June 30, 2011

Career Challenges

Written by Wisdom Hunters

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today- June 30, 2011

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men…(Colossians 3:23).

Career challenges are meant to keep us close to Christ, and not drive us to default by just our own determination. These occupational hazards come as a result of economic downturns, or when a recession rears its ugly head. The fear of layoffs, downsizing, and restructuring can linger over our life like a bad dream. Our confidence is shaken, as we wonder if we will continue to receive a paycheck. We may feel extremely vulnerable, because our industry is caught in change and consolidation.

However, these down cycles are your opportunity to remain a dependable employee, partner, investor or boss. For instance, make sure your attitude aligns around the Almighty’s big picture for your life. This season of service has been a gift from your Savior. Going forward you will be a much better person than before. Use these days of uncertainty to stay engaged in your job. Remain an asset rather than a liability to your company. Your work is for the Lord first, so labor with passion, focus and diligence.

Furthermore, there are various ways to keep a stellar testimony during these trying times at the office. First, stay focused on doing your job with excellence, and don’t allow fear to force you into leaving prematurely. Sometimes you feel conflicted, like Nehemiah, where he was building the wall with half his resources and fighting the enemy of discouragement with the other half (Nehemiah 4:17).

Secondly, be flexible, as people leave, new responsibilities may need to be migrated under your management. See this as an opportunity to expand your capacity and learning. Bosses remember those who worked harder and smarter during the hard times. Moreover, be willing to get out of your comfort zone and serve in a totally new role if that is what it takes to weather your current vocational storm.

“Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will serve before kings; he will not serve before obscure men” (Proverbs 22:29).

Lastly, if you are a boss, supervisor, manager, director, vice president or ‘C’ leader, do the right thing, the right way and trust God with the results. Stay under the authority of wise objective counsel and follow through on their advice. Make the hard call early to let someone go, but do it with grace and generosity. Pray with and for the team member you ask to exit. Look them in the eye and affirm their contribution to the organization. Do everything you can in good conscience to provide them contract work, or connect them with other career opportunities.

Christians have a responsibility to reach out to those in transition and to walk with them additional miles in their search for work (Matthew 5:41). The way you manage is your ministry, so take it seriously and prayerfully. Your career constituents are your congregation—they need to see you model Christ in the marketplace. Men and women are most vulnerable and teachable in the middle of career challenges and transitions, so use this widow of ministry to love them toward the Lord. Career challenges are meant to draw everyone closer to Christ!

“So that everyone he has made may know his work, he stops all people from their labor” (Job 37:7).

How can I best model Christ in my current career challenge?

Related Readings: 2 Chronicles 34:12; Nehemiah 5:15; Psalm 127:1; 1 Timothy 4:10

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Additional Resource: Hard copy of 365 day devotional: Seeking Daily the Heart of God and 90-day devotional Infusion… click here: http://bit.ly/bQHNIE

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  1. Susan Taft says:

    How about a devotional for the unemployed? As my husband continues to try to find work, the businesses he interviews do not follow your devotional instruction. If you are not chosen for the position, you don’t receive a phone call or email. The company just forgets about you. No follow up. Just like you said…leaves you vulnerable, because noone really cares. Seems most are out for #1. My husband would gladly give it his best if he had work

  2. William L. Huntsman says:

    Why is it that all of these Scriptures are taken out of context? What about the blue collar Christians? I am a working man who has gotten downright filthy day after day just to earn a paycheck, and I am the FIRST one to get canned (as well as a couple of million others) WE are not being asked by God to serve as CEO’s or even supervisors, and believe me when I tell you, the bosses could care less about helping me out regardless of my contributions to the company. I am also not a rookie christian, my testimony has over 25 years of being a christian to back it up. Please try to show more respect for the no-name christians that have servants hearts, most of us don’t have office jobs, we drive trucks, work in warehouses, serve food in restaurants, fix cars AND we are educated in the Word. Being a christian is anything but a sugar coated song of praise, and those who choose to offer wisdom or scripture need to be be realistic about being in the world, but not of the world. I am not angry with GOD, I am, however, very wary of a christian that refuses to acknowledge the hard times we are facing now. Wisdom comes from paying dues, getting burned, THEN facing God and learning the truth about his plan for us, not a masters degree in theology but no experience with day to day life. Please consider what is written here before offering “wisdom”.

    Thank you for your time, and patience.

  3. Randy says:

    Thanks for reminding us we serve God, and are responsible for being a good and faithful steward of the talents and abilities He has blessed us with.

    Times may be tough, but God is still our sufficiency! Very thankful to be living in the USA were we can worship God in spirit and truth and pursue any career opportunity that I want to work at.

  4. Susan Jensen says:

    Hi William,
    Don’t know if you’ll read this or not, kind of late according to date of article but I just read your comment on Career Challenges. You sound very hurt, disappointed and frustrated and justifably so. As I read your comments I thought how sad that you feel so put down for your service as a blue collar laborer. There are far more blue collar laborers than CEOs and the blue collar laborers are probably the back bone of labor in our nation. Blue collar laborers are very honorable positions and as you stated hold some of the hardest jobs. Our hats should go off to you. But William, its not the job title, degree, or no degree that matters to God. We’re all equal in His eyes. But you just gotta know that with some positions there will be a greater degrees of accountability. I hope by now that employment has come to you and the love that God has for you has healed your wounds. May God’s grace and peace keep you.

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