June 24, 2020

Energized by Love

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – June 24, 2020

Jesus wept. The people who were standing nearby said, “See how much he loved him! John 11:35-36

Knowing we are well-loved by God will empower us to love others well, especially those we are called to love and lead at work.

I didn’t always understand this principle. I was busy learning about leadership before I ever became a person of faith. When, as a nineteen-year-old college freshman, I wanted to date this amazing girl who had caught my eye, she announced that I would need to get her father’s permission. How hard can that be? I thought. After sizing me up and asking me a few questions, he told me that if I wanted to date his daughter I would need to attend church with their family. I was pretty apprehensive, not knowing what to expect since I hadn’t grown up in a church setting. Would I find it embarrassing? Would they ask me questions I couldn’t answer? Would the whole experience be weird?

But I really liked her, and I thought that I could get some good market research done by hanging around with Christians. I was in the process of building a new business, so all the contacts I could get would be a plus! In my mind, church was just another useful tool for networking. Well, I married that girl, and I soon learned that a connection with Jesus was much more important than making another business connection. 

Even for people who have been believers for a long time, sometimes there is a similar disconnect between our “religious” activities and our “corporate” ones. My friend, Doug Spada, in his book Monday Morning Atheist, points out that many of us attend church on Sunday so we can check off the spiritual responsibilities on our “to-do” list but fail to integrate what we learn or experience there with the activities of our work week. Faith makes little or no impact on how we function in the business world.

“Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless” (1 Corinthians 15:58).

The spiritually mature leader is the one who is always asking the important question, “Where is the Holy Spirit in what we are doing?” It is all too easy for our board meetings to begin with a token prayer as a tip of the hat to God, and then just go on to business without ever again asking the question of what God would want for our organization. I’ve seen this even in organizations focused on ministry goals. This leaves those board members busy, but barren.

I’m always striving to have the attitude voiced by the great American evangelist, George Whitfield, who travelled all over the United States preaching untold sermons and sharing the Gospel with millions of people: “I am weary in the Lord’s work, but not weary of the Lord’s work.” I worry that many contemporary leaders are both weary in and weary of, due to their reliance on their own strength and talents rather than learning to lean on God’s wisdom and strength. Many such leaders need to not just learn new ways of leading, but to sit at the feet of the One who is the greatest leader of all. Through growing spiritually, they will discover a new focus and a new courage and empathy that will transform their leadership style. 

It all starts with having the right focus. By focusing on the unseen with eyes of faith, we see the spiritual realities that underlie everything. And the greatest of those unseen realities is the love we experience from God, unseen by our eyes, but experienced in our heart and soul. 

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18).

Prayer

Dear Lord, I lean into your precious love so I will see and love others as precious in your sight, in Jesus’ name, amen.


Application

What one way can I better love those whom I serve at work?


Related Reading

Psalm 138:8; Isaiah 49:4, 65:23; 1 Corinthians 3:5; Colossians 3:23

Enjoy Boyd’s newest and well loved 40 day devotional book: Wisdom For Living. Wise living is all about the Lord Jesus Christ. What is His best? What is His will?


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The spiritually mature person is the one who is always asking the important question, “Where is the Holy Spirit in what we are doing? #WisdomHunters #love #truth #Jesus


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