Living as a christian in the marketplace

When I was first given the task of writing about “How does being Christian affect our work/business?”, I felt burdened, because it was just another task on my to do list. My plan was just to put together a long list of “Christian” things to do, such as read bible daily; love others as yourself; donate generously; put family above work etc. Those are not incorrect, but without the right mindset, they are empty. In fact, they can breed contempt and bitterness towards God. This is exactly the path I was heading towards.

For a long time, I felt my Christian walk has plateaued, and I became legalistic. I did Christian things without Christian love. One Sunday, the preacher challenged me by asking whom I was doing things for? Was I serving at church, and going to Sunday service, because “I am a Christian”, or because I love God? Do I serve so I can earn favours from God, or is God an end to Himself? In other words, am I serving for me and my glory, or for God and His Glory? Sadly, I admitted that it was for me. I wanted others to know that I had a great Christian walk, and that I was OK. In reality, I was not. In “Gospel” by JD Greear, he says,

“Whatever we think makes us better than others, we feel proud about, and that leads us to more sin. Pride gives rise to violence, impatience, intolerance, judgementalism, and other vices. Of course, on the other hand, when we don’t feel like we measure up to others, we despair. Our sense of nakedness and fear of rejection grows. This leads only to more fervent attempts to distinguish ourselves from others, and jealousy and hatred of those around us. Our despair creates a void that we often turn to the lusts of the flesh to fill. Despair over our soul “nakedness” drives people to crave drugs, alcohol, creature comforts etc. It turns people into workaholics, serial romantics, and obsessive parents.”

That describes me pretty well. (Of course, I’ve never done drugs, so I’m definitely not THAT bad.) God exposed my sin for not loving God above all; He also reminded of the work he did for me on the cross. The gospel is simply that I am a sinner. But God so loved the world, that He sent his one and only Son to die for my sin. My sin is no longer mine, but nailed to the Cross. God sees me veiled the perfection of Jesus Christ. There is NOTHING that I can do to make Him love me more. There is NOTHING that I can do to make Him love me less.

I knew all of this before, but I finally started to understand the “power of the Gospel”. It started to move from my head to my heart. Living, or doing business, as a “Christian” is not about doing the right things; it’s about having the right relationship with God, out of which the right actions flow. So what does a Christian do in business? Read bible daily; love others as yourself; donate generously; put family above work. But above all, Love God.

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