We are currently piloting a new process of handling our work in my region of the company. It is a team approach that requires a vastly different perspective to the way we each do our work. It demands a high level of trust and self-sacrifice, not always easy to find in the corporate world where individual performance and personal career goals are the norm.
How do I preach the Gospel, love God, and love people in this situation? Perhaps Paul’s writing to the Christians at Philippi sheds light on the matter.
In the midst of significant infighting among the believers there, Paul writes a letter promoting selflessness and unity. At one point he challenges them, saying, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others” (Philippians 2:3-4).
The Message translation of the same passage captures the sentiment this way: "Don't push your way to the front; don't sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don't be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand."
Maybe, just maybe, the goal is much higher than simply our personal success in the marketplace. The greatest commandments Jesus outlines are turned outward. By praying for our coworkers, we become interested in the well-being of others, but not because it promises any return on our investment. It’s simply what we should do.
Prayer: God, help me to love each of my coworkers today. May I serve them earnestly, not out of selfish ambition, but out of a sincere desire to do what is right. Give me strength to do good work today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.