As leaders, we easily get wrapped up in our work, applying incredible focus to our efforts in order to get things done.
Doing our best and working hard is good, regardless of our position or role. Remember these verses?
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters… It is the Lord Christ you are serving." Colossians 3:23, 24b
Of course, as leaders we know that our efforts are multiplied through good strategy and planning. And so we apply ourselves diligently to strategy development, knowing that this is also in line with God’s will for our working lives.
But like every other effort that we put forward – whether this is through ourselves or those on our teams – we remember that results are not guaranteed. There are just too many variables at play for us to guarantee the result, no matter how well we plan or how hard we work.
But this does at all mean that we should just work harder, does it? The Apostle Paul offers some additional perspective on what it means to work as if for the Lord in another one of his letters to the early church:
"Work with enthusiasm, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people." Ephesians 6:7 NLT
Paul suggests that doing our best for the LORD means working with enthusiasm. Keeping ourselves and our team enthusiastic as we do our best means keeping perspective, even if our strategies and plans are frustrated by internal or external events.
Let’s go back to the Bible to see what it is telling us for these situations, drawing again on the wisdom offered in the book of Proverbs:
"In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps." Proverbs 16:9
"Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails." Proverbs 19:21
To be clear, here’s what these verses are saying:
Business leaders may strategize & plan, but it is God Himself who determines success and failure.
God is in control.
So, if God – the creator of heaven and earth – already knows the outcome of your business strategies and plans, then it is to our advantage to tap into this wisdom; the very topic of our next reading.
In closing, consider these two verses as they may apply to your work today:
"How much better to get wisdom than gold, to get insight rather than silver!" Proverbs 16:16
"If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you." James 1:5
Reflection / Application