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Take This Job and Love It - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
April 28, 2021 2:00 am

Take This Job and Love It - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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April 28, 2021 2:00 am

The tedium, tension, and labor we feel at work can give way to a higher motive that brings authentic joy and deep satisfaction. In the message "Take This Job and Love It," Skip considers some principles that will transform your outlook on your job.

This teaching is from the series Rock Solid.

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Website: https://connectwithskip.com

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This week's DevoMail: https://connnectwithskip.com/devomail

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Harvard did a study that when people get hired, you know what 85% of the time they get hired for? Their attitude, not their smarts.

Only 15% of the time people get hired because they're really smart and they know facts and figures. 85% of the time it's attitude. And for believers, it ought to be the attitude of gratitude. Gratitude is the attitude that sets the altitude for living.

Jesus spent time working as a carpenter and many of his parables had to do with work and wages. So what does that mean for you today? Today on Connect with Skip Heite, Skip shares how you can experience more joy and satisfaction at your job by living out your faith in the workplace. But first, we want to share about where you can hear even more biblically solid teachings from Skip. My TB program, Connect with Skip Heitzig, is now airing on the Hillsong channel on Saturdays at 4 30 p.m. Mountain Time. Watch there or tune in on TBN on Sundays at 5 30 a.m. Eastern.

Check your local listings. Thank you, Skip. Now we're in 1 Peter Chapter 2 as we dive into the teaching with Skip Heitzig. And so he says submit.

It's a very practical command. Servants submit to your masters. But here's what you need to know. What the New Testament did is teach enough principles that eventually slavery would become undermined in the Roman Empire. Started in the second century A.D. by about the fourth century, there was no slavery.

And virtually every resource I looked up to discover why, including Encyclopedia Britannica, was that enough people in the Roman Empire had now become Christians that they started looking at people differently. So it served to eradicate slavery. They started looking at people with compassion in the image of God.

Not a piece of property, but a human being like they were. And so slavery was abolished. As time went on, slavery persisted. But there were anti-slavery movements usually led by Christians. In England, William Wilberforce is a notable example, along with his friend John Newton, who wrote the song Amazing Grace. In America, there were the abolitionists, mostly led by Christian believers. So New Testament principles that would say submit to your harsh employer, your master, also gave enough information and inspiration that when a person adopted the Christian message, eventually it permeated his culture.

So that's the practical command. And I want to give you the principle to write down. Here's principle number one. Work hard and work well. Be a hard worker. Be the kind of worker that any employer would want to hire.

How's that for being a Christian? Just work hard and work well. Many years ago when I was jobless, I had been trained in the medical profession. My field was radiology and I needed a job. And so I went to a local hospital to a department. I put in my resume and I had an interview. And they asked me questions.

And at the end of the interview, they said this. It's the word everyone hates to hear. Thank you. We'll call you. Don't call us.

We'll call you. Which usually means bye-bye. You don't get the job. And I knew that. And I was turning around to leave and I paused and I remembered this, this idea, this text. I turned it and I said, hey, listen, I know you're going to interview a lot of people, but I just want you to know something. If you were to hire me, I will be the best worker you have in your department. He sat up in his chair and he said, you got the job.

Then I left going, oh, dear. Now I got to make good on that promise, right? But isn't that what it's all about? Christianity, in the workplace, this is a stage by which to prove that that is true. You want to be the kind of worker to an employer that they would want to hire and want to keep. Work hard, work well. Notice he says something in verse 18, that you were to be submissive to your masters with all what?

Fear. It means respect. Be respectful. Don't be a bitter employee. Don't be the kind of person who always has a negative disposition.

Work hard, work well. That's a practical command. The second is a potential complication, for you'll notice as we go through verse 18 down in the words that follow, that not every boss is good. Not every boss is gentle.

He says, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. Harsh is a word scolios. Ever heard of scoliosis? A twisted spine? It means a twisted person. Harsh, twisted, crooked, because of that. Now, if a person is that way, the employee is going to suffer, and you'll notice the wording in verse 19. You endure grief, he says. You are suffering wrongfully, he says.

Verse 20, if you do good and yet you suffer, and why would they suffer? Because their boss, their master, is harsh. Ever had a boss like that? A harsh boss, and you just think, great, I thought this job was so cool, and that's my boss, and it gets worse. You might be having that boss right now.

I might be just, you might be that boss. One job that I had, there was this supervisor that I had, and she didn't like me. One of the reasons she didn't like me is because I was a believer, and she just thought that stuff was hokey pokey, hocus-pocus weird stuff, but one of the reasons is that on Monday mornings, I would come in happy, and she just thought that is not possible. I came in like humming a tune, whistling, singing, and she finally turned to me. She goes, would you stop that? I go, what?

Stop singing. It's Monday. She just resented any happiness on Monday morning, so it's very hard for me to do that, but I do remember that she would give me lots more work, and the kind of jobs nobody else in the department really wanted, and life wasn't easy because of that. Here's the second principle I want to give you, and I want you to write this one down. Life is a mix of good and bad. Use both to advertise. Life is a mix of good and bad. Use both good and bad to advertise. You're going to have good bosses. You're going to have bad bosses. You're going to have great jobs that they ask you to do. You're going to have jobs that are distasteful and that you hate, but can I be as bold as to simply say at least you have a job?

I mean, can't we as believers just start right there and say, okay, you know, I really don't like what I'm doing here. I don't like this job. I don't like this situation, this work condition. I don't like, but you know what?

You know what? I have a job. I get a paycheck.

I have employment, and then to say beyond that, I believe the Lord put me here. It elevates your position, and it changes your attitude. You know, Harvard did a study.

I was reading this week. Harvard did a study that when people get hired, you know what 85 percent of the time they get hired for? Their attitude, not their smarts.

Only 15 percent of the time people get hired because they're really smart, and they know facts and figures. 85 percent of the time it's attitude, and for believers it ought to be the attitude of gratitude. Gratitude is the attitude that sets the altitude for living and for working, especially for working. So life is a mix of good and bad.

Use both to advertise. The third swash of this is a powerful consideration. He continues to be a powerful consideration. He continues in verse 19, please notice, and he says this is commendable.

This is good. You're going to have good bosses and bad bosses, and when you have a really bad boss, he says this is commendable. If because of conscience toward God, one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. For what credit is it if when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? You're a bad worker. You mouth off, you slack off, and you get punished so what? You deserved it. But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God.

In other words, God is really pleased with that. Now this gets to the very motive for which we work. Why do you work? Is it just to get a paycheck? I know that's important. Is it just to make a living? That is important. Is it just to provide for your family? All of that is very, very noble and very important. But could there be yet another level of motivation that is better than all of those?

You just read it. God is pleased. This is commendable before God. No doubt, and you've got to think back, no doubt many people 2,000 years ago when they read this letter were servants who had been beaten by their masters, who were given unreasonable tasks and worked unreasonable amount of hours, far more than our labor board today would ever allow. But back then, 2,000 years ago, they did not have what we have today. They did not have union representatives. They did not have human resource departments. They did not have government agencies to appeal their case.

They could not bring a civil lawsuit against an employer. They were slaves to a master. And life was harsh.

And Peter knew that when he wrote. And so he said, sometimes you suffer because you deserve it. You cut corners. You don't finish the job. You get in trouble.

You quit early. There's a sign in a business in San Francisco that says, if you don't believe in the resurrection of the dead, you ought to be here five minutes before closing time. Sad if any of those were believers. Believers.

I read an interesting survey. They did a lot of digging for this one. And they discovered that American workers admitted to goofing off 20% of the time. That's one whole day per week, essentially. Talk about extra things they do for themselves, extra phone calls they make, extra time spent at lunch or break or whatever. Their own little deal.

20% of the time goofing off. Sometimes, Peter says, the suffering you have is undeserved suffering. Peter says, in that case, be patient. Endure. You've been accused falsely. This is commendable with God.

If you take it patiently, for the conscience sake before the Lord, God loves that. Now, can you think of a few others? Gosh, they're all over the Bible, are they not? Of people who, at their work, were shamefully treated. Daniel was. He was accused by his peers of wrongdoing, even though he did nothing wrong. Joseph was. He was accused of doing things wrong. He was put in prison a couple of different occasions. By the lies of other people, he did nothing wrong. In fact, at the end of all that, he said, you meant it for evil.

God meant it for good. I have a question. How on earth can a person live like that? Live victoriously when treated like that.

How could they do that? How could you do it at work? Here's the answer. Take God to work with you.

That's principle number three. I want you to jot this down. Take God to work with you. If you want to transform any job into a real joy, take God to work with you. Ephesians chapter 6. Work with enthusiasm, Paul writes, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.

He goes on to say, not as men pleasers, but pleasing God. Not with your eye on the clock, not with your eye on the boss. The boss is coming. Look busy. Be the kind of worker whose eye is on the Lord and not on the clock. Take God to work with you. How about if you looked at that lousy job and said, Lord, I'm doing this as unto you, because I want you to be pleased with my...

I want to leave at the end of the day saying, I work for God today. Stradivarius violins are known for not being cheap instruments. Am I right?

Is that an understatement? I was talking to a music store owner in this town who has one of the finest instrumentation, fine musical instrument places in the country, in the world it's known for. And he said, I've had three or four different Stradivarius violins here that I've sold. I said, how much do they sell for? Like 20 bucks?

He said, each instrument sells for several million dollars apiece. Why? Why is that? Just because some fancy Italian dude's name on it? You don't want to know why? You want to know a secret? Antonius Stradivarius, the owner of that shop, believed that no instrument should leave his shop unless it was near perfect as humanly possible.

And here's why. Quote, he said, God needs violins to send his music into the world, and if any violins are defective, then God's music will be spoiled. Close quote. Did you hear that? Do you know what Antonius Stradivarius did to every worker in his factory that felt they had a mundane job of cutting and gluing wood together? He just elevated their task and saying, you're doing this for God. This is God's music. I want these to be God's instruments.

Do it as unto the Lord. I've told you before about those three workers. Each one was doing exactly the same thing. One person went up to the first worker, said, what are you doing? He said, I'm breaking rocks, scowling at them. The second one, he goes, what are you doing? He goes, I'm earning a living. Asked the third guy, what are you doing? He said, I'm building a cathedral.

Three different attitudes, exactly the same job. I'm just making it through or I'm doing something for God. That's the powerful consideration. Bring God to work with you. And the second one, he goes, powerful consideration.

Bring God to work with you. Fourth, and we'll close on this, a personal calling. A personal calling. I want you to read something that I hope will floor you like it did me when I read it again.

Verse 21, for to this you were called. Stop right there. Stop right there.

To what are they called? Well, he just said, you're going to have jobs where your employer is really good and you're going to have jobs where your employer is really harsh and you're going to be treated wrongfully and you're going to suffer for it. Okay, what's the good news? The good news is you were called to that.

Huh? To this you were called to suffer. Look what he says in the rest of the verse, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example that you should follow in his steps.

I can only imagine what this sounded like as they read this verse. I'm called to this and here's why. Who do you follow? What's his name? Jesus Christ.

You follow him. What happened to him? He got crucified. He suffered. You are following a suffering savior, which means by necessity, from time to time you're going to be called to suffer. Paul wrote about the fellowship of the sufferer.

Paul wrote about the fellowship of his sufferings. To this you were called. To this you were called.

That's real submission. To look around and go, I hate this job. This job hurts and maybe, just maybe, God has called me to this. Brings you to principle number four. Principle number four, life transforming principle. God's plan isn't that you just show up, but that you grow up.

God's will, his plan, isn't that you just show up to work, but that you grow up. This job isn't just to satisfy you or supplement you. It's to shape you. It's to shape you. How many of you would agree that suffering can be beneficial?

Anybody? I mean, that's all. Do you believe that suffering can be beneficial? Absolutely. If you're a Christian, you must admit suffering can be beneficial.

I can think of a few things it can do. Number one, it keeps us pure. Nothing will purify you like suffering, like a goldsmith who heats up the gold and pours the hot golden metal from vessel to vessel and the impurities rise to the top. Suffering will keep you pure. Number two, suffering will keep you humble. Paul the Apostle was lifted up and prone to pride because he saw revelations of God nobody else saw. And he said, to counteract that, God gave me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to buffet me.

I hated it. I asked God to take it away. He goes, uh-uh. I'm paraphrasing. My grace is all you need, Paul. My grace is all you need.

So you know what he said? Then I'm going to rejoice in my suffering because it keeps me humble. It keeps you pure. It keeps you humble.

Number three, it keeps you dependent. When you're brought low through suffering, you depend on God. Your prayer life is never better than when life hurts.

Is that right? So is it any wonder that God allows or even prescribes periods of suffering? So God's plan isn't that you just show up, it's that you grow up.

To this you are called. But I want to say this because I remember the bad job, I remember bad job situations, a couple of them. Life has been pretty good, but they're not bad. They're not bad. They're not bad. I remember bad job situations, a couple of them.

Life has been pretty good, but there's a couple of bad ones. And I remember as a believer going, could this be God's will? And it wasn't his will permanently or eventually, but it was his will temporarily because I needed to be shaped. I needed to be whipped into shape. And some of those harsh bosses were God's tool.

I close with this story. Sid was an ugly caterpillar with orange eyes. He spent his whole life groveling and squirming in the dirt on God's earth. One day, Sid got a terrific idea. He crawled up the stem of a bush, made his way to a branch, and secreted a translucent fluid onto that branch.

He made a kind of button out of the fluid, turned himself around, and attached his posterior anatomy to that button. Then he shaped himself into a J, curled up, and proceeded to build a house around himself. There was a lot of activity for a while, but before long, Sid was entirely covered up, and you couldn't see him anymore.

One day, an eruption took place. Sid's house shook violently. That little cocoon jerked and shook till a large, beautiful wing protruded. Sid stretched it out in all of its glory.

He continued his work until another gorgeous wing emerged. At this stage of Sid's life, you might have wanted to help him, but you didn't because if you tried to pull the rest of Sid's house off, you would maim him for the rest of his life. So you let Sid convulse and wriggle his weight of freedom without any outside intervention. Eventually, Sid got his house off his back, ventured out onto a branch, stretched, spread his wings. He was nothing like the old worm he used to be.

And you know what? Sid didn't crawl back down the branch and start groveling and squirming in the dirt again. Instead, he took off with a new kind of power, flight power.

Now, instead of swallowing dust, Sid flies from flower to flower, enjoying the sweet nectar in God's wonderful creation. Did that process hurt? Did his life get shaken because of it?

Yeah. But the submission brought a great sense of freedom at the end. That's Skip Heitzig with a message from the series Rock Solid. Now we want to share about a resource that helps you live confidently in the peace of Jesus, even in life's uncertainties. So how is your stress level on a scale of one to ten? Stress is a thief, a robber of peace and joy. Here's Skip Heitzig with a pointed observation. If you don't live with an anchor of faith, you're going to drift in a sea of anxiety. And most people in the world, they don't have anything to anchor.

They have no real grand scheme or purpose in life. We want to help you live with an anchor of faith so you can learn to lean into God in times of anxiety by sending you three powerful resources. Skip Heitzig's new booklet, Overcoming an Anxious Mind. His teaching, Worship and the Uncertainty on CD. Plus, the War is Over worship CD. This bundle is our thanks when you give $35 or more today to help expand the Bible teaching outreach of Skip Heitzig.

Jesus as Savior brings peace with God, but Jesus as Lord brings the peace of God. Call now to request these three encouraging resources when you give, 800-922-1888, or give online securely at connectwithskip.com slash offer. Did you know that you have a chance to help listeners like you grow in their relationship with the Lord?

It's true. Today, you can help strengthen your relationship with God by giving a gift to help keep these encouraging teachings on the air and available to you. Just visit connectwithskip.com slash donate to give a gift now. That's connectwithskip.com slash donate, or you can call 800-922-1888.

800-922-1888. Thank you. Tune in tomorrow as Skip Heitzig shares vital truths to encourage you as you pursue God's purpose for your life. Jesus Christ is the one by whom we trace the behavior of our life, whether good times or bad times. And that's the reason why we put up, endure harsh circumstances and harsh people is because Jesus did it. Make a connection, make a connection at the foot of the cross and cast all burdens on His word. Make a connection, connection. Connect with Skip Heitzig is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never changing truth in ever changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-24 14:40:41 / 2023-11-24 14:49:51 / 9

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