The Christian Public Servant – “especially at work”

workers reading the bible3

November 30, 2017 – Thursday

Reading

2 Peter 3:18(a) [ESV] But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ

Reflection

When I was child, I loved going to Sunday school. I loved hearing all the stories and experiencing new things about God every single week. Now that I’m an adult, that love of learning and growing has become cynical. After all, I’ve heard every story and every sermon – so there’s nothing else to learn… YEAH, RIGHT!

God calls you and me to continually grow in our faith – especially at work. There must be a bible-study group that meets after work. Perhaps you and a coworker will read a bible chapter each day, and talk about it during lunch. Or, is there someone who needs to pray with you? Or, I bet there is someone whose actions are truly Christ-like – a coworker from whom you can learn more about God than any sermon offered.

We cannot simply sit still. All of us need to keep the passion and desire going. All of us need to constantly grow in our walk with Christ – especially at work.

At your job today, don’t think there’s nothing else to learn about your faith and Christ. Be looking to see where and with whom you can grow.

You will find there is always something else to learn about Him – especially at work!

Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You for Your patience with Your child. Help me to be constantly seeking after You and growing in Your grace and truth – especially at work. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Brock Wolitarsky, M.A.
Rural Carrier Associate (RCA)
U.S. Postal Service
Everett, Washington USA

The Christian Public Servant – “reason for the hope”

reason for the hope1

November 29, 2017 – Wednesday

Reading

1 Peter 3:15(b) [NIV] Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.

Reflection

In my field of work, I take care of at-risk youth. My husband and I live with them as we rehabilitate them, and our young children live with us as well. Due to the nature of our work, we moved away from family and everything familiar to the location of our mission.

Many ask why we would leave our home, family, church family, and friends to take care of some “bad” kids. Others express concern over our children being negatively influenced, or maybe even hurt by such youth.

I always respond that my faith teaches service to others, and my God commands that I give of my time and talents to better this world. Even though our job is tough and the rewards are not immediately seen, we do what we do because we have hope – hope that our actions today will have a lasting impact on future generations. And the reason for the hope is Christ.

Perhaps you have forgotten the reason for the hope in your own field of work? Maybe you’ve hit a plateau on your job and are wondering why you just don’t up and quit. Well, I have news for you, my friend. All work is meaningful work, and will have an impact on somebody’s life. Do not lose hope in God’s purpose for your work and career.

At work today, when someone asks: do not be afraid to speak of the reason for the hope. Let everyone know you follow His will and continue to work your hardest every day, trusting that He has great things in store for you.

Yes, freely express the reason for the hope for the work that you do. Christ!

Prayer

Dear Lord, thank You for all You are doing for me. Thank You for instilling within me a heart for service. I pray I will continue to proclaim the reason for the Hope – whatever work I do will be made meaningful in Your will. In Your name, I pray. Amen.

MeShel M.J Bussey, MPA
Robertson School of Government
Regent University
Virginia Beach, Virginia USA

The Christian Public Servant – “God loves you”

God loves you1

November 28, 2017 – Tuesday

Reading

Genesis 1:1 [NKJV] In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Deuteronomy 23:5(b) [NKJV] but the Lord your God turned the curse into a blessing for you, because the Lord your God loves you.

Reflection

Sometimes I need to check my attitude because it is not like Christ would have me be. A bad attitude is contagious and can lead to bad things at work. When bad things happen to me, I scream “why?” at God. It is so easy to forget what God, my Father, does for me all day long to turn the bad into the good for me because He is with me. He does this because He loves me just like He loves you. Do you realize that God loves you enough that He is with you 24/7? It is easy to forget, very easy. God loves you like any good father who loves his children and wants to be with them, training and steering them to a bright future.

Take a moment and really think about this right now…God loves you! Seriously, really think about it. The God who spoke the Universe into existence loves you. You are important to Him. He wants to know you personally each and every day. He wants you to take time for Him – even at work. Think about how much God would appreciate it if you invited Him into your workday – like a child would invite a loving parent into a play day? He is already there but it is always nice to be personally asked.

I have a challenge for you. Wake up saying “Good morning God! Would You like to hang out with me today?” At noon, say “God would You like to join me for lunch?” And at the close of day, say “Good night, God. Thanks for being with me today. Want to do it again tomorrow?”

See what happens to your attitude when things go bad but you have purposely invited God to be with you today. See if your coworkers notice a change in you because you are inviting God to be with you in your workplace just because He loves you and you love Him. What will people think when they see that God loves you!

Prayer

Lord, I invite You to join me in my day. Help me be conscious of Your presence each day as I walk with You in my work. Let my attitude reflect the God that is standing next to me because You love me and I love You. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen.

Kevin Cooney, Ph.D.
Visiting Professor
Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
Beppu, Japan

The Christian Public Servant – “starts with a praise”

book cover - Christ in Job & Career

November 27, 2017 – Monday

Reading

Ephesians 2:10 [NLT] For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do good things he planned for us long ago.

Reflection

This week starts with praise! Since 2012, our Lord has permitted The Christian Public Servant to be one of His instruments in the workplace. And, for the third straight year, our Lord has permitted the coeditors to publish the devotionals as a hard copy book through Emeth Press.

This year’s version is titled Christ in Job and Career: Daily Devotions for Christians at Work (Emeth Press). The coeditors are donating all royalties to one or more Christian ministries. So, we are not making any money by alerting you of this publication.

But if you know someone who could use a hard copy of a workplace devotional, or perhaps that person is you, we invite you to purchase the book. To order a copy (or two!), go to either Amazon or the Emeth Press website. You will bless the person who receives it for Christmas, and you will bless a Christian ministry that will receive the royalties.

And hey! If you write a devotional this year for The Christian Public Servant electronic ministry, it will appear in the book version next year. So perhaps you are called to write one? Perhaps one per month? If so, contact me at jslack0229@live.com, and I will send you a tip sheet.

The coeditors of this new book, Christ in Job and Career: Daily Devotions for Christians at Work, are truly blessed to be a part of His good things! And that is why this week starts with a praise!

Prayer

Father God, I praise You for blessing me with this ministry. I ask that You use it to create Your masterpiece in the hearts of the faithful. In Your Son’s name, I pray. Amen.

James D. Slack, Ph.D., Ph.D.
Professor
Jackson State University
Jackson, Mississippi USA

The Christian Public Servant – “do more than just listen”

Christ at work1

November 24, 2017 – Friday

Reading

James 1:22 [NLT] But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.

Ephesians 3:20 [NLT] Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.

Reflection

When I first became a Christian, here on life row, it was so easy. All I had to do was learn about Jesus. I stayed in my cell, away from the anger and sadness outside my bars, and read the bible. I listened to pastors and attended Christian meetings – without saying or doing anything.

Then I realized the difference between learning about Jesus and following Jesus. I decided it was time to do more than just listen. At first, I was nervous – very nervous – to do or say something in His name. I was afraid the other brothers, and the correctional officers, would make fun of me. Tell me I don’t know anything. Remind me of who I am – just another brother on death row.

But God was working mightily in me. Through His power, I could accomplish any task. And while I am still nervous, scripture reminds me it’s better to be nervous than foolish.

Does God need you to do more than just listen? (You know the answer!) There is coworker going through trouble who needs to know how Jesus can help. Maybe God requires a comment from you in a meeting – a comment that glorifies Him. Perhaps He wants you to show kindness and mercy in His name. Maybe He wants you to stop to help that homeless man you drive by every day. You are going to be nervous, but know His mighty power will help you.

At work today, don’t fool yourself. As a Christian, you must do more than just listen.

Prayer

In the name of Jesus, I pray. Father, you give me Your word, but I must do more than just listen and read Your word. I must obey Your word. I know You will give me what it takes to do Your word. Amen.

Jimmy Davis, Jr.
Z-557 Unit N-10
Death Row
Holman Correctional Facility
Alabama Department of Corrections
Atmore, Alabama USA

The Christian Public Servant – “should be thankful”

November 23, 2017 – Thursday

Reading

Isaiah 12:4(b) [NIV] Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done, and proclaim that his name is exalted.

Reflection

We work so hard, we sometimes forget what we work for. We work so hard, a lot of times we forget why we should be thankful.

When I remember, I work to serve God and what He has blessed me with. I work to serve Him in my workplace, and I work to serve God in the hearts and minds of the students He entrusts me with. And when I remember, I am thankful for the blessings He bestows on me in this life. The blessings of home and family. And in my family, when I remember, I work to serve God in the hearts and minds of my loved-ones.

Whether or not you work today, perhaps you have the workday off, remember why you work and why you should be thankful. And when you remember, I bet your list of thanksgivings is not much different than mine.

Today, let not work get in the way of your heart and mind. Know you should be thankful.

Prayer

Father God, I give You thanks. You give me work, but so much more! And so, I praise Your name, and I proclaim that Your name is exalted. In Jesus, I pray. Amen.

James D. Slack, Ph.D., Ph.D.
Professor
Jackson State University
Jackson, Mississippi USA

The Christian Public Servant – “notice the best”

flight attendants2

November 22, 2017 – Wednesday

Reading

I John 4:8 [NKJV] He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

I Corinthians 13:5(b) [TLB] Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy.

Reflection

About three years ago, while on a work-related flight, a very irritable passenger gave the flight attendants a tough time. To their credit, the flight attendants did not give into their emotions and were models of professionalism throughout the flight. As I reflected during a layover, I pulled out my laptop and logged onto the airline’s web page. There I wrote a compliment, naming the flight attendants and testifying in detail to their incredible skill. It only took a few minutes, but it felt right to notice the best in people doing a job well.

Since that day I make it a practice, when travelling on work, to pick the person who gives the best service and write a detailed compliment. I am never likely to see that person again, and he or she likely will not remember who I was. I do it because Jesus sees the best in me despite my sins. God has commanded me to love others as He loves me. In my work, therefore, I try to notice the best in those around me.

As a Christian public servant, choose to notice the best in those whom you serve and those with whom you serve. There will be angry citizens and rude coworkers, but there will be people who should be seen for doing their best. Choose to notice the best in others today at work, and you will see what God sees in you!

BTW, a few months after that first compliment, I was on a flight with the same attendants. When they saw my name on the manifest, they remembered me. You see, that irritable passenger had filed a complaint but my compliment had cleared them.

God is good, and it is always good to notice the best in others!

Prayer

Lord, use me today to see the good in the people around me. Help me to be a blessing to others. Let me lead a life of love and service to You in each work today. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen.

Kevin Cooney
Visiting Professor
Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
Beppu, Japan