Last month I attended my KIROS Monthly Breakfast event and heard a great talk by Jessica Hsieh. The purpose of KIROS is to provide a meeting place for Christian business professionals to network. For me it’s a great time to share experiences with those in the workforce that are not full time pastors.
Jessica is a business professional with Microsoft and shared her background. She referenced Luke 10; when Jesus sent out the 72.
I’d like to share with you that amazing talk that impacted my life immediately.
The first instruction to the appointed 72. GO, two by two, and travel light. There is no need for a lot of gear, a lot of ‘stuff’ – just get out there. There is also no need to dilly dally, no chatting with friends on the road. There is a purpose, and that purpose is to get to your destination. What is your destination? Let’s assume your job is your destination. Let’s assume you are like lambs among wolves and you are the only light they will see. As Christians in the workplace, we need to be ready to respond to God’s call to GO. As you will find reading further, we are not to have one foot out the door, but when the call is made in our life to GO, we must respond.
Also note in scripture that Jesus sent them out two by two. Two by two was also common for the 12 disciples in their journeys, and something that you should look for. In the military, we called Two by Two “battle buddies”. Having a battle buddy that you can share parts of your journey with will make you a more effective witness in whatever situation you are in. Your battle buddy doesn’t necessarily need to be a co-worker, but someone that can relate to your situation.
What I love about reading the Bible is how deep it is. Some say it contradicts itself. SMH. Those that say that don’t get it. The Bible is deep, so many layers that all surround a common theme of the Gospel. The second instruction after GO is STAY. I love it! This hit me square between the eyes. I’m always looking to move. Patience is something that I need to work on, and a high priority to be better at throughout 2015. I love the command of GO, and hate the thought of staying. But here is where Jessica’s point made the most sense. Trust. It’s hard for others to trust when people are on the GO all the time. In Luke 10:5, Jesus tells the appointed 72 to enter a house and offer Peace to it. One thing we may forget in today’s culture is the Christian people are a people of Peace. Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Peace within your heart, peace within nations, peace within a family.
The instruction continues that we should STAY in the house, eating and drinking whatever they give you for the worker deserves his wages. Do not move around from House to House. GODSMACK! Right in my kisser. Since 2004, after the Salt failure and Lindsay’s request to be a stay home mom, I’ve been hopping from job to job. My intentions were good but I only heard what I wanted to hear. I left Cutter & Buck for a job in sales and to become a one income family. Less than two years later I was recruited out of that job into another. That trend continued until 2012, never staying more than two years and always hoping to make more money for my growing family. STAY. *Sigh* – it’s so hard for me to STAY. But what of the people that I come across with all those years? If I’m always leaving it’s hard to really establish a trust with them. Trust is important when sharing the Good News of the Gospel. Trust is important when blessing others.
Luke 10:8 states something interesting: When you enter a town and are welcomed, eat what is set before you. Heal the sick who are there and tell them, ‘The kingdom of God is near you.’ When I read this, what stands out most is “and are welcomed“. “And are welcomed” is important in the workplace. There is really only one job that I’ve worked where I wasn’t welcomed. It’s so important as someone not in full time ministry to ensure that I’m welcomed before getting hired. Let’s assume that you are welcomed at your current employment. Being welcomed gives you the opportunity to STAY and BLESS.
Do you think healing the sick is a blessing to others? Yeah, I would say so.
Do you think healing the sick would add validity to sharing the news that the kingdom of God is near? Yes, it’s something tangible that can be measured.
Do you think healing the sick can come with more effectiveness if the person you are praying for trusts you? Remember what I said about STAY and the value of building trust?
STAY builds trust.
Trust allows others to share what’s going on in their life. Once you have information about what’s going on in their life you can BLESS.
BLESS brings healing to the sick (emotionally, physically, spiritually, mentally).
Healing to the sick brings an ear for those to hear what you are saying.
Hearing, backed by a tangible, measured healing that they can think back to, brings Joy, and an eventual coming to Christ.
It all ties together nicely doesn’t it?
As I mentioned earlier in this post, how Jessica described her journey and GO, STAY, BLESS talk was a powerful combination that I’ll never forget. In fact, I added one more word that fits with my profession and personality.
The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” This is important because documenting things can help understand what works and what doesn’t work. With God it always works so having a report to look back to can only build confidence. Remember the joy of the Lord is our strength. If we don’t have joy we are weak. Joy comes through positive reports.
My profession is in Business Intelligence. Business Intelligence takes data and turns it into information so you can make faster and better decisions. I’ve always been a stats guy, and believe it’s in the data. Reporting is a vital part of looking at the data that makes sense to the situation. Evil spirits were the pinnacle of sickness then, and even the evil spirits submitted to the name of Jesus from the appointed.
Let’s look at that in greater detail: the seventy-two returned and said ‘even the demons.’ That shows me that these appointed had a lack of faith, that they they never expected that demons would ever submit to them using the name of Jesus. You can see their amazement since it was the first thing they said when reporting back to Jesus. Look at some of the synonyms of amaze: astonish, astound, surprise, stun, stagger, shock, stupefy, awe, stop someone in their tracks, leave open-mouthed, leave aghast, take someone’s breath away, dumbfound. The definition and synonym of amaze is much different than a word like ‘expect.’
Expect – regard (something) as likely to happen. “we expect the best.” Synonyms: anticipate, await, look for, hope for, look forward to.
To me it’s less about our faith and more about our ability to obey. Our ability to GO, STAY, and BLESS. Our obedience will bring back the REPORTS we need to change the hearts of everyone we work with. Daily.
If you live in the Greater Seattle area and would like to join us at our next breakfast, plan for the second Tuesday morning of each month. You can register for the events at www.KIROS.Org