Your #1 Job

August 25, 2014 | 7 comments

So, what’s your job? To teach students, count money, log orders, sell clothes, write software, play golf?

Workers often identify with their job title and reply to the question, “What’s your job?” with answers like, “I’m an electrician, a customer service representative, a teacher, a delivery truck driver, or an engineer.” But a worker’s real job is much more than accomplishing an assigned task. It’s how he accomplishes his work that makes all the difference.

For instance, a customer representative may answer the phone and give the scripted reply, but if he doesn’t express joy and love, thoughtfulness and care for what he’s doing and the person he’s helping, his response lacks. He is not doing a very good job.

An office worker may show up in her cubicle each day and get her quota of data inputted, but if she isn’t also bringing joy and gratitude to her office environment, her input to the office morale is lacking. She is not a very good employee.

An engineer may have in his mind the perfect bridge to build, but if he isn’t cooperative, patient, and understanding of other engineers assigned to help, he is doing a poor job of fitting in. And there may be conflict, disagreement and poor final results. He’s doing a poor job of understanding what it takes to get a bridge built.

To succeed at a job and do the most good, a worker’s #1 job is to bring the presence of God into his work.

Knowledge tells one how to do a job. Wisdom enables one to do it well. Flow charts may explain who reports to who, but love, respect and goodwill establishes healthy and happy relationships that enable the work to flow with ease. Showing up to work on time may generate a paycheck, initially, but demonstrating increased worth and value over time keeps the paychecks coming.

Wisdom, keen discernment, helpful insight, grace, poise, calm, intelligent decision-making, cooperation and love are qualities that turn a job into a joy and create valuable workers. It’s our #1 job to express these qualities in any position we occupy. And they come freely and abundantly from God.

7 thoughts on “Your #1 Job”

  1. Thanks, Evan!

    …reminds me of this old story:

    “A man came across three masons who were working at chipping chunks of granite from large blocks. The first seemed unhappy at his job, chipping away and frequently looking at his watch. When the man asked what it was that he was doing, the first mason responded, rather curtly, “I’m hammering this stupid rock, and I can’t wait ’til 5 when I can go home.”

    ”A second mason, seemingly more interested in his work, was hammering diligently and when asked what it was that he was doing, answered, “Well, I’m molding this block of rock so that it can be used with others to construct a wall. It’s not bad work, but I’ll sure be glad when it’s done.”

    ”A third mason was hammering at his block fervently, taking time to stand back and admire his work. He chipped off small pieces until he was satisfied that it was the best he could do. When he was questioned about his work he stopped, gazed skyward and proudly proclaimed, “I…am building a cathedral!”

    “Three men, three different attitudes, all doing the same job.”

  2. Thanks Evan, I am reminded of a scene I really liked from a the movie, The Peaceful Warrior. A young athlete often stops by a gas station to chat with the man who works there and gets advice from him. He calls the man Socrates. Here is the quote:

    Dan Millman: Hey, Socrates. If you know so much how come you’re working at a gas station?
    Socrates: This is a service station. We offer service. There’s no higher purpose.
    Dan Millman: Than pumping gas?
    Socrates: Than service to others.

    I think you are right, whatever job we do, if we see it as expressing Love and helping others it is no longer “just a job.”

  3. I love when I call a certain business asking for information that I get a feeling of joy from the other end of the phone. It makes for an attitude of doing business again with that same organization.

  4. At my supermarket, there are grocery baggers. Most are teenagers on a first job. But occasionally there is an older adult. Most are courteous and polite, but don’t stand out. Right now there is a 40 something fellow who really shines at this. He is so warm and friendly and helpful, always acting like every customer is his very favorite person that he was just waiting all day to see! It really makes a customer feel warm and wanted.

    It is just a humbling, minimum-wage job that he has, but he’s making the most of it, and I hope he soon gets promoted if he wants that. And I’ll bet he is truly enjoying the job a lot more than those who just do it dutifully only, with one eye on the clock.

  5. Loved the stories and all the good advice. Loving your job is most important, When you love what you do everything else falls into place.

  6. Thanks for this blog, Evan. I retired recently but had been working in the claims department of a large insurance company. I don’t know if I was the best claims rep, but I did make it a priority to give the best service I could and I treated people with compassion and understanding. That was how I was identified by my bosses and co-workers. I was bringing the Christ to work with me every day and that made my days there a joy!

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