Many years ago when I first became a Christian, I worked in a place where the work was easy but the people were difficult. It got to a point where the thought of going to work each day would give me a sense of dread. When praying about it one day, God clearly gave me a picture in my mind’s eye showing me that I was leaving Jesus at the front door of my workplace while I went inside. With this new insight I learnt to invite God into my workplace and into the struggles I was facing.
Years later I found myself once again in a particularly difficult work situation. As I invited God into the conflict and struggle I discovered the joys and benefits of prayer and intercession. Although I was having difficult days I would love the experience of going to God and pouring out my concerns to Him. I had a real sense of casting my burdens onto Him and it produced a deeper sense of intimacy with Him. I would love to say that these times of prayer and intercession changed my situation but it didn’t. As far as I know things are still the same as when I left. What did change however was my relationship with God plus a gift of intercession was discovered.
There have been many other things that I’ve learnt in the face of difficulties at work. Learning to serve and respect others, learning to be faithful in the small things, working for God and not man, finding my identity in Him and not in what I do are just some of the gems I’ve walked away with. God has clearly used the hard times to develop my character and relationship with him.
There’s no question that work can be hard but when God is invited into the circumstance, much good and much fruit can come out of a difficult situation.