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October 5, 1998

Knowing God at Work

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Who may ascend the hill of the LORD? Who may stand in his holy place? PSALM 24:3
If the mission statement for your career and the mission statement for your life aren’t closely aligned, then you might lack a complete view of how your faith plays out in your work. For instance, a staple of every believers personal mission statement should be to “know God” more intimately. So what does “knowing God” have to do with work?
The psalmist asks, “Who may ascend the hill of the LORD? Who may stand in His holy place?” (Psalm 24:3). In other words, who has the honor of knowing God?
The psalmist’s answer gives us a quick but profound guideline for how to approach our work: “He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear by what is false” (v. 4).
That response highlights three foundational components for an appropriate view of faith in the workplace: that we have honorable actions (clean hands), that we have honorable motives (a pure heart), and that we honor the one, true Lord for Who He is (don’t lift up your “soul” to an idol).
In the work force, that translates into a person who doesn’t steal from the company, who doesn’t gossip about others, who plans—but doesn’t plot—for a promotion, and who doesn’t turn such things as money, power, and position into items of worship.
Taking this approach produces rewards that are both immediate and eternal. “He will receive blessing from the LORD and vindication from God his Savior” (v.5). The immediate rewards may or may not come in material forms; more importantly, of course, this approach to our work provides the transport so that we might “ascend the hill of the LORD” and “stand in His holy place.” Thus, by merely legitimately living our faith at work, the reward is nothing short of knowing God.

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