How to Fulfill the Great Commission @ Work
Do you have a burden for your unsaved friends and family? As believers, you probably hear this question many times over. Pastors will talk about it from the pulpit, calling you to think of the unsaved people in your life. What about witnessing to your coworkers? You know you should be reaching out but don’t know the best approach.
Let’s take a deeper look at sharing Christ’s love at your job—from a Biblical understanding.
3 Things to Understand about Coworkers
Before you get started, you need to understand a few things about your coworkers.
1. Your coworkers are not the enemy.
Sometimes, we get so focused on our defense for Christ that we forget why we’re defending Him. You’re trying to show someone the way to Him. You cannot effectively point to Christ if you are always stirring up angry arguments and talking down your coworkers’ opinions.
Author C. Peter Wagner said, “Learn how to draw the line. There are times to cut some slack and allow the system to operate. But you have to adapt before you have a chance to change them. Otherwise you isolate, and hide in a cubical with Bible verses pinned to your wall.”1
When you bring up God in your conversations, remember to step back and listen too. Your coworkers may not mean to attack you; they’re just wanting legitimate answers. If they do share harsh words, realize that the battle is the Lord’s. Let God do the talking.
2. They crave transparency.
Your coworkers are real people, not an object to preach at. Show your vulnerabilities, your genuine love, and even a few weaknesses.
Take time to develop relationships and build their trust. If you do, you’ll find them going to you first when they have a problem, and then God can use that situation for His glory.
3. They need to see unwavering faith.
While you definitely need to deal peaceably with your coworkers if possible, you will encounter times when you have to defend your faith. This often happens when a boss or coworker asks you to do something that violates your faith.
Keep a Gospel of John with you so that you can point out Scripture. God’s Word will give you confidence. You may feel uncomfortable in this situation, but your coworkers need you to stand firm. Your unshakable faith, given with a respectful attitude, may lead them to everlasting life.
An Excellent Spirit
Daniel 6:3: “Then this Daniel became distinguished above all the other high officials and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him. And the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom.”
While you’re building trust with your coworkers, you should also stand apart in your work. Let your work ethic surpass any that your coworkers have ever seen.
Talk about the positives of your workplace, and bring un-intruding suggestions for improvement directly to your boss. Your boss and supervisors should love having you work alongside them because they know that you will do your best with any assignment.
If you’re diligent, you may even find yourself in the same position as Daniel in the Bible. Daniel performed great work with such an excellent spirit that the king wanted to put him in a higher position. He held Daniel in high regard. When you’re working diligently in your everyday job, you’re speaking volumes for Christ.
Next, you should also work and act in a way that nobody at work can find fault with you. Think about what young kids do when they don’t understand their parents’ instructions. If they’re told to do something that the parents don’t do themselves, a child will point out that flaw.
Your coworkers may not be children, but they have a young knowledge of God. If someone can point out an inconsistency in your life, you’ll have a harder time witnessing to those coworkers effectively.
In 2 Corinthians 6:3, Paul says, “We put no obstacle in anyone's way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry.”
If you know of any faults, work at changing them and making them right. Your coworkers will notice your change in attitude.
Things happen quickly at work. You might have stacks of assignments loading your desk. Maybe your job requires a running start to every day with the customers you serve or people you talk to.
In light of life’s busyness, train yourself to see every opportunity you have to be a witness to your coworkers, even small ones. The former Archbishop of Canterbury, George Carey, said,
“There are ways to speak sensibly and sensitively about faith without provoking hostility or confusion in others. One of my most formative life-lessons was when I started my national service in the RAF.
“I was a new Christian and my rather authoritarian evangelical vicar told me before I started, ‘George, don’t be ashamed of your faith. When lights go out, kneel by your bed and say your prayers.’
“This seemed easy enough to agree to when in church, but in that crowded billet surrounded by the high-spirited banter of young men, I was in turmoil as I knelt and spent several minutes in prayer. There were no adverse reactions, and I made many friends because of that practice. There was just the occasional missile thrown at me.”2
Like the archbishop, you can seize opportunities at work too. Here are a few easy ways to witness to your coworkers while celebrating fall:
1. Write a card at Thanksgiving.
Thank a few of your co-workers with a hand-written card and insert a Gospel of John inside. If you’re still building trust, you could simply start the card with a Bible verse to lay the foundation for sharing in the future.
2. Bring baked goods or a goodie basket.
Many workplaces let you bring goodies to share in your staff room. Leave some Christmas-themed pocket-sized Gospels beside the goodies.
3. Decorate for the holidays.
If you have a festive office, join in the holiday cubical decorating. Add a candy dish of sweet treats and leave a few holiday-themed Gospels nearby.
4. Pray for your coworkers.
Starting today, pray about who you can invite to church for Christmas. The Pew Research Center shows that search engines like Google get more searches for church around Christmas and Easter than at any other time of the year.3
And many pastors confirm that these holidays do indeed bring a higher church attendance. It’s a wonderful chance to invite an unsaved coworker to go with you.
5. Celebrate fall.
Invite people from work for a fun harvest party and keep Gospels by the door. If you can’t host a party, hand out fall-themed gifts like autumn-smelling candle and let coworkers know that you’re praying for them.
With genuine care, God’s guidance, and the Gospel of John in hand, you can witness to coworkers effectively. Let God’s Word and fellow believers strengthen you to further the Great Commission. Read, Carry, and Share Christ with your attitude and actions every day!
To get prepared for witnessing at work, order Gospels at ptl.org/share.
If you’re a business owner, consider printing a custom Gospel of John! Learn more at ptl.org/partner
1 Wagner, C. Peter. The Church in the Workplace: How God’s People Can Transform Society. Ventura: Regal Books, 2006.
2 Carey, George. “Christians Must Learn to Stand Up for Themselves.”The Telegraph. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/11470456/Christians-must-learn-to-stand-up-for-themselves.html
3 Kuriakose, Noble. “When Easter and Christmas Near, More Americans Search Online for ‘Church.’” Pew Research Center. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/04/18/when-easter-and-christmas-near-more-americans-search-online-for-church