Magnificent Opportunity Or Mundane Obligation?

Have you stopped to take in the view on the side of a mountain road and wished you had such a view all the time? Have you ever been to the beach for vacation and wondered how the people that live there year-round ever get any work done? In fact, the more you notice the people that appear to live there, the more you realize they seem to ignore the opportunity to stare at the view.

Opportunity not obligation

Why Is That?

Why are we like that?

What, you think you are any different? You think you are much more sensitive to your surroundings and if you lived near such beauty, you would always make time to enjoy it? I have to argue against you on that one.

Instead, I bet you are living near something just as beautiful now. You just don’t see it that way. Likely, you noticed it at one time, but it has simply become something you take for granted. It no longer grabs your attention, but it is still beautiful to someone who has never seen it before.

New Gets Old Fast

The problem is that we lose excitement quickly. When opportunities come our way for something new and exciting, we are eager to engage. In some cases, this eagerness lasts for weeks or even months, but at one point or another, it fades. The opportunity becomes mundane and no longer interests us.

Now I come to my main point. Your job or business is likely the same way. At one time, you saw the work you do as a magnificent opportunity to get fulfillment and hopefully, serve God in ministry through that job.

Opportunity Excitement Faded

At one time, you got up in the morning with just as much excitement about the opportunity at work as you have had when heading off on vacation. Ideas were floating through your head about how you could minister here or there and how God could use you for eternal impact.

Then time happened. You weren’t thinking about it, but something changed and you no longer see the magnificent opportunity for Christian ministry through your business. Instead, you are beginning to see your job as a mundane obligation.

What went wrong? What did you do to cause this?

We Stopped Working At It!

Well, if you think about it, this same analogy can apply to our marriages, our friendships, and even our relationship with God!

A sluggard’s appetite is never filled, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.
Proverbs 13:4

We stopped working at it.

We did not stop working at our job, but we stopped working at seeing the opportunity in our job (or marriage, friendship, relationship with God). Rather than regularly praying for God to show us the “new” in our jobs, we focused more on surviving them!

What Is The Solution?

So what is the solution? How do we get back to seeing our jobs as an opportunity to serve God and not an obligation?

There are many ways to do this, but I would suggest a couple of steps that have worked.

Get A New View!

Determine in your heart that tomorrow you are going to walk into your workplace with a new set of eyes. Pray that God would give you a new vision for what you can do and how you can be used at work.

Rather than taking the normal path to your office or workstation, change it up. Come in a little early. Look around as if this is your first time there. Expect to see an opportunity for ministry at every turn. Prepare in advance for what you might see.

Then block out some time and begin to take notes. Act as if it is your first day on the job and you have to decide what needs to be done differently in what areas. Pretend you have just been hired (by God) to come in there and to impact the people around you for eternity.

Look For Impact Opportunity!

Go person by person through your co-workers and see if you can think of ways you can begin to serve them. Think about their struggles and pray for ideas on how you can help.

Begin praying for them individually. Pray for their success and peace in their struggles. Pray for an opportunity to show them God’s love. Pray for God to renew your eyes every day so you can see the needs around you.

Change Will Come!

This may not completely change your vision overnight, but I promise it will change in time. Pretty soon, you will be getting up with energy in the morning.

No longer will you drag yourself out of bed, but will instead get a bounce in your step. You may even be able to give up the coffee…well, maybe that is pushing it!

Have you lost excitement over the opportunity in your job?

When will you commit to changing your view?

Can you enlist someone to keep you accountable to this commitment?

Photo by SergeyNevins / iStock

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  • Great reminder…stir it up, change it up, look at our surroundings from a fresh and different perspective. In another month my wife and I have been married 40 years and we have enjoyed the journey as an adventure. Our work should be not much different.

  • Rajeev

    Awesome !!

  • On a recent trip to TN, I felt an increased drawing to nature. Happened when I visited Colorado & Hawaii too. I love being outside in relative solitude, and I feel drawn to it. I have wondered, though, if I would grow tired of it if I saw it all the time. I’d like to think I wouldn’t. But since I can’t have that sort of solitude in this season of life, I am determining to enjoy the nature that is outside my back door. In other words, I want to put what I tell my kids into practice in my own life: Enjoy what you have instead of focusing on what you don’t have. Gratitude for the beauty outside my back door. And now, to apply that approach to other areas of my life… writing, marriage (great point, Coach), my kids, my church, exercise, food… truly being grateful for what I have. Truly realizing that what I have now is a gift from God that He wants me to use in ministry. Blessed to be a blessing.

  • stthomas95

    I like this post and especially your idea of slowing down and taking notes. When I am on vacation several sectors of my brain are empty so I can truly receive and perceive new data. Perhaps I need to empty myself more here at home so I can behold.

    • Crazy how it is so tough to eliminate the distractions at home…but not impossible!