One of the things I miss most about my old job is how I got to know new people. For those who don’t know, I sold forklifts for 19 years before I became a pastor. I didn’t go seminary, I went to 105° warehouses in swanky places like Waco, Reynosa and Laredo.
Throughout my career, I grew in my faith. The Lord began to transform my heart as I began to understand how much He loves us. The more I saw Him move in my life, the more I began to trust Him and the more I began to care for my co-workers and customers.
As a pastor, if you meet with me to talk about your life, you expect me talk about Jesus. You gotta know it’s coming.
As a forklift salesman, when you shared your struggles with me, if I prayed for you or offered how God helped me through a similar circumstance, it was a surprise. It was unexpected, but very real and authentic. Sometimes I spoke about my faith, or it might have been how I cared about people. I didn’t always know if my concern or words were meaningful to my work friends.
Over time, some of my close friends from my forklift days have confided in me. They’ve shared with me it was how I responded, God’s peace for me in hard circumstances or something else they witnessed that God used to make a difference to them.
I was never perfect. Never. But, as God promised in His Word – He was at work in me. I share this so you're reminded, God is using you today.
John 1 tells us “light pierces the darkness.” As a believer, the light of Christ shines thru us, and the more He works in us over time, the more brightly we reflect Him (2 Corinthians 3:18). Our lives may be the brightest glimpse of Christ our work friends see.
Francis of Assisi was right when he said, “preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.”
Our tendency is to grab a pastor or leader when our friends ask a hard question. Don’t be afraid to share your story. If you’ve experienced the love of Christ, you’ve got something valuable to share. If you’re waiting until you have the perfect day, or get your ducks all lined up, you’re gonna miss some sweet opportunities to see God move in the lives of your friends.
“Take delight in the LORD, and He will give you your heart's desires. Commit everything you do to the LORD. Trust Him, and He will help you.” – Psalm 37:4-5
Let me encourage you to commit everything to The LORD and His purposes, as you walk into your day. Watch Him work in your life, and the lives of others.
Honestly, He is at work in us in ways we may never realize while we're here on earth. The real fun begins when we invite Him to use us, right where we are…today.
“We begin to sense that our work can be changed from job and task into service and act of kindness, from struggle for gain into the offering of gift, from slow death into life-giving co-creation. The work itself can become something more as we come to see ourselves as co-laborers rather than pawns, as hands and feet of God rather than merely the shoulders and backs of the marketplace.” – Living Prayer by Robert Benson