There are Marketplace Morsels all over Scripture that illuminate our individual roles in daily life, at the office, in the field, in our communities, at home, in the car and everywhere else. Below, are some of the nuggets I’ve found over the years.
Each morsel is separated by a horizontal line. And as I see more nuggets, I’ll add them.
Please take your time. The idea is to savor every bite. Every morsel deserves reflection and contemplation so every nutrient can be taken in and assimilated. Don’t rush. Old ideas cannot be replaced too quickly. It takes time.
If you want to share any of these nuggets, feel free. But please just note where they came from. Thanks!
Regarding his Kingdom work, Paul said, “…It was God giving me the work to do, God giving me the energy to do it…” 1 Corinthians 15:10-11, The Message Bible
Obviously, Paul was talking about his ministry work but isn’t everything we do also ministry? Absolutely, which is why we can see our work as given God to be done with His energy IN us. How different would our work be if we saw our jobs, our work lives through this Kingdom lens? What if we did our jobs through God’s energy and not our own?
What percentage of our words, actions and lives are UNDERGIRDED by RESURRECTION? What does this really mean? What do words undergirded by resurrection sound like? What do actions infused with resurrection look like? What does a daily life energized by resurrection live like? Personally, for me, the answer to the first question is 2% on my best day. And all I can do to change this is surrender to the Resurrection and Life Himself Who’s INSIDE me and undergirds me. “His left hand is under my head, and His right hand embraces me.” (Song of Solomon 2:6) All He started in me, He will finish. He is faithful.
“…Each of us is now a part of his resurrection body, refreshed and sustained at one fountain—his Spirit—where we all come to drink…” 1 Corinthians 12:13, The Message Bible
Each of us are a part of Jesus’ resurrection body. So, as we go about our day, whether at work, at home, with our co-workers or family and friends, we are His resurrection body in those moments. We are not what everyone else is. We are not what we used to be before we joined our Head as ONE. We are the emBODYment of HIS RESURRECTION BODY everywhere we go, with everyone we meet. And that resurrection reality can flow out of us, out of our lips, from our hands and feet, through our BODY language. The face of our Head, of Christ, can show through our facial expressions. The same Resurrection of Life Himself Who raised Lazarus from the dead flows through our veins right now to raise dead hearts, minds and lives to new life through our words, hands and presence.
And when we are tired, we can drink Him in directly, just as our physical heads and bodies drink in the blood in one another through the circulatory system.
“The Christian life is the resurrection manifest. The true, authentic Christian life is the resurrected life of Christ manifest in actions, in words, in personal behavior… confident in what He has done for us.” Bill Johnson
Christianity today is more a reduction of Christ in us to what we are than a resurrection of ourselves to Who He is IN US.
“…Your body is a sacred place, the place of the Holy Spirit?… The physical part of you is not some piece of property belonging to the spiritual part of you. God owns the whole works. So let people see God in and through your body.” 1 Corinthians 6:16-20, The Message Bible
The Godhead lives IN us. We are Their Home and everywhere we go, They go. Everywhere we step, They step. Everywhere we work, They can work. I say “can” because we have to “let”, to allow Them expression by working with Them to speak and do what They are saying and doing inside each moment. We can prevent Their Life IN us from flowing through us or we can make ourselves available to share what They long to give to those around us.
Worship = “…Take your everyday, ordinary life — your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life — and place it before God as an offering…” Romans 12:1-2, The Message Bible
“We’re here to be worshippers first and workers only second. We take a convert and immediately make a worker out of him. God never meant it to be so. God meant that a convert should learn to be a worshiper, and after that he can learn to be a worker… Any work done by a worshipper will have eternity in it. Labor that does not spring out of worship is futile…” A.W. Tozer
“It does not matter how cruel the drudgery that your present job seems to be because you can turn it into worship. If you do your work for the Lord, rather than just for the company or your employer, you will begin to experience the greatest freedom and satisfaction in your work that you can imagine. This will happen though the work itself may not change. It is better to be a slave and have the presence of the Lord than to be a king without Him. If you experience this, you will be a free person regardless of what job or position you are in. If you do not know this truth, you will never be a free person regardless of what job or position you are in.” Rick Joyner
“…I’m convinced—Jesus convinced me!—that everything as it is in itself is holy. We, of course, by the way we treat it or talk about it, can contaminate it.” Romans 14:13-14, The Message Bible
Everything you do everyday is holy. Every job, every project, every activity, every action, interaction and transaction… is in itself holy, from God’s perspective. But we can contaminate any one or all of these things “…by the way we treat it or talk about it…” What we do isn’t as important as HOW we see what we do; only then can what we do become so much more than just something we do for a paycheck or some other personal benefit. Perspective is everything.
“…As you learn more and more how God works, you will learn how to do your work…” Colossians 1:10, The Message Bible
How do you do your work where you work during the week (and/or on the weekends if that’s when you work)? What if HOW you do your work could become more than what it’s been?
Learn HOW God works. Then, you will learn HOW to do your work. Let YOUR work be informed by God’s work. Let His “HOW” become your “HOW” and let go of your “HOW”. There is a higher “how”, a better “how”, a greater “how”. Abandon “how” you’ve always worked and graduate to “how” God works.
“How” has He always worked? Through rest, from rest and in rest, through the Divine strength of Christ within and not through mere human ability and know-how. He has always works through love, from love and in love, from the vantage point of a higher place, seeing from the throne and not from the natural, fallen way of seeing and thinking.
“…Live your whole life in the Spirit… follow the leading of the Spirit… the Spirit produces in human life fruits such as… love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, fidelity, tolerance and self-control…” Galatians 5:16, 18, 22-23 PHILLIPS
Notice, it doesn’t say, “Try harder” or “Do better” or “Give more” or “Work harder” or anything like that.
Just live in Him and follow Him. Surrender. Abide. Rest. Depend upon Him. Lean on Him and He will produce the fruit of His Life in you and through you.
“That famous promise God gave Abraham—that he and his children would POSSESS THE EARTH—was not given because of something Abraham did or would do. It was based on God’s decision to put everything together for him, which Abraham then entered when he believed. If those who get what God gives them only get it by doing everything they are told to do and filling out all the right forms properly signed, that eliminates personal trust completely and turns the promise into an ironclad contract! That’s not a holy promise; that’s a business deal. A contract drawn up by a hard-nosed lawyer and with plenty of fine print only makes sure that you will never be able to collect. But if there is no contract in the first place, simply a promise —and God’s promise at that—you can’t break it.” Romans 4:13-15, The Message Bible
God promised Abraham and his children that they would “possess the earth” and God kept that promise. In fact, He has kept that promise to this day to us who are the children of Abraham by faith. You “possess the earth”. You possess various roles and responsibilities in this life, in your home, your workplace, your relationships, your community, etc. This was “God’s decision”, His promise, and “you can’t break it”. Of course, you can choose to doubt His promise. That’s up to you. But then that will leave all those roles and responsibilities to be filled by something or someone else, resulting in less than God’s highest and best.
“3 things are too much for even the earth to bear, yes, 4 things shake its foundations — when the janitor becomes the boss, when a fool gets rich, when a whore is voted ‘woman of the year,’ when a ‘girlfriend’ replaces a faithful wife.” Proverbs 30:21-23, The Message Bible
“…When the janitor becomes the boss…”
This is something the earth strains to bear, that shakes the foundations of the earth.
Christ inside the janitor (a position considered by many to be inferior), who lives out of and through Christ inside his daily life and work, elevates and translates him/her into higher realms of authority and responsibility otherwise and often held by those with titles and positions (and higher pay). The Kingdom inside does not need a title or position to eclipse lesser kingdoms. All one needs is to lean into Christ inside in each moment of each day. As this becomes more natural, the elevation and translation will accelerate and expand. Each relationship will become an open window for Light to shine through. Influence and favor will enlarge and multiply until one’s words and actions carry greater weight than all those with titles and positions. Then, one day, you will look around you and notice all those who are looking to you for life and love and leadership.
And what you do at that point is vital.
Will you follow the spirit of the age and lead them? Or, will you point them to Christ in them so they can lean into Him to walk with them, without leaning on you or anyone else to lead them? Will you hook them into Christ inside or something else or a mixture of both? Will you graft them to Life Himself or make them dependent on some other life support system?
Cause only one of these will make them Salt and Light.
First Corinthians 15:58 has the potential, if internalized and applied to our lives, to revolutionize our daily work.
Check this verse out in the following translations.
“…Be firm (steadfast), immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord [always being superior, excelling, doing more than enough in the service of the Lord], knowing and being continually aware that your labor in the Lord is not futile [it is never wasted or to no purpose].” The Amplified Bible, Classic Edition
“…Be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord [always doing your best and doing more than is needed], being continually aware that your labor [even to the point of exhaustion] in the Lord is not futile nor wasted [it is never without purpose].” The Amplified Bible
“…Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste of time or effort.” The Message Bible
“…Let nothing move you as you busy yourselves in the Lord’s work. Be sure that nothing you do for him is ever lost or ever wasted.” J.B. Phillips Translation
“…Do many good works in the name of God, and know that all your labor is not for nothing when it is for God.” The Voice
“…Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.” New Living Translation
“…The hard work you do for the Lord is not pointless.” Names of God Bible
What if our work stopped being for our customers and bosses and started being for the Lord? What if we stopped working in the name of the company we work for and started working “in the name of God”? What if we stopped laboring for a raise or a promotion or a big contract and started laboring for the Kingdom of God? Would we not become more enthusiastic, more alive, knowing it’s all for Him? Would our work not become much more meaningful, useful, and eternal? Would we not excel far beyond our peers as a result of making His pleasure our passion?
Throw yourself INTO God’s work, INTO what He is doing, INTO what is of the Spirit and throw yourself OUT OF your work, OUT OF the work of self, OUT OF what is of this world, of the flesh, of Adam, of mere men.
“To be a true worshiper of God is to do His works and His alone.” Rick Joyner
This doesn’t mean quit your job and become a full-time preacher/evangelist/pastor, but rather do your job the way Jesus would do it if He was in your shoes. Do your job His way and do it “for Him” and not just for your boss or customers, knowing that whatever you do for people, you are doing for Him. I like this quote from Bill Johnson:
“A culture of honor is one where we treat others as we would Jesus Himself. This is the basis that has its foundation in our value for God. Whatever we do unto ‘the least of these,’ we do unto Him.“
Love people the way He loves them. Serve as He served and still serves. Sacrifice as He sacrificed. Give of yourself as He did. Go above and beyond as He did.
Exceed the standards of your company by embodying the standard of Love, of Love Himself. Display the heart and life and power of Christ IN you to each person you meet. Leave them in a better condition than you found them.
“Concentrate on doing your best for God, work you won’t be ashamed of…” 2 Timothy 2:15, The Message
When one does anything for God, it will be their best. And they will never be ashamed but be proud of their work as those over whom God says, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
One day, the disciples urged Jesus to eat something, to which He responded, “I have food (nourishment) to eat of which you know nothing and have no idea.” John 4:31-32 AMPC
Of course, this confused them, causing them to wonder if someone else had brought Him some food. But Jesus explained what He meant when He said, “My food (nourishment) is to do the will (pleasure) of Him Who sent Me and to accomplish and completely finish His work.” John 4:33-34 AMPC
I love this last statement by Jesus. Pleasing our Father nourished Jesus. Doing our Father’s work was His food.
What if we applied this to our daily work? What if we stopped working for a pay check or for the sake of the work itself and started doing His work, where everything we did every day was for Him and not men, with supernatural integrity, insight, and strength? What if we stopped being about our business and started being about our Father’s business, as Jesus was? What if we were light, salt and leaven for the Kingdom in our workplaces, disinfecting, illuminating, flavoring, preserving, influencing and expanding everything around us with the nature, glory and life of Christ in us? Would our Monday to Friday life not be transformed? Would our home life not be utterly transfigured?
Every hour of every day would be saturated with Heaven flooding the earth of our daily lives, saturating everyone and everything in its wake.
When your job requires you to take a trip, the Lord in you goes with you for the ride. Then, you talk and walk together and throughout your time with Him, your hearts can love on the people you see and interact with, bringing healing words and touches as He nudges you and moves through you.
When your new-born baby starts crying in the night, desperate for a diaper change, and you’re exhausted from a long day at work, the Lord in you goes with you for diaper duty. Then, together, you both love your baby, changing the diaper as an expression of worship, taking care of the least of these as an act of love for God, doing all for His glory.
“Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed.” Proverbs 16:3, Amplified Bible
“Before you do anything, put your trust totally in God and not in yourself. Then every plan you make will succeed.” The Passion Translation
“Put God in charge of your work, then what you’ve planned will take place.” The Message Bible
In other words, when we give ourselves over to the Lord in our work, our thoughts become His thoughts which draft plans He establishes.
So many of our ideas at work succeed and we think they’re good, but what would happen if we walked with Him in our work by carrying within ourselves an ongoing dialogue with Him as Adam did in his garden in the beginning? Would He not show us things we don’t see? Would He not share with us new levels of creativity, wisdom, and insight that can produce outcomes we’ve never considered? What if we stopped at various times of our work day to know God’s thoughts about what we’re doing? It takes humility to do this and He gives grace (favor and power) to the humble, which amplifies the quality and influence of our work well beyond all the boundaries we think we are limited within. But we have to be willing to pause and turn our inner gaze to Him to see what He thinks. Why? Because His ways are higher than our ways and His thoughts are greater than our thoughts.
Sure we can do our jobs without Him. We can see problems, formulate solutions and get it done. But that’s how “mere humans” live (1 Cor. 3:3), while those who know God display strength and do exploits (Dan. 11:32).
Of course, when it comes to exploits, we think of supernatural healings, miracles, signs and wonders. And that’s great, but what if there’s more that applies directly to our daily work? What about prophetic business strategies through dreams, visions, trances, angelic visitations? What about dreams in the night from God that show us how to address a problem we keep losing sleep over if we’ll simply follow their leading? What about the little nudges we feel inside from the Lord in that moment we are so worried? Do we notice the signs meant to show us the way?
“So we see that they were not able to enter [into His rest], because of their unwillingness to adhere to and trust in and rely on God [unbelief had shut them out]. [Num. 14:1-35.]” Hebrews 3:19, Amplified Bible, Classic Edition
We’ve been conditioned to read Scripture through a spiritual prism, which is fine, but what if we read it through and applied it to our daily lives, to a marketplace context? What if our spiritual prism is meant to be married to our everyday life in our workplaces, our home and family lives, our everything?
Have we thought about doing our work in His rest by adhering to, trusting in and relying on Him rather than our knowledge and ability? Where would laboring in such a Rest lead us?
Would it not look like this, where Jesus said…
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good—not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.” Matthew 11:28-30, Amplified Bible, Classic Edition
Consider this quote…
“Toil was a part of the curse, and toil does not mean just hard labor, but difficult and painful labor. This indicates a struggle rather than a blessing, which hard work can be. Toil actually deprives us of who we are, while the labor of liberty sets us free to be who we really are. Toil saps us of our life and energy—the works of freedom actually help to regenerate our soul… A yoke is for work, but when we are yoked with the Lord and His purposes, which is what we were created for, we actually find rest and refreshment for our souls instead of weariness (Matthew 11:28-30). The work may actually be harder when we are laboring for the Lord than it was when we labored for ‘Pharaoh and his taskmasters,’ but it will be far more fulfilling.” Rick Joyner