Transition from a state of learning to leading can be the most challenging – and most rewarding – aspect of one’s career. This state requires a different set of challenges, rules, policies, expectations, and values. Preoccupation with self must be substituted with a desire to make a positive and constructive impact on your surrounding – others. This means to help others achieve their goals while continually striving to improve the workplace for the benefit of everyone.
Joshua was handpicked by God as Moses’ successor (Numbers 27) to lead the people of Israel into the Promised Land – Canaan. God Himself encouraged Joshua because he did not feel that he could handle this awesome task. Through three major military campaigns involving more than thirty enemy armies, the people of Israel learn a crucial lesson under Joshua’s leadership. Victory comes through faith in God and obedience to His Word rather than through military might or numerical superiority. His comforting words in chapter one of the Book of Joshua, …be strong and of good courage…(verse 6), are very appropriate during this transitional stage in the life of the worker.
In order to effectively apply what has been learned at the entry level, be guided at all times by God’s word – “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light onto my path (Psalm 119:105).” God encourages us to “Acknowledge Him in all thy ways, and He shall direct thy paths” (Proverbs 3:6). ‘Paths’ is plural, and indicative of all of the options that we will have throughout our working life. Options create choices. Knowing that we will be faced with many, many options, we must not lean on our own understanding, but trust in the Lord with all of your heart (Proverbs 3:5). God is not in the business of disappointing His chosen children!
Having trusted fully in God, the Apostle Paul teaches us to extend kindness and courtesy to everyone, especially to our brothers and sisters in Christ. Our light – lifestyle – could be the magnet that eventually draws others to Christ. We are the substance of things hoped for and the evidence that proclaims that God is real although He cannot be seen with the naked eye. “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing in prayer (Romans 12:10-12).” Love never fails because God is love (1 John 4:8).
Lastly, as we transition from learning to leading, we must be watchful as God’s chosen overseers on the job. In our new and expanded role, we are responsible to be on alert and watch for situations and circumstances that we can change. “Ye are all children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober (1 Thessalonians 5:5-6).” Be prayerful and vigilant. Show compassion, care, and understanding. Mediate where needed. Solve problems and make decisions based upon God’s Word. Demonstrate the peace that passes all understanding while in the midst of tests, temptations, and trials. Dare to launch out into the deep (Luke 5:4)!
Excerpt: Part II, Give God the Glory! Called to be Light in the Workplace ©2003.