傾盡全力完成最糟糕的工作──GIVING YOUR BEST FOR YOUR WORST JOB

MONDAY MANNA

你做過最糟糕的工作是什麼?我想對不同的人來說,「最糟糕」的定義不盡相同,不過我們可能都會想到一個或兩個特別討厭的工作。對我來說,最糟糕的工作是每天兩三次試圖簡單介紹產品的銷售工作。第一個是透過預約向人推銷真空吸塵器,另一個是挨家挨戶銷售百科全書。

這種銷售方式只適合過去的年代,我認為由於安全因素以及網路購物的興起,挨家挨戶銷售的方式已經過時了。現在還有人會買百科全書嗎?用Google和其他線上搜索引擎,我們所需的信息一鍵躍出,為什麼要買那麼多又貴又沉重的參考書來堆滿我們的家?

我討厭這兩份工作的主要原因是我不適合當銷售員。我個性內向,向陌生人推銷他們可能不想要或不需要的東西來謀生對我沒有吸引力。然而,那些外向、喜歡銷售的人,尤其是希望賣出更多產品來獲得豐厚收入的人,可能會熱愛我討厭的工作。

但是,如果你做的是不得體或一點也不令人興奮的工作呢?我曾聽說有一個男人的全職工作是清潔移動式戶外廁所,我保證,沒有人長大或上大學的目標是得到這份工作。但這個人說雖然他不會把他的工作描述為「令人愉快的」,但他在工作裡找到了快樂,因為他每天都滿心期待,能透過工作來榮耀上帝。

當我聽到這個故事時,我想到了在古歌羅西城中耶穌基督的跟隨者。他們當中許多人的工作非常平凡,例如清潔馬厩。你能想像自己整天、每天都在鏟糞,更換弄髒的乾草和稻草嗎?但是,當使徒保羅寫勸勉信給這些信徒時,他說:

「無論做甚麼,或說話或行事,都要奉主耶穌的名,藉著他感謝父 神。……你們作僕人的,要凡事聽從你們肉身的主人,不要只在眼前事奉,像是討人喜歡的,總要存心誠實敬畏主。無論做甚麼,都要從心裏做,像是給主做的,不是給人做的,因你們知道從主那裏必得著基業為賞賜;你們所事奉的乃是主基督。」(歌羅西書 3章17,22-24節)

看到上面的經文,我們是否會感到羞愧?即便我們有喜歡的工作,卻還是抱怨不止。我們能如何達到保羅敦促每一位基督跟隨者要做到的事?上列的經文包含了一些提示:

我們要努力彰顯出基督的品格。「奉主耶穌的名」意味著以敬虔的品格和有品質的方式執行我們的工作,就好像耶穌自己在做這個工作。多年前,WWJD「耶穌會做什麼?」這句標語膾炙人口。當我們在做自己的工作時,可以好好地問自己這個問題。

我們的心態要正確。當我們知道有人正在觀察我們,把事情做好是一回事。但是,當沒有人在看的時候,我們會怎麼做呢?即使我們的人類老闆不在場,我們也應該知道無所不知的上帝在那裡,希望我們為祂帶來榮耀。

我們會得到回報。我們無法保證其他人會注意到我們工作上的卓越,但我們有上帝的應許,祂必注意我們並會獎勵我們的勤奮和忠誠。

© 2019. Robert J. Tamasy 是企業巔峰: 給今日職場從箴言而來永恆的智慧 一書的作者。也與導師之心的作者David A. Stoddard 合著Tufting Legacies。編輯多本著作包括Mike Landry. Bob的書: 透過苦難成長。Mike Landry. Bob的網站為www.bobtamasy-readywriterink.com, 他的雙週部落格為: www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com

反省與討論問題

  1. 你做過的最糟的工作是什麼?請說明原因。
  2. 為什麼同樣的工作,有些人會覺得既愉快又有回報,而另一些人卻厭惡,甚至討厭到寧願做其他任何事,也不願意做這個工作?
  3. 你如何看待那些在人前全心全意熱情工作,卻在沒有人看和評估時,工作效率降低或幾乎完全沒有工作效率的人?
  4. 你如何解釋「為主而不是為人工作」的意義?這是指我們不用關心地上的監督者和老闆的想法嗎?你覺得為主工作的意思是我們可以降低標準,還是設定一個比我們工作要求更高的標準呢?請解釋你的答案。

備註:如果你手上有聖經並想要閱讀更多內容,請參考以下經文:

箴言12章24節
12:24 殷勤人的手必掌權;懶惰的人必服苦。

箴言18章9節
18:19 弟兄結怨,勸他和好,比取堅固城還難;這樣的爭競如同堅寨的門閂。

箴言22章29節
22:29 你看見辦事殷勤的人嗎?他必站在君王面前,必不站在下賤人面前。

哥林多前書15章58節
15:58 所以,我親愛的弟兄們,你們務要堅固,不可搖動,常常竭力多做主工;因為知道,你們的勞苦在主裏面不是徒然的。

加拉太書6章9-10節
6:9 我們行善,不可喪志;若不灰心,到了時候就要收成。
6:10 所以,有了機會就當向眾人行善,向信徒一家的人更當這樣。

以弗所書6章5-9節
6:5 你們作僕人的,要懼怕戰兢,用誠實的心聽從你們肉身的主人,好像聽從基督一般。
6:6 不要只在眼前事奉,像是討人喜歡的,要像基督的僕人,從心裏遵行 神的旨意。
6:7 甘心事奉,好像服事主,不像服事人。
6:8 因為曉得各人所行的善事,不論是為奴的,是自主的,都必按所行的得主的賞賜。
6:9 你們作主人的,待僕人也是一理,不要威嚇他們。因為知道,他們和你們同有一位主在天上;他並不偏待人。


GIVING YOUR BEST FOR YOUR WORST JOB

By Robert J. Tamasy

What is the worst job you ever had? I understand that “worst” can mean different things to different people, but all of us can probably think of one particular job – or two – that we absolutely hated. For me, it was commissioned sales jobs that I attempted briefly. Very briefly, like for about two or three days each. The first one was selling vacuum cleaners to people by appointment; the other was going door-to-door selling encyclopedias.

You can tell both of these were many years ago, because I think door-to-door selling is virtually obsolete for security reasons, as well as the accessibility of being able to buy things via the Internet. And does anyone buy encyclopedias anymore? With Google and other online search engines, information we need is literally at our fingertips. Why clutter our homes with multiple volumes of costly, heavy reference books?

The point is, I detested both jobs, primarily because I am not a salesperson. Being basically introverted, for me the idea of having to earn a living by trying to sell to strangers things they likely do not want or need had zero appeal. Outgoing, sales-oriented individuals, however, especially those who thrive on the opportunity to earn a substantial income if they can sell enough products, might have loved the jobs I hated.

But what about having to do work without any beauty or excitement? I heard about a man whose full-time job was cleaning portable outdoor toilets. I guarantee, no one grows up or goes to college with the goal of attaining that job. But this man stated although he would not describe his work as “enjoyable,” he found joy in it because he started each day with the heartfelt desire to bring honor to God by how he approached his assignments.

When I heard this story I thought about followers of Jesus Christ in the ancient city of Colossae. Many of them had jobs that were mundane at best. For some, this meant cleaning horse stables. Can you imagine spending all day, every day, shoveling manure and replacing soiled hay and straw? And yet, when the apostle Paul wrote a letter of exhortation to these believers, he said:

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him…. Slaves, obey your earthly masters in everything; and do it, not only when their eye is on you and to win their favor, but with sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord. Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving” (Colossians 3:17,22-24).

This is humbling to consider, especially if we have jobs that we do like, but grumble about them anyway. How can we do what Paul urged every Christ follower to do? The passage above gives some hints:

We should strive to reflect Christ’s character. “In the name of the Lord Jesus” means to perform our work in ways that reflect godly character and qualities – as if Jesus Himself were doing the job. Years ago the saying, “What would Jesus do?” was often repeated, and as we approach our work, that is a good question to ask.

Our hearts need to be right. It is one thing to put on good appearances when we know someone is watching what we are doing. But how do we conduct ourselves when we think no one is looking? Even when our human bosses are not present, we can trust the omniscient God is there, wanting us to bring honor to Him.

We will be rewarded. We have no assurances that people will notice the excellence of our work, but we have God’s promise that He does notice and will reward our diligence and faithfulness.

© 2019. Robert J. Tamasy has written Business at Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today’s Workplace; Tufting Legacies; coauthored with David A. Stoddard, The Heart of Mentoring, and edited numerous other books, including Advancing Through Adversity by Mike Landry. Bob’s biweekly blog is: www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com.

Reflection/Discussion Questions

  1. What is the worst job you ever had? Why did it seem so bad for you?
  2. How can it be that some people find certain kinds of work enjoyable and rewarding, while others detest them and would choose to do almost anything but what their current jobs demand?
  3. What do you think of people who appear to be working wholeheartedly and with zeal when they know they are being watched, but lower their productivity or do virtually no work at all when they feel they are not being seen and evaluated?
  4. How would you explain what it means to “work as for the Lord rather than for men”? Does this mean we should not care what our earthly supervisors and “masters” think? Do you think that working for the Lord means we can lower our standards – or does that mean setting a standard even higher than what our job descriptions require? Explain your answer.

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more, consider the following passages:

Proverbs 12:24, 18:9; 22:29; 1 Corinthians 15:58; Galatians 6:9-10; Ephesians 6:5-9

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