Watch: Jon’s testimony
Jon picked up a slogan from social media that subconsciously became his work “mantra”. This led him to neglect to love his colleagues and showing them the grace he had received from Jesus, until he learnt to release control to God and experienced true joy. Praise God!
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I began to ask myself, “Did I care enough?”
“Did I care for my employees’ well-being more than just them doing their job and them helping me attain success?”
My name is Jon. I was born in the States and I grew up in Asia to a Christian family. But growing up, I think I was very tempted by a lot of things that we see in the movies, like power and love and all these things.
When I graduated, I worked as a consultant at a small company.
In the beginning, it was quite rocky because, well, I didn’t know what I was doing. But as I learned from my mistakes, I began to attain more success in what I do. I began to move up the ranks, my boss put more trust in me, gave me more responsibilities, and it made me feel more empowered.
As I was on this upward trajectory in my career, the company hired a senior to look over me and look over our team.
I felt that some of this empowerment was drawn away from me. I felt I lost a lot of control.
I felt disrespected that the company would think someone can do a job better than I can. I still wanted to be the guy in charge. I wanted to be the main guy.
I became very angry at the company, at the senior that was put in place to manage me, because I knew better. This anger, this agitation trickled over to the way that I treated my teammates and even personally, the way that I treated my girlfriend And that often doesn’t bode well in a relationship.
Eventually, the senior left and I was put into his position. So, I got what I wanted.
I was in the spotlight again, but my inner issues were never resolved. I was still angry. I was still easily agitated. I still treated my teammates rather harshly.
I also realised that my girlfriend and I were arguing a lot, and she pointed out to me that I had a lot of anger and pride issues and that I needed the humility to hear and to change.
And in my Christian community, we prayed that things would smoothen up, but more than that that God would kind of show me a way out of this problem that I had. Through all that, God reminded me of a statement that I read on social media some years ago.
It said something to the tune of, “I don’t care about your best. I just want you to do your job.”
And that to me was my mantra, and how I approached work. Colleagues didn’t matter, employees didn’t matter, because as long as you got the job done, you know, that’s all that I needed. That varies very differently than how Jesus taught us how to love and how to live our life.
I was reminded of this verse in James 4:6. It says, God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.
And so I really saw that contrast between how I was living my life at the workplace versus how I should live my life.
God demonstrated His grace for us. And in turn, we need to demonstrate grace for others, in the workplace even. I realised that the cure to pride was humility, the cure to anger was forgiveness. And Jesus showed us what a life of grace looked like.
My attitude began to change at the workplace. I started caring more for my colleagues.
It’s as easy as dropping by their seat and asking them, “How are you doing today?” I realized that there was a burden that I was carrying without even noticing. It was a burden of, you know, needing to perform. It was a burden of needing to manage. It was a burden of needing to gain respect from other people. Once this burden was lifted, I just felt this joy that came all over me.
I think humans innately want control over a lot of things. We want control over how much money we make. We want control over how happy we are. We want control over how healthy we are.
And being in this Covid-19 pandemic, I think it puts a lot of things in perspective, in that we are not in control.
From my experience, it’s a mindset that when we are in control, we place an invisible burden, a stress on ourselves. It is when we let go of that control to God that this burden gets lifted and true joy and true peace and love enters into our hearts. And it sustains us during the chaos and during the uncertainty that we face every day of our lives.
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