Before Jesus gave us the Great Commission in Matthew 28, God gave Adam and Eve work to do and the commission to rule and manage the earth and everything in it (Genesis 1 and 2).
Unfortunately, most working individuals see no greater purpose for their work than to earn a paycheck or make a living. Most people see work as a necessary evil and for others it consumes their life. In short, work is their life.
God gave us the concept of work back in the Garden of Eden and he cares about our work as much today as he did back then.
The church has a twofold opportunity: equipping the saints for the work of ministry and supporting them as they carry it out. If workplace believers do not see their local church as equipping them in their area of work nor understanding the challenges they face everyday, the church fails to disciple the workplace believer where they may be making the greatest cultural and societal decisions. Secondly, to fail to affirm a workplace believer in their area of influence fails to equip them for evangelism and ministry where they will spend the majority of their waking hours.
If workplace believers do not believe that what they do at work has any eternal impact or importance other than to make a living, they will miss the opportunity for which they were created. If they are not equipped and commissioned as ministers and an extension of the church, they will miss opportunities for worship, fellowship, discipleship, ministry and evangelism in their workplace.
There is a genuine hunger being expressed by people in the workplace to want to know their purpose in life. 50% of people at work will talk about spiritual matters this week. The sale of spiritual and religious books is outpacing sales in all other categories, with the top sellers being those that address the question, “What is the meaning of my life?”
Workplace ministry is not just another ministry. It meets people where they spend the majority of their waking hours and where they have an influence on culture, society and people that a pastor will not have.
For some workplace believers, a workplace small group may be their only source of discipleship. For others it may be a source to formulate spiritual opinions and a place to consider Christianity. For many, it may be a source of influence to integrate one’s faith and values into their work life. For the church it may be an outreach to fulfill the great commission.