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How to Pray When Your Work Isn’t Working

These prayers may help change aspects of your job, and they may change you.

Is your work working?
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Having trouble at work? Feel like it’s no longer working for you? Maybe you’re desperate for a change. Maybe you’re the one in six people that statistics say thinks about quitting every week.

If so, what do you do? 

Like most things—maybe all things—it begins with prayer. So let me suggest four prayers that may help when your work is no longer working for you. 

1. God, thank You for my job

Especially in these times, if you have a job, say, “Thank you, God!”

Your job is a gift. It is a privilege…just ask someone who’s out of work or who’s unable to work. It is a blessing, even if it doesn’t feel that way.

2. God, save me from my job

You may read that as a prayer to get out of a job, to get a new job, a different job, a better job.  And that’s a fair prayer to pray, if that’s where you happen to be.

But it can also be prayed in a different way. Paul, the first-century church planter, once said:

Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life: You should mind your own business and work with your hands (1 Thessalonians 4:11, NIV).

That may not sound like much, especially in our culture where one of the first questions we ask a new acquaintance is, “What do you do?” And often the unspoken part of that question is, Is your work impressive? Is it important? Do you make a lot of money? Does your job make you….somebody?

So you might pray, “God, save me from my job.” Save me from being defined by what I do. Save me from thinking my worth is wrapped up in my work. Save me from confusing my identity with my vocation.

3. God, help me do my job

The Bible says:

Do your own work well, and then you will have something to be proud of (Galatians 6:4, CEV).

Whether you’re digging a ditch or building a cathedral, writing a book or driving a cab, teaching a class or roofing a house, pray to do it well, to work as hard as you can and make yourself as valuable as you can to the company or institution you serve. Make your job an act of worship to God. 

4. God, help me go to my old job as a new person

The Bible says:

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving (Colossians 3:23-24, NIV).

Imagine how that could transform the experience you have at work even this week.  

Whatever you do, approach your old job as a new person, a representative of God at your workplace, a minister of Jesus Christ.

Who’s taking the time in your work world to listen to a hurting person? Who’s taking the initiative where you work to befriend the lonely, encourage the weary or hug the neglected?  

Who’s working not just for a paycheck but also for God?

It could be you. You could start this week. You could be a new you in that same old job.

So try these four prayers. Even if your work is working for you. It might change things. It might change you.

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