Blog - Supporting Believers
God is in My WorkplaceWednesday, December 09, 2009
A workplace testimony by Debbie LaFever
God had been tugging at my heart for two years to begin a prayer group in the public school where I work as a counselor. But for some time I held onto reservations. I feared it would cause “issues” and be rejected by co-workers determined to maintain separation between church and state in our public schools. But God in his faithfulness continued to speak his truth and desire into my heart.
Finally this year I stepped out in faith and invited the entire school staff to join me for a weekly time of prayer. That invitation unleashed an instantaneous and powerful reaction. Immediately battle lines formed between those for and against. Conflict and pressure increased among staff members, until one afternoon my school principal entered my office for a “chat.” He asked me to find a way to restore harmony in our building. He suggested I issue an apology for offending those who want no part of God in the daily workplace.
I was hurt and confused. How could offering to bring the Almighty God into our work environment and lift up our school struggles and concerns offend anyone? I wrestled with how to respond. Should I apologize and back down? Or should I stand my ground for the truth I know? Through prayer, God revealed I should aim to do all I could to win the hearts of those opposed to Christ. I apologized for offending anyone and promised that next time I would choose a more private way to invite those interested. Within a day, tensions and the conflict over prayer in the public school subsided.
In the following week, two things began to happen. Some avoided me. But far more exciting, Christians began to come out of hiding and let their presence be known. Some encouraged me and said thanks for stepping out. Others committed to joining the weekly group. We began to meet and pray once a week before school, inviting Jesus to invade our building. Even those unable to attend physically committed to joining with us in their prayer times at home. We began to acknowledge each other throughout the day with Scripture and to send one another notes saying things like, “I'll be praying for you,” or “God is with you in all things.”
I noticed other Christians began to talk openly about the Bible studies they were attending and to share points from sermons and the good things happening in their churches. We began sensing a new-found freedom to acknowledge God in our daily work and to speak his name aloud to each other, not in a way that would stir conflict, but in a way that sweetly encourages the heart of a believer.
We now meet weekly to invite God into our workplace, to inhabit the building with his presence, to bring favor and protection to the children, and to strengthen our conviction to love one another. Our workplace motto has become, “Do it as unto the Lord,” and it is beautiful to behold!
To God be the glory, great things he has done!