I apologize to my readers for the lack of posts this week. I have had fever, a sinus infection, and bronchitis. Not fun.
Anyway, I wanted to write a bit about blessing others. The concept of blessing people in daily life is something that goes back to the Abrahamic covenant, where God blessed Abraham so that he could be a blessing to others (Gen. 12). This is something that we really try to teach new converts in the Story of Redemption, encouraging them to seek to bless three people each week (Christians and non-Christians).
Frankly, this is something that we need to teach long time Christians to do as well, for many fall victim to the sacred/secular divide that is so prevalent today (where church and God are just what happen on Sunday, not the rest of the week).
One of our Story of Redemption groups--the Melissa small group--has done an excellent job of this. They have adopted a daycare center that one of them had their kids at, brought a care basket to a neighbor whose relative was shot, and sent clothes to a family that one of the members knew whose house had burnt down. Each week they are thinking of ways to bless others, which also gives a purpose and focus to our group. And it opens the door to share the gospel.
As Reggie McNeal says, "We don't need an evangelism strategy--we need a blessing strategy." While a bit of an overstatement, there is a lot of truth to this. If we bless others, this kind of love and kindness is so rare in the world that it will have a powerful effect upon those we bless. Besides, it feels good and makes our lives and the lives of those we seek to bless better.
But how do people bless people in the workplace? This is where so many people spend so much of their time. If we fail to bless people here, then we are failing to live out a significant part of our life for Christ. Josj Reeves recently wrote a blog post on 30 Ways to Bless Your Workplace. Here are his suggestions:
- Instead of eating lunch alone, intentionally eat with other co-workers and learn their story.
- Get to work early so you can spend some time praying for your co-workers and the day ahead.
- Make it a daily priority to speak or write encouragement when someone does good work.
- Bring extra snacks when you make your lunch to give away to others.
- Bring breakfast (donuts, burritos, cereal, etc.) once a month for everyone in your department.
- Organize a running/walking group in the before or after work.
- Have your missional community/small group bring lunch to your workplace once a month.
- Create a regular time to invite coworkers over or out for drinks.
- Make a list of your co-workers birthdays and find a way to bless everyone on their birthday.
- Organize and throw office parties as appropriate to your job.
- Make every effort to avoid gossip in the office. Be a voice of thanksgiving not complaining.
- Find others that live near you and create a car pool.
- Offer to throw a shower for a co-worker who is having a baby.
- Offer to cover for a co-worker who needs off for something.
- Start a regular lunch out with co-workers (don’t be selective on the invites).
- Organize a weekly/monthly pot luck to make lunch a bit more exciting.
- Ask someone who others typically ignore if you can grab them a soda/coffee while you’re out.
- Be the first person to greet and welcome new people.
- Make every effort to know the names of co-workers and clients along with their families.
- Visit coworkers when they are in the hospital.
- Bring sodas or work appropriate drinks to keep in your break room for coworkers to enjoy. Know what your co-workers like.
- Go out of your way to talk to your janitors and cleaning people who most people overlook.
- Find out your co-workers favorite music and make a playlist that includes as much as you can (if suitable for work).
- Invite your co-workers in to the service projects you are already involved in.
- Start/join a city league team with your co-workers.
- Organize a weekly co-working group for local entrepreneurs at a local coffee shop.
- Start a small business that will bless your community and create space for mission.
- Work hard to reconcile co-workers who are fighting with one another.
- Keep small candy, gum, or little snacks around to offer to others during a long day.
- Lead the charge in organizing others to help co-workers in need.
Josh Reeves is a church planter in Lubbock, Texas. Click here for his blog post.
Which of these suggestions do you like or want to try? What other suggestions do you have for blessing people in your workplace?