My weekdays usually begin early. The first thing I do every morning is head straight for the coffee pot. Once the coffee pot is going, I sit at our kitchen table with a Bible and journal. Right now, I am reading through the Gospel of John. I will generally write a page or two in my journal. Generally, I will glance at the Waco Tribune Herald and the Dallas Morning News before leaving for work.
Maybe you are about to go to work as well. Or, perhaps you just arrived and you are checking this blog just before you begin. A few suggestions.
1. Consider who you as you begin your workday. Are you a Christ-follower? Pray that Christ will be seen in you today. Be conscious of your identity in Christ. Think about what that identity means practically.
2. Be conscious of Jesus’ call to "neighbor love." What does it mean to "love your neighbor as yourself?" Are you treating people right? Are people glad to see you come? Or are they glad to see you go away?
3. Let it go! Don’t make a big deal out of things that just don’t matter. OK, a driver was rude. OK, someone walked by you and wasn’t friendly. OK, the lady in the next department didn’t seem to realize the breadth of your work experience. There are some people who seem to let nothing go and they stay tied up in knots, most of the time. Learn to travel light! Not everything is worth getting upset over.
4. Surprise somebody today.
- Be more forgiving than people expect.
- Be more gracious than many people might be.
- Pay attention to people who are often invisible or forgotten.
- Ofter to help someone and expect nothing in return. This may be a person at work who could use some assistance.
- Smile at someone who you think is generally unfriendly.
5. Use people’s names! Most us love to hear our own name. Not long ago, a person in our community spoke to a co-worker regarding a conversation he and I had earlier. That person said, "He remembered my name!" I was glad I did. (Yes, I have also forgotten many names!). Yet, it also reminded me of how something so simple can mean so much to someone else.
A few weeks ago, Charlotte and I were at a basketball game. We arrived about fifteen minutes before the game started. As we made our way through the corridor of the coliseum, we passed a concession stand. There were no customers at this stand. Four or five workers were behind the counter getting ready for the customers who would eventually come. As we were passing, I saw a man approach the counter. Though I did not know him personally, I recognized him as a minister of a large church in this part of our state. As he approached the counter, he abruptly barked, "Corn Dog!" He said nothing else.
I made a mental note. "Self–don’t ever do that." I don’t want to go through my day barking at people when I want something. However, I think I am less likely to do that when I begin my day with intention. How do I want to begin this day?
This could be a very significant day. When the day is complete, I may or may not realize just how significant it was.
It could be that part of the day’s significance might center around how God used me because of the way I began this day in the early hours of the morning.