pulling the plug on unhealthy work

When is it time to pull plug on your current job? 

Last Sunday we had a panel discussion on how we relate to our boss and other employees at our workplace. With our five panelists we discussed a number of questions related to 1 Timothy 6, and other verses in the New Testament that talk about slavery, and how to deal with in the workplace.

One question we did not get to was:  “When is it time to look for a new job and leave an unhealthy environment?” 

I know this was on a few minds at the end of our church service.  It would be easy to assume that the instructions to honor your master would mean that you are never allowed to leave your current job.  This is not what we were trying to convey in our discussion on Sunday and I thought I would take a few minutes to speak into this dilemma some of you are having in your work-life. 

God places us into circles of influence and different workplaces so that we can change the culture and make a difference. As people on a mission to bring the culture of heaven to earth, there will be many times when we are faced with circumstances in our workplace that are opposed to Jesus.  We want to be light in dark places and bring the love and the power of God to those who are living in darkness without Him. There will always be tension for us as we try to influence others to adopt the values of heaven. 

Sometimes the darkness grows to the point where it’s time to leave your job and find another place to shine your light. 

How do you know when it’s time to make a change, and when you should persevere through difficult days? 

  • Seek wise counsel

Proverbs 15:22 (NIV) says, “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.”  
Proverbs 19:20 (NLT)  “Get all the advice and instruction you can, so you will be wise the rest of your life.”

When we make decisions on our own, we often make small things big and big things small.  We lack an objective point of view on our own circumstances and need others to help us see what we are blind to. 

Making decisions about whether it’s time to move on from your job are much easier when you have Godly people in your life helping you discern God’s will. 

  •  Ask Jesus for confirmation through His peace

 A gift of peace is often how the Lord will confirm that I am on the right track.  I pray and ask for it as I make decisions. 

In John 14:27 Jesus says,  “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.”

God wants to confirm to your heart when you are making the right decision, and He will do that for you if you ask. 

  • Seek God for clarity on your calling

This is the reason why we run our seminar called Focused Living.  We want to become as clear as possible about what God is calling us into.  If we are pursuing our calling, sometimes Jesus will ask us to stay in a difficult context for us to make a change and shift the atmosphere.  Sometimes staying too long in an unhealthy context will delay us from walking into our destiny and keep us from continuing to grow toward God’s future. 

Matthew 6:33 invites us to seek God and He will put everything into proper perspective. 

If you are in a place where you know you aren’t specifically called and you are not growing any more, it’s probably time to leave that job. 

  • Be aware of the enemy’s schemes

Another reason we stay too long in a job is because of fear.  The enemy of your soul has mental audio tapes he loves to play in your head to keep you from stepping out, taking risks and growing.  He wants to keep you in the same place, and limit your exposure to those who need to hear about Jesus. 

Here a few questions to ask yourself:

  • Are you aware of what schemes the enemy of your soul is using against you? (2 Cor. 2:11)
  • What is the lie that’s playing in the background of your mind that keeps you from embracing the new, the different, or the more advanced context?
  • What lies might you be hearing or believing that will keep you “stuck.” ?

This is not a complete list on this topic, but I hope that it helps those of you asking this question know how to process a bit better. 

In the midst of your process, apply yourself to honoring and blessing those around you, and the grace of the Lord will begin to be seen in your workplace. 

If you missed last Sunday's panel discussion here is link to the audio & visual of the service. It's not to late to register for Focused Living happening on Nov. 15-16, click here to register.

Andrew Burchett

Written by Andrew Burchett

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