Witnessing for Jesus Christ through work is not an easy task. America is no longer a “Christian nation”, and sharing the Gospel at work could even land you in hot water. But you don’t necessarily have to witness in the typical way – there are subtle ways to do it that can get the message across without getting you in trouble with anyone.
9 Tips For Sharing The Gospel At Work
1. Keep A Bible On Your Desk
A friend told me about this approach over a decade ago, saying he actually heard it somewhere else. You don’t need to say a word to anyone about the Gospel – all you have to do is to keep a Bible in an obvious place on your desk. People will see it, and will understand exactly what it means, even if they never ask any questions.
When the moment comes that they do have questions, and are seeking faith-based answers, you may very well be the person they come to first.
2. Don’t Participate In Gossip And Obscenity
One of the best ways to witness is by not participating in non-Christian activities. Gossip and obscenity are practically participation sports in many workplaces. People spend eight or nine hours together each day, and this becomes a form of entertainment. By not participating in it, you are quietly making a statement that you are a different kind of person. And in the process, you will also avoid hurting anyone’s feelings.
3. Do More Than The Minimum
How you go about your work is also an indication of Who you answer to. There are enough people in the workforce who do the absolute minimum possible. But you can make a statement for the Lord through the quality of your work. “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters…” – Colossians 3:23.
4. Be Ready To Help Where You Can
If it seems as if someone in your department is overloaded with work, be ready to help. Similarly, if someone approaches you about helping them, do it enthusiastically. By doing this, you earn people’s respect. Witnessing – however minimal – will be more accepted when you have people’s respect.
Of course, this doesn’t mean helping everyone to that point that your own work slips. But help out if you can, at least a little.
5. Don’t Compromise Your Integrity
It is unfortunate but true that in many workplaces, we are called upon to compromise our integrity. You should always want to protect your integrity – it’s your credibility in life – protecting it can also be a platform to witness from.
When you’re asked to do something that clearly violates your faith as a Christian, you can cite your faith is the reason why you can’t participate. Once you do, everyone will clearly know where you stand. Yes, some will hate you for that stand. But others will see you as a leader – even a spiritual leader – who dared to say “no” to doing the wrong thing.
6. Get Along With Everyone, Even The People You Don’t Like
Romans 12:18 tells us “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” That directive doesn’t evaporate the minute you arrive at work. You should try to get along with everyone at work, even and often especially the people you don’t like.
Realize that sometimes when we are working closely with someone who we don’t like, it is God Himself who has put us in that position. It’s a test of faith for us, and a strong likelihood that God has a purpose for our being with that person. You may even be the only Christian that person ever knows. Embrace it as an opportunity.
7. Be Ready To Listen, And To Be A Friend
There is probably no behavior on your part that will more identify you as a believer then being ready to listen and to be a friend. At some point time, everyone feels lost and lonely. You will be an oasis in the desert to a lost person who has no one else to turn to. That is usually the time when people are most receptive to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
8. Know The Bible, Know What You Believe
It is a sad but true statement that many professing Christians have only the most superficial understanding of Scripture. Many get it second- or third-hand from preachers, televangelists and even from Christian friends. But that is not the kind of faith that stands up well to the storms of life. And you can hardly relate a credible testimony to nonbelievers with that level of faith.
The only way to truly understand Scripture is to study it personally, meditate on it, pray about it, and put it into practice in your life. That is the primary training you need in order to be able to effectively witness to nonbelievers. And don’t forget – sometimes it’s other believers who need witnessing. Life can wear down even the most convicted Christian. The testimony of another believer can be just what’s needed to pick them up.
9. Never Overstate Your Case
Never forget when you’re in the workplace that the Gospel may not be officially welcome. As well, some people are turned off by in in-your-face witnessing, no matter how genuine it might be. The subtle approach – using some of the tips above – will probably be more warmly accepted.
These days, millions of people have been raised without any semblance of faith. In witnessing to them, you must always be aware of this, and proceed accordingly. If you come on too strong, you risk turning them away. Witnessing should be thought of as a soft, long-term process that will require patience, subtlety, and an understanding that many people will never accept what you’re saying. This can be especially true at work, where there is usually something of a secular support structure that turns people the other way.
Don’t forget that it’s not we who “win souls”, but the Holy Spirit. Our job is to spread the Word, even if that means doing it by example, rather than with actual words. As Saint Francis of Assisi is credited with saying, “Witness at all times. If necessary, use words.” Nowhere is that better advice than in the workplace.
Do you ever try to witness at work? How does it work for you? What are your biggest obstacles?