Friday, September 21, 2012

A Bad Job

Have you ever felt trapped in your job?  Maybe you have been treated badly by your boss or coworkers.  Perhaps you really want to be a stay at home mom, but your family can't afford it.  Maybe you are a stay at home mom, and you feel like you'll go insane if you can't get out of the house.  With the recent job market, maybe you are staying in a job you hate because it pays the bills and you are afraid to do anything else.  I'm sure people have told you that you should be grateful for what you have, and they are right.  However, I think that using our jobs, even our unpleasant ones, as an opportunity to serve God will go a lot farther in helping us be content.

In the opening verses of 2 Kings 5, we read about a young girl who truly was trapped in her job.  "Now Naaman, captain of the army of the king of Aram, was a great man with his master, and highly respected, because by him the Lord had given victory to Aram.  The man was also a valiant warrior, but he was a leper.  Now the Arameans had gone out in bands and had taken captive a little girl from the land of Israel; she waited on Naaman's wife" (2 Kings 5:1-2).  As a household slave, she was probably not mistreated.  But she had been taken from her home by a band of raiders (her capture was after a treaty had been established between Israel and Syria), and forced into servitude with little to no chance of ever seeing her homeland again.  She could have moped, gloomily telling herself to be grateful she was alive, but still feeling angry or depressed.  That was not the choice she made.

Instead, "She said to her mistress, 'I wish that my master were with the prophet who is in Samaria!  Then he would cure him of his leprosy'" (2 Kings 5:2).  This young girl had obviously proven herself trustworthy because Naaman listened to her and went to Elisha, the prophet his servant had spoken of.  Naaman's story ended well.  He was healed of his leprosy, and he vowed to worship only the God of Israel.  We don't read anything else about his young serving girl.  It's probable that even after giving her master the information he needed to be saved from leprosy and from idol worship, she still remained a slave, torn from her family, for the rest of her life.  In all of the Bible, we only have that one sentence to shed light on how this unnamed girl lived and thought. I speculate that she continued her work as a great servant.  I believe she continued to look for ways to shine the light of Jehovah in a foreign land.  She may have been trapped, but she didn't see it that way.  She used her life as an opportunity to serve those around her and bring them to a knowledge of her God.

I ask again: Do you feel trapped in your job?  I promise you are no more trapped that Naaman's servant girl.  Being grateful for your blessings is good, but it isn't enough.  No matter where we are or who we are, God can use us to spread His Gospel, His good news.  He doesn't promise that sharing His word will save us from earthly troubles, but we know that His Word does not return void.  Any amount of trouble is trivial compared to leading others to a God who can save their souls.  

Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE(R), Copyright(c) 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

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