Still on working (or living) in a hostile environment, please note, as established in the first write up in this series that our focus is not on merely coping or surviving, but on maintaining a high level of productivity, to the point of prospering in the midst of it all, difficult as it seems.
Let’s return to our case study on the man Jacob and how he prospered amidst hostility in the work place, and ended up richer than his mean, shrewd and controversial boss, Laban, as recorded in Genesis 30:25 to Genesis 31.
The first factor, which guaranteed the success and prosperity of Jacob, is Loyalty.
What is Loyalty?
Merriam-Webster defines Loyalty (with respect to the various objects) as
faithfulness or allegiance to “one’s lawful sovereign or government”, “a private person to whom fidelity is due” and “a cause, ideal, custom, institution…”
The Place Of Loyalty
There is great tendency for people who face hostility in the work place to detest and despise their bosses.
And when hatred sets in, Loyalty flies out of the window!
In this state, it gets very difficult to sustain one’s morale, and every act of disloyalty seems very justifiable.
Nevertheless, the true test of loyalty is not when things are smooth, but as said by Mac Hammond in his Winner’s Way series, “…when leadership sets a course with which we don’t agree”.
Is There a Strong Enough Excuse?
Your loyalty to your company, your boss (or spouse, family, country and whomsoever else your loyalty is due), is a duty and a responsibility that cannot be compromised.
Moreover, a hostile (work) environment is never acceptable as excuse enough to be disloyal- especially with God, who would not also condone any form of rebellion against authority.
For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry … (1 Sam.15.23)
Even With Possible Loss in View…
Jacob remained loyal to Laban despite cheating him and changing his wages ten times.
You know that I have served your father with all my might and power! Gen. 31: 6
He did not allow the character flaws and integrity issues of his boss to dent his own character, integrity and right standing with God!
He never took advantage- even though he could rightly have. He just kept on serving and remained loyal all through.
It now becomes obvious why he was able to cope, and more importantly, to excel to the point of prosperity.
If he said, The speckled shall be your wages, then all the flock bore speckled; and if he said, The streaked shall be your hire, then all the flock bore streaked.
Thus God has taken away the flocks of your father and given them to me.
Loyalty is key and nonnegotiable no matter what!
How loyal are you to your company, boss, (spouse, family, nation or whomever else your loyalty is due) when things don’t go in your favour?
Lord, it is hard to keep being loyal at the cruel face of probable loss and betrayal. But I trust in You.
Please help me to attain a higher level of confidence in You, and to believe that You have my back in all circumstances.
Please grant that this deep security keeps me loyal even when things don’t work in my favor…
And even if it seems I’m losing ground at the moment, please teach me to trust and see You give me victory and turn everything around for my good at the end. Amen!
Funmi Adebayo (c) 2013