Don’t Hang Your Hanger on the Sprinkler!


How is our leadership affected when we break the rules? Not only does it affect us and our relationship with God, but it also affects our relationships with others.

I was on a business trip recently and noticed a sticker below the sprinklers in my motel room. It had an image of a hanger and that infamous red circle with a line through it. Under that was the following statement: “Do not hang anything on fire sprinkler.” Obviously, someone, at some point in time, tried this and created the reason these stickers now hang in motel rooms under the sprinklers.

My first thought was, “What did they try to hang on the sprinkler? Ran out of room in the closet? Thought it would be a great drying rack? Maybe curiosity – to see what would happen?” Whatever the reason, it broke the rules.

How is our leadership affected when rules are broken?

Isaiah 59:2 says, “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.” Breaking rules is a sin. Sin separates us from God. When we are separated from God, we cannot lead like Him.

Not only does breaking the rules affect us and our relationship with God, it affects our relationships with others. Think about a time when you may have been presented a situation where you had to decide to follow or break the rules. What other people were affected by your decision? Did you make your decision with that in mind? Some things that come to mind might be calling in sick when you are not sick, spending time socializing or gossiping by the water cooler, surfing the web for personal use during business hours, or having someone clock in for you when you are running late. What does God’s Word say about this?

Colossians 3:23 says,“ Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.”

If we filter all of our work decisions through that filter, how does that change things? How does that affect our relationship with God and with others? This filter should challenge us to do the right thing in all circumstances. If we work for the Lord, then we would not put additional workload on others when we called out sick for no reason, we would not gossip, we would be convicted to not surf the internet unless it was related to our current assignment, and we would not ask someone to go against company policy by clocking us in before we arrived at work.

As humans, we are not perfect. So, what happens when we do mess up?

Ephesians 1:7 reminds us that, “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace.” As God extends His grace toward us, we should extend that same grace to others. If someone breaks a rule that affects us, we should extend grace to them, forgiving them just as Jesus has forgiven us. If we happen to break a rule that affects someone else, then we should go to that person, apologize, and ask for forgiveness.

All of this is much easier said than done. I’m sure all of us would like to be “employee of the year” under Christ’s leadership. As leaders, we should set goals that support our desire to work for Jesus and not for man. I encourage to take a few minutes to reflect on how your life would look if you worked for Jesus.

In Acts, God gave us the command to go into all the world and spread the gospel of Jesus Christ. Our workplace is our world. As leaders, we need to be confident of Who our model is. I challenge you to use Colossians 3:23 as your filter as you strive to lead like Jesus.

By Kim Rider

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