This may seem like a rhetorical question. Job titles and org charts should make it clear right off the bat. However, though it’s obvious who the boss is, the reality is that some people simply have difficulty accepting who their boss is and why their boss holds that position. And this kind of confusion results in a sort of rebellion that where people are not motivated to give their best at work simply because of their inability to respect who they are reporting to.
The Bible gives us a command that dispels confusion or rebellion.
Bondservants, obey in everything those who are your earthly masters, not by way of eye-service, as people-pleasers, but with sincerity of heart, fearing the Lord. – Colossians 3:22
Then again, you may have a great relationship with your boss, or maybe not. Either way, what will really bring you success in your relationship with your boss could be found in knowing that:
1. You are not the Boss.
As much as you are given a certain level of freedom to create, to manage, and to initiate, you are still under the authority and supervision of your boss.
Nowadays, delegation is a big word in the business and non-profit world, and to some extent, being given a trust could make you feel entitled to calling the shots. However, always remember that the trust given to you is based on your boss’ belief that you will work, innovate, and execute projects based on your organization’s mission, vision, and values. Therefore, how you perform your tasks can either build that trust or break it. The key is to stay loyal and humble towards your boss, remembering that he or she still calls the shots.
2. There’s a Bigger Boss.
Ultimately there’s a Boss bigger than your human boss—God! Your boss can take measures to monitor everything you do under his or her nose, but he or she is not ever going to see everything you do. It’s quite a known fact that though companies have all kinds of processes that guard against fraudulent activity, some “creative” employees still find a way to bypass those processes for the sake of “the bottom line” and meeting that quota.
But the greater reality is that the BIG BOSS sees everything. He’s Omniscient (all-knowing) and Omnipresent (everywhere). Sure, there are many cases where employees get away with their dishonest behavior, they aren’t completely off the hook because God knows everything and He will certainly hold them accountable one day.
But let not this fear of judgement day be our only motivator to be honest and do well at work. Let this become a fear of the Lord that guides us in deciding to stay in His will and desire for us. The Bible says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” Proverbs 9:10
Sincere obedience and respect towards our earthly bosses will keep us right on track in our work, not just towards a job promotion, but more importantly, towards a heavenly commendation from The Bigger Boss who sees every effort we put into the work He has called us to do.
1. What are practical ways for you to show respect to your boss?
2. How does a realization of God as the ultimate Boss help improve your relationship with your earthly boss and drive your performance at work?