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Devotions or Biblical Counseling During Work Hours

Discussion in 'Spiritual Formation & Disciplines' started by Jim B., Jan 22, 2022.

  1. Jim B.

    Jim B. New Member

    United States
    In Relationship
    Hey all!

    I accepted a new job back in June and it is a much slower pace than my last job. While it’s only a slight pay increase, it’s generally easier money to earn. Whenever I have a little bit of down time I often read material that is related to my work to increase my knowledge and not waste time. As a matter of fact, for years I have been using Colossians 3:17 as evidence that I need to work as if I’m working for the Lord. (see below for reference.)

    Anyway, my question is what if I spend any down time on things related to the Lord but not necessarily related to my work? For example, I’m currently working on a lay counseling program and I could use more time. Lay counseling somewhat ties into my job since I work at a drug and alcohol treatment center. What if I studied the Word of God or watched YouTube videos on preaching? Am I stealing time from my employer or is it o.k. since God comes before all?

    “And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father” (Colossians 3:17, NLT).
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. bèlla

    bèlla ❤️ Supporter

    United States
    In Relationship
    Down time at work is still on the clock. You’re being paid regardless of busyness. Turn the question on its head. Would you be accommodating in your employer’s position or expect your money’s worth?

    ETA: I was referencing periods outside of lunch or breaks.

    Last edited: Jan 22, 2022
  3. BobRyan

    BobRyan Junior Member Supporter

    United States
    First of all - if your work allows a certain amount of time for "breaks" -- like walking around for 10 or 15 a few minutes after a few hours of work - then they already expect you to be engaged in some down time -- just make sure you are not exhausting yourself during productive work hours by your activity during those company approved down-times.

    on the other hand - if your study material is in fact OJT (on-the-job Training) then see if you can get approval for it.
  4. Rachel20

    Rachel20 Well-Known Member

    United States
    One thing I've learned, when the Lord is fully in something, I'm not troubled or doubtful. So if there's a nagging at my conscience, regardless how small, I pay attention.
  5. GreekOrthodox

    GreekOrthodox Psalti Chrysostom

    United States
    Eastern Orthodox
    There are short prayers you could say before you start a new task or at certain hours of the day.

    This is a standard prayer from the Orthodox prayer book before starting a new task. I find that saying this prayer helps clear my mind of whatever I was working on before and gives me a mental separation to begin the next item on the to-do list.

    Almighty God, our Help and Refuge, Fountain of wisdom and Tower of strength, who knows
    that I can do nothing without thy guidance and help; assist me, I pray thee, and direct me to divine wisdom and power, that I may accomplish this task, and whatever I may undertake to do,
    faithfully and diligently, according to thy will, so that it may be profitable to myself and others,
    and to the glory of thy Holy Name. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, of the
    Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit: now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.

    This is an Orthodox prayer at monastic hours of 6am, 9am, 12pm, 3pm, 6pm
    Prayer of the Hours
    O Christ our God, who at all times and in every hour, in heaven and on earth, art worshipped and
    glorified; who art long-suffering, merciful and compassionate; who loves the just and shows
    mercy upon the sinner; who calls all to salvation through the promise of blessings to come; O
    Lord, in this hour receive our supplications, and direct our lives according to thy
    commandments. Sanctify our souls, hallow our bodies, correct our thoughts, cleanse our minds;
    deliver us from all tribulation, evil and distress. Encompass us with thy holy Angels, that guided
    and guarded by them, we may attain to the unity of the faith and to the knowledge of thine
    unapproachable glory, for thou art blessed unto ages of ages. Amen.
    [Here may be added your own private devotions and intercessions, using your own words or the
    "Occasional Prayers"]
  6. SkyWriting

    SkyWriting The Librarian Supporter

    United States
    In my experience every minute on the clock should be working for the company and your breaks should be ROCK SOLID to the second and well documented what that time is. There are often back stabbers looking for lazy co-workers and they will run to the boss at a moments notice if you even glance at your phone.

    Unless the boss hands you the daily paper while you are working, it should be ignored as well as your phone.

    What do you want your boss to consider when it's time for a raise?
    That you slacked less than he allowed allowed you to slack off?
    That's not really worthy as compared to you working 30% harder than necessary when they give raises.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2022
  7. JAM2b

    JAM2b Newbie

    United States
    It really depends on what your employer's rules are.

    I work in a job where there is often significant down time. I work with clients who have disabilities. We are permitted to entertain ourselves with our phones, watch TV with clients, read, make personal phone calls, or whatever we might have on hand. I've even had telehealth appointments with my doctor while on the clock.

    My supervisors are aware and give their approval because there is literally nothing to do in those moments. Whatever we are doing, we have to be able to drop it in an instant and tend to the client if needed.

    If it is against your employer's rules then I believe that doing it would be wrong.
  8. Jim B.

    Jim B. New Member

    United States
    In Relationship
    Thank you all for your wonderful replies and suggestions! I have concluded that it is wrong to work on my personal studies during work time but as someone noted there are scheduled breaks in my day. Also, if there are times that I can combine my studies with our group activities then I think that would be fine. Naturally, I will be practicing my counseling skills on my clients and this is an example of a combined event.