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Easter: the Power Behind Your Legacy At Work

Wharton’s Adam Grant asks “Are you a giver or a taker?

New York Times columnist David Brooks asks “Are you an illuminator or a diminisher?” 

Retired NFL Quarterback Jeff Kemp asks “Are you an Investor or a Consumer?” 

All of these thought leaders are hitting us with a powerful dichotomy: you are either adding value to others or using them. Which do you want to be?

We all know the right answer: Be the positive, others-oriented, make-the-world-better kind of women and men. We also want that right answer to be true of us. At VOCA, we’ve proven once again that the most significant source of joy at work is positively impacting other people. Whether it’s the product or service we deliver or the relationships we develop with those with whom we work, our joy at work is about giving, uplifting, and investing in people. Adding value to others is the key to having a legacy at work.

Yet this aspiration only goes so far. Where do we find capacity for this at work when the reality is that we’re already miles behind on our never-ending to-dos? And what about the not-so-neat and tidy scenarios? How do we give when giving requires sacrifice? How do we find the courage to illuminate when those around us may not want to see the light? How do we invest when there is a high short-term cost for an as-yet-unseen long-term gain? This is where the reality of Easter can change how we approach our colleagues and neighbors at work.

During the arc of Holy Week, Jesus provides seven reasons we can trust him to take care of us as we risk ourselves in the care of others.

  1. He is the King: The Palm Sunday presentation of Jesus is that of the rightful King. He is the boss of everything and in complete control (Read "Easter is the Secret to Faith and Work".) None of us needs to feel the stress of trying to run the universe.

  2. He turned the tables on the superficially religious: One of the great sources of false guilt and shame in our world comes from the superficially religious, who deliver pressure to perform outwardly without reference to the heart. Jesus neutralized these would-be shamers over and over during Holy Week, creating space for us to serve others authentically.

  3. He is infinitely wise: Holy Week was a week of conflict with the religious powers setting all sorts of traps for Jesus–he didn’t fall for any of it. The infinite wisdom he displayed shows us that he knows how to live better than we do. We can trust his instructions to be others-oriented.

  4. He is a friend: On Thursday of Holy Week, Jesus washed his disciples’ feet, showing that he would not use his authority to manipulate or feed his ego. He is the servant King. He called these flawed men his friends. We can trust him to befriend us as well, giving us a secure base from which to risk caring for others.

  5. He exercised courage on our behalf: Jesus’ suffering was for us. He fulfills God’s requirements to win, innocently standing for each of us before Him. He knew it would be agony but he had the courage to say “Not my will but yours.” He did that for us, making it safe to risk investing in others.

  6. He conquered the grave: Jesus’ resurrection proved many things. One is this: if you follow him, there is no worst-case scenario. Not even dying is the end of our story when we surrender to him.

  7. He did what he said: During Holy Week, everyone did what Jesus said they’d do. The religious leaders had him condemned to death. The disciples deserted him. And he stayed the course and rose from the dead.  

It’s great advice to be a giver, illuminator, and investor. But it takes more than advice to tip the scales in favor of acting differently in your workplace. During Holy Week, we find Jesus who repeatedly demonstrated that we can count on him. This gives us the security to encourage, serve, and celebrate our colleagues without worrying about our own success. 


We help Christians maximize their Kingdom impact at work. Schedule a free consultation with one of our coaches and learn how you can see your work in a new way.


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