I No Longer Hate My Colleague

By Xinzhi

Fang Xia works in a law firm, which has three storefronts. Judging by the amount of foot traffic, the middle storefront has the greatest advantage. Fang Xia was lucky enough to be assigned to this room. In the office, everybody was on duty in turn. The lawyers received a commission based on the number of transactions they made during the day. The sales commissions—the total amount of their daily sales minus the management fees of the law firm, would go to the lawyers who are on duty that day, and formed their day’s income. So, everyone cherishes their time on duty very much. Fang Xia was no exception.

christian in the workplace,a law office

One day it was Fang Xia’s turn to be on duty. She left home early and arrived at the office five minutes later. As she came down the stairs, she glanced into the room and saw that her colleague Dou Chuman was clicking the keyboard at the reception desk, seeming to be sorting materials. Fang Xia opened the door and greeted Dou Chuman with smiles. Dou Chuman, with her usual exaggerated enthusiasm, said to her, “Oh, honey, just a moment. I’m sorting some materials. I’ll make room for you a moment later!” Fang Xia smiled agreeably, saying, “Alright. Go ahead!”

But Fang Xia felt such enthusiasm as Dou Chuman expressed was somewhat exaggerated and even sickening. She disfavored this way of handling things, because she was a Christian who only wanted to work hard and steadfastly, and to be honest.

Later, Fang Xia found that Dou Chuman always took up her duty time, in the name of using the computer, and sometimes, she would use it for all morning. During this time, what was worse, she gave Fang Xia the cold shoulder. Such an attitude greatly disturbed Fang Xia at work. When Fang Xia couldn’t stand her and so reminded her, “Sister Dou, am I on duty today?” Sometimes, Dou Chuman would reply, “Really? Dear me, I’m always muddle-headed!” Only then did she drag her feet in leaving the desk. Other times, she would say, “Okay, I’ll be quick to make room for you. Just a little while.” Fang Xia could see that Dou Chuman was on purpose. But Fang Xia knew that what happened every day has been permitted by God, and that she should learn to obey God’s sovereignty, so she practiced tolerance and didn’t fuss with her.

But gradually, Fang Xia found: If Dou Chuman wanted to use a computer when the director Gao Lin was on duty, she would voluntarily use one on any other desk; even if the director hadn’t arrived, she wouldn’t occupy the reception desk. In short, she never occupied the director’s duty time. Besides, she usually said that she was too careless to remember who was on duty and on which day…. But judging from her daily performance, she couldn’t, in fact, be clearer than anyone else about that. The more Fang Xia pondered over this matter, the angrier she was. She thought Dou Chuman was taking advantage of her. Unable to stand her any longer, she told the matter to the director Gao Lin, hoping that the director could remind her. Nevertheless, the director discriminated in favor of Dou Chuman, saying that Dou Chuman must have forgotten about it. When Fang Xia saw that the director had no intention to help her, she was very uncomfortable.

christian in the workplace,computer

One day, it was Fang Xia on duty again. Dou Chuman wanted Fang Xia to help copy the photos in her phone to the computer. Because the computer on the reception desk wasn’t quick, Fang Xia offered to use the computer in the back room to help her and asked Dou Chuman to sit at the reception desk in her place. Just when Fang Xia was busy copying the photos, her head lowered, a customer came in. Fang Xia thought Dou Chuman would definitely introduce the customer to her, so she continued what she was doing. But unexpectedly, Dou Chuman herself began to receive the customer. When she appeared unable to answer what the customer asked, she said, “Let me introduce to you a professional lawyer in this aspect.” Upon hearing that, Fang Xia expected Dou Chuman to introduce the customer to her—after all, she was the one on duty that day. But, it never struck her that Dou Chuman should rise to push the door open and lead the customer to the room on the right.

It was said that the lawyer in the right room hadn’t had cases for two months odd. Dou Chuman should please others at the cost of Fang Xia’s interest. Fang Xia was about to explode with anger. She thought: How come you curry favor with her and embarrass me in front of other people? Are you not bullying me? Fang Xia felt so much hatred for Dou Chuman that she wished to go out at once, to reason, and even fight with Dou Chuman to vent her anger. At this moment, Fang Xia realized that she was bursting with her satanic dispositions, and that her condition was abnormal. In order to keep herself from doing something that grieved God’s heart, she seized her bag and left the office. She wandered in the street, feeling pained and frustrated. Everything around her seemed to have stopped moving. Her heart was burning with hatred, her mind was set on how to take revenge on Dou Chuman.

At this moment, Fang Xia had involuntarily been dominated by her corrupt nature. She didn’t want to practice the truth. She only wanted to deal with Dou Chuman with her own way. She thought: Humph! As the Chinese saying goes, “If the tiger doesn’t show its might, people may treat it as a cat.” Next time, I’ll teach you a lesson!

Several days later, the day for Fang Xia to be on duty came, and Dou Chuman once again occupied the computer on the reception desk. Fang Xia said nothing, just letting her be. As expected, Dou Chuman kept sitting there for a whole day. The next day, it was the director Gao Lin’s duty day. But Fang Xia still arrived at the unit early. Pushing the door open, she saw that Dou Chuman was unknowingly seated at her own desk. After they mutually greeted each other, Fang Xia quickly put down her bag, took a book, and sat at the reception desk. She was a little nervous in the heart, but she assumed an air of earnestness, as if she were really on duty that day. A while later, the director slowly came in. Seeing Fang Xia sit there, he went straight to the back room without saying anything. Dou Chuman noticed that Fang Xia kept sitting there, so she asked deliberately, “Well, who is on duty today?” Fang Xia pretended to be not knowing it, saying, “Am not I?” Dou Chuman was stunned and then said, “Yesterday was your duty day. Today should be the director’s.” Fang Xia thought to herself: You said you couldn’t remember who was on duty. See, how clearly you have remembered! You just pretended to be muddleheaded. Fang Xia patted her own head and pretended to have wrongly remembered the day, saying, “Oh, yesterday was my duty day? I thought it was yours. Because you sat there for a whole day, I then thought you were on duty yesterday!” At this moment, Sister He, who had long disfavored the way Dou Chuman treated Fang Xia, came out from another room and said, “Sister Dou, since you were not on duty yesterday, why did you sit there for a whole day? Why are you always taking up Fang Xia’s duty time? Don’t say that you are used to it, or you have forgotten about it. If you are in your element, then why do you never occupy the director’s duty time?” Dou Chuman knew she herself was in the wrong, so, in order to save her face, she had to go to apologize to Fang Xia. Only then did Fang Xia heaved a sigh of relief.

Although Fang Xia had her anger vented, she wasn’t as happy as she had imagined, but was condemned somewhat. She realized that she was “giving someone a taste of his own medicine,” which was not the likeness a believer in God should have. She felt much remorseful about this matter.

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4 Principles for Christians’ Interacting With Others

By Hanxiao After believing in the Lord, along with listening to more and more sermons, we have some understanding of the Lord’s words and also always put forbearance and patience into action according to the Lord’s teachings in interacting with others. For this reason, we often feel peace and joy in our heart. But it is undeniable that many Christians are very hazy about the principles of practice in establishing normal interpersonal relationships. In fact, there are mainly four principles for Christians’ interacting with others. With them, we will be able to live out the likeness that the Lord is pleased with in our life. The first principle is that we should be able to love each other while getting along with others; the second is dealing with people with wisdom; the third is treating others correctly; the fourth is that we should not interact with others on the basis of our philosophy of life, but should establish a proper relationship with God. So long as we keep the four principles in our daily life, we will be in accord with the will of God in interacting with others. The first principle is that we can love each other. The Lord Jesus required that “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like to it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-39). For example, Peter said to the Lord Jesus: “Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?” The Lord Jesus saidto him: “I say not to you, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven” (See Matthew 18:21-22). We all have weaknesses and inadequacies, so our interactions with others should be based on loving each other. In this way, we will not have any trouble living in harmony with others. Those who have no love are inhuman and cannot get along with others, while those who have it have a compassionate heart, like to help others, and moreover are able to comfort those who suffer hardships. Besides, those who have no compassion love others conditionally. They only help and forgive those who did them a favor before or those who haven’t hurt them. As soon as someone impinges on or harms their own interests, they seem to forgive him outwardly, but their hearts are full of dissatisfaction and boredom. In this situation, we need to pray to God more and ask Him to grant us with a heart of truly forgiving and loving others. Only when we truly rely on God, can we have the faith to put forgiveness and patience into practice, and let go of the prejudices and dissatisfaction toward others inside us. But loving our neighbors as ourselves is not unprincipled, and God does not require a confused kind of love of men. We see that the Lord Jesus was full of mercy and love toward those who believed in and followed Him, but condemned and cursed the hypocritical Pharisees who opposed Him, this is an exemplification of the righteous disposition of God. So, we ought to draw a clear boundary line between ourselves and all the satanic forces that oppose and condemn God to achieve loving those who God loves and being clear about love and hate. The second principle is dealing with people with wisdom. In Matthew 10:16-17, the Lord Jesus said, “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the middle of wolves: be you therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will whip you in their synagogues.” Actually, for Christians, using wisdom is an indispensable principle in practicing forbearance and patience and loving our neighbors as ourselves. This is because some people are the Christians pursuing truth, but some are the forces that are hostile to God, oppose God, and refuse to accept the gospel of God. And they are specially sent by Satan to interrupt and disturb the work of God. If church business or something about brothers and sisters is known to them, they will get a hold on these things to attack, judge, and condemn, and even report the brothers and sisters to the police. So, we must have discernment and be wise with these people. Secondly, it is unavoidable to encounter many difficulties in getting along with others, so it is indispensable for a Christian to use wisdom. Actually using wisdom is, on the one hand, for the sake of allowing others to gain benefits, and on the other hand, for the sake of helping to solve problems easily. For example, if we want to do or say something, we should consider what sort of disposition the person we are interacting with has, and how to go about things in a way that benefits them and does not harm them. All these are some practices of using wisdom. The principle of dealing with people with wisdom is also very important. The third principle is treating others properly. The Lord Jesus said to us: “And why behold you the mote that is in your brother’s eye, but consider not the beam that is in your own eye? Or how will you say to your brother, Let me pull out the mote out of your eye; and, behold, a beam is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of your own eye; and then shall you see clearly to cast out the mote out of your brother’s eye” (Matthew 7:3-5). If wishing to attain to treating others properly, we should not fixate our eyes on others, but should learn to find out our own shortcomings. 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When doing things, we should take account not only of our own interests, but also of others’. Besides, we should learn to be more considerate to others, to benefit them, and to listen to others’ opinions more. If someone has some shortcomings or does something wrong that jeopardizes our interests, we should treat it properly. Since the Lord Jesus can forgive us, we should also forgive others. The fourth principle is that we cannot use the philosophies of life to interact with others, but should instead establish a proper relationship with God. This is the most important. In our daily life, we often use those philosophies of life in the world to maintain relationship with other people, such as “Think before you speak and then talk with reservation,” “More friends, more paths. More enemies, more barriers,” “Keeping silent on the faults of good friends makes for a long and good friendship,” and so on. When we do things according to these philosophies of life, actually, this just shows that what we worship is still Satan. Our maintaining relationship with others in this way is hated by God. What God requires of us is to have a normal relationship with Him and do everything according to His words, such as being an honest person, not telling lies in interacting with others, and not making flattering remarks. When seeing that the practices of some brothers and sisters are not in accordance with or violate the Lord’s teachings, we can point it out instead of being afraid of displeasing them. In short, all things are established on the basis of the Lord’s teachings. We can practice whatever the Lord requires of us. Only this is having a normal relationship with God. The above are the four principles for us Christians’ interacting with others. 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