By Rick James
‘It may sound odd for a professor of business to say this, but I reckon that our organisations could do with a deal more loving, a bit more forgiveness and a lot more faith in other people’.
It’s one of my favourite quotes from Charles Handy, a leading management writers over the last 50 years.
But forgiveness is really tough. Bishop Isaiah Dau’s inspiring story ‘But what about my brother’s killers?’ made this abundantly clear in the May bulletin. I was encouraged when Isaiah said forgiveness for him was an on-going process, “a daily struggle” that “keeps coming back”. I can relate to this. Perhaps when Jesus said we had to forgive seventy times seven times, he might also have meant that we had to forgive the same offence over and over again.
How do people in your organisation respond when things go wrong; when people let them down? How do you react? Mistrust and resentment may be reasonable, but ultimately destructive, responses. The only real antidote is facing the situation with both truth and grace (John 1:14). It may be unappealing and a huge struggle, but it is only forgiveness that can really transform difficult workplace relationships.
What could you do this week to make ‘truth and grace’ more part of your office culture?