Updated: Jan 8, 2021
I had this contractor that frustrated the heck out of me, but she was so darn good at what she did!
When I had her full attention, it was like magic. But then she would disappear, not hearing from her for days or weeks, only to reappear ready to work harder than ever.
Some of us entrepreneurs don’t have the patience for this. We feel wronged when the very people we look to serve, turn around, and hurt us.
This happens with clients, vendors, contractors…You name it. It’s happening all around us in business.
What do we do when we’re stabbed in the back, spit on, stepped over, or downright shamed by others in our business?
What I’ve learned in this area of business has helped me propel forward in ways you wouldn’t imagine.
When people wrong me, I love them more. When people let me down, I raise them up and show grace.
But how? I’ll admit that it’s tough.
The deal is this: business is not meant to be done alone and you’re dealing with imperfect people along the way. You can have a rule that you don’t deal with people like this, but you’ll end up jaded and alone in your office, subject to only being able to do what’s within your capacity to do.
Or….You can learn what I’ve learned from the bible about how to deal with imperfect people and situations.
In the book of Genesis, we have the story of Joseph who was sold into slavery by his own brothers and served under the rule of Pharaoh in Egypt. But 20 years later, Joseph negotiates with his captors the safe passage of his brothers back to their land.
So let me get this straight. He buddies up with his “slave master” and then helps us so-called traitorous “brothers”. Am I missing something here? The two very people he should hate…He’s negotiating with.
If we’d admit, whenever we’re in a situation like this in business, most of us won’t really do anything. Instead, we hope the problem or the person goes away. We won’t put in the work that it takes to internally forgive and forget and move on.
The bible says
“Please, come closer,” he said to them. So they came closer. And he said again, “I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into slavery in Egypt. But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who sent me here ahead of you to preserve your lives. This famine that has ravaged the land for two years will last five more years, and there will be neither plowing nor harvesting. God has sent me ahead of you to keep you and your families alive and to preserve many survivors." (Genesis 45:4-7 NLT)
Joseph couldn’t control people or his environment. He could only control the way in which he showed patience, forgiveness, and grace.
The alternative was to live with anger, resentment, bitterness, and revenge.
Loving people takes making risks. It takes faith. It takes a commitment to fight through challenges when we really just want to flee the situation.
Maybe you feel that way about certain employees or clients that have done something wrong in your book. Despite the circumstances, you must choose to keep trusting and loving the people around you because you never know when and where you will meet and need each other.
We should never waste an opportunity to serve – even those who have wronged us.
These are the very people that God is using to propel your born to do identity. It’s these very people that will reveal to us the reason we’ve suffered in business.
Clients, prospects, mentors, and vendors – they all serve a purpose beyond what we can see right now.