Raise your hand if you’d like to move up in the workplace?
Raise your hand if you feel stagnant in your career?
Raise your hand if you blame your boss, your co-workers, your staff, or your work environment for holding you up in the areas above?
Have you ever considered the role esteem has on your potential promotion?
We know Sarai as the elderly wife of an even more elderly Abram. As you remember, God promised Abram that his offspring would be innumerable. In fact, he would be the Father of many nations. Assumingly, Sarai would be excited to play a part in this promise as well,
But her low esteem got in the way.
Genesis 16 records where Sarai instructed Abram to lay with her servant in order to get a “jumpstart” on fulfilling this promise. But when the servant did conceive, Sarai became emotional, saying to Abram, ‘‘This is all your fault! I put my servant into your arms, but now that she’s pregnant she treats me with contempt. The Lord will show who’s wrong—you or me!” So, let’s get this straight. Sarai is mad that exactly what she planned to happen, happened. Mhmm…
God wanted to promote Sarah to her promised place in royalty. God even said, “I will bless her, and she shall become nations; kings of peoples shall come from her.” Yet, the time span between when a child was born to her servant and when a child was eventually born to her was 14 years!! So this means, day in and day out, Sarah had to deal with feelings of being judged, less than, unqualified, and at risk of being replaced. For 14 years, she felt uncomfortable and anxious in her workplace, convinced there were no options B’s and no room for advancement. Do this any of this sound familiar to you? Sound like your workplace environment? If so, consider this…
What role does my esteem play in my promotion?
With Sarah, we see that the way she doubted her body, thought less of her body, and failed to esteem her body created the foundation upon which a 14-year detour in her promise was built. If she esteemed her temple, perhaps the promise would have inspired her to eat better to prepare a healthy womb. If she esteemed her temple, perhaps the promise would have inspired her to establish a good exercise routine, so she could lower the risk of pregnancy complications. If she esteemed her temple, perhaps at the very least, the promise would have inspired her to immediately take her husband and get to work on bringing God’s word to fruition. But no, she instead disrespected her temple, calling it “worn-out.” Now, when you look back at what God has promised you, how has your low esteem delayed your promotion?
How has your low esteem limited your promotion?
- In the case of our friend Sarah, the low esteem distracted her. She was so focused on what she thought she was incapable of doing, that she wasn’t even motivated to try what she was assigned to accomplish! The low esteem made her feel like her workplace environment was the cause of her demise. When, in fact, she was the cause of her demise herself.
- This low esteem made Sarah an abuser. She acted out of character. Even though Sarai instructed Abram and the servant to lay together, she turned around and took it out on both of them. In fact, the servant eventually ran away! How difficult will it be to have a healthy workplace when one of your most dependable workers, one of your most obedient workers, is no longer present? How can you expect to be elevated when your team is busy trying to avoid you all day?
- This low esteem elevated Sarah’s emotions and fractured her faith. It was 14 years from the time Ishmael was born to the time Isaac was born. In year one, Sarai probably thought Abram just heard God incorrectly. During years two through seven, she had likely built up a large amount of resentment towards God, losing faith in His word by the day. Certainly, by year 14, Sarah didn’t want to even want to hear mention of God, much less believe Him for anything. The low esteem she had for herself, her body, fractured the esteem she had for the One who created it.
Oftentimes, we blame others, our circumstances, or our environment for our shortcomings in life. Perhaps it’s time to evaluate the common denominator—YOU. I encourage you to be honest with you. Be real about the esteems you are struggling with. Whether it’s self-esteem, spiritual esteem, intellectual esteem, physical esteem, etc., be daring enough to address it head on. Refuse to allow low esteem to limit you from being promoted to your place of promise.