Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck. For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another.
Most people wonder how to get promoted at work. Some have concluded that it takes knowing someone at the top hierarchy of the company to get a promotion. Some wonder if their years of service and experience count for nothing. They have repeatedly seen those with fewer years of service/experience (than they have) getting a promotion instead of them.
The scripture makes it clear that promotion does not depend on these things. It is not about how long we have been at our workplace or who we know or do not know. It has nothing to do with strategic positioning, the influence of those in our social circle or the strength of our network. These things may be of some value, but when it comes to what matters, it is of no importance.
There are many biblical examples of men who, by all human standards, should not have risen to power but did. Joseph was a slave in a foreign land, but he became the second-in-command in Egypt. David, despite the hatred and plot of his successor, rose from being a lowly shepherd to a king. Isaac became wealthier than a nation during a famine. Time would not permit us to speak of Moses (a wanted murderer who became a great leader) or Jacob( who went to Laban with just his stave and returned with a family and great wealth). There is also Peter, the fisherman who became a spiritual authority more revered than the Pharisees and Sadducees (the spiritual leaders of that time).
Take another look at our passage of focus and see that promotion comes from God. Unfavourable work policies, the existence of favouritism and corruption, cannot hinder our advancement. Therefore, it is necessary to know (and align with) His criteria for career advancement.
Though He has promised to give us the best, He is a just God, and He rewards His servants based on their output. Thus, this means that promotion is about meeting His well laid down criteria. He has graciously and lovingly stated them in the scriptures and has empowered us with the grace to meet them if we are so willing.
For the Lord God is a sun and shield: The Lord will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.
We have seen a few of these criteria in previous chapters, and we shall yet be seeing much more in subsequent chapters.
Nevertheless, before desiring a promotion or aligning ourselves for one, there is one vital thing that makes the whole quest meaningful (the reason for wanting one). Is it about seeking more power, a better paycheck and respect? Or is it about the platform to reach more lives and make a higher impact?
We are not to make getting promoted at work our focus. If we work by our Father's rules, we are bound to stand out, be distinguished or get promoted. It is only a matter of time!!!
1 Samuel 2: He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the Lord's, and he hath set the world upon them.