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Expect the Unexpected: Discovering the Wonder of God in Your Workplace

A few months ago, I lost my driver’s license. The replacement required me to go to the DMV. Now DMV’s are often some of the most lifeless places marked by long lines of people (like myself) who feel wildly inconvenienced by having to take a number and wait for hours to receive a government issued ID. My trip to the DMV was no exception.

Grey walls. Crowded waiting room. Stale air.

I took a ticket, number 162, and winced. The flashing red light read 76. I settled onto one of the plastic, hardback chairs.

One particular employee, the woman taking license photos, caught my attention. I watched as she carefully said each person’s name, inviting the person to have their photo taken. She spoke each person’s name in a gentle but firm way that felt warm and carried an expression of dignity.

She greeted each person with a warm smile, and asked the person to stand in front of the camera. To the aging 50-something woman, she encouraged, “You’ve still got your beauty.” To the awkward self-conscious teenager, she leaned in, “Show me that beautiful smile.”

One woman appeared particularly distraught, and I watched as this worker comforted her. At one point she came out from behind the counter to give her a hug and encouragement. “You’re gonna get through this,” I overheard her say.

I sat wonderstruck. Right in the DMV, I was witnessing the love and compassion of Christ. This woman was touching thousands of lives as she worked.

Armed only with a camera and compassion, she radiated a joy that transformed the atmosphere of the room.

When she called my name, I walked forward to stand on the line and look at the camera. I heard the click and moved toward the woman.

“I see something in you,” I said. “And I believe it’s the love of Christ. It radiates from you.”

Tears streamed down her face. She looked away then deep into my eyes. “God has given me so much and I can’t help but give it away. But I always wonder if it makes a difference.”

“Oh, the difference you make!” I said. “You leave me wonderstruck.”

I left the DMV that day with a new driver’s license, but something far greater: the wonder of God was alive in my heart. I had encountered one of those moments that made me long to know God more and see His glory displayed in every crevice of creation.

Through this stranger, God reminded me of the importance of living with divine expectation. One of the great things we can expect of God is the unexpected. By His nature, God’s ways are so much more vibrant, breathtaking, and all encompassing than our own. This is one of the most exciting aspects of living with divine expectation: we can lean into the idea that whatever God has up His sleeve is better than anything we could imagine on our own.

This isn’t just true of big life decisions, but those small every day ones—especially in and surrounding your workplace. It’s easy to overlook. Caught in traffic on the way to the office. Feeling frantic as you begin tackling an impossible list of to-do’s.

Smelling the familiar stale scent of the cubicle, staring out at the same parking lot below.

Day after day.

Week after week.

We become distracted. Task-oriented.

Overwhelmed and underwhelmed all at the same time.

But what if it’s in these moments—which you didn’t expect—God is busting at the seams to display His glory and power and might in your life?

What if what could be dismissed as a detour or inconvenience or excess workload is actually an invitation to experience the wonder of God? 

What if that next project positions you to deliver the precise word of kindness or encouragement a person needs? 

What if the person waiting by the coffee pot really needs someone to talk to—and God has sent you? 

What if, like the woman at the DMV, God is doing more in and through you right where you are than you ever imagined?

Spend some time today reflecting on how God wants to use you right in your workplace.

How can you begin living with a greater sense of divine expectation in your 9 to 5? Who is God sending you today—among clients and coworkers—on whom you can lavish the love of God?