“No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light.” Luke 11:33

Throughout a large part of my life, certainly in school, definitely in college and in the early part of my career, I hid my faith from most people. Only those closest to me knew that I was a Christian and that I believed in God. It was indeed like I was carrying around a light but wrapped in a blanket and buried at the bottom of my bag.  

In many ways, I was living a double life. At church and in my home life I would be faith-filled, prayerful and walking in line with God’s word, but at work I would often be faithless, wandering aimlessly and not really knowing my own identity and certainly not sharing who I really was inside.  

As an Executive Assistant, I am a people pleaser, a problem solver, a good listener and always taking notes, deciphering what actions can be taken to make someone else's life easier. My own natural instinct is to sit in the middle, a little on the fence, not wanting to offend anyone. All of this meant that I did not feel comfortable to speak openly about my relationship with God, worried about what people would think and concerned at making others feel uncomfortable.

However, as time has gone on, my dependency on God has increased, my love for Him has deepened and matured, and the highs and probably more importantly the lows of life, have meant that it is hard not to share the profound impact He has on my life. The amazing peace that I get, waking up every morning in His presence and knowing that my life, and those of whom I love, are in His safe and secure hands, puts all anxieties and worries at rest.  

When I joined Baringa, almost two years ago, the first phrase I saw was ‘People First’ and I cannot emphasise enough how Baringa really lives by those words. Baringa is a firm which truly seeks to understand what is important to people. Soon after I joined, a colleague introduced me to the Christian community, which is part of Baringa’s Interfaith and Belief Network. My heart literally skipped a beat at the realisation that I was where I was supposed to be and the doors that I had kept closed for so long, began to open.

As I looked further into the Interfaith and Belief Network, I discovered a group of people who encouraged others to bring their full selves to work in an authentic way. Our Interfaith Network is for anyone and everyone and celebrates all faiths, religions and viewpoints. This Network has built an environment where people can talk about and raise awareness of their various beliefs and practices within the firm, celebrating diversity and increasing our understanding of one another. Hearing other people talk about their faith and their beliefs has empowered me to speak out about my own. 

After what has been a very personal journey, I now find myself being witness to and part of a corporate drive to raise awareness of how important and beneficial it can be for employees to bring ‘Faith at Work’.  

We held Baringa’s first ever Carol Service in December and welcomed over 100 employees, family members and clients to St Stephen’s Church, a short walk from our Baringa London office. Excitingly, plans are already under way for this year's Christmas event! 

After Easter, the Christian community ran ‘Explore Christianity’, a course where people come to find out more about who Jesus is and to learn more about the Christian faith. Everyone of all or no faith were welcomed, and it was a safe space to be curious and learn more. 

Research reveals businesses that foster an environment of religious freedom outperform their peers in various metrics, including profitability, employee and client engagement, wellbeing and innovation. 

An immensely proud moment for the Interfaith and Belief Network came earlier this year, when Baringa achieved 1st place in the 2024 UK REDI (Religious, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion) Index. This index measures and scores organisations based on their inclusiveness of Faith and Belief. Alongside this, the team have managed to gather researchers, businesses, and governments to finally start addressing the elephant in the room – faith and belief at work is important. How amazing is that!

As I bring my true Christian self to work, it does not mean that I am perfect and polished (far from it!) but for me, it means I can share who I am, what I believe, without fear and without shame. I can shine God’s light (without hiding it in my bag!) for everyone to see, sharing His hope, His love, His peace and I hope it encourages others to do the same.  

Are you bringing your full ‘faith-filled’ self to work? I encourage you to have open discussions with others within your workplace about faith and what this means. If you are not sure what your faith is, or perhaps something has stirred in your heart whilst reading this, please do reach out - I’m happy to chat with anyone.  

Baringa Christmas Carol Service


About the author:

Helen Walker

Helen is a Senior EA with over 25 years of experience. She supports three Partners in our Digital and Technology Business Unit, line manages six EAs and co-leads Baringa’s Christian Network. In her personal life, Helen is married and mum of two teenage girls. She loves walking with Teddy, the family’s cockapoo and is a bit of a plane spotter!

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