DEAR HARRIETTE: I am a woman of faith. Now that I am in my 40s, I can see even better how important my faith has been in my life. I know, of course, that I have worked hard and that has helped me to have the wonderful job that I have. I am a good wife and mother. So far, even though I have had some challenges, my life is great. I don’t take this for granted; I believe that this is happening because I have faith in God. I am active in my church and do my best to live a well-balanced life. When people ask me why I am so positive, I like to tell them why. But I worry that I shouldn’t talk about faith at work. I never try to get people to follow my path, but I do want to be able to tell my truth. What do you recommend? -- In the Spirit, Atlanta
DEAR IN THE SPIRIT: You are wise not to proselytize anywhere, especially at work. Your focus at work should be the tasks at hand. Of course, it is also important to build relationships with the people on your job. What you are already doing sounds right. Be a good example of honorable behavior and focus. When asked why you are the way you are in a one-on-one situation, feel free to express your belief that you know you work hard but that your faith is your foundation. Keep it simple unless you believe the person asking is sincerely interested in learning more. Do not invite co-workers to pray with you or go to church with you.
Be mindful that a work environment is legally supposed to be free of any religious affiliation. That said, if someone asks to learn more about how you practice your faith, you can share more information. There is no need to be paranoid, by the way. Just remember that everyone’s religious views are acceptable in a work environment.