There is a great difference in excellency, usefulness, and comfort between people of clear, digested knowledge, and confused, undigested apprehensions. -Richard Baxter

Jacob’s ladder and the corporate ladder

sgtsanta.jpgso we spent a couple days last weekend thinking, discussing, and praying about how our faith and our occupation ought interact. (Along the way we encountered serendipitous insight–but unrelated to the topic at hand–into ‘why they hate us.’ Picture at right taken at the entrance to Joe Pool Lake, where we rested from our consideration of a work for a while. The state park was gearing up for their holiday Christmas light extravaganza. Santa has apparently traded in his sleigh for an F-1 Abrams.)

The question is, now what? What shall we now do with the essence of Chuck’s commentary on how:

  • God is present in and to our workplace; our task is becoming aware of how He is present there
  • the toxicity we sometimes encounter in our workplace is surely no impediment to growth in grace, but actually a means to discovering growth
  • our awareness of God’s presence in the workplace–His concern for bringing all work under His lordship–is what fuels our ability to be involved in that work for the good of those we work alongside and for the good of those for whom the work exists. (Joseph’s story and God’s superintention of that story is but one example of how mere diligence to our work in the sight of God is capable of doing great good.)
  • the normal Christian life is one connected to the wisdom of others–and especially in the workplace where eternal perspective is needed as much as an industry-perspective.)

So even if you didn’t retreat with us, there’s still some concrete steps to be taken going forward.

  • Pray. Pray that God would help you to see those you work with in a new light.
    • That where you work is as much a mission field in this Post-Christian era as the remotest parts of the earth
    • That what you’ve been given in the aptitudes necessary for your work are capable of being harnessed for the glory of God–both for the good of the business you’re doing and for the good of the world
  • Talk. Talk with those in your field. Ask one another the questions, “Okay, if God can be glorified in whatever context, how might my work in (education, administration, medicine, law, arts/music, business, etc) fulfill that calling?  Is there anything we know how to do for the sake of our occupation that is transferrable to the work of the Kingdom?”  Yes, you’ll have to pray for that kind of insight, too.
  • Apprentice.  As we continue to gather with more seasoned PCPC professionals, approach them.  Ask them the hard questions.  Take the initiative to seek their counsel often.  You’ll be surprised how energetic and enthusiastic they’ll be to receive that kind of “hounding.”

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