“The danger is that this should lead us to forget that employment is not an end in itself.” ~ CS Lewis, “Good Work and Good Works”
“Hi, my name is Sean and I enjoy long walks on the beach…”
Introductions are not like personal adds, but for adults they are often just as pointless. Rather than walks on the beach the key detail becomes our occupation. “Hi, my name is Sean and I am minister…”
This becomes all the more important in our endless recession, with the unemployment number stuck terribly high. Certainly many among us many wait for a job—across the hall the College Director, David Keel, has been without work for over a year (he did have an important interview this week, so please, say a prayer!). And for these people it is as though they have lost their sense of worth.
As students your lives are defined by many things. From football to school to video games to friends to… And you have many answers to the question, “Who are you?” Because central to every students life is school (hence I call you students). And the goal of school is learning, right? Certainly—but our learning has a purpose. It not just about facts, but preparing you for the next stage. And the end goal is always an occupation.
As adults we embrace this reality. We embrace the idea that our goal is an occupation, and our jobs become central to our life. They are so important we often answer the question, “Who are you?” with, “I am a doctor.” or a teacher or the company for which we work (since many of us will struggle to define what we actually do everyday!). And our job’s importance is ascribed a number. As salaries rise and fall we find our pride is attached. Of course we talk about the worth of other things, but when we find ourselves without an income sitting at home—we begin to believe we are actually worthless…
Hence the phrase, “almighty dollar”. Because our currency has taken the role of God, defining the value of His creation.
There is nothing wrong with work—whether at school or when we have jobs. But our worth should never be tied to work. Our value should never be determined by a paycheck or grade card. For Christ has come to save. He has given everything to rescue both the unemployed and the one who choose to lay them off. Because the creator has decided we are all valuable.
This value does not root in our job. Or our paychecks. Or our grades. Instead, we are valuable because He was given to save us. And for this our life’s goal should not be an occupation, but worship.
“Who are you?” Our answer should have little to do with what we have done and everything to do with what God is doing in our lives! We are not plumbers or accountants or cheerleaders or cut from the team… We are HIS CHILDREN!
“How great the love the Father has lavished upon us, that we should be called children of God.” ~ 1 John 3:1