Do you have a job or a calling?

By Mark Smith, Mukilteo Presbyterian | Oct 31, 2012

There is an old story of a traveler who wandered past a giant construction project. He paused to speak with some of the workers.

To one working with a chisel and saw he said, “What are you doing?” The man moaned, “I spend my days sawing and chiseling beams.”

To another worker who was mixing cement in a trough with a hoe, the traveler said, “And what are you doing?” He groaned, “I spend my days mixing cement.”

To another man, straining at lifting a heavy load of bricks, the traveler said, “What is your task?” He complained, “I spend my time day after day laying bricks.”

The traveler then passed a stoop-shouldered elderly man with gnarled fingers and calloused hands. He was clearly a common laborer hauling debris and sweeping refuse.

And what do you do?” the traveler asked. The old gentleman raised his head, and with a proud, contagious smile replied, “Sir, I am building a cathedral.”

For many people, work is simply a job – a means to make a living. It something you have to do in order to pay your bills and feed the family.

Some people just hate their jobs and live only for the weekends. They find their work monotonous and boring, devoid of meaning and purpose. That’s tragic when you consider the average person spends one-third of his or her life working.

Other folks view their work as a calling – a calling from God to serve him by serving humanity. They intentionally look for the connection between the work they do – no matter how humble or humdrum – and God’s larger purposes to bless the world.

How one views one’s daily work makes an absolutely huge difference in one’s outlook, attitude and productivity.

What if a Boeing worker saw his or her specialized work as a higher calling to produce the world’s greatest airplanes that enable families to more easily connect with one another and do so in safety and comfort?

What if a truck driver views his work not simply as hauling goods in order to make a buck, but as calling to carry needed goods across country that will enhance the life of thousands?

What if a janitor viewed work not simply as sweeping the floor for an hourly wage, but rather as a ministry of beautification – making a building a more pleasant place for all who live in it, lifting the spirits of all who enter?

Do you have a job or a calling? The distinction makes all the difference in the world!

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