The higher calling of corporate mission statements

Thanks to David Bergquist for alerting me to an article in the Wall Street Journal about how corporate mission statements are now all about “changing the world” and other idealistic and even religious motivations (including having a “mission”), rather than just making a product.   This demonstrates both people’s need for a sense of vocation and their misunderstanding about what a vocation actually entails.

Read an excerpt and follow the link after the jump, then consider what I have to say about this. [Read more...]

The military procedural

The American Sniper movie is stirring up big controversy in some circles for supposedly glorifying war.  But it’s also a monster hit, possibly on its way to becoming the most popular war movie ever.  Film critic Ann Hornaday says that it’s an example of a new kind of war movie:  the military procedural.

On television, police procedurals have become extremely popular, stories that concentrate on showing how police officers do their jobs.  All of the shows about forensics specialists, physicians, lawyers, etc., are of the same type, showing professionals at work as they overcome obstacles and accomplish the tasks set before them.  That is to say, all of these procedurals are about vocation! [Read more...]

An actor speaks of faith & calling

Whether or not Selma is fair to LBJ, it’s supposed to be a powerful movie.  (I haven’t seen it yet.  Can anyone comment on that?)  And I’m told that the actor playing Dr. King, the Nigerian/British actor David Oyelowo turns in an amazingly good performance.  It turns out, Mr. Oyelowo is a zealous, committed Christian who is not afraid to talk about his faith.

After the jump, I have an excerpt and a link to an interview with Mr. Oyelowo that first appeared on Patheos and was picked up by Time (which also has a link to our discussion of the LBJ controversy).  I don’t vouch for the theology–for example, that God spoke to him directly–but he is also talking about vocation (a.k.a. “calling”), and we hear a perspective that is kind of refreshing coming from Hollywood. [Read more...]

Martin Luther King, Jr., on Vocation

In honor of Martin Luther King Day, I offer you something he said about vocation:

If a man is called to be a streetsweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great streetsweeper who did his job well.

via Martin Luther King, Jr. Quotes, Page 2.

Symposium on Vocation

As I said in my own contribution, Patheos has put together a symposium on vocation, involving blogs on the Faith & Work channel and the Evangelical channel.  Since Luther’s doctrine of vocation is a major theme of this the Cranach blog, I took part, and I invite you too to join the discussion.  This may introduce you to other blogs you’d like to follow, and since together we have thought long and hard about these issues here, I hope you will contribute your insights.  So, for the symposium, go here:  My Faith and My Calling | Patheos.

The “big questions” of vocation

The Faith and Work channel at Patheos is sponsoring a symposium with other blogs interested in the subject.  That would have to include us at the Cranach institute, since one of the major themes here is the doctrine of vocation.  The topic is the “big questions” of vocation, as raised by the quotations posted here.  Interestingly, the writers quoted are all from the Roman Catholic tradition, but I think the struggles they are articulate are common to evangelicals and other Protestants as well.  Here we can see just how helpful Luther’s distinctive take on vocation really is.

Read the quotations, read my thoughts on them after the jump, then join in on the discussion, both here and on the other participating blogs. [Read more...]


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