As a pastor, I find myself needing to talk about work and the American workplace constantly, and to constantly reevaluate my theology of work given the ever changing culture. In Public Jesus I wrote a whole chapter about work and vocation. More and more I am having conversations with people about work and how difficult it is to make sense of how we are spending our days. What are we working for? Are we doing something important with our lives, and if we are not, should we make a change? Does work have to mean something or is a McJob okay? Does work need to be lucrative to matter? Do we need to feel passionate about our job in order to do it well? How much power should I give an employer over my life? My happiness? Should I work to live? Can I live to work? Does my life matter to the kingdom if I keep doing a job I despise? Can God redeem my professional life? Do I need to quite my job if I work for a company that adds to the darkness of the world?
I’m not sure we’ve ever known a time in the American experience in which work caused more confusion for normal everyday folks.
I really want work to matter. I want people to feel as though they work for the common good, no matter what their job is. I think you should be able to work hard and still have time for your family. I think that bosses should want well rounded employees – not money generating robots. I want people who feel trapped in their jobs to become liberated from them. I want people who have a soul-crushing job to find a soul-sustaining job.
More than anything, I want Christians to know that when they go to a job, they carry the mission of God into that place. Their vocation is to image God in the workplace no matter what the job is. That is their primary reason for working & it should show in every single aspect of their work life.
This video tells an important story. I’m not sure quite what to make of it, yet. But I think it would be hard to do a job this difficult for this long if there wasn’t some important meaning there. What does this video do to you?