Vocation

02/20/2011

A friend of mine at work shared with me how he was recently challenged with the task of writing a mission statement for his life.  He smiled as he told me it caused a lot of trouble for him because it made him question why he was doing what he was doing.  Now he’s passed the trouble on to me.

I wrote a mission statement for my life this morning.  It goes like this:

My mission is to use my life as a conduit for Christ to bring persistent hope and holistic transformation–in me, my family, my community, my job, and the world.

Lately I’ve committed to act on what I perceive to be God’s strong tugs on my heart.  I’m taking a class that’s essentially a primer on social entrepreneurship from a Kingdom perspective.  I started a group trying to get poor folks into homeownership.  I bought an Arduino Uno to explore manufacturing and other job-creating business opportunities.  As I flounder around trying things, I get the sense that I could waste a lot of my energy if I don’t focus, set goals, make plans, and generally apply some discipline to the process of doing things.  The tricky thing for me seems to be that I have trouble balancing the high value I place on not letting structure and routine interfere with creativity and this new idea that structure and routine (discipline!) can be the key to making a creative effort successful.

I like how the Wikipedia article on vocation describes Christian vocation as “the use of one’s gifts” for the sake of the common good.  I’m convinced that putting gifts to use requires intentionality.  I plan on making some goals consistent with my mission statement for each of the different areas of life over which I have influence (mentioned above:  me, family, community, job, and world).

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