What’s My Job? And Where’s My Work?

Blog / Produced by The High Calling
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In my late 20s, my job as a camp director consumed me, something I justified by including my wife. Summers we worked together, and the rest of the year I kept her up on all the staff and work. We were both enmeshed in my job, and I remember it as a great time. In fact, I loved our life. So in our mid-30s, when our first child appeared, I expected to continue my routine with the happy addition of thinking about our daughter. And until then, my wife would have been willing to let me.

Our world, however, was irreversibly changed. Suddenly I had a job and a family. And in the slow, painful process of bringing them into balance, I came to see that our work in this world is not defined by a job. My work would be to build the Kingdom of God. Instead of asking what job God had given me, the upending impact of fatherhood led me to ponder what unique circumstances He had put me in to do his work.

Building a home, tending to a marriage, rearing a child, maintaining a house, and more were all vitally important to the Kingdom. What’s more, my place in the community required participation. In addition to my job, therefore, my work would consume my entire life.

In those days, my prayer and reflection spurred frequent new questions and considerations. Where are we to spend our time? “Making a family life, serving an employer, affecting other lives,” I answered. And my notions of work continued to mature—neither quickly nor painlessly; yet I do believe it came in obedience.

Where is my work? Now I would say: look around. A marvelous employer pays me for my efforts on the job; a wonderful wife endures my sometimes dense awareness; two precious daughters absorb my attention. I have community boards and committees, regular involvement with people at stores, the theater, wherever life takes me. Every situation requires faithful response—even recreation. Here, now, all this is the work God gives me. I fail frequently to live up to this great trust, but God knows my intention to live a life in Christ with the help and encouragement of the Holy Spirit, and to help build His Kingdom.