“The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”
― Frederick Buechner, Wishful Thinking: A Theological ABC.
Sometimes a job is just a job, and a career may be rewarding, putting food on the table and a roof over our heads. Sometimes, though, it seems our work, or our craft, runs much deeper.
Are you deeply attached to your work or craft? I am.
It started early. In high-school I preferred spending lunchbreaks helping others come to grips with their maths, science or literature challenges. Fellow students would come for relationship advice, which is rather strange since I was a solid introvert and genuinely lacked experience in anything they would tell me about. Nerdy? Yes. A little strange? Not really, or maybe. When I have tried to pursue other types of service, this desire to come alongside others keeps bubbling up, permeating my activities. Sometimes we are simply wired for something. It turns out I’m wired for providing skilled company for people, especially those who live and serve with a sense of ‘calling’ or ‘vocation’.
I’m humble enough to realise this is likely a gift from God and while I choose to keep improving my skills in this area, it bubbles up from the deep places. The places the life of the Spirit bubbles up from. Do you have a similar sense? Or perhaps you had and have lost it under a pile of detritus?
I’ve also found, over several decades, that this kind of company is something I need. I thank God often for the beautiful souls who have been this kind of companion for me. The kind of companionship where Jesus is clearly present, our hearts burn, and our eyes are opened… It reminds me of the Emmaus Road experience. (You’ll find it in Luke 24)
For those moments when you are, like the disciples on the Emmaus Road, a little dazed by ‘all the things’ going on in and around, a conversation as you walk along is natural and healthy. They had an encounter with Jesus. Jesus was present in their conversation. Their hearts burned as they talked. Their eyes were opened. I love that Jesus is present in our conversations along the way. How could he not be? He is the almighty, ever-present Creator after all…… We too can encounter Jesus in conversation, in being listened to. Our hearts can burn, and our eyes can be opened.