Vocations and hairballs

A quick post today as this has been quite a week, but if you’re familiar with the wonderful theologian and author J.I. Packer, he has some very insightful words about the Christian concept of vocation over at Crosswalk.com. You can check it out here. I’ve given this topic some thought over the years and I find that there is the constant need to transcend the tyranny of the moment… it’s nearly impossible to keep a healthy perspective on what we’re really here to do (and whom we’re here to serve) when we get all worked up over the daily and weekly hairballs of corporate life.

Incidentally, I borrow that phrase “hairball” from the wonderful (albeit theologically questionable) book Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Graceby the late Gordon MacKenzie. It’s a book about behaving as a creative innovator by orbiting the hairball – you know, the politics, the pettiness, and the inertia of the status quo found at the center of most bureaucracies. He suggests that the key is not launching ourselves in the stratosphere, thereby declaring ourselves immune from relevant daily issues, and not getting ourselves tangled up right in the middle of the hairball. The same principle is true for us as Christians. We need to orbit these hairballs, reminding ourselves of our true vocation and staying close enough to be relevant (salt and light) without becoming entangled in the mess.

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