Tag Archives: vocation

Important work like sittin’ around fishin’

“Important work like sittin’ around fishin’ remains to be done.” In making this quaint observation, Pogo was not the first to recognize the importance of being alone and idle. The value of solitude has been affirmed throughout history. Early in the nineteenth century, Emerson wrote, “In the morning, — solitude;” said Pythagoras; that Nature may […]

On getting to know the Sirens

“You are worried and distracted by many things.” The words have dogged me for decades. Jesus addressed them to Martha when she tried to triangulate him into settling her disagreement with Mary about some after-dinner chores (Luke 10:38-42), but they keep hitting their mark in me. So do the ones that followed, “there is need […]

The hope of our calling

What do you see when you look at a lump of coal? Do you see merely a lump of coal? Or do you see fire? Steam to drive engines and light cities? Coal is not our best source of energy, but for a long time it was exactly suited to our level of development. Now […]

You are called to be sent

The future is arriving faster than anyone expected. I don’t say that because I’m growing older, although I admit my Medicare card arrived a lot sooner than I expected. People who live and work at the frontier of creativity and technology are saying it, too. “For the first time in history,” one futurist wrote recently, […]

You are called to bless

Rex Ryan changed his tattoo. The new head coach for the Buffalo Bills had been sporting a tattoo of his wife Michelle dressed in a Jets-green jersey. After being fired as head coach of the Jets and coming to work for the Bills, Ryan had the color of his tattoo changed to Bills blue. Ryan […]

This call is for you

After the curtain falls on our celebration of Christmas, Howard Thurman reminded us in his poem, the work of Christmas begins: “To find the lost, / To heal the broken, / To feed the hungry, / To release the prisoner, / To rebuild the nations, / To bring peace among brothers [and sisters], / To […]

Stepping out

In 1978 I had a moment like Saint Peter must have had when he stepped out of the boat and experienced the truth of W.H. Auden’s observation that “the distresses of choice are our chance to be blessed.” That was the year I chose to leave one publishing house and join another. It was probably […]

Going the distance

The season of Lent comes with a hard question. When do the gifts of God, meant to help us in our journey of faith, become obstacles that prevent us from reaching our destination? When do green pastures that restore our souls become soft couches on which we lie down into the sleep of spiritual death? […]

Coming and going

Now another Christmas has come and gone, and what was the good of it? Aside from the seasonal heart-warmth it provided, what lasting difference did it make? That’s the kind of question you might expect from Ebenezer Scrooge, but it wasn’t Scrooge who asked it. It was Meister Eckhart, the German theologian, philosopher, and mystic […]

Keep the channel open

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will […]