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..: I feel like a preacher
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Today at work, I was talking with the head of a new department at our company. As she spoke on about bringing the rest of the company up to a level of comfort with her department's services, she said "I feel like a preacher, standing on a pulpit every Sunday trying to get them to buy into this." We used that as the analogy for the rest of our conversation.

I had already been converted, I told her. But that conversion did not come easy. When her new department had been first introduced, I held it at arm's length. Not because I didn't like it, but because her department was foreign, and being a manager I don't like having to ask my people to change the way they work unless it's absolutely necessary. But eventually, I bought into her corporate world view. It took some time, sometimes I feel it took too long. "It's not really about what you say," I told her. "More importantly, I watched what you did, and how fruitful you were. And then, there were other signs, like what I was reading in the industry journals and from what our clients were telling us. Eventually, I knew for myself that the change you propose is not only beneficial, but is essential to the very life of the company." I stand before you a changed man, I told her, somewhat jokingly.

In all my years as a person of faith, I've never said anything like what I said today. I think all the time about how my faith has and hasn't seeped into my work. How does one do a good job for God? The Christian shoemaker can sew a small fish symbol on all his shoes. The Christian maid can sing hymns as she serves poridge. Is there something more important? Rather, the shoemaker should make high quality, sturdy shoes. The maid ought to make and serve poridge exactly as requested, always deligent and thoughtful. The charge is this: do your own job, and do it well. That is how you please the Lord. I've seen faith expressed at my job before, and sometimes, I am ashamed. With the same mouth that shares about an exciting church retreat, come curses at clients, words of fear and groans of despair. Not that I am perfect, of course. I am the worst. But I have also seen faith modelled with precision, and I can point to no single action or event that has led me to say that. Instead it is something about consistency, about character and about deligence towards a job well done. These are the things on the horizon for me, they have been for a very long time.
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