This morning, I scrape egg off of a blue and white plate.
I overhear a pastor, Tim Keller, speaking about work in a sermon video. I wipe my hands on the dish towel and strain to hear.
Keller says, “Work is rearranging the raw material of a particular domain for the flourishing of everyone.”
I think about what “raw materials” make up this day.
So far, my raw materials are dirty dishes. Later, I rearrange letters to make words and then rearrange words to make sentences. Now, I position red peppers in a pan to roast for dinner. At 6:30, I’ll open the front door and welcome the children for neighborhood fitness group.
I also have the raw emotions of fear about my sick friend and sadness for the Japanese. I take the feelings and do the work of prayer.
Suddenly, I look at my work in new ways. Cleaning the kitchen, teaching grammar, making dinner, praying, and then hosting the neighborhood fitness group tonight all represent ways I rearrange raw material into new positions for flourishing.
And if what I’m doing doesn’t contribute to our flourishing, then it’s not the kind of work I want. I think of Proverbs 14: “The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.” I want to be the kind of person who rearranges whatever she’s been given today to allow everyone (including myself) to flourish.
Living with flair is a kind of rearranging: We rearrange our circumstances, turn them towards the light, and find the good, the beautiful, and the hopeful.
Journal: How does my work advance our flourishing?