Listen to Your Work

What is your work telling you?

This question and others like it came up last week at a leadership lunch we hosted at work for select student leaders. Our guest was thought partner and uber-blogger Bradley Moore of Shrinking the Camel.

As students asked Bradley about his path to career success, the theme of listening came up again and again. "I just felt drawn to the world of business," he said.

Detailing how God is often in the most mundane of details, his career path has looked like a winding road with no obvious trajectory.  Yet, over time, Bradley's success has been evident and God has woven quite a track record for results. All this because he has listened to God through his work.

Right now I'm trying to do the same. I'm hearing that I don't do all that well when I'm past the 10 hour mark in any given day. I heard recently that variety keeps me fresh and so I adjusted my schedule, cancelled a meeting and mixed things up. I could go on and on.

The point is that, as Merton once said,

"God is present in all of the silences of the world."

Many of these happen at work, while we are commuting or while we are in front of a computer screen. The art of listening to your work is really important today. In fact, I think it's vital to changing our workplaces and helping God transform ourselves.  

Think of that friend who complains about his job. Or that relative who can't see that her position is actually pretty decent but all she does is pour over the classifieds, looking for something "better".  Sometimes we need  a bit of context to show us how great our positions really are.  Conversely, we may also use listening to show us that it's time to leave work and find something new, something that gives us life.

What is God saying through your daily schedule? What is He not saying through it?

Listen to your work. It will show you what "lights you up" as Michael Bungay Stanier likes to say. And, most importantly, it just might show you where God wants you to spend the next five minutes of your day.

Listen to your work.


Photo courtesy of Phaitoon