I have been evaluating my life recently. I have been working to create the initial Mission, Vision, Values and Goals for Spiritual and Religious Life at Drexel University. I have also been working through my Ministry Covenant with Baptist Campus Ministries. To make a long story short my life is overwhelming. I am able and required to do so many grand things. I have been spending too much time evaluating what needs to be done. What must I do? What needs to be done is overwhelming. There is too much to do and not enough of me to get it done. Just today that question changed on me. No longer will I ask about what needs to be done. The question is now: “what can I do?” Or more importantly, what is it that I can do in this particular situation that no one else could to the extent that God has specifically placed me here and no one else?
I am reminded of the initial point in one of my seminars for Drexel on Spiritual Leadership. This seminar is one of the sources that gave the impetus for developing Work-Ship. If God created time, and we should try manage our lives based upon God’s will for our lives then God’s will for our lives will never be to do more than there is time to complete. Therefore if we do not have enough time to complete everything we are trying to then either we are trying to do more than God’s will for our lives or God is using the tension to change us into more capable persons. What needs to be done is more than what God wants me to do. So the liberating question is not what needs to be done but what can I do.
What Can I Do?
As I been thinking about that question and the various levels of my life the central theme that keeps coming back is Work-Ship. Work-Ship may be the organizing idea of my life at this moment.
As I look at my roles as a husband, father, son, family member and friend, I realize that I need to model the proper balance between work and rest, between mission and worship, between task and relationship. This is what I can do. I won’t ever be able to be everywhere my daughter wants me to be, but I can be available when my daughter needs me. I may not be able to saturate my wife with the amount of quality time she deserves but I need to make certain that spending time with her never feels as if it is pulling me away from more important tasks. I need to develop relationships with people simply because I like being around them.
As I look at my role as the Baptist Campus Minister at Drexel University, I am in a unique position to really experiment with methods in developing mature Christian graduates who are able to approach work as mission and rest as worship. Because Drexel operates on the quarter system and has the extensive co-op program, I am in a unique situation with a unique clientele. I can develop curriculum with students and test its effectiveness almost immediately. I have access to students who know what they need when entering the work environment. This is what I can do that no one else is able.
As I engage the University in my role as Coordinator of Spiritual Life, I realize that the one thing that I can be an expert on is how work and faith interact. I can answer the question of how a student processes academically from a faith perspective. I can help Student Life investigate proper work – rest balance issues. I can challenge the University to allow room from students to explore their vocation as spiritual beings. I can ask University to look at the balance between achievement and celebration.
As I engage my role as Coordinator of Spiritual Life from a personal perspective, it gives the opportunity to first hand evaluate what it means to serve a secular institution as a committed Christian for God’s glory and because of God’s calling. II do my best for Drexel to make Drexel the best place it can possibly be and still remain faithful to the calling of God in my life. I am an ordained evangelical Christian minister who serves to the best of his ability the needs of Drexel. My job and my faith are inextricably twisted together into one unique calling from God.
What can I do? Exactly what God wants me to do.