Most of us don’t have glamorous jobs. Most young people don’t say, “My dream is to be the produce manager at Giant Eagle,” or “Someday I hope to work in a car wash.” When I was young I wanted to be a rock star. Yet I wound up being an elementary art teacher (at least for a while). Hardly living the dream.
Yet every calling God has created represents and points to Jesus. God has created every occupation to display something of his nature and character. God created man in his own image and commanded him as his representative to exercise dominion over the earth. Though sin has marred that image, it hasn’t erased it or eliminated God’s mandate. So when we do our jobs for his glory we manifest something to the world of Jesus. Even unbelievers display Jesus’ glory through their jobs, though they don’t realize it.
What do I mean?
If you are a doctor or a nurse or hospital technician, you manifest how Jesus heals and saves from death, and ultimately his desire to heal us of our sins and save us from eternal death. If you work in a cafeteria you show how Jesus feeds and provides for people, just as he fed Israel in the desert, and fed the multitudes by multiplying bread and fish and feeds us as our good Shepherd when he makes us lie down in green pastures and gives us his Word. Maintenance people and hotel housekeepers display how Jesus created order and beauty in his creation and his ultimate restoration of order and beauty when he creates the new heaven and the new earth.
If you are an artist you show the creativity of Jesus in creating the universe, and especially when he makes us new creations and forms his own beautiful image in us. In the military? You represent Jesus the Conqueror, who will someday crush Satan, evil and death itself. If you’re a police officer, you represent the One who gives us his law for our benefit and who watches over and protects us day and night. In any job, when you develop your skills and talents you reflect the excellence of Jesus, the one who does all things well.
If you’re a father, you display Jesus’ love and provision for his own family, the church, as well as his kindness to instruct, guide and discipline us. A mother shows Jesus’ tender care for his children as she cares for her family. A teen can show the humble subjection of Jesus to his Father’s will by obeying his parents.
All legitimate professions display Jesus’ desire to bless our lives. All things that men and women create to make our lives better display the generosity and love of Jesus.
Ok, I know someone is going to throw out some wacky profession and challenge me as to how it displays Jesus. What about a circus clown? (If by chance you are a clown, I don’t regard your profession as wacky, btw). What do clowns show us about Jesus? Here you go. Clowns bring joy and laughter. Jesus brings infinite joy. Clowns (should) love children. Jesus loves children. Apparently, the original authors of Godspell felt like a clown could represent Jesus and it makes sense to me – the infinitely glorious one takes on human nature with all its weakness – heaven’s king becomes a clown and enters the world of clowns to rescue them.
The more you think about how every occupation displays Jesus, you will begin to see him everywhere. You will see the kindness of Jesus to you through almost everyone. And it will make you more thankful and give you more joy.
So add your comments. What does your job reveal about Jesus, or how do some other callings display Jesus to us?
*This article was originally written/published by the author under the title “Livin’ The Dream….NOT. (But Doing Something Better).”