Monday, June 17, 2013
In The Scheme Of Things
Much of our time at work is spent trying to make a good impression. We are being paid, after all, to do a good job, and there’s no doubt that we are constantly watched and evaluated by a 360 panorama of witnesses: superiors, peers and subordinates. There’s a fine line, however, between channeling our gifts and talents towards maximum career impact, and conducting ourselves with grace and humility in the workplace.
After shaming the Galatians into focusing their attention on helping other people, now (in what may turn out to be my new favorite bible verse of all time) Paul turns up the blunt-meter (as he does so well) and confronts the Galatians with this: “You are not that important.” Your position, your brilliant education, your big salary if you are so fortunate, your flowing robes, none of this means a thing if you can’t bring yourself to see the pain and needs in others, and move to action.He is looking at Gal 6:3-6 in the New Living Translation which deviates quite significantly from most other translations here, but the spirit of the passage remains the same. The passage is about self-reliance and and having a proper image of yourself.
The point of the passage seems almost antithetical to teh self-image obsessions of the current age. The point is to have a sober view of yourself and to base your self-image on your accomplishments, not on comparing yourself to "the sinner over there."
I can here is the screams now of how such a sentiment flies in the face of grace." Yet Paul writes consistently of "not thinking more of oneself than on ought." I think it is pretty simply really, the correct response to grace is a sober view of our inadequacy. Grace is a gift, not an entitlement.