Seth Godin is shocked.
I was talking to a religious leader, someone who runs a congregation. She made it clear to me that on many days, it’s just a job. A job like any other, you show up, you go through the motions, you get paid.
I guess we find this disturbing because spiritual work should be real, not faked.
I was interested in his perception of religious work because his remarks seem to focus totally on the ‘spiritual’ and not on the ‘work’.
I’m reading Seth’s new book
Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? where he seems to be suggesting that with hard work we can all become the kind of people who create and add value. He says that we can’t and won’t be a creative genius all day but that the 5 minutes that we are makes a huge difference. Why should ministry be different?
In his brilliant book
Dangerous Wonder: The Adventure of Childlike Faith Mike Yaconelli tell a story of a preacher he met who was counting the days to retirement, like counting telegraph poles along a long road. This minister was fed up, tired, drained and burned out.
I’ve met many people who feel like that some days. I’ve felt like that. Often.
Spiritual work is hard word. Some days it feels very much like work, mostly because it IS spiritual work and you feel the pressure to inspire people, to lead and to bring them into the presence of God.
Some days you turn up and go through the motions because it’s work… and we are human.