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What Is the Soul of Our Work?

What Is the Soul of Our Work?

The more I write for this blog, the more I’m discovering one of the core themes that God has given me to speak on.

The Soul of Our Work

In this day and age of technological advancements, text messages, emails, and even blogs like this can sometimes feel like they are diminished replacements for the real heart of real genuine connection. Now, I know that the written word can carry more than its value on its face. God’s word itself is inhabited by God’s Spirit. And I believe, in a similar way as we work, as we create, as we write, that our soul imprints on the work to which we put our hands. While I feel like this may be an avant-garde thought to many today, I believe in 5-10 years people will definitely recognize this to be true. Even though authenticity is a buzzword in most circles today, it will become the only real currency in the days ahead. As deepfakes increase, as the truth and reality become so watered down, augmented, or twisted that they are unrecognizable as such, more and more we will crave something real. Something NON-FUNGIBLE.

It will be harder and harder to spot the real thing from a shelf filled with fugazi, but there will be at least one distinguishable feature for those with clear eyes and full hearts hungering for the authentic. It won’t be visible from the average vantage point, but only upon closer inspection. It’s when one engages with the work looking for impact, that one will find a clearly present or missing ingredient… soul. It is the soul of the work that touches the soul of the beholder.  The outside can look great, but it’s what’s inside, the soul that makes the difference. Jesus said it this way when speaking to his religious opponents…

27 “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.” Matthew 23:27-28 NIV

While hanging outside with my wife and son, we discovered a problem with one of his shoes. Despite in what great condition the top and design-heavy portion of his shoe was, we found aSOUL OF OUR WORK 1 hole in the bottom which meant they needed replacing sooner than later. At that moment I heard myself say,

“It doesn’t matter how great it looks when there is a hole in the sole.”

WHOA. That’s it, isn’t it? There is a truth for life, for art. Not a truth about the sole, but the soul. It’s the thing that matters when all is said and done in our life on earth. The state of our soul is the most important biblical question, but the most important question in our creativity might be similar…what’s the soul of our work?

I think we should all check to make sure we don’t have holes in the soul of our work where the real impact we genuinely want is threatening to seep out.

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