sermon: Too Good to Ignore
Called to Growth
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Given 16-Mar-13; Sermon #1147; 73 minutes
Richard Ritenbaugh, observing that everyone is trying to either get ahead in the world or to get by the best he can, suggests that a whole genre of career counseling handbooks has been spawned by this perennial need, among them Cal Newport's book So Good They Can't Ignore You. Newport takes issue with the cliché that we must follow our passion, suggesting that very few individuals have 'marketable' passions. Something other than passion needs to be factored into the equation as to why people love their work. Actually, Steve Jobs' primary passion was Asian Eastern religion, while computers served as an ancillary interest. His passion for the work ethic came much later. Fulfilling work actually sets the stage or the conditions for passion to develop. When we become skillful, doing things that perhaps no one else has done, we acquire passion, creativity, control over output, and fulfillment. Comedian Steve Martin literally spent a lifetime perfecting his craft or refining his shtick until he became so good they could not ignore him. We need to become craftsman at whatever we have chosen to do. God has given us a calling that is greater than a career; if we become proficient at living God's way, people will take notice. We are to serve as the salt of the earth and the light of the world. We are to practice our Christianity out in the world, in public where everybody can see. As metaphorical salt, we are called to preserve and flavor the world, largely in an unobtrusive manner. But being a light implies that we absolutely will be seen. Jesus wants us to display His righteous way to humanity as a witness. We should be the best light we are capable of being, craftsmen in Godly living, radiating out like the rising of the sun. We need to aspire to the goal of perfect righteousness. Paul had aspirations of being a master builder, turning over the foundation to a successor for him to carry on the work. The building of the edifice or the running of the race is not "over until it's over," the metap
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