Tag Archives: Calling

Christian Kamiwaza

You should strive to be like the gods. Or maybe not. (Wait, what?)

In The Icarus Deception, Seth Godin writes about a Japanese term kamiwaza:

“Like most great words for which we have no equivalent, it is difficult to translate. The shortest version is “godlike.”

When we strip away self-doubt and artifice, when we embrace initiative and art, we are left with kamiwaza. The purity of doing it properly but without self-consciousness. The runner who competes with kamiwaza is running with purity, running properly, running as the gods would run.”

That statement is so close to correct, it’s almost painful. Isn’t it?

Kamiwaza isn’t something we should strive for… I mean, Adam and Eve wanted kamiwaza, to be like God, to be godlike, and it didn’t turn out so well.

So, no. Not kamiwaza. But Christian kamiwaza. (I’m not super original.)

Christian kamiwaza.

Like most ideas rooted in scripture, it’s simple to understand but difficult to master. The shortest version might be “as created.”

When we strip away self-doubt, artifice, and doubts of our Creator, when we embrace what we were created for, we are left with Christian kamiwaza. The purity of doing it properly but without self-consciousness. The runner who competes with Christian kamiwaza is running with purity, running properly, running as God created him to run.

What would Christian kamiwaza look like in your work, art, home life, friendships? You would be fearless, decisive, adept, skillful. You would be intentional. You would be humble. You would be free from the unnecessary restrictions of others or self.

You would be whole.

You would be as created.

Fuel for work

(You are going to think this doesn’t apply to you. It absolutely does.)

You will be tempted to work through the holidays. You will be tempted to work Christmas morning even. Maybe for your day job, maybe not. But the temptation to work will be alive and well.

  • Cook breakfast that will impress everyone
  • Be winsome and funny
  • Fit in at dinner
  • Make sure everyone knows you did ________
  • Make sure no one knows you did ________
  • Hide this
  • Embellish that
  • perform, perform, perform
  • Think about work
  • Check email
  • Check twitter
  • Take 15 pictures, post one to instagram
  • Post one to facebook
  • Write a comment about how great everything is
  • #blessed
  • perform, perform, perform
  • Worry about how your comment was taken
  • Worry about how your gift was received
  • Worry about who gave you this and who didn’t give you that
  • Worry about what that means about how they think of you
  • Worry about what it all means about you
  • perform, perform, perform
  • work. work. work.

Christmas morning is God’s gift to you to lay down your work. Not just your “day job” work, but the work beneath the work. The work of defending and protecting yourself. The work of modifying and correcting your image. The work of proving your worth (to others and to yourself). The work of striving for _________. The work of earning the love of those around you.

Christmas morning is the ultimate gift of rest and provision and peace and comfort.

Jesus is the ultimate gift of rest and provision and peace and comfort.

His birth (and his death and resurrection 33ish years later) are the fuel for your rest this coming Thursday. That rest, deep soul rest, is the fuel for your work every day forward.

This Christmas, rest in God’s completed promise, wrapped and laying in a manger. Rest because God told you to. Rest because if you know Jesus, you don’t have to work.

More than anything, I hope you get that peace this Christmas. I hope your heart and mind and soul rest in the good news that God wrapped himself in flesh to be with us. I hope you find the rest that can only come from knowing that because of Jesus, God loves you specifically and unconditionally.

I hope I get that rest too.

Merry Christmas. (Restful Christmas.)

Don’t miss the forest

Tasks are terrible.

Jobs suck.

Careers aren’t better.

Callings though. Callings are what you want.

Don’t just do a task today. Don’t just do your job. Don’t just spend time building your career.

Tasks don’t matter tomorrow. Jobs won’t matter once you quit. Careers only last a decade or two. Callings though, are eternal.

Do work that matters. Do work today that fulfills your calling from God – your career supports it, your job supports it, your task list today supports it.

Don’t miss the forest for the trees.

Not sure what your calling is? Check out the two hyperlinks above and then join the mailing list. Life’s too short to do work that doesn’t matter.


Confidence is a Choice

Have you ever thought about the fact that you view confidence as both the precursor to, and the result of, success? “I need confidence to be successful. I’ll be successful when I can get some confidence.” That’s a terrible chicken and egg scenario.

It’s not super useful to view confidence as both the result of and precursor to success. If you’re waiting on being confident to be successful while also waiting on success to find your confidence, you might just wait forever.

It seems far more useful to understand the truth of confidence: the source of your confidence is not your accomplishments, but Christ’s.

The Gospel – the truth that Jesus sacrificed himself so that you could be adopted into God’s family – is the source of the greatest confidence. If you truly get it, you can be one seriously cocky s.o.b. (uh… can he say s.o.b.?). Think about the kid you knew growing up who was given everything, was told they were great at everything, was never told no. That kid’s confidence was through the roof (even if he was a terrible snot nosed brat.) That could be us. We have all the tools necessary to be confident just like that kid! We could be snot nosed brats! (wait…)

You have every confidence because like that kid, you’ve been given everything that matters.

Today at work you can have the confidence to take that risk (you know the one) because the most important things have already been accomplished on your behalf.

Think about what would make you confident: landing a big account, acing a presentation to your boss, hitting a hole in one, totally nailing a social interaction, perfecting that cake recipe, running a 5 minute mile.

Now think bigger. What would make you confident all the time? I would be confident all the time if I were the president, or Einstein, or Michael J. (Jordan or Jackson) If I had that status, I would be confident in any situation. Right?

The truth though, is that you already have that status. You just have to accept it.

In Christ, you’ve achieved all the highest and hardest calls. In Christ, you’ve been adopted, given a great status, higher than any world leader or genius. In Christ, you are given an abundant inheritance.

If you are already an heir to the riches of the universe, and regarded as a close friend to the most powerful person ever known, doesn’t that email you’re about to send seem a little less scary? Or if you’re worried about your paycheck, but God has promised you he will provide for you, doesn’t that give you a little more confidence that it will work out?

Ultimately, it’s not what you do that secures your confidence; you could just fail tomorrow and undo it anyways. Your confidence is secured by you taking hold of the inheritance Jesus has earned for you. (And God would be ever so pleased if you did.)

The Mosquito’s Day Job

Mosquito Therapy

Mosquitoes are the most deadly animals in the world.

Yet God created them.

Have you ever wondered why?

I mean… why do that?

We may wonder why, but the mosquito doesn’t wonder. The mosquito “knows” what it was made for. Mosquitoes, along with all the birds, and cattle, and mountains, and frost and snow, and daisies in the field, and hydrogen atoms, praise the Lord.

By being a mosquito the mosquito glorifies its creator. Because by being a mosquito, the mosquito fulfills its Creator’s command.

There is beauty and freedom in that simple truth. The mosquito doesn’t waste time wishing it was a fruit fly or worrying that it isn’t as well liked as the humming bird. It simply glorifies God as a mosquito. Just as it was created to. (No more, no less.)

You and I are called to do the same. We are called to glorify our creator by being as we were created.

As administrative assistants, pastors, financiers, gardeners, parents, retail associates, cashiers, janitors, advertising executives… we are each uniquely created to glorify our Creator.

Don’t miss your chance to glorify God today by wishing you were a fruit fly if he made you a mosquito.

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