Mommas, Be Sure Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys

… or whatever else they should be.  Everybody has a role to play.

As a Christian, I have a particular belief that the world is not as it should be but that it will be redeemed one day and that we are meant to do our parts now as part of God’s plan for redemption.

All of our work matters in that (almost) all of it is redemptive.  Let’s leave prostitution out of this line of reasoning.  But generally (and I think I got this idea from author Dan Allender but can’t figure out where) all of our redemptive work falls in the realms of addressing problems that exist in these realms of brokenness:

  • man vs. man
  • man vs. nature
  • man vs. God

Where does your work fall in that framework?  What sorts of broken systems are you addressing?  Relationships?  The environment?  Sick bodies? Theological constructs that don’t lead to love?

I’m a big believer that each person has in his or her hard-wiring the clues, skills, inclinations and opportunities needed to figure out what they want to do in life (a Tim Keller notion, paraphrased; nothing’s original today!).

And that parents and mentors and teachers and grandparents (and all who can encourage) have a role to play in calling out those talents and reminding others (or ourselves if necessary) that we are meant to be part of serving others and the world, for good purposes, and that the shape that takes is unique to each of us and should be respected.

Of course many work for subsistence alone, and for those who do not have the luxury of “figuring out what you love and finding a way to get paid for it,” their passions can still be operative for the good of the world.

Yesterday I wrote about Olivia Islip, an 11-year-old bird artist doing her part to save the birds in the Gulf.  She’s a prime example of someone who is using her gifts for the good of the world, for redemptive purposes, and it sounds like her mother rightly and generously taught her (and other students) that they could make a difference (watch the video).

Thanks, Olivia’s momma.


~ by Cary on June 19, 2010.

3 Responses to “Mommas, Be Sure Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys”

  1. So, I was thinking about this – I agree that our giftedness leads us to particular emphases, I guess I would call it. I also believe that we are called to ALL of those, in all of our work. For me, at least, this is the redemption of my life.

    • You mean your own redemption happening through your participation in all of the various realms (if we can even parse them out as separate)?

  2. My redemptive work is operative in all areas, even though some areas may be more a part of my giftedness. For me, it’s about the pervasiveness of redemption. Just by being human and, hopefully, alive:-). Or maybe because I have experienced my own “split-ness” and have sometimes used it as an excuse to be less than redeemed in specific areas. Does that make sense?

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