Faith at Work XXIII

June 2006

Several people recently have said to me that they have felt that it is just not worth getting too intent on making business an over-riding concern in their lives.  Of course it needs to be there to provide purpose and fulfilment as well as enough to live on, but there is more to life, much more than generating profit, power and status and the increasing urge within the capitalist system to be self-sufficient and in control, a focus on material well-being.

Are we reaching a turning point when the social and spiritual aspects of our lives are straining to be heard?  How many of us would prefer to spend more time being with and bringing up our families?  How many of us would welcome a way of stepping off the treadmill, at least for a while?  How many of us, at the other end of the scale, would be so grateful for an easier way of keeping body and soul together, from both economic and spiritual perspectives?

David Whyte describes in his book “Crossing the Unknown Sea” how he was at the extreme end of the busy life in an office some time ago.  He was rushing from desk to photocopier to meeting and back to his desk and the more he achieved, the more people expected it of him.  The pressure was increasing and there seemed no way he could do anything about it.  One day, he was passing an office where some of his colleagues had assembled – he poked his head around the door and without stopping to think asked: “Has anyone seen David?”  An innocuous question at the time, but since he was the only David in the office, it suddenly struck the others how apt it was; they chuckled at first, then roared with laughter at his unintentional glimpse of the truth.  David needed that shock to give him the all-important insight that he was at the beck and call of the business – he had no time and his own potential was not being fulfilled; it resulted in a complete change in his way of life.

David is now a freelance poet and welcomed for his insights in some of the biggest companies in the US.  This is how he expresses his sudden revelation:

“That day I saw beneath dark clouds
the passing light over the water
and I heard the voice of the world speak out,
I knew then, as I had before,
life is no passing memory of what has been
nor the remaining pages in a great book
waiting to be read.

It is the opening of eyes long closed.
It is the vision of far-off things
seen for the silence they hold.
It is the heart after years
of secret conversing
speaking out loud in the clear air.”

I pray that you all may become more fully
who you are meant to be.

This site was developed to contain work by Mike Fox relating to the WMMTC course
and subsequent experience during ministry in the parish of Codsall and the BCUIM.
This page was last updated on 2006-05-13

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