In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,
Ephesians 1:11 NIV
There was a sudden sadness that I felt…as did so many others…when it was announced that Steve Jobs was leaving his post as Apple CEO. How would Apple…trend-setter of so much that we enjoy today…get along without him?
Steve Jobs is known as a hands-on leader, pivotal in the decisions that made Apple one of the greatest companies of all time. I appreciate his creative enthusiasm for Great Work, his commitment to his assignment on earth. I’m certain he felt somehow chosen to be the enormous influence on technology that he is.
Kate Harper, a gift designer in Berkeley, California, posted one of her designs on Facebook after the news. Kate presented a “free to steal” graphic of an inspiring Steve Jobs quote that deserves a prominent place near your work site. To me, if you’re not going to do Great Work, you’re shamming your gift.
The interesting thing about Great Work is that it keeps evolving. If you’re like me, your assignment may change relevant to factors like timing and geography.
Whether you accomplish your life’s assignment using a violin, a stethoscope, a hammer and chisel or a computer keypad, do it with gusto. Trust your instincts to know what your calling is and when you must accomplish it. God is a terrific gift-Giver; He implanted within you all the necessary skills and resources. And also, He will provide the needed human connections and opportunities.
What impedes most of us are these two obstacles: procrastination and fear of failure or embarrassment. We stall, we delay, we put off starting a task we know we ought to do. We let treasured moments wane like fading rays of sunlight. We fear rejection of our ideas, terror at what others might say or do.
Sometimes our assignments look intimidating; that’s when we begin to catalog our impediments. We don’t have enough, we don’t know enough. We’re too young, too old, too poor, too weak, too frail, too late, too busy, too unappreciated and life’s too short. Our irrational fears may be confirmed if we listen to the assignment bullies. Their words are similar to those of Bildad, one of Job’s friends, when he lamented to Job:
for we were born only yesterday and know nothing,
and our days on earth are but a shadow.
Job 8:9 (Message Bible)
If I spoke to Steve Jobs, I would say this: at every stage in life, God has a plan and a path of His own choosing. Whatever that new path is, it is not a random one. With or without his famed creativity and visionary magician’s flare—if it involves work, whatever Steve Jobs does next will be above and beyond stellar. And I’d say I’m praying for his healing and strength.
May everything that the great God of the universe implanted in each of us be birthed in the Great Work we do. Touching lives, changing the world, creating genius, imagining the unimaginable and, like Steve Jobs, helping people do things they didn’t even know they wanted to do.