Monday, October 8, 2012

A day outside. . . A day of spiritual rest

Who would know that a day full of hard work outdoors could be so refreshing?

I am a corporate "suit."  Okay, so I don't wear a suit every day (in fact not really ever), but I work at a Fortune 500 company and am part of middle/upper-middle management.  I am in a sales/marketing job responsible for managing some of our largest customer accounts.  I have a good job and I work with a lot of great people, but at times I do wonder if this is what I was supposed to do?  Should I have done more with my life?  I believe I have done well for my career, for my family, we live in a nice home, and we don't have to worry about many things that those less fortunate have to worry about every day -- for that I feel truly blessed.  But, the job certainly comes with its stresses.  For example, I seem to never be truly "off" work.  There are the late night and weekend phone calls, the constant internal/external e-mails making my phone vibrate at all hours, and the feeling of failure at times for things that often we don't control and that are really trivial when put next to many of the world's problems.

So, on days like today, I have to be thankful.  One of the good things that BrightPoint does is it has a "Week of Caring" every year where employees volunteer at a local non-profit organization for an entire week and do all sorts of activities "free of charge" to simply help the organization.  This year I'm part of the committee responsible for the Week of Caring and we picked a place called Jameson Camp which provides services for under-privileged, poor, and at-risk youth year-round.  It has the traditional "camp" atmosphere, but also has buildings where it has indoor activities.

My "team" each day is responsible for essentially taking this acre or so area of woods, clearing out a space for a 650 foot nature trail, removing debris and invasive plant species (which I can tell you is the hardest part), defining the trail, laying mulch, and planting native species to provide a learning experience for the kids.  Today was the first full day and I LOVED it.  Not only did I love it because I was doing something great for the community, but it provided my a bit of "spiritual rest."  Yes, the work was physical and tiring, but mentally and spiritually, I felt more refreshed and less tired than usual after a day of normal work.  I was able to breathe in the fresh air, and felt fortunate to be working with my hands surrounded by God's beauty.  Somehow, this was fuel for my soul, and I can't wait to get back at it tomorrow.  I did have to run to the office for about an hour and checked e-mail once or twice on my phone, but most of the time I was immersed in the work at hand.  I couldn't help but wonder, if I did something like this every day, would it make me a better person?  Would it please God more?  If I didn't have to answer the late phone calls, look at e-mails all the time, and be stressed over work even after work was "over", would I be a better Dad, Husband, and, most importantly, follower of Christ?  I think I know the answer to that question, but I'm just not sure how to make it a reality. . . that's probably for another post.

God Bless. . .

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