We become better at something in ourselves—more skilled, more creative, more effective—when we work. We discover that, indeed, we are good for something. Good work is, at the time, its own kind of asceticism. It needs no symbolic rituals or contrived penances.
The very act of continuing something until we succeed at it is soul-searing, life-changing enough... It makes us equal partners with the rest of the human race in this one common endeavor to grow the globe to wholeness. Good work is our gift to the future. It is what we leave behind—our persistence, our precision, our commitment, our fidelity to the smallest and meanest of tasks that will change the mind of generations to come about our sacred obligation to bear our share of the holy-making enterprise that is work.
the stones over which we stumble,
friends, and build altars...
Let us name the harsh light and
soft darkness that surround us.
Let's claw ourselves out from the graves we've dug.
Let's lick the earth from our fingers.
Let us look up and out and around.
The world is big and wide and wild and wonderful and wicked,
our lives are murky, magnificent, malleable, and full of meaning.
Let us pray.