Sometimes it is tempting to think of our business transactions, our buying, selling, banking and investing, as being removed from our spirituality, removed from our lives of faith, from our service to Jesus Christ. However, part of our calling as Christians is to offer ALL of our lives to God. Nothing is removed from God’s care, or beyond the reach of God’s grace. No part of our lives – whether it be work, play, rest, family, business or even our commutes between these things – no part of our lives can be “separated” out from our Christian faith and practice, from our calling to serve Jesus.
So what about business, commerce, buying and selling, finance, etc.? Aren’t these things un-spiritual, mundane? Perhaps even a little bit “dirty,” just the “necessary evils” of this world? This is a false dichotomy, an artificial separation and dualism. Business relationships are, in fact, relationships. Like any other relationship, they affect those involved for good or for ill. They can be life-giving or death-dealing, and they can build up or break down the communities in which we live. Aren’t those with whom we do business, with whom we engage in transactions of buying, selling, banking, investing, etc., are they not our “neighbors,” too? We are called into righteousness – into right relationship with God and neighbor – in all times and places. We are called to be faithful in all of our lives, and that includes our buying, selling, trading, banking, financing, etc.
What if instead of thinking of certain aspects of our lives as “un-spiritual” – or somehow “dirty” or “worldly” – we all challenged ourselves to approach these parts of our lives with prayerful attention to God’s will, careful attention to our relationships with our neighbors? There is no part of our lives that is beyond redemption through Jesus Christ, nothing that is beyond sanctification by the Holy Spirit. If we refuse to offer aspects of our lives to God because WE have decided they are beyond God’s realm of care and grace (“un-spiritual”) then we are refusing to live fully faithful lives. We are holding out on God, trying to keep something of our lives separate from God’s will, and putting ourselves in the place of God in thinking that WE can decide where God will or won’t be present and active.
What part of your life feels separate or removed from your spiritual life? Is there some part of your life that seems so distant from your faith, from your soul, that it seems like God is irrelevant? Is there some part of your life that you think of as being un-related to God’s grace and redemption? Are you asking yourself the question, “How do I serve God when I do THAT? How can I feel God’s presence THERE?” If some part of your life feels like a “necessary evil,” how can it become good, even holy? If we really believe that God has redeemed all of our lives through Jesus Christ, that God’s grace can reach everywhere in heaven and in earth and even in our messy lives, then how can we NOT offer even those “un-spiritual” aspects of our lives to God, for God’s will to be done? What would it be like to really open ourselves up to that transformation, to that blessing?