God in heaven, God in others, God in self
By Peter Mirus ( bio - articles - email ) | Feb 01, 2010
I know a priest whose sermons often cover the merits of (1) remembering God’s love for us, and what His relationship with us demands (2) recalling what God’s love of each person requires of us in regards to our neighbor, and (3) understanding how God’s love transforms us and calls us to respect ourselves as temples of the Holy Spirit. These encompassing principles rule our lives and lead to holiness.
As a part of our life, these principles should also apply to how we conduct our business. First, to remember that without God we can do nothing. All of our abilities are his gifts; moreover, God can work where we ourselves cannot find an avenue for success. Second, we must treat every person that we encounter in the course of conducting business with friendship and justice. Third, we must conduct our business lives with a balance that is in accord with respect for ourselves.
Now, if you are grumbling to yourself (as I sometimes do) that this seems like a big burden, you are right. Fortunately, Christ is not one who places heavy burdens on the shoulders of others, but will not lift a finger to lighten the load. No, Christ is constantly helping us along the road, in ways seen and unseen. With the help of grace, we can view our responsibilities not as burdens but rather as opportunities.
The challenge of the Christian life is “to do all things well”. We are supposed to excel in all areas. However, we have to excel in the way that Christ defines success, and not the way that world defines success. For example, if we have a choice between being dishonest and staying in business, or being honest and going out of business, we must go out of business. I have met many who would rather go out of business “doing things the right way” than stay in business “screwing people over”—these people are my constant inspiration.
However, for the entrepreneurial mindset, newly formed personal strengths will find ways to define successful business models and create new opportunities.
Love of God, love of neighbor, and love of self are the three rules for success in our lives—and that includes our professional work.
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Feb. 02, 2010 8:40 PM ET USA
Maybe some of our archbishops, etc., could benefit from learning these principles. So many seem to have very large treasuries in their personal control. On the other hand, some are always short on financial assets with which to serve their parishes and needy flocks.I would not be surprised to learn that the number of vocations per registered Catholic in these poorer parishes exceeds those of the richer ones.