What makes a work great?

We’ve been talking about Nehemiah’s work this week. And it makes me say, “So what makes a work great?

Here are some suggestions:

  1. Something about it makes you weep. When Nehemiah hears about the condition of the walls of the city of God, it breaks his heart.
  2. It’s bigger than you. Hugely so. Rebuilding a city? Putting wells in every village in a country in Africa? No homeless children in your community?
  3. You have to take lots of small steps that don’t seem like they will get anywhere. Each stone that Nehemiah’s crew moved seemed insignificant compared to a two-mile city wall. But each stone needed to be moved.
  4. Doing the work transforms you. Nehemiah was a seasoned leader when this was done.
  5. God calls you to do it. I know. This one can creep people out.
  6. It matters enough that you ache when you can’t accomplish it quickly enough, and it’s big enough that you can’t accomplish it quickly enough.  Every day working on a great project excites you, drains you and (some days) blesses you.
  7. It is not about you. This is tough. A great work is about others, not about you. So my weight loss is great, but it isn’t a great work.
  8. It takes so long that you can’t do it in a day, but the choices of each day matter in whether you can get it done.   #3 says there are steps. This says that every day you have to choose to take those steps. Every single day.
  9. You may not know anything about how to do the work. It may have nothing to do with your job. In fact, it may cause you to leave your job or may turn into a job. 
  10. You cannot not do it. 

So, what did I miss?

What is your great work?

Tomorrow: Some examples.

2 thoughts on “What makes a work great?

  1. Pingback: Not so great | 300 words a day

  2. Pingback: Rebuilding the Church: Is It Worth it? | 2×2 The Church Without a Building

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