Saturday, we did a Boston Duck Boat Tour.
A duck boat is an amphibious vehicle developed during World War II, which have found an industrious retirement in the streets of and waters surrounding Boston.
The novelty is the amphibious nature of the tour: a ride through the city, followed by a ride in the Charles River.
What made the tour so enjoyable for us, however, was our tour guide. He was in his early thirties, cherubic, with a playfully sarcastic demeanor. He was informative, interactive with our group, and extremely funny. When our duck boat broke down in the street, he improvised for twenty minutes until our new duck boat arrived, engaging us with trivia, ad-libbing, and entertaining everyone.
When we were in the river he called up two children to steer the boat, but he did it with such enthusiasm it dispelled any suspicion it was something he was required to do. Our guide was a master at his craft, and it was clear he enjoyed what he did. Ask anyone on the tour and they would tell you he was made for this job.
My guess is our guide will move on before too long. Friends or family will convince him he needs to do something with his life, something, that is, besides guiding duck boat tours. Our culture will tell him he needs to make more money to be truly happy, and everyone knows you can’t make enough money to have all the stuff one needs to be happy as a tour guide, right? And if he listens to all this he may be stepping out of his calling.
People step out of their calling all the time for the wrong reasons. The choice is usually based on the faulty assumptions that having more stuff or having a more prestigious career is more important than enjoying one’s work and doing what one was created to do well.
But when one understands that King Jesus manages the planet through those who follow Him and perform their jobs excellently and ethically, it becomes clear there are few jobs that are unimportant; and what our culture considers a more prestigious job is, in the eyes of Him to whom we will ultimately answer, not less prestigious but only less a temptation for pride.
For this and other reasons, I believe the Apostle Paul wrote the Colossians, “Do your work with all your heart, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance.” (Col. 3:23).
More on this in the next post. GS