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day 142: Character Acting

Some of the great actors of our day are “character actors”. These are the actors who, at their job of being an actor, can play just about any part and when given a role they are able to draw upon inspirations, experiences and observances of human nature and personality to become the words, the emotions, the personality of the person given to them, as if it that character was them personally. I’ve noticed over the years that people at work are character acting. Everyone is given their role in their jobs and they slide right into that role and become what they believe they should personify for others. And like great character actors, they take on this new personality and role while in their own lives they might be someone totally different. Over the last 5-7 years many companies have begun to do credit checks on their financial department prospective employees. Why? Because they learned over time that many people who played the role of financial expert at work could have terrible credit ratings and poor financial management at home. And, if you can’t manage well at home, then how good will you be in the job? Makes sense to me. But, in character acting, you might be so good at being who you think you should be that everyone else is fooled as to who you really are. As believers in the workplace, we are to fight this tendency and be transparent and be who God wants us to be at all times. Yes, and be the same at home, work or play. We all use the examples of the great men of the Bible as the role models who we are to examine and follow their lead. But sometimes they looked so strong, so in control of themselves, so powerful and so close to their walk with God that it is hard to try and cast ourselves as even remotely being like them. We want to draw upon them as our inspiration but it seems too remote to find how we could be like them. They played roles in the Kingdom that seem way above our ability to ever play. But this was not the case. These were normal men and women, like you and me, cast into roles within their communities, families and jobs and because of where they drew their own inspiration, from God solely, they became some of the great Biblical leaders and role models. How do we know they were like us, the Bible tells us in James 5:17: “Elijah was as human as we are…”. Today we are being asked to play a role at our job. We play it the best we can and we do become a character actor each day. Yet, we want to be sure that the character that we draw upon is “real character” the character of God and the inspiration that he gives us to live our lives in the way He has told us we should. Each word we speak, action we take and decision we make can and should be drawn from the dialogue and inspiration of the man with the greatest character to ever walk the earth. In that sense, let us all be the greatest character actors we can be.

Reference: James 5:17 (New Living Testament)