TO DO VS TO BE
Why The Worker Matters
Saint Joseph was tasked to do the seemingly impossible with NOTHING. [No, we don’t mean the staircase in Santa Fe, though that’s amazing!] The task? A mere man, though righteous, asked to guard, protect and lead the Sinless Virgin and the Son of God. And he did that well in dire poverty and under extreme stress and trial, never fully seeing the outcome of Jesus’ saving ministry during his earthly life. How did he do it? And what can that example of Joseph’s help us with today with all our to-do lists, task orientation, and work-focus where little matters but GTD [getting things done]?
Joseph didn’t worry about getting things done. He likely didn’t worry much about the doing either. What mattered was being. Being there for Jesus and Mary. Being. Yes, the doing was absolutely necessary. How else could he accomplish the important task of providing for them as the Father wished? Joseph could do this with the barest means in poverty and simplicity because it was being with Jesus and Mary that mattered first. The relationship with them. Joseph worked in that almost heavenly milieu – the Immaculate One and the God-Man – about him as his family environment. His situation required his work to support and sustain them. But it also enabled his work to be sanctifying.
Work, especially Joseph’s work, wasn’t about getting things done. It was about who he did it for, how he did it, why he did it, and with whom he did it. He lived the Primacy of the Spiritual and his work was prayer itself. Saint Joseph the Worker, Pray for Us!