Our work or vocation is very much a part of the Gospel story. In this series, The Gospel Coalition India invites working professionals and entrepreneurs to reflect on their work through the five chapters of the Gospel narrative—creation, fall, redemption, renewal and new creation.
Taarika Chandy Pakki reflects on how her vocation of Communications fits into the gospel story.
Vocation: Please tell us about your work
I am part of the Communications Team in an NGO. The organisation focuses on building good, decent homes and sanitation for people who don’t have this across the country.
Many people always ask “so what exactly does the Communications Team do?” To this I answer, “Everything!” But primarily we work like a service provider within the organisation. Anything that tells the story of what the organisation does should ideally come from the communications team. Within the team, I juggle many activities but my focus is usually in copywriting.
Creation: How does your work connect with God’s original creation plan for humanity?
What we do is convey the meaning of our work. Every article I write or every video I make, aims to communicate the reason this organisation exists. It clarifies what is the meaning behind our work.
We also literally create things with our words, designs, and our photographs to convey this meaning to a third party.
In these things I see a reflection of God our creator, the one who created everything in the world, the one from whom all things flow. I also see how he is the one who gave meaning to everything on earth. So in this way my work in creating something that tells a story or gives something meaning is a reflection of this characteristic of God.
Fall: How is your work making you aware of your own brokenness and the brokenness of the world around you?
I think one of the ways in which I can directly see brokenness is how we just cannot create anything perfectly, or even convey the meaning of our cause perfectly.
No matter how many times we proof-read a document, edit a video or plan for an event, something will always go off track.
I can also see how numb people, including myself, can be to the very cause we are working towards—providing good housing for those who do not have it.
I can see my own brokenness in two ways. When things do not go according to plan, I feel greatly frustrated and sometimes sinful anger at the outcome. At other times when it has come out well, I can see how much pride I take in myself, literally getting my self-worth from the fact that I “achieved something of note.”
Redemption: Could you share a recent example of how the Gospel made you a better worker?
Many parts of my work are gruelling. Sometimes I am hauling boxes, sometimes I am writing the same kind of collateral for the hundredth time or arguing once again with a co-worker about the same deadline.
Recently I was reminded that my work is not for myself, not for my boss, the CEO or the Managing Director—but it is all in service of God. I was reminded that when nobody else sees these little things I am doing, he sees it all. There is never a moment that I am separated from his love and care for me because of Christ. Reminding myself of this has helped me to keep going, to keep doing the things that do not get acknowledged. It has helped me to be at peace even in difficult times.
Renewal: How are you able to love and serve others in and through your work?
Being part of the communications team gives me a unique way to serve others. I never thought of it that way until recently. But we are like service providers within the organisation. It is as if my colleagues are actually my clients.
I am also starting to see that putting my own personal work on hold to help a colleague in the organisation complete their work is one way I am able to love and serve people through my work. It helps me to think about Jesus and reminds me of Jesus, “who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped” (Phil. 2:6). I think I have an opportunity to serve others in humility in this way.
New Creation: How do you connect your work here and now to our longing for the perfect world that Christ will bring when He comes again?
I do not have very clear thoughts about this yet but this question just helped me imagine my work and eternity together—something I do not think I have ever done before!
Because I think of my work as conveying meaning or creating, when I think about eternity I imagine that in heaven we will not be confined to using things like vocabulary or visual shots to convey meaning. We will probably have unimaginably greater ways to express something, greater ways to create, and honestly the greatest thing ever to communicate about—God himself.