Callings 5


Dorothy L. Sayers, has been an impact-full female figure throughout the world. Studying at Oxford she became the first women to have ever received a degree. Sayers, was a powerful writer with a vast range of works from detective novels to plays and religious essays.  As World War II, reached its ending Sayers in one of her popular works “Vocation in work” argues against the communist ideal that people are no more than “economic beings”.


Prevalent within the communist doctrine was the belief that “Man is first man when he produces the means of livelihood” (Callings, 406). This communist belief as Sayers saw hiders us as people especially as Christians because it allows “economics to be the sole basis of man’s dealings with nature and with his fellow-men, which is the very negation of all Christian principle” (Callings, 407). Not only are we reduced to economic beings by such a doctrine, we are also found to place unnecessary value on leisure time which can lead to idleness. Sayers, however believes that in order for us to truly fulfill our calling in our work we are to live as though we were an artist. By being an artist we as Christians are not purely focused on the economic gains of our work but instead stamping a specific and creative mark in the work we do. Sayers, states “the worker works to make money, so that he may enjoy those things in life which are not his work and which his work can purchase for him; but the artist makes money by his work in order that he may go on working. The artist does not say: “I must work in order to live”; but “I must contrive to make money so that I may live to work” (Callings, 408). As Christian we are called not to work so that we may only make profitable gains even though it is not necessarily wrong, but instead to place greater emphasis on the quality and heart we put into our work. Along those lines it is important that we use our gains from work and time to further our understanding and lives in beneficial ways not to lay idle and be wasteful


As a college student who in a couple will decide on a career path to follow Sayers has provided me with some wise words. It is very easy to get caught up in the want for money and or being negligent with one’s money and time. Sayers critique on the idea that we are plainly living and working for only economic means has allowed me to reconsider and challenge such wrongful beliefs. It states in the scriptures that “Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless” (Ecclesiastes 5:10, NIV). As I move on in my career and in life it is important that I take pride in the effort and quality of my work not merely working to achieve profit.

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