Last week, Kristen Deede Johnson came to Trinity to speak about her recent book Justice Calling. She came to our BUAD 321 class to relate her research to our study of business.
With us she discussed how God calls us to justice and ultimately, righteousness; but what does this look like at how do we know the distinction between justice and injustice? To answer that question one must look to scripture. The Bible is our tool for distinguishing right vs. wrong or justice vs. injustice. Christians often think that righteousness can be found by pursuing a life in the ministry such as being a pastor, a missionary, or a Christian school teacher. What Dr. Johnson communicated to us is that it is also acceptable for us not to work directly in these fields. It is acceptable because the different institutions that we will work for can give us the opportunity to pursue justice and to seek shalom. We simply need to shift our attention to the structures and institutions around us because they can allow for individual and community flourishing. If we make the institutions work for everyone, not just ourselves, then everyone can seek justice and shalom together. It will no longer be an individual fight against injustice but, a community putting an end to it.
Overall, this relates greatly to my life because I am about to graduate and enter the workforce full-time. So, it really makes me think about the structures and institutions that I will be entering in the near future. Are there communities that are actively seeking justice? What are the structures that shape us and allow for individual flourishing? Can I enter an institution as a recent graduate and change the way it conducts business or do I need to create my own structure? How can I align myself with God’s calling while working in business? These are questions I have been asking myself since Dr. Johnson’s visit.
I want to follow my dreams of working in the renewable energy industry after college. I think that this is where God is calling me but I can not tell for certain. Right now, I can only go forward with my best intentions and trust that God will guide me to his path. All along the way I know I need seek the justice and righteousness that God desires. For me, that would be fighting the injustices of pollution and greenhouse gas emissions through the promotion of renewable energy sources. In whatever I do, I want to promotes justice and individual flourishing. — Austin VanderVelde