Much Love Monday

I've been thinking a lot about faith since two days ago, when I was trying to work out a million themes in one blog post. One of the main ideas I want to come back to is contained within advice from my favourite scientist, J.C. Maxwell: he says that rather than work for labour and wages, we ought to pursue "an inward growth of faith working by love, which purifies the heart and encourages us to wait for the hope of righteousness."
This is relevant to me, because sometimes I feel that I am going to disappear into what is to my little eyes the magnanimous wonderland of my dissertation. I find myself going down - by choice - one of those Alice tunnels, and faith is important to me for I want to believe that this strange labour of love will gain some larger meaning.
I consider that one can love one's work as well as love one's true love - just as one can love several countries all at once as well as love one's friends. These are all forms of different love - but it seems to me that we reach it through little steps of faith. When we start out, we do not know how it will all turn out, but we have the faith that if we don't earn fulfillment, we learn a lesson that will lead to it. To develop "an inward growth of faith working by love, which purifies the heart and encourages us to wait for the hope of righteousness" is such beautiful advice.
Faith is important, and so is the time needed for the good things to come to pass. I remember when I was in my twenties, so hoping that I would one day find my one true love. The Picnic Girl did such a lovely photo-story on this topic - what an inspired young soul. But we need faith in all areas of life: we need faith in our jobs, too. Because sometimes it is only faith that can carry us through.
Campbell's biography of Maxwell work, and life, is one of the best books I have ever read. Maxwell was a scientist of such achievement, that much of modern science is based on his equations. Above all, though, he was a man of great character and courage - and is courage not an expression of our faith? When Peter set out upon the Sea of Galilee towards Christ, he became afraid by the waves: afraid of all that was stacked up against him; he felt doubt. Our courage to cross the waves is a sign of our faith.
And if faith sounds too great a word, I read a related management technique in a newly favourite column, The Corner Office. Setting short term goals is easier than feeling overwhelmed by a goal that might seem hard to imagine reaching. You have to "feed the monster a cookie." There are many techniques to get the job done. We all know that adage about the journey of a thousand miles.
I'd still argue, though, that each step is a brick in a building of faith: for it happens so often that people, through doing good work, come to even greater gifts in life, like love.
So, for today's Much Love Monday, I love cultivating faith and working by love. We shall not want for anything, so long as we work lovingly and in good faith.

  Elements: buttons, needlework, frame 
and paper: minitoko.