Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Core and Chore. Anyone who works anywhere will experience both.

Core is the stuff that gets you excited about the work. It is the part of the job that resonates deeply with whom you are and how God has wired you (Psalm 139, Ephesians 2). Core is the reason you are doing this! Core is the reason you are alive! It is your calling, your passion, your gifting, and your aptitude.

Chore, on the other hand, is the stuff that needs to get done but doesn't necessarily excite you. It is the part of the job that "needs to get done." Chore is the price you pay for Core. Chore is the paperwork that needs to be filled out, or the mess that needs to be cleaned, or the fundraising that needs to be done (assuming you are not gifted as an administrator, or a servant, or an exhorter, respectively).

One man's Chore is another man's Core. Administration may be a Chore to you if you are not an administrator; but to an administrator administration is Core. This is why we emphasize spiritual gifting and team-building. By surrounding yourself with people who are strong where you are weak, you can focus on your Core, the stuff that gives you energy instead of taking it.

In your work you want to spend more of your time on Core than on Chore. A 60/40 split is a reasonable goal. Sometimes Chore will demand more - something "just needs to get done." But part of self-management is to not allow these times to persist too long.

Everyone needs to get an A on their Core. If you do not spend time developing and working on your core you will soon find any job to be unsavory. With Chore you need to get at least a C. If you do not get a passing grade on Chore, you will end up losing credibility on Core.

In planning your week it is sometimes helpful to "knock the chores out." The strong desire to get to your Core as quickly as possible can be a good motivator to deal efficiently with your Chore. However, if you pursue Core first, it is sometimes hard to enjoy your Core, knowing that Chore awaits you.

It is unrealistic to think that there is a job out there that is all Core and no Chore. Sadly, since the Fall of Man, we have to pull the weeds, not just smell the roses.

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