The fallen world says, “You are what you do.” Adopting that value system immerses us in a performance-orientation where achievements, possessions, and appearances define us. What others think of us (image) is what we work on all the time, in a kind of “never let them see you sweat” approach.
The Gospel-oriented world says, “You do what you are.” Giving ourselves to this way puts us into a grace-orientation where relationships, servanthood, and integrity define us. What God thinks of us (agape) is what we concentrate on all the time, in a kind of “always let them see you care” approach.
In his classic poem “As Kingfishers Catch Fire,” Gerard Manley Hopkins described this Gospel-oriented life in these few words: ‘What I do is me, for that I came.’