Tuesday, June 26, 2012

GenJ Through an Intern’s Eyes

I walk into the office at 8:25. Coffee is percolating, giving the office a rich scent. Jill, the office manager, greets me from the next cube as I walk down the hall to the last cube where Glenn sits at his mountain of papers some call a desk. After a brief chat, I return to my cube to finish working on some materials for the upcoming iGovern Pacific camp. People wander into the office, and conversation begins as people discuss their weekends. There is no talk of parties or drinking. Rather, the discussion centers on visiting friends, enjoying movies, and excellent sermons at church. Everyone eventually resumes their work, but the conversation never stops. Visitors have often referred to the GenJ office as a never ending party. While we do accomplish the impossible in the office, we most certainly have fun whether it’s chatting while working or playing Munchkin over lunch. At the end of the day, I find myself sorry to leave the office and looking forward to the next morning.

Not many people can say that they are so happy with their job. When I first applied for the internship, I wasn’t sure what I was getting myself into. I knew quite a few people who had interned at GenJ, but I was a little apprehensive when I committed my entire summer to working at this office. I now have no regrets about that decision. A good job includes a few things: enjoyable and purposeful work, friendly and diligent coworkers, and caring and wise leadership. The GenJ office has all three.

I am often awed at the mission of GenJ as it seeks to educate the next generation in political methods and to change the lives of those it touches for the glory of God. I am humbled every time that I think that the projects we work on have the potential to bring another member into the Body of Christ and to raise up men and women who will fight for truth and God’s kingdom on this earth. The work here is amazing, and I have grown significantly from my time here.

I can’t say enough about my coworkers. They are some of the most loving, giving, and servant-hearted people I know. Every time Will walks into the office, he brings with him a radiance of joy that permeates every cube. While the office faces several problems and setbacks that make one simply want to rip one’s hair out, each member of the office handles the situations that come with grace and patience. It is both a privilege and a humbling experience to work with such great men and women.
Finally, the leadership at this office is both caring and wise. Even as the intern, the lowest in the vast hierarchy of the GenJ office, I have been treated with respect and humility. I am not scared that my suggestions will be met with blank stares or dark, brooding silence. I am treated as one of the members of the office (even though it took some time to get my name on roll call). The leaders of the office are respectful even in their requests for the intern and part-time staff. Such leadership creates an environment where I and my coworkers enjoy the work we do at GenJ.

As a former outsider that has had the opportunity to see the internal workings of the GenJ office, I believe that it is such a wonderful place because each member is not motivated by selfish ambition but by a desire to bring glory to God and to His work. God has blessed this office, and I have personally seen some of the fruit it has produced. I am continually blessed by the values, the mission, and the people that make GenJ what it is.

It’s 4:43, and I am about to leave the office. There is still conversation and laughing even as we finish up for the upcoming camp. I’m already looking forward to tomorrow morning when who knows what I will do. I may be required to write a letter from a non-existent foreign dignitary or make a fake passport. Either way, I get to work in an amazing office. That’s something to be thankful for.  

Andrew Ferguson