An ad promoting a trip to Glacier National Park

By John Pierce

There is a cute TV commercial in which kids in a classroom are unimpressed by Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers’ visit. He just plays football.

“That’s not a job,” one kid says. When Rodgers mentions being last season’s MVP another kid quotes his embarrassed teacher saying that trophies are for people with self-esteem issues.

Instead, the students praise the insurance agent who is there — because he provides discounts to their families.

That ad reminds me of a time when my now-Georgia Bulldog daughter (or dawghter, as I usually spell it) was in preschool in Atlanta. Fathers were invited to the classroom to talk about their various and fascinating vocations.

One dad was an OB-GYN at nearby Northside Hospital — the “baby factory” where both of our daughters were born, and each year welcomes enough newborns to populate a small city. He spoke delicately of how he “helps mommies have their babies.”

We all took turns at explaining our work — in hopes of educating these young minds to the variety of skills and functions needed to make the world go ‘round and to provide income for food, homes, churches, schools, streets and especially vacations.

Honestly, there were some very impressive vocations represented. But Kaylie’s dad stole the show.

He worked at the Frito-Lay plant and brought along samples.

For days, even weeks, little Meredith said nothing about her friends’ dads who help birth babies, investigate crimes, run municipalities or practice law. And her classmates were certainly not impressed that her dad just writes stuff that is printed in papers.

But over and over again, we heard: “Kaylie’s daddy makes Cheetos!” “Kaylie’s daddy makes Cheetos!”

Both the current TV commercial and that memory remind me that we are widely gifted — and when those gifts match opportunity we can discover the value of vocation. And we must be careful about assuming which tasks are most important.

It takes a lot of people doing a lot of different things to make the world go ‘round.

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