9.20.2007

Making Spreadsheets for Jesus

One of the useful things I learned at Wharton was pro-forma analysis.
I got pretty good at using spreadsheets on Microsoft Excel to make
financial statements with all sorts of bells and whistles. It was
even a little fun for me, believe it or not.

It's a testament to the vastness of God's reign that even the most
mundane and worldly skills, like making spreadsheets, can be used to
advance the purposes of His Kingdom. In my present job, making
spreadsheets is a lot of what I do. And I get to use that skill to
contribute to meaningful urban discussions, on topics like economic
development and affordable housing and immigration and commercial
corridors.

I like to say that everyone in our firm has some "superpower" that
they bring to bear on behalf of our clients. I envy the talents of
others, who run circles around me on statistical models and
econometrics and spatial analysis and economy theory, but more than
envy I'm grateful their "superpower" is available to our firm.

And I'm grateful I have a bit of a "superpower," in making
spreadsheets, that I can offer to the cause, and to topics that I
think matter for the Kingdom. And so I try to remember back to my
days at Wharton when I first learned. And I try to remember that you
can even make spreadsheets for Jesus.

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