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‘The Act of Work Is Worship’ — Sho Baraka Talks Creativity, Vocation, and the Value of Narratives (Interview)

Sho Baraka is a hip-hop artist, activist, and writer. A graduate of Tuskegee University and the University of North Texas, Baraka is a cofounder of Forth District and the AND Campaign. He has also served as an adjunct professor at Wake Forest School of Divinity. In his debut book, He Saw That It Was Good: Reimagining Your Creative Life to Repair a Broken World, Baraka explores “the intersection of faith, creativity, and justice.”

Faithfully Magazine spoke with Baraka about He Saw That It Was Good and the importance of narratives, creativity, and vocation for Christians. The transcript has been edited for clarity.

Can you talk about the backstory to He Saw That It Was Good? What made you realize that you needed to write this book? What did you want your readers to walk away with?

Well, first of all, thank you for having me and taking the time out to interview me about the book. People primarily know me as an artist, as a hip-hop artist to be more specific. Very similar to your first album, your first book is really just the culmination of your life and a collection of thoughts and experiences that you are excited about sharing with the world. The first album I did was pretty much all these ideas and concepts that I had been thinking through for many, many years, and I was just happy that somebody was giving me an opportunity to make an album. Similarly with writing, I think that there’ve been things that I’ve spoken on in the past, there’ve been lectures I’ve given, interviews I’ve done, and experiences that I’ve had that I thought were either applicable or just good anecdotes for people to wrestle with. And then there are people I studied.

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Timothy I. Cho
Timothy I. Cho
Timothy Isaiah Cho is Associate Editor at Faithfully Magazine. Timothy’s bylines have appeared in Religion News Service and Reformed Margins, and he has been interviewed for several podcasts including Truth’s Table and Gravity Leadership Podcast. He also runs a personal blog on Medium. He received a Master of Divinity from Westminster Seminary California and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from U.C. Berkeley. Email: timothy.cho (at) faithfullymagazine.com

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