Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

FAITH AND WORK: Connecting Sunday to Monday

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Faith and Work News ~ Links to Interesting Articles

  • u-s-mintMeet the Christian Who Transformed the U.S. Mint. In telling us the story of Ed Moy, Bethany Jenkins writes “And it wasn’t just a fancy, slick marketing campaign. It was connecting a deep part of being meaning-makers—of who God made us to be—to the larger narrative of working for the public good, loving our neighbors, and contributing to human flourishing. And people responded by enjoying their work.”
  • Work Is Central to the Forgotten Message of Advent. Hugh Whelchel writes “What does the Advent Season have to do with our work? Everything. This connection is part of the forgotten message of Advent.”
  • Respect for Dangerous Work. Luke Bobo writes that he enrolled in his city’s 11-week Citizens Police Academy because he needed to be fair and allow those men and women to share their side of the story. He states that he enrolled because I wanted to learn about their line of work.
  • How to Connect Sermon Application to People’s Jobs. I enjoyed two classes at Covenant Seminary with Dan Doriani. Here he writes “Believers often wonder how they can serve God and neighbor at work, and often doubt the value of their work. But pastors can help, and the strategic sermon illustration is a leading tool in our arsenal. A good illustration is like a parable, presenting a case that is both particular and universal, specific and common.”
  • Christians Should Not Fear Speaking about their Faith at Work and in Public Places, Theresa May Says. Steven Swinford writes that the British Prime Minister said people should be able to celebrate Christmas as she endorsed a report which said that Christianity should be “celebrated, not denigrated”.
  • Insights I Have Learned About Failure. Ron Edmondson writes “I’ve had failures – but I’m not a failure. Because I got back up every time I failed.”
  • Reputation.  In this “Minute with Maxwell”, John Maxwell states that a reputation is something that takes a while to earn, but it can be destroyed in an instant.
  • An Attitude of Gratitude. In this “Tuesday Tip”, Dr. Alan Zimmerman gives us five actions that will help us toward an attitude of gratitude.
  • Why Giving Thanks Gives You an Edge. Michael Hyatt writes “There are at least three ways gratitude encourages resilience. And these apply to athletes, entrepreneurs, parents, leaders … anyone.”
  • What John Maxwell Taught Me About Building Relationships. Paul Sohn shares five key principles from John Maxwell’s book Winning with People that will help you improve your trust-ability with your direct reports, colleagues, and bosses.
  • Connecting Real Faith to Real Work. Jason Dollar writes “The idea that most vocations are secular while only a few (like pastors and missionaries) are sacred is an idea that is being successfully challenged.”
  • The Way Home Featuring Bryan Chapell. Listen to this podcast as Daniel Darling talks to Bryan Chapell about his transition from seminary leadership to local church ministry and what advice he has for young pastors today.
  • Solution.  In this “Minute with Maxwell”, John Maxwell states that he asks his team members that when they bring a problem to him they also bring three possible solutions to the problem.

your-work-matters

  • 7 Reasons Why Our Work Matters. Austin Burkhart writes “Our work is one of the primary tools God uses to transform us into his glorious image. And that, if nothing else, is a great reason to get up and go to work today.”
  • Your 9-to-5 Is Not in Vain. Andre Yee writes “In our performance-driven world, fruitlessness is usually a difficult pill to swallow (especially for the more driven personalities among us). We expect immediate results and we can quickly become discouraged when we fall short of our own expectations.”
  • Mastering Work When Work Masters You. RJ Grunewald writes “We spend a large portion of our day trying to become masters of our work. We train, we hustle, and we network all for the sake of having more control and more influence in our jobs. What many of us have also realized though, is despite our best efforts to master our work, we often feel like our work has mastered us.”
  • Grace for Monotonous Work. Andre Yee writes “Unfortunately for me, not all the work I do daily is creative. In fact most of our work is of the repetitive and monotonous type — interspersed with occasional opportunities for creativity. This is true of much of our work that must get done every day, both in the office and at home.”

  • Feeling Unappreciated at Work? Andre Yee writes “There are few things more difficult than giving our best labors daily in an environment where we feel unappreciated.”
  • The 4 S’s of Meaningful Work. Neil Pasricha writes “So, I say never give up work. Meaningful work. Work you love. Because you’ll be giving up the 4 S’s—Social, Structure, Stimulation, and Story—you get every day from being there.”

Leadership

  • The 5 Most Painful Leaders to be Around. Dan Rockwell writes “Some leaders are painful to be around. To be honest, sometimes you and I are the pain. We’ve all been the leader others complain about.”
  • 16 Practices of Leaders Who Lead Like Jesus. Brian Dodd writesThere are a number of people from all walks of life who make me better leader every time they speak. But there is one leader whose words and life impact me like no other – my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
  • A Lesson in Leadership. Listen to these two messages (part 1) and (part 2) from Alistair Begg’s series God’s Work, God’s Way, Volume 2.  
  • 5 Signs You’re a Leader Who Talks Too Much. Charles Stone writes “Unfortunately, leaders can talk too much, not necessarily by monopolizing conversations, but by giving too many answers. So, how do you know if you are a leader who talks too much and what can we do to stop?”
  • Are You a Tone-Deaf Leader? Steve Graves writes “Tone-deaf leadership is leadership that is unable to get outside one’s own narrative and one’s own way of looking at a problem. In doing so, these leaders lose objectivity because everything they say sounds good to them.”
  • Biblical Principles of Discernment for Developing Wise Leadership. Glenn Brooke writes “Leading well requires going beyond the observable facts in a situation. We have timeless principles of biblical wisdom. We have trustworthy guidance on how to relate with God and with one another. God has designed the universe and ordered his kingdom so that living according to these principles is the best way to live.”

Quotes about Faith and Work

  • I’ve seen success cripple too many gifted leaders. Scotty Smith
  • The most effective leaders know it’s not about them – it’s about serving their people and letting them shine! Ken Blanchard
  • Your reputation is not for sale. Protect it at all costs. It takes years to build, but only seconds to Brad Lomenick
  • Leader, when you stop asking good questions, you’ve probably stopped leading. The best leaders ask the best questions. Ron Edmondson
  • People want to go to work feeling like they matter. Dan Rockwell
  • God is not under any obligation to make me succeed. Tim Keller
  • The secret to success is good leadership, and good leadership is all about making the lives of your team members or workers better. Tony Dungy
  • Calling is not only a matter of being and doing what we are but also of becoming what we are not yet but are called by God to be. Os Guinness
  • Would it not make sense that God not only wants to join us in our work but to increasingly conform us into greater Christlikeness while we work? Tom Nelson

Patrick Lencioni Quote

Faith and Work Book Clubs – Won’t you read along with us?

faith-and-work-bibleNIV Faith and Work Bible, Edited by David H. Kim

I couldn’t be happier to see this new Faith and Work Bible, as a passion of mine is to help people integrate their faith and work.  Tim Keller, Senior Pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church (PCA) in New York City, writes the Foreword. It was Keller’s excellent 2012 book Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work that started me on my own faith and work journey. This journey has included holding faith and work events at my church, reading a number of books about faith and work, and leading a faith and work book club in my workplace. David H. Kim is the Pastor of Faith and Work at Redeemer and the Executive Director of the Center for Faith & Work. It was in Every Good Endeavor that I first heard of Redeemer’s Center for Faith & Work.

Over the coming weeks we’ll be looking at the special features included in this new resource.  This week we look at Theological Foundations

  • The Centrality of the Gospel. Grasping the gospel of Jesus Christ is the main point of this Bible.
  • Calling and Work: Definitions. This Bible will address both the concepts of calling and work.
  • Calling (and its Latin-derived synonym, vocation) is a larger category describing God’s purposes for humanity.
  • One of the fundamental premises of this book is that God has in a sense called his people out of this world—a world characterized by sin,disbelief, pride, self-preservation and other ills—so that he can call them back into the world to seek its peace and prosperity.
  • This larger call includes but is not limited to the daily work that we do. This work is what we might call our occupation or job—it is the thing we spend most of our day doing. Maintaining this distinction between calling and work allows us to understand how our larger calling can powerfully inform and shape how we approach our work.
  • Our daily work has been significantly impacted by the fall and its far-reaching effects on our world. This larger calling gives us reason to pursue work with redemptive hope and meaning.
  • This Bible addresses both the larger concepts of calling and the more mundane aspects ofour daily work.

The Advantage by Patrick LencioniThe Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else in Business by Patrick Lencioni. Jossey-Bass. 240 pages. 2012

Patrick Lencioni is one of my favorite business authors. His books The Advantage and The Five Dysfunctions of a Team are among my favorites. I recently started reading and discussing The Advantage with two colleagues at work. I’m sharing key learnings from the book and this week we look at CASCADING COMMUNICATION

  • The most reliable and effective way to get an organization moving in the same direction is for members of a leadership team to come out of their meetings with a clear message about what was decided, promptly communicate that message to their direct reports, and have those direct reports do the same for their own direct reports. We call this “cascading communication” because it begins the structured but interpersonal process of rolling key messages down through the organization directly from the leadership team.
  • Amazingly, when employees in different parts of an organization hear their leaders saying the same things after meetings, they actually start to believe that alignment and clarity might be possible.
  • There are three keys to cascading communication: message consistency from one leader to another, timeliness of delivery, and live, real-time communication.
  • It’s critical that leaders do this during a short and consistent time frame.
  • A twenty-four-hour period following a meeting is not a bad standard.
  • Many executives ask if they can communicate the results of a meeting using e-mail or even voice mail. The answer is no. Although these tools are certainly more efficient than having to communicate live, they are drastically less effective.
  • The best way to do cascading communication is face-to-face and live.
  • Another good idea when doing cascading communication, whenever it’s possible, is to do it with an entire group of direct reports at the same time instead of one by one.
  • Leaders can ensure that key messages are effectively disseminated throughout an organization in a few other ways. The first and most important is to incorporate the answers to the six critical questions in any situation that calls for leaders to be communicating with employees—everything from recruiting, interviewing, orienting, managing, rewarding, training, to even dismissing people from the organization.
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Author: Bill Pence

I’m Bill Pence ~ married to my best friend for more than 37 years, a St. Louis Cardinals fan, a manager at a Fortune 50 company, a graduate of Covenant Theological Seminary, and in leadership at my local church. I enjoy speaking about calling, vocation and work. I am a life-long learner and have a passion to help people develop to their fullest potential and to utilize their strengths more fully. I am an INTJ on Myers-Briggs, 3 on the Enneagram, my top five Strengthsfinders themes are: Belief, Responsibility, Learner, Harmony and Achiever, and my two StandOut strengths roles are Creator and Equalizer. My favorite book is the Bible, with Romans my favorite book and Colossians 3:23 my favorite verse. Some of my other favorite books are Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper, The Holiness of God by R.C. Sproul, The Prodigal Son (originally titled A Tale of Two Sons) by John MacArthur and Crazy Love by Francis Chan. I enjoy Christian hip-hop/rap music, with Lecrae, Trip Lee and Andy Mineo being some of favorite artists.

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