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

  • Should I Take a New Job If It Requires Moving? Charlie Self responds to the question “I may have an opportunity to take a new job and a significant promotion. But it would mean that we (wife, 4-year-old, 2-year-old, and me) would have to move about 1,000 miles from our extended families for no less than two to three years. Further, we love our church and our small group, and it’s very challenging to think about joining a new congregation and building new relationships. However, I think I can see God’s fingerprints all over the path that led us to this opportunity. How do we discern wisdom in this situation? How should we be praying? How do we know when to go, or stay, in faith?”
  • How Should I Respond to a Colleague’s Same-Sex Wedding? Charlie Self responds to the question “Two male co-workers are getting married. My boss took up a collection for a gift (which I didn’t contribute to), and now she keeps passing the congratulatory card with an eye in my direction. I’m not going to sign, but I don’t know what to say. “I object on religious grounds” is classified as harassment according to our recent team training.”
  • Am I Taking on Too Much? Casey Shutt responds to the question “My family tells me I have a hard time discerning the difference between meeting the needs of others when I encounter them, versus taking on more than I can handle. I want to be a person who serves generously but knows when I’m taking on too much (and thus trying to be godlike). How do I know when I’m straying too far toward one side or the other?”

Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:

  • More links to interesting articles
  • The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
  • My Review of The Servant Leader by Ken Blanchard and Phil Hodges
  • Snippets from the book Work and Worship: Reconnecting Our Labor and Liturgy by Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Willson

  • How to Positively Lead Through Change and Uncertainty with Carey Nieuwhof. On this episode of the Crush Your Career podcast, Dee Ann Turner visits with Carey Nieuwhof about how leaders manage in a crisis and how you can crush your career even when it seems like everything isn’t going well around you.
  • Leadership in Ministry is Relevant for Any Job. Continuing his series, Jeff Eads writes “The world needs more leaders that display the servant-leadership qualities of Jesus. Who better to offer this than those who hold to his teachings?”
  • Called to Lead. My book Called to Lead: Living and Leading for Jesus in the Workplace is available in both a paperback and Kindle edition. Read a free sample (Introduction through Chapter 2).

  • Mark Miller on Attracting Top Talent. In this short video, Mark Miller discusses the 3 factors top talent is looking for in an organization.
  • Manage Relationships, Not Just Workers. Russ Gehrlein shares a few suggestions as to how to foster relationships and build teamwork.
  • Work is Worship. Darren Bosch writes “Our work is meant to serve God’s purposes more than our own, which prevents us from seeing work as a means to stock up our coffers, set ourselves up for retirement, or just plod away ‘cause it’s a necessary burden.”
  • Stacking Salt for the Life of the World. Daniel Darling writes “We should care about our work because our work is a gift to those around us.”
  • 5 Monday Resources on Work & Worship. Jacqueline Isaacs writes “About six months ago, I read Work and Worship: Reconnecting our Labor and Liturgyby Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Willson. The authors asked an interesting question: Instead of focusing on how Sunday’s sermons can better inform our weekday work, they asked how the work we do Monday through Friday better inform our worship on Sunday. As we start another work week, here are five resources that are engaging with this book and its central question.”
  • Let’s Examine Our Motivations for Work. Hugh Whelchel writes “As Christians, we are to work with excellence, knowing that our labor in the Lord has both temporal and eternal consequences; because of the work of Christ, we do not labor in vain (1 Cor. 15:58). We do not work to earn or prove our salvation, nor do we work egotistically to make a name for ourselves. But like Eric Liddell, our motivation to work comes solely from the love of our Savior and our desire to please him.”
  • Why Networking is More Biblical Than You Think. In this article Chip Roper draws on the story of Abraham to highlight a Biblical approach to networking. He writes “For those of you who are allergic to the practice, we will demystify it by showing its Scriptural roots. For those of you who enjoy networking, you will discover how you can engage in it redemptively.”
  • Jack Phillips on Why He Didn’t Just “Bake the Cake”. Randy Alcorn shares this excerpt about integrating your faith and work from Jack Phillips’ book The Cost of My Faith: How a Decision in My Cake Shop Took Me to the Supreme Court.
  • Embracing a Posture of Gentleness in the Workplace. Steve Lindsey writes “Continuing to heal and move forward toward a “new normal” begs for grace at home, at church, and at work.”
  • Wisdom and Sabbath Rest. Tim Keller writes “Leadership is stewardship—the cultivation of the resources God has entrusted to us for his glory. The Sabbath gives us both theological and practical help in managing one of our primary resources: our time.”

  • We should serve God, restrain evil, and advance love, justice, and mercy at work. Dan Doriani
  • No matter what you do, your job has inherent purpose and meaning because you are doing it ultimately for the King. Who you work for is more important than what you do. Greg Gilbert and Sebastian Traeger
  • A job pays the bills; a calling fits our gifts and interests. Dan Doriani
  • The Sabbath is critical to our understanding of a theology of work because God put a lot of emphasis on it for His people. Russ Gehrlein
  • Your job will fail you, people will fail you, success will fail you, you will fail you, but Jesus will never, ever fail you. Paul Tripp
  • Since God is in charge, you can be called to a vocation, but not called to be successful in that vocation. Tim Keller
  • Your job is not mere drudgery; it is a calling, a noble vocation if you choose to see it that way. Jeff Goins
  • Living the mission of Jesus means taking your faith into your work and your life and praying for it to change people’s hearts toward God. Tim Keller
  • A calling is something you have to do. A dream is something you want to do. Calling is doing what you are created to do. John Maxwell
  • Not only does our day of rest and worship distinguish us from the world on Sundays but leads to a distinct work ethic on Mondays. Christians rest diligently, and we work diligently. Both are a witness to the watching world. Burk Parsons

The Servant Leader by Ken Blanchard and Phil Hodges. Thomas Nelson. 129 pages. 2003
** ½

I have read (and reread) Ken Blanchard’s and Phil Hodges’ excellent book Lead Like Jesus. Much of the material in this book about servant leadership can be found in greater detail in that book. See my review of the original book here or Lead Like Jesus Revisited here.
This book also includes information a large number of Bible verses, as well as helpful information about Blanchard’s Situational Leadership® II. It may be better to purchase this book in a hardcover edition. Some of the formatting was off in the Kindle edition.
The authors tell us that Jesus was the greatest leadership model for all time, and that for a follower of Jesus, servant leadership isn’t just an option; it’s a mandate. They tell us that there are two parts of leadership that Jesus clearly exemplified:

  • A visionary role: doing the right thing
  • An implementation role: doing things right

The book includes a helpful “Checklist of Essentials for Servant Leaders”.

Although much of the book can be found in their Lead Like Jesus book, there are several excellent quotes about servant leadership in the book. Here are 20 of my favorites:

  1. When the Heart, Head, Hands, and Habits are aligned, extraordinary levels of loyalty, trust, and productivity will result.
  2. Leadership is first a matter of the heart.
  3. As you consider the heart issues of leadership, a primary question you will continue to ask yourself is: “Am I a servant leader or a self-serving leader?”
  4. One of the quickest ways you can tell the difference between a servant leader and a self-serving leader is how they handle feedback, because one of the biggest fears that self-serving leaders have is to lose their position.
  5. Self-serving leaders spend most of their time protecting their status. Servant leaders, however, look at leadership as an act of service.
  6. Servant leaders, who consider their position as being on loan and as an act of service, look beyond their own season of leadership and prepare the next generation of leaders.
  7. A servant leader never asks anyone to do something they wouldn’t be willing to do themselves.
  8. Servant leadership begins with a clear and compelling vision of the future that excites passion in the leader and commitment in those who follow.
  9. True success in servant leadership depends on how clearly values are defined, ordered, and lived by the leader.
  10. Effective implementation requires turning the hierarchy upside down so the customer contact people are at the top of the organization and are able to respond to customers, while leaders serve the needs of employees, helping them to accomplish the vision and direction of the organization.
  11. When you turn the traditional hierarchy upside down for implementation, you have the people closest to the customers—the object of your business —with all the power, all the capabilities to make decisions and to solve the problems.
  12. Once a leader’s vision is clear, once the final exam is set up, then a leader initiates day-to-day coaching.
  13. Servant leadership starts with a vision and ends with a servant heart that helps people live according to that vision.
  14. As a servant leader, you have to identify which changes are necessary to implement your vision, and then help people move in that direction.
  15. As we seek to leave a legacy of servant leadership behind when our own season of leadership is finished, we can do so by modeling our values and investing our time in developing others.
  16. A key activity of an effective servant leader is to act as a performance coach.
  17. Servant leaders understand that everyone needs to be heard, praised, encouraged, forgiven, accepted and guided back to the right path when they drift off course. As leaders, we need to practice these behaviors. Why? Because Jesus did!
  18. Having truth-tellers in your life is important. It’s probably your greatest opportunity for growth.
  19. As we commit to becoming more like Jesus in our leadership service, it is vital that we don’t miss the important example Christ provided on how to combat the loneliness and isolation that can often be a part of being a leader.
  20. Leadership is not something you do to people; it’s something you do with people.

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

Work and Worship: Reconnecting Our Labor and Liturgy by Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Willson

Drawing on years of research, ministry, and leadership experience, in this new book Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Willson explain why Sunday morning worship and Monday morning work desperately need to inform and impact one another. Together they engage in a rich biblical, theological, and historical exploration of the deep and life-giving connections between labor and liturgy. In so doing, Kaemingk and Willson offer new ways in which Christian communities can live seamless lives of work and worship.
This week we complete our review of Chapter 8: The Early Church Worship and Work in Ancient Christianity. Here are a few takeaways from this section of the chapter:

  • Work cannot be an afterthought in worship, an ancillary issue, a necessary evil. Work and how workers worship matter deeply to God.
  • What would it look like for contemporary pastors, elders, and small-group leaders to actually know the workers they disciple and the industries they engage?
  • Might contemporary churches reimagine work-oriented street liturgies for their own cities? What profit might be gained from organizing a prayer walk around a new factory or through a city’s struggling commercial district?

Author: Bill Pence

I’m Bill Pence – married to my best friend Tammy, a graduate of Covenant Seminary, St. Louis Cardinals fan, formerly a manager at a Fortune 50 organization, and in leadership at my local church. I am a life-long learner and have a passion to help people develop, and to use their strengths to their fullest potential. I am an INTJ on Myers-Briggs, 3 on the Enneagram, my top five Strengthsfinder themes are: Belief, Responsibility, Learner, Harmony, and Achiever, and my two StandOut strength roles are Creator and Equalizer. My favorite book is the Bible, with Romans my favorite book of the Bible, and Colossians 3:23 and 2 Corinthians 5:21 being my favorite verses. Some of my other favorite books are The Holiness of God and Chosen by God by R.C. Sproul, and Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper. I enjoy music in a variety of genres, including modern hymns, Christian hip-hop and classic rock. My book Called to Lead: Living and Leading for Jesus in the Workplace and Tammy’s book Study, Savor and Share Scripture: Becoming What We Behold are available in paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon.

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  1. Pingback: Manage Relationships, not Just Workers | Reflections on Theological Topics of Interest

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