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

  • How Should a Christian Ask for a Raise? Courtney Powell responds to the question “When is it ok to ask for a raise? Is there a biblical way to think through asking for a raise?”
  • Faith & Work: How Do I Glorify God Even When My Work Seems Meaningless? On this episode of The Gospel Coalition Q&A, the final installment of a six-week series on faith and work, Greg Phelan answers the question, “How do I glorify God even when my work seems meaningless?”
  • How Do I Confront a Colleague? Russ Gehrlein addresses the question “I discovered one of my colleagues doing something we consider a fireable offense. I’m not sure if she meant to do it, and it wasn’t something that would jeopardize our business or clients, but it was unethical. I’m concerned that if I don’t report her now, in the future the offense might be more serious. On the other hand, if it was an honest mistake, shouldn’t I offer grace? After all, I make mistakes too.”
  • Faith & Work: How Can We Include the Poor in the Conversation? On this episode of The Gospel Coalition Q&A podcast, the fourth in a six-week series on faith and work, Robby Holt and Brian Fikkert answer the question: “How can we include the poor in the conversation?”

Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:

  • More links to interesting articles
  • The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
  • My Review of The Self-Aware Leader: Play to Your Strengths and Unleash Your Team by John Maxwell
  • Snippets from the book Discipled Leader: Inspiration from a Fortune 500 Executive for Transforming Your Workplace by Pursuing Christ by Preston Poore

  • Michaela O’Donnell/The Call to Mastery. On this episode of The Call to Mastery podcast, Jordan Raynor visits Dr. Michaela O’Donnell, Executive Director of the Max De Pree Center for Leadership, and author of Make Work Matter, to talk about the helpful difference between “betting the farm” and taking the “next doable risk,” how Russian nesting dolls can help us think differently about calling, and 3 things to consider before joining the Great Resignation.
  • Staff With Eagles. In this short video, Mark Miller discusses the second of three best practices for “Act As One”, Staff With Eagles.
  • 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).
  • 5 Shifts Every Leader Needs to Figure Out to Lead Into the Future. Carey Nieuwhof writes “Here are five things every leader has to figure out to lead well moving forward. Master these, and the future and the change it demands will be much easier to navigate.”
  • The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill. All episodes of Mike Cosper’s excellent podcast The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill have now been released. This should be required listening for all leaders, not only church leaders.
  • Glory at Work. Howard Graham shares twelve practical ways to testify to the glory of God by exhibiting glory in your life and work.
  • In Search of “Meaningful Work”. Robert Covolo writes “People often say they are in search of “meaningful work.” But what exactly makes for “meaningful work”? Michaela O’Donnell-Long’s new book, Make Work Matter, suggests that finding “meaningful work” may not be what we thought it was. Here are some great takeaways from her book regarding our elusive search for meaningful work.”
  • Cheryl Bachelder/The Call to Mastery. On this episode of The Call to Mastery podcast, Jordan Raynor visits with Cheryl Bachelder, former CEO of Popeyes, to talk about the quote that stopped her in her tracks and led her to understand her calling as “developing leaders for a living,” and how she has learned to embrace her lack of discipline and routine.
  • The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry with John Mark Comer/Faith Driven Entrepreneur. On this episode of the Faith Driven Entrepreneur podcast, John Mark Comer states why slowing down may be the only way to stay emotionally healthy and spiritually alive in the chaos of the modern world.
  • The 8 Paradoxes of Great Leadership with Dr. Tim Elmore, Part 2. On this episode of the Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast, Stanley and Dr. Tim Elmore continue their discussion on how, in order to be a great leader, one must be willing to step up to the challenge of a “both/and” perspective rather than stepping back into the stifling familiarity of “either/or” practices.

Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week

  • All labor is honorable. No one ever needs to be ashamed of an honest calling. The Word of God does not disparage the humblest calling. Charles Spurgeon
  • Whether our work is paid or not paid, our work is to glorify God, honor others, and add value to their lives. Tom Nelson
  • Mission includes our secular vocations, not just church ministry. Tim Keller
  • Whatever you do for Christ, throw your whole soul into it. Do not give Christ a little halfhearted labor, done as a matter of course every now and then; but when you serve Him, do it with heart and soul and strength. Charles Spurgeon
  • Your work is your mission field, and because of that there is a God-given dignity in what you do. Bryan Chapell
  • The concept of Immanuel Labor is indeed a biblical one. God’s presence in the midst of our human labors is well-grounded in God’s Word in a vast number of places. Russ Gehrlein
  • You cannot be a real leader without character that all can see, respect, and therefore trust. Tim Keller
  • We may retire from our paycheck, but we never retire from work. We never retire from the privilege and responsibility of neighborly love. Tom Nelson
  • If you are always looking for an impact, a legacy, and success, you will not take the time to care for the things that matter. Michael Horton


The Self-Aware Leader: Play to Your Strengths and Unleash Your Team by John Maxwell. HarperCollins Leadership. 176 pages. 2021  

In this book, derived from material previously published in Leadership Gold: Lessons I’ve Learned from a Lifetime of Leading, leadership expert John Maxwell tells us that what sabotages more leadership efforts, holds back more good teams, and derails more leaders’ careers than anything else is a lack of self-awareness. Maxwell states that self-awareness for a leader is a lifelong journey. He writes that if you are new to leadership, the book will help you get a better start on your leadership journey, and that if you are an experienced leader, the book will help you fine-tune your leadership.
He begins the book by telling us that the toughest person to lead is always yourself. If you want a better team in a better organization that produces better results, you need to become better at leading yourself.
Among the subjects covered in the book are strengths (only twenty percent of employees feel that their strengths are in play every day in the work setting), helping your team win, trust, good listening, receiving criticism, mentors, failing successfully, being an intentional learner, creating a positive growth environment for the people you lead, developing others, and finding the one, two or three things you can do better than others and sticking with that.
Maxwell writes that as you increase your self-awareness and gain experience as a leader, you understand more and more that leadership is not about you. It’s about the team and helping them accomplish their mission.
Although based on previously published material, the book still has much to offer. Questions for reflection are included at the end of each chapter, making this a good book to read and discuss with other leaders.
Below are 15 of my favorite quotes from the book:

  • Leaders need to remember that the point of leading is not to cross the finish line first. It’s to take people across the finish line with you.
  • The willingness to seek and accept advice is a great indicator of accountability. And of a leader who is maturing and improving.
  • Leading yourself well means that you hold yourself to a higher standard of accountability than others do.
  • The more you know your strengths and work within them, the more successful you will be.
  • People’s purpose in life is always connected to their giftedness. It always works that way. You will not be called to do something that you have no talent for. You will discover your purpose by finding and remaining in your strengths.
  • If you don’t have the talent to do something better than others, find something else to do that leverages your abilities.
  • The best leaders are characterized by their ability to recognize the special abilities and limitations of their people and fit them into the jobs where they will do best.
  • Many leaders fail to help their people find their strengths and place them in the organization where their strengths can be an asset to the company.
  • Working on a weakness in your strength zone will always produce greater results than working on a strength in a weak area.
  • We may say that people quit their job or their company, but the reality is that they usually quit their leaders.
  • When it comes to defining failure or success, it’s not about the number of mistakes you make; it’s the number of times you make the same mistake.
  • The value of asking, “What are we missing?” is that it causes everyone to stop and think.
  • In any organization, problems should always be solved at the lowest level possible.
  • As a leader, you should never expect loyalty from others before you have built a relationship and earned trust.
  • Leaders may impress others when they succeed, but they impact others when the people on their team succeed.

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

We are reading through Discipled Leader: Inspiration from a Fortune 500 Executive for Transforming Your Workplace by Pursuing Christ by Preston Poore.

Discipled Leader provides struggling, stuck, or merely surviving Christian business leaders with a framework to grow their influence through becoming a redemptive (i.e., change for the better), Christlike presence in the workplace and living a more fulfilling life.

This week we look at Chapter Four: Confess. Here are a few takeaways from the chapter:

  • When you become a disciple with integrity, you can become a leader others will follow because of your honesty.
  • Discipled leaders must have integrity before God before they can have integrity before others. If discipled leaders are right with God, they can operate from moral authority.
  • Discipled leaders are honest to the core and know that integrity is a foundational characteristic of successful leadership.
  • We must work hard to pursue truth no matter the cost. We must be leaders with integrity.
  • Leaders must be willing to be held accountable and to hold others accountable.
  • Encourage honesty and constructive criticism, and make sure team members are not punished or bullied for calling out issues and mistakes.
  • Being a leader with integrity does not just happen. You cannot will yourself to do the right thing at the right time all the time. Integrity flows from a heart and mind at peace with God.
  • It is essential for leaders to lead with integrity. If you are the one responsible for building a strong team or a strong company, your peers and employees need to know they can trust you.
  • Be willing to admit when you are wrong. Take the position of a servant. Think less about yourself and your goals and more about how to help others.
  • No one wants to follow a leader they can’t trust. But if you are a leader who is honest—with others, with God, and with yourself—you can transform your team, your workplace, and the world around you.

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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