Faith and Work News ~ Links to Interesting Articles
- Choosing God over College Basketball. Sarah Eekhoff Zylstatra interviews Leah Church, who gave up her dream of playing college basketball at the University of North Carolina.
- A Biblical Perspective on Retirement. Jeff Haanen writes “Rather than seeing retirement as a never-ending vacation, the Bible paints a picture of our later years as a laying down of past work-identities and entering a new season ofrest, renewal, and reengagement as elders filled with wisdom and blessing for the coming generation(s).”
- Serving Others With Our Schedule. Micah Anglo shares some helpful practices and attitudes to adopt as Christians when we are planning out our schedules and the time that God has given us to steward.
- On this episode of the Minute with Maxwell podcast, John Maxwell states that our best today sets us up for success tomorrow, and we should make every day our masterpiece.
- Burnout: The First Stage of a Quarter-Life Crisis. Jacqueline Isaacs writes “A quarter-life crisis has three stages, I shared in my last article.” In this article she writes about the first stage: burnout.
Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:
- More links to interesting articles
- The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
- My Review of Discipled Leader: Inspiration from a Fortune 500 Executive for Transforming Your Workplace by Pursuing Christ by Preston Poore
- Snippets from the book You’re Only Human: How Your Limits Reflect God’s Design and Why That’s Good News by Kelly Kapic
- The Church Needs Non-Anxious Leaders. On this episode of the Gospelbound podcast, Collin Hansen and Mark Sayers, author of A Non-Anxious Presence: How a Changing and Complex World will Create a Remnant of Renewed Christian Leaders, talk about tribalism, anxious systems, maturity, hardship, and more.
- Common Grace for the Common Good. Hugh Whelchel writes “Wherever we work, we can rest assured that God can use us through our vocational calling to influence our fellow employees, our company, our city, our nation, and the world for the glory of God.”
- Making Work Matter with Michaela O’Donnell, Part 2. On this episode of the Center for Faith + Work Los Angeles (CFWLA) podcast, Robert Covolo and Michaela O’Donnell discuss the way work forms us, seeing the fruit in our work, the importance of relationships and people in all types of work, the problem of “pursuing our passions” and the role ambiguity plays in vocation additional insights from her excellent new book Make Work Matter: Your Guide to Meaningful Work in a Changing World.
- The Joy of Forgetting What You Need to Remember. Tim Challies writes “Ultimately, a strong system of productivity isn’t necessarily meant to help you do more, but to ease your mind, to calm your heart, to allow you to have confidence that your system is good enough, perfected enough, robust enough to grant you the joy of forgetting what you need to remember.”
- Proverbs, Wisdom & the Benefits of Good Work. Gage Arnold writes “To work wisely is simply to be steeped in the skill of Godly living and forged in the fires of his refining grace. It’s with this in view that Christians can faithfully serve their work and hone their own hearts and hands to be shaped by the life-giving precepts of the Lord.”
- Finding Joy When Work Isn’t Enjoyable. “Our workplaces can be places where we share our God-given gifts with the world or the source of stress and disappointment. So, what do we do when work isn’t enjoyable? Join Joanna Meyer and Dustin Moody on this episode of the Denver Institute for Faith & Work Podcast, as they talk with Shundrawn Thomas, author of Discovering Joy at Work: Transforming Your Occupation into Your Vocation.
- Do I Enjoy My Work Too Much? Russ Gehrlein looks at the question “Do you enjoy your work too much?” through the lens of his unique theology of work, which focuses on the biblical connection between God’s presence and work.
- Self-Leadership, Part 1. On this episode of the Andy Stanley Leadership Podcast, Stanley discusses why successful leadership begins with self-leadership.
- 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).
Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
- God has made us so that through working we actually sculpt the kind of selves we each are becoming, in time and for eternity. Lester DeKoster
- Learning in retirement can be preparation for a new job, career, or volunteer position that flows from a God-given calling. Jeff Haanen
- All work done well has a dignity in the eyes of God. Tim Keller
- Be more concerned with your character than with your reputation. Your character is what you really are while your reputation is merely what others think you are. John Wooden
- The purpose of life is not to be happy. It’s to love God and to love people, to be of service, to be compassionate, loving, honorable, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived with significance. Tim Tebow
- Every day I sense God’s presence with me. He has called and enabled me to do a variety of tasks that contribute in some small way to this country’s defense. Russ Gehrlein
- What if you’re struggling under an unfair boss or a tedious job that doesn’t take advantage of all your gifts? It’s liberating to accept that God is fully aware of where you are at any moment and that by serving the work you’ve been given you are serving him. Tim Keller
- In America, what matters most are the results we produce. In Jesus, what matters most is the kind of people we are becoming. Scott Sauls
- Any work that is useful to others and done with excellence is deserving of honor. Tim Keller
FAITH AND WORK BOOK REVIEW:
Discipled Leader: Inspiration from a Fortune 500 Executive for Transforming Your Workplace by Pursuing Christ by Preston Poore. Kregal Publications. 224 pages. 2021
The author, who has worked at Fortune 500 companies for decades, tells us that he discovered that the surest way to realize his leadership potential was to become a follower of Jesus—not just on Sunday or at home, but twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
The author is open transparent as he shares personal stories that delve into the seldom-discussed connection between personal discipleship and corporate leadership. How to become a disciple of Christ is the essence of this book. By disciple, he means someone who passionately pursues an intimate fellowship with Jesus, seeking his presence, will, wisdom, and guidance in every facet of life—family, work, school, and community. Each story is accompanied by two imperatives: one for your spiritual life and one for your leadership. Each chapter starts with a key verse and ends with helpful study questions. The book ends with a Facilitator Objectives Guide, intended for facilitators leading studies on this book in one-on-one, small group, or large audience gatherings. This book is unique in that it is a good mix of how to become a disciple and also how to apply that as a leader. I recommend it as a book to read and discuss with others.
Among the many topics covered in the book are decision making, Bible reading and daily devotional time, serving others, confidence, honesty and integrity, trustworthiness, temptation, criticism, joy and growth.
Below are some of my favorite quotes from the book:
- Becoming who you are meant to be as a Christian leader does not begin with focusing on leadership. Your calling toward better leadership is a calling toward deeper discipleship. That’s how you become a discipled leader.
- In all our decisions, especially in the workplace, we should be putting our faith into action.
- How you serve others can define who you are as a disciple of Christ.
- Discipled leaders are honest to the core and know that integrity is a foundational characteristic of successful leadership.
- Our role is to glorify God—to point to what he has done, give him the credit, and bring honor to his name.
- People need to know that their work matters and is valued and appreciated. Recognize their efforts, publicly and privately.
- As a Christian leader, you must surround yourself with other believers who will regularly ask you tough questions about your life.
- We will experience utter joy in life when we are completely devoted to Jesus, daily yielding our will and desires to him as he transforms us from the inside out.
- When a discipled leader delights his or her team or individual contributors, this will in turn cause them to delight in their work and delight their customers.
- The challenges you face are opportunities to learn and grow. What counts is how you respond. It is a choice.
- Discipled leaders have a growth mindset—the belief that they can learn, grow, and get better through developing their talents, strengths, skills, and abilities.
- The exchanged life does not guarantee that God will fix your problems, but it promises that he will use such challenges for your sanctification and will give you the strength to be victorious despite them.
- Your ultimate goal as a discipled leader is to make other disciples and change your world in the process.
- Discipled leaders ought to be the same people on Sunday morning as they are on Monday afternoon. There is no sacred-secular divide. There is only being a disciple and leading others toward Christ and discipleship—every day.
- Your calling toward better leadership is a calling toward deeper discipleship.
Faith and Work Book Club – Won’t you read along with us?
We are reading through You’re Only Human: How Your Limits Reflect God’s Design and Why That’s Good News by Kelly Kapic. The list of demands on our time seems to be never ending. It can leave you feeling a little guilty–like you should always be doing one more thing.
Rather than sharing better time-management tips to squeeze more hours out of the day, Kelly Kapic takes a different approach in You’re Only Human. He offers a better way to make peace with the fact that God didn’t create us to do it all.
Kapic explores the theology behind seeing our human limitations as a gift rather than a deficiency. He lays out a path to holistic living with healthy self-understanding, life-giving relationships, and meaningful contributions to the world. He frees us from confusing our limitations with sin and instead invites us to rest in the joy and relief of knowing that God can use our limitations to foster freedom, joy, growth, and community.
Readers will emerge better equipped to cultivate a life that fosters gratitude, rest, and faithful service to God.
We begin reading through the book this week as we look at Chapter 1: Have I Done Enough? Facing Our Finitude. Here are a few quotes from the chapter:
- Many of us fail to understand that our limitations are a gift from God, and therefore good. This produces in us the burden of trying to be something we are not and cannot be.
- All of us bounce between the illusion that we are in control and the world’s demonstration that we are not.
- Whether through tragedy or simply as the result of aging, we all are repeatedly reminded that we are fragile and dependent creatures.
- We have far less control of the world and even of ourselves than we would like to imagine. Some people respond by living as passive victims, while others aggressively seize as much control as possible.
- The odd thing is that, even when we run into our inevitable limits, we often hang on to the delusion that if we just work harder, if we simply squeeze tighter, if we become more efficient, we can eventually regain control.
- Denying our finitude cripples us in ways we don’t realize. It also distorts our view of God and what Christian spirituality should look like.
- Finitude is an unavoidable aspect of our creaturely existence.
- I think we have a massive problem, but it is not a time-management issue. It is a theological and pastoral problem.
- We must rediscover that being dependent creatures is a constructive gift, not a deficiency.
- We must learn the value and truthfulness of our finitude, eventually getting to the point where we might even praise God for our limits.
- Each of us must face our limits and weaknesses at some point, whether we want to or not.
- This book focuses on the limits that are part of God’s original act of making us, which he called “good.”
- This book aims to help us discover the theological and pastoral significance of embracing the gift of being limited: it is just part of being human.