Faith and Work News ~ Links to Interesting Articles
- How Do I Manage My Staff with Humble Confidence? Courtney Moore responds to the question “When managing others, how should I balance the important attribute of confidence (“I know this is what we should do and how we should get there”) with humility (“I need your insight on what we should do or how we should get there”)?”
- Be a Gospel Signpost with the Work of Your Hands. Hugh Whelchel writes “How has God designed and called you? Do you see your work as a “signpost” to point people to God’s picture story? How can you give others a glimpse of shalom through your work?”
- Reflections on the Impacts of Teleworking from a Biblical Worldview. Russ Gehrlein writes “I trust that both Christian employers and employees have been confronted with some new thoughts that can be translated into good habits in this hybrid work environment. If we continue to serve our employees, submit to our bosses, and work wholeheartedly for the Lord, we will bless others.”
Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:
- More links to interesting articles
- The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
- My Review of You’re Only Human: How Your Limits Reflect God’s Design and Why That’s Good News by Kelly Kapic
- Quotes from the book Agents of Flourishing: Pursuing Shalom in Every Corner of Society by Amy Sherman.
- How Christ’s Ascension Raises Our Daily Work to New Heights. John Pletcher writes “We all feel frustration, suffering, fatigue, even failure. But we don’t need to be overwhelmed. We need not succumb to weariness in our daily work, because our ascended King Jesus is praying for us, defending us, and empowering us.”
- Working with Dan Doriani: Marvin Olasky. On this episode of the Working with Dan Doriani podcast, Dan visits with Marvin Olasky, former head of World
- 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).
- The Motive – Receive It! Howard Graham writes “Why do you work? Why do you lead? The reason — the why or motive — behind what you do impacts your effectiveness as a leader and is the single greatest influence on whether you find joy and meaning in your work life and leadership.”
- Mere Christians: Sam Acho. On this episode of the Mere Christians podcast, Jordan Raynor visits with ESPN analyst Sam Acho about why vulnerability is the key to freedom in your work, the power of Christ-like joy in the workplace, and why every mere Christian’s work matters to God.
- Working with Dan Doriani: Tim Challies. On this episode of the Working with Dan Doriani podcast, Dan visits with Tim Challies about the loss of his son and his book Seasons of Sorrow.
- Is It Wrong to Switch Jobs Just for Better Pay? Amy Dimarcangelo responds to the question “Is it sinful to change your place of employment based on pay alone?”
Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
- God calls every disciple to full-time service. We deny that some work is sacred and some secular. Dan Doriani
- There are no perfect jobs. All jobs will have thorns and thistles. Sometimes you just have to gut it out for a season until things improve or something better comes along. Russ Gehrlein
- The gospel frees us from the relentless pressure of having to prove ourselves and secure our identity through work. Tim Keller
- Sabbath is that uncluttered time and space in which we can distance ourselves from our own activities enough to see what God is doing. Eugene Peterson
- Instead of striving to be served, Christian leaders strive to serve. Harry Reeder
- Stewarding my time is not about selfishly pursuing only the things I like to do. It’s about effectively serving others in the ways I’m best able to serve and in the ways I am most uniquely called to serve. Kevin DeYoung
- The true measure of leaders is not the number of people who serve them but the number of people they serve. John Maxwell
- The biblical worldview has the highest opinion of the most menial of work. Tim Keller
- Regularly asking for his wisdom as we go about our work reminds us that it is God alone who gives us the wisdom to do our work well. Jordan Raynor
FAITH AND WORK BOOK REVIEW:
You’re Only Human: How Your Limits Reflect God’s Design and Why That’s Good News by Kelly Kapic. Brazos Press. 272 pages. 2022
This book, by a college professor of theological studies, focuses on the limits that are part of God’s original act of making us, which he called “good.” The 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. The author takes time to carefully think about our creatureliness. This reveals limits, dependence, love, reliance on the grace of God, and worship. He tells us that finitude is an unavoidable aspect of our creaturely existence.
The author addresses a number of subjects in the book, among them are our union with Christ, humility, vulnerability, gratitude, lament, sleep, our bodies, physical touch, sin, time, the fear of the Lord, interconnectedness, our callings, and rest.
You’re Only Human is a thought-provoking book about our limitations as humans. I found it best to read the book slowly and take in the author’s ideas.
Here are 20 of my favorite quotes from the book:
- God delights in you as you use the particular gifts he has given.
- God wants you to flourish as the particular you that you are, to enjoy his creation and to enjoy him. That is your calling and privilege as a particular human creature he made and delights in.
- A truly Christian spirituality must always also be a body-affirming spirituality.
- Our bodies and their inherent limits are a good gift from a good Creator.
- Our identity in Christ isn’t something apart from our cultures and backgrounds but rather his transformation of them as he brings us to himself.
- If you don’t see your own finitude as a gift and a way of appreciating the gifts of others, then all you see in others will be their problems and the ways they could be better.
- Humility is a distinctly biblical virtue because it begins with the knowledge that there is a good Creator Lord and we are the finite creatures he made to live in fellowship with him.
- We can happily praise people, because such praise recognizes God’s own work.
- Anxiety whispers in your ear not that you are a good creature made by God but that you are insignificant, a disappointment, even a failure.
- God has consistently been concerned with process and not merely with a finished product.
- Only when we live in our interconnectedness will we stop belittling those with “secular” vocations who honor Christ as painters and teachers, as landscapers and homemakers, as politicians and software engineers. Rather than disparage someone else’s work, we can see it as part of the whole, and thus we are liberated to really celebrate all manner of vocations and labor.
- Whether you buy or sell, use pens or the plow, tend the hearth or the child, each is enabled to use their labor to honor God and for the common good.
- A healthy view of our finitude allows us to step back, take a breath, and think about the importance of different seasons in life, the rhythms of our bodies and our days, our months, and our years.
- Different times of life bring different callings.
- Recognizing one’s vulnerability before God and others is fundamental to a Christian understanding of being human.
- God has made us dependent on his good work and gifts in others, so that affirming those gifts and encouraging them is no more than a realistic approach to life.
- Lament and gratitude are mirror concepts that highlight the same fundamental truth: we are dependent on the God who rescues us. Only when we accept our creaturely finitude will this make sense to us.
- Sleep is a spiritual discipline that daily reminds us of our lack of control.
- Sleep is an act of faith. It requires us to see our finitude as a good part of God’s design for us.
- We were designed not only to work but also to rest, just as God rested after six days of creative work.
Faith and Work Book Club – Won’t you read along with us?
We are reading Agents of Flourishing: Pursuing Shalom in Every Corner of Society by Amy Sherman. Sherman is also the author of Kingdom Calling: Vocational Stewardship for the Common Good, a book I first read in my “Calling, Vocation and Work” class at Covenant Seminary.
Every corner, every square inch of society can flourish as God intends, and Christians of any vocation can become agents of that flourishing. In this book, Sherman offers a multifaceted, biblically grounded framework for enacting God’s call to seek the shalom of our communities in six arenas of civilizational life (The Good, The True, The Beautiful, The Just, The Prosperous, and The Sustainable).
This week we look at the Introduction.
Here are a few helpful quotes from The Introduction:
- My hope in this book is to help pastors and Christian leaders live deeply and wisely into the call of Jeremiah 29:7: “Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.”
- In this book I try to bring together a vision of the church’s missional identity—including its rich, two-thousand-year legacy of advancing the common good—with a holistic, biblical, and sociological understanding of the dimensions of societal flourishing.
- I hope to offer a guide for congregational leaders willing and ready to live into God’s call to seek their neighbors’ thriving.
- This book focuses on local outreach, not overseas missions
- My purpose in this book is to encourage and equip congregations to seek the flourishing of their communities—based on a conviction that this is a central mission of the church in our time.