Faith and Work News ~ Links to Interesting Articles
- What If I’m Not Working as Much as I Should Be? Miranda Carls responds to the question “I technically work from home, but I’m not putting in nearly as many hours as I should be. I sometimes keep my computer on while I’m not working. How can I be honest about when I am and am not working? And how can I do better going forward?”
- What Does It Mean to Represent Jesus in My Job? If we are representing Jesus in our work, it means there is value to our work because we are showing the world his character and care. Watch this short video from Bryan Chapell.
- I Work in Healthcare. Can I Call Patients ‘Pregnant People’? Shane Morris responds to the question “At my job, I deal with maternal and child health, and one of the trends is calling pregnant women “pregnant people.” Thus far, I’ve tried to use the “pregnant women” terminology as much as I’m able and avoided using “pregnant people.” However, there’s increasing pressure to change the terminology. If I do, is this a violation of what I stand for as a Christian? I’ve been trying to search for some biblical passages to help guide my thinking on this matter.”
Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:
- More links to interesting articles
- The Top 10 Faith and Work Quotes of the Week
- Faith and Work Book Review ~ Workship: How To Use Your Work To Worship God by Kara Martin
- Quotes from the book Agents of Flourishing: Pursuing Shalom in Every Corner of Society by Amy Sherman.
- Will We Work in Eternity? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the questions “First, will we work in the new creation? If so, what types of vocations will be needed? Does the Bible give us any hints here? And if we work, do you think this future vocation will resonate with or consummate some gifting that we always felt drawn to express here on earth, whether or not we could make money doing it here? And if you answer yes to all of this, put on your hat of prediction: What will you be doing in eternity?”
- How Can I Respond to Coworkers Who Think Christianity Is Bigoted? Kaitlin Miller Febles responds to the question “How do I respond when a coworker angrily disparages Christians as hateful and bigoted?”
- Does my Earthly Work have Eternal Value? (Part 2). Russ Gehrlein shares part 2 of a two-part series from chapter 8 of his book, Immanuel Labor – God’s Presence in our Profession.
- Should You Head Back to School at a Seminary? Joshua Nangle writes “If you are someone who has considered deeper theological study but is not interested in leaving your current field, you will find there are actually a lot of ways going back to school for a seminary degree can help you in your own work.”
- Wrestling with Ageism. Russ Gehrlein defines ageism, considers some of the common ideas about older workers, what the Bible says about aging, how to treat this demographic with dignity and respect, and how to think about and do as we approach retirement age ourselves.
- 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).
- Job Crafting: How to Cultivate Our Vocation at Work. Stevan Becker writes “Cultivating our vocation is a matter of listening to God in the particulars of our work situation and discovering the unique things we’ve been created to do. Cultivating our job may mean taking what we have to work with and recreating”
- Walking In Grace – “Works”. Watch this Walking in Grace video from Bryan Chapell that explains how your work matters to God.
- Working for the Weekend – Part II. Robert Covolo writes “In my last blog (see “Working for the Weekend”) I explored work’s relationship to the weekend. There I argued that we were made to embrace both work and rest as those made in the image of the God who works and rests. In passing, the blog touches on the fascinating and rich Biblical concept of the Sabbath. To follow up, this second installment will set its sights on what the Bible teaches about the Sabbath.”
- Why Forgiveness is Vital in Business. John Pletcher writes “Do you believe that Jesus has fully forgiven you? His mercy flows to us so it can flow through us. Remember, forgiven people forgive people.”
- Every occupation has its own honor before God. Ordinary work is a divine vocation or calling. In our daily work no matter how important or mundane, we serve God by serving the neighbor and we also participate in God’s on-going providence for the human race. Martin Luther
- We work in proper relation to and in total dependance upon each member of the Trinity, allowing God to work in us and through us for His glory and for the good of His creation. Russ Gehrlein
- 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 greater our gifts and opportunities, the more the Lord expects of us. Dan Doriani
- I believe the only worthy motivation for leadership is a desire to serve. If you want to lead but are unwilling to serve people, I think you need to check your motives. John Maxwell
- Work is simply taking the raw material of creation and developing it for the sake of others. Tim Keller
- The Christian shoemaker does his duty not by putting little crosses on the shoes, but by making good shoes, because God is interested in good craftsmanship. Martin Luther
- Wouldn’t it be great if one day every employee had the opportunity to go to work with enthusiasm and to come home more fulfilled as a result of being there? Patrick Lencioni
- We glorify God when we use our talents joyfully and effectively. Dan Doriani
FAITH AND WORK BOOK REVIEW:
Workship: How To Use Your Work To Worship God by Kara Martin. Graceworks. 198 pages. 2017
The author writes of an institute she helped form within a theological college that aimed to bridge the Sunday–Monday divide within the college, church, and the marketplace. That experience has formed the basis of the material for this book.
In this book (volume one of two), the author looks at these areas:
- A Biblical View of Work
- Spiritual Disciplines for Work
- Practical Wisdom for Working
In defining work, the author writes that she believes God sees work as any purposeful activity requiring focus and effort. That means it could be housework, schoolwork, caring for children or parents, study, paid work, voluntary work, etc. She tells us that our work should be done in a way that honors and worships God and that serves God and others.
A danger is if we think that our work doesn’t matter to God. Some think that God is only concerned with spiritual things like Bible reading, church services, mission activity, prayer, and evangelism. But the Bible teaches that work was created as a good thing. It is part of the way human beings were made in the image of a creative and working God. It is God that we truly work for.
Each chapter includes a prayer and a “Taking It Further” section with helpful questions to go deeper with the material in that chapter.
The book includes helpful stories to illustrate the content of the book. It covers a number of topics such as redeeming your workplace, working righteously, an eschatological dimension of work, vocation, calling, identity, and kingdom business.
A particularly helpful part of the book was the discussion of the following six spiritual disciplines:
- Holy Working
- Gospel Working
- Prayerful Working
- Incarnational Working
- Spirit-Empowered Working
- Social Justice Working
For each of these disciplines the author includes a biblical basis for the discipline, the behaviors that demonstrate the discipline, and examples of the discipline, as well as a prayer and the “Taking It Further” section.
The book includes two appendices:
In Appendix 1 is a questionnaire to help you work out your spiritual discipline preference.
In Appendix 2, you will see how the six spiritual disciplines intersect with Mark Greene’s 6Ms in his book Fruitfulness on the Frontline.
I appreciated this book as it looked at dimensions of integrating our faith and work that other books haven’t touched on. I also look forward to reading the second volume.
Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the book:
- Work is a gift because we have an opportunity to be stewards over whatever responsibility God has given us: to love that work, do the best we can with it, and offer it back to God as a form of worship.
- It is God we work for. It is he who gave us work as a gift and prepared us for the work given.
- Work is not simply a means to an income. It is about stewardship, productivity, fruitfulness, relationships, for the good of the world, and for the glory of God.
- Vocation is not so much what you ‘do’, it is about responding to the one who calls you.
- Our call is responding to the one who calls us. It is about being Christlike in the place where we find ourselves, seeking to serve God and others.
- Work will never satisfy us when we expect it to deliver something different than what it was designed for, that is, as a means of working with and worshipping God.
- If work is the source of your identity, self-esteem, and/or your security, then it has become an idol. It means that you are too attached to your job.
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 Chapter 7: A Strategy for Cultivating the Beautiful: Invest in the Arts. Here are a few quotes from the chapter:
- For Christ-followers uninitiated in the arts, the gallery shows and artist talks nurture thoughtful engagement about the realm of aesthetics and the role it plays in human flourishing.
- CC-Downtown’s investment in the arts has also created a context for nonbelievers in the arts community to consider the claims of Christianity.