An accidental blog

"If God is sovereign, then his lordship must extend over all of life, and it cannot be restricted to the walls of the church or within the Christian orbit." Abraham Kuyper Common Grace 1.1.

Friday, 30 December 2011

Being more vocationally intentional - some suggestions (more wanted)

Tom Nelson in Work Matters writes:
To move forward a faith community will need to:
(1) become more intentional about teaching a robust theology of vocation
(2) begin celebrating the diversity of vocations
(3) equip for vocational faithfulness and
(4) collaborate with other like-minded local churches that also recognize the church as a primary conduit for gospel faithfulness
How can we do this? Here are a few tentative suggestions - some adapted from Nelson:

1. Watch your language
Avoid phrases such as 'a secular job', 'ministry' when its related only to a church-focused activity.

2. Avoid this mentality:

from here

3. Pray for those starting new jobs in the church service

4. Pray for those unemployed in the church service

5. Unemployed groups - provide room and resources for them to meet

6. Testimonies from people in the workplace about the workplace

7. Education Sunday - pray for all those in education, preach on education, testimonies form students and teachers. Have a Business, Science, Maths ... Sunday too!

8. Prayer life - review who and what we pray for

9. Preaching - review what topics are covered. Use more illustrations from the workplace.

10. Pastors on sabbatical in a workplace role - or at least visit congregational members in their workplace.

11. Employ a work place and vocations minister

12. Stock the church library with useful books such as:

       Tom Nelson Work Matters  my review here
       Daryl Cosden The Heavenly Good of Earthly Work
       Lee Hardy The Fabric of This World
       Gene Veith God at Work
       Mark Greene Thank God It's Monday
       Stephen Nichols What is Vocation? my review here
       Douglas Schuurman Vocation after Christendom
       Miroslav Volf  Work in the Spirit: Toward a Theory of Work
       Paul Marshall (ed.)  Labour of Love: Essays on Work   pdf available here
       R. Paul Stevens The Other Six Days

13. Book reviews of the above books in the church service

14. Book discussion groups - discussing some of the books mentioned above

15. Start what Newbigin called 'Frontier groups'. 

16. Vocation-oriented discipleship/accountability groups

17. Vocation-oriented prayer triplets

18. Hold sessions on exploring vocation - and look at how to discern your vocation

Update: Amy L. Sherman's new book Kingdom Calling deals with some of the issues. See the website
vocational stewardship  and her list of Ten Ways to Encourage Vocational Stewardship In Your Church

Any other suggestions?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve,

Check out 'The Cultural Way of Being' and 'Translating the Invisible Wind' for vocationally-minded suggestions. It's not only the artist who needs setting free, but the plumber, the accountant and the teacher! (to name but a few!)