Vocation

Does “real kingdom work” only happen when we volunteer at church or get paid from a nonprofit organization?

"'My dream is to one day ...quit my job and do real kingdom work.' ...But at the same time, I cringe at the false dichotomy I hear in statements like this. As if 'real kingdom work' only takes place when one is volunteering at church or getting a paycheck from a nonprofit organization." - Daniel Darling

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Five Reasons to Preach a Series on Work

In my five decades of attending Bible-preaching churches I’ve heard precisely one sermon series on work. It was my own, and was pretty weak.

It’s possible that the topic has been receiving systematic attention all over the place all these years, and I’ve just managed to miss nearly all of it. But I think not.

For whatever reason, work is a neglected subject, not only in topical preaching and teaching, but, in my experience, also in the applicational portions of expositional sermons. Often, when the workplace is referenced at all, the focus is solely on “being a witness” or “having a good testimony,” as though work couldn’t possibly have any other important purposes in a believer’s life.

So the topic seems not only to be underrepresented in pulpit work, but also to be poorly understood.

For several reasons, our ministries should include systematic teaching on work. Some of these reasons also point to the bigger picture of why work is important in the lives of Christians.

1. It’s OK to do topical work sometimes.

For the benefit of those who highly value paragraph-by-paragraph expositional preaching (as they should) and are hesitant to include any topical work in the mix, a few observations:

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Study: How do millennial Christians approach faith, work, and calling?

“In Christians at Work, which is based on a new study from Barna … . Christian millennials emerge as distinctly optimistic and ambitious, whether in the ‘tangibles’ of their daily work and spiritual growth or in their general awareness of how or whether to apply their God-given gifts.” - Acton

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Women, Work, and the Home: What Is a Biblical Measurement of Success?

"Mothers are invested in this process [of bearing and rearing future workers] for only a segment of their adult lives. Most women will have sixty years as an adult in which to create value through their own labors. The challenge is how to do that wisely in a culture that largely requires parenting and income generation to be done in separate places." - IFWE

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