Your work matters to God.
Twelve years ago, I explored platforms that would embrace the biblical truth of faith and work. I reset my career and came to North Central University to engage in these Scriptures with a new generation who needs to know that they can wholeheartedly and radically serve God no matter the location or profession.
This past fall, I had the privilege of taking the message beyond North Central University borders, speaking at conferences on the topic of faith and work. My stops have included a conference in Paris, France, the Wisconsin Youth Conference, and various churches across the U.S. Common amongst all of them were audiences hungry to be freed by the truth.
On October 14, I spoke at Faith and Work Unleashed, a conference at Cedar Valley Church in Bloomington, Minnesota, co-sponsored by Made to Flourish and Open USA.
With an audience ranging from college students to 40-year marketplace veterans, I had the opportunity to lead a breakout session I titled, “The 4 Myths We Believe” where we focused on revealing the lies often adopted by Christians in the marketplace about their kingdom value and purpose. These myths can be countered with Biblical truths to equip and empower the Believer to live a wholistic, purpose-filled life for Christ.
Here are the myths and truths we unpacked.
God is more interested in the soul than in the body or mind.
And because my work as a (ex. marketing director, accountant, barista, etc) does not deal with the soul, then what I am doing is not of worth.
According to Genesis 2:7, God created humans as a unit, not parts.
Soul + body + mind = one person.
Take a jug of water and pour in a red Kool-aid packet, then a blue one, and finally an orange one; stir it all up. Now reach into the jug and pull out the red Kool-aid. You can’t! In the same way, the soul, body, and mind are one.
Therefore, whatever one does to impact the soul, impacts the body and mind. Whatever one does to impact the body, impacts the soul and mind. And, whatever impacts the mind, impacts the soul and body. If your job impacts any one of these, you’re impacting the whole person.
To live a radical, sold-out life for Christ means I need to sell everything and move somewhere.
Let’s be clear, it can mean this but, it doesn’t only have to mean this.
According to 1 John 5:3 to live a radical, sold-out life for Christ means to obey.
And, to obey is to love God and love his creation. Therefore, can you be radically sold out as a pastor – Yes! Can you be radically sold out as a teacher – Yes! Can you be radically sold out as a construction worker – Yes!
Life is divided into two categories: sacred and secular.
The greatest heresy is when we separate God from any part of his creation; thus, need to stop using the language of sacred and secular.
According to Colossians 1:16, all things were created by God.
At any moment, no matter what we’re doing, we’re either relating to God either properly or improperly. So, maybe instead of using the language of sacred and secular, we should be viewing it as aligning with sin or righteousness.
Because of the nature of their work, ministers and clergy are more important than laity.
It’s easy to feel this way as a marketplace worker when sitting in a lifetime full of services and those elevated and prayed for are the pastors and missionaries. When’s the last time we’ve been to a service and a bank teller from the congregation was brought to the front and prayed for their ministry at the bank?
According to 1 Peter 2:9, all believers are in ministry, and all are called.
We are all called to the royal priesthood; if you know the Truth it is your job to steward it everywhere.
The goal in discussing these myths and truths is not to devalue anything but to elevate other things to their proper place. A theology of work must have a place for all work, not just that of clergy or missionaries. It is a privilege to help guide people to “Aha” moments about the value of their work.
My passion about the integration of faith and work extends beyond the classroom and it’s the central theme of research for my doctorate degree at Grand Canyon University.
If we adopt the myth of the market as merely a tool, we are bound to embody the materialism of our assumptions. Don’t get caught! Understand that you’re called to steward this life for God … because it belongs to God.
This article originally appeared on the North Central Blog and was shared with permission.