What was God’s original design for work and rest? Are these two concepts opposites? Are they enemies? This week on the podcast we talk about the “dance” of work and rest, and how embracing both as part of God’s design for our lives is part of living in Gospel fullness.
We also dive deeply into the topic of biblical retirement. This may be difficult for some of us to hear, but the modern Western definition of retirement is not in the Bible. Does this mean we’re meant to work a grinding 8-5 job until our dying breath? Not at all. But reimagining retirement through the lens of the Gospel is an important exercise for every believer.
Our friend Chuck Rapp shares his personal story in this week’s missional moment. After a 40+ year corporate career, Chuck is finding new ways to work, worship, and serve in his late 60s. No matter your season of life, Chuck’s story will encourage and inspire you to think differently about the future.
You can learn more about Chuck’s work at One Mission Society by visiting https://onemissionsociety.org
Please share, follow, and rate this show (we prefer all the stars if you don’t mind) on your podcast platform of choice. It goes a long way to help establish us as a new podcast. You can also find more information about Missional Marketplace and The Stone Table here:
The Stone Table: https://TheStoneTable.org
Missional Marketplace Book: https://www.erikcooper.me https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/173…
Speaker 1 [00:00:00] Work is not the enemy of our souls. Sin is the enemy of our souls.
Work is not the enemy of our souls. Work and rest are meant to be partners. They are
meant to do go together. And we need to learn to dance to the rhythm like that designed
Speaker 2 [00:00:25] It's another episode of the Missional Marketplace podcast.
Speaker 1 [00:00:29] Yes, it is there and brought.
Speaker 2 [00:00:30] To you by the stone table. And we are glad that you are here with
us. I am Darren Cooper, your co host, here with my good brother. Good. See, I said it
again this week. Good brother, my good brother. My good brother.
Speaker 1 [00:00:43] Mr. Eric versus our bad brother.
Speaker 2 [00:00:45] Oh, yeah, yeah. He's terrible. He's the worst brother he is.
Speaker 1 [00:00:49] Yeah. Since he doesn't.
Speaker 2 [00:00:50] Exist. He does not exist. Yeah, he does not exist.
Speaker 1 [00:00:52] But we can, we can pick on him because he, he's, he's, he's not a
Speaker 2 [00:00:56] He can't talk back at all. That's right. But no, we are so glad that you
are here for another episode of the Missional Marketplace podcast. We are on episode
eight. We are making this thing happen.
Speaker 1 [00:01:06] That's right. Accelerating the great commission through the
marketplace there. And that's the goal.
Speaker 2 [00:01:11] That is the goal. That is the goal. And if you are a marketplace
Christian, we just hope that this little podcast can be an encouragement to you, that that
tells you and helped shape the idea, the fact that your work matters, what you do every
day matters right. And you can get up and work from that place. And that's a that's a good
place to start.
Speaker 1 [00:01:28] That's right. Just to to reform and reshape and rethink our everyday
work through the lens of the gospel, that that who you are and what you get up and go do
every day is not just biding your time, you know, waiting for some disembodied life in the
clouds when you can go up there and sit on a cloud and play your harp. Right now, this
actually has meaning and purpose. And so a little bit encouragement in that regard.
Speaker 2 [00:01:53] Yeah, absolutely. And absolutely. And and like we say, pretty much
every week, if you've followed us on this journey so far, we are walking through Missional
Marketplace, a book written by the great Eric Cooper here, just your.
Speaker 1 [00:02:06] Good brother.
Speaker 2 [00:02:06] The good brother, brother versus the bad brother. But yeah, it's just
given us the the conversation kind of the alleyway that we've been taking. And so we
started off with work and the great story.
Speaker 1 [00:02:17] That's right.
Speaker 2 [00:02:17] Right. In the last few weeks, we've been talking about work and the
great commandment. And we even we were talking about hiring and firing last week. Oh,
man, it was a heavy one. If you haven't listened to that one, you got to go back and check
it out. I got some good tips and tricks for all of that kind of stuff.
Speaker 1 [00:02:33] Yeah, it's hard. Hard to it's easier to think of hiring to the glory of
God. Right. But to actually talk about how do we fire someone and still glorify God?
Speaker 2 [00:02:41] Some good stories in that one. Some good story. So if you haven't
checked that out, make sure you go back and listen there. But today we're actually
wrapping up the section on work and the Great Commandments. Right? Right. This is kind
of the we've been there the last couple of weeks. This will be the last one. And we are well,
where are we headed? Kind of frame it up a little bit today and kind of give us the direction
Speaker 1 [00:03:01] Where we're going. Yeah, well, if we look at work in the great
commandment, the great commandment is, you know, love the Lord your God with all your
heart, all your soul, all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself. And our contention
is that our everyday work is not just acts of charity that we can do this with, but it's actually
acts of commerce that we can honor God and love our neighbor, for sure. For sure. So
when we get up and we go to work every day, we have the opportunity to fulfill the great
commandment. And that alone gives some sacred purpose, right? Yeah. So we just been
looking at, you know, just some various aspects of that. Like you said last week, we talked
about hiring and firing. Today I want to talk about work and rest and actually retirement.
Speaker 2 [00:03:44] Relaxed.
Speaker 1 [00:03:44] Already years ago. Well, let me get you all worked up here, I guess
at some point. But yeah, we want to talk about work and rest and the rhythms of work and
rest. And then we want to we want to actually touch on this idea of retirement and what is
biblical retirement look like, because I think it fits into this great commandment
conversation. Sure. And so for me, Daryn, this this really started I guess I always recall
about seven or eight years ago I was in Egypt and had the joy of sitting in a room with
about 40 global missionaries that were from all over the Arab world, really. And they had
convened for a a meeting together for some strategy sessions, but also just to be
encouraged. And that night, the leader I'll never forget, we had we had a worship service.
It was powerful. And then the leader was just sharing some little nuggets of challenge with
all of these other missionaries that are working really in some of the hardest places, right?
Yeah, they're working in some of the hardest places around the world. And he said two
things that night that I will never forget. He he said some of you just in real hard core
challenge, some of you don't know how to rest. And he said that is a sin. It is a sin. And
you need to repent. Right. Wow.
Speaker 2 [00:05:12] And strong language, too, that he like.
Speaker 1 [00:05:15] He went at he went at it, man. He he didn't just say, yeah, you
probably ought to learn to wrestle or for your, you know, mental well-being. He said, no,
no, you are sinning. If you don't know how to rest, you are sinning and you need to repent.
And that kind of. Right.
Speaker 2 [00:05:31] And everybody that didn't know how to rest was kind of like, oh, no,
that's, you know, like your brain starts going, you're like, That's me.
Speaker 1 [00:05:37] Is that me? He's talking to me. I know he's talking to me. Right. But
then he he turned it. His next point turned. And I wasn't expecting this. And he said. But he
said, some of you don't know how to work. Hmm. And he said, that is a sin, and you need
to repent. Right. Wow.
Speaker 2 [00:05:59] Put them both on the same plane.
Speaker 1 [00:06:01] So. So here I am in another country, and I am with some of the most
respected people that I know. Mm hmm. And. And they are being deeply challenged by
their leader, both to repent of lack of rest and repent of lack of work.
Speaker 2 [00:06:20] Right. Yeah.
Speaker 1 [00:06:21] And I think and we've we set these on two sides of a pendulum.
Right. Which is what we do. Just typical human nature. Right. Like. Like I overwork. So
now I need to swing it over. And now I'm. I'm instead of understanding that these things
are meant to work in tension and really as partners with one another. And I don't know
about you. I migrate towards busyness. I have a naturally hard time resting. Even if I am
physically resting, I'm I'm mentally.
Speaker 2 [00:06:56] Is it still right? Yeah.
Speaker 1 [00:06:58] And I think.
Speaker 2 [00:06:58] A lot of people can relate to that. Yeah.
Speaker 1 [00:07:00] So and that's typical, right, of our Western capitalistic culture. It's the
typical caricature that we see here in our culture today. And so I have to remember that
God not only modeled, but he he commanded rest from his people. If we look at Genesis
two, two and three, this is second chapter of the Bible. Right?
Speaker 2 [00:07:23] This is right out the gate.
Speaker 1 [00:07:24] Right. It says on the seventh day, God had finished his work of
creation. So we see already a working God. Yeah. Right. God had finished his work of
creation, so he rested from all his work.
Speaker 2 [00:07:38] Beautiful.
Speaker 1 [00:07:39] And God bless the seventh day and declared it holy because it was
the day when he rested from his work of creation. So we see a god who both works and
Speaker 2 [00:07:53] Yeah.
Speaker 1 [00:07:54] And he models this for us and he commands it of us. Right. And so,
Darren, I think rest is not only good for us physically, it's good for us spiritually. It's a
reminder that we are not ultimately in charge, that the world can go on without us, that that
the world does not rise and fall on our ability to get things done, that that God needs us.
He does not need us. I'm sorry. God does not need us. But he wants us for sure. For sure.
Yes. Yes. It's kind of like it's kind of like tithing, right? Like or giving, like God doesn't he
doesn't need our cash. Right. But he needs our heart. And so by bites, what's.
Speaker 2 [00:08:36] Underneath it all?
Speaker 1 [00:08:37] That's right. By pre deciding, you know, we're going to give of our
resources in that way, we are saying to God, you are in charge. My trust is in you. Right.
It's the same thing with our time. It's the same thing with our work and our rest that that we
are we are showing God and demonstrating to ourselves that he is in control, that the
world can go on without us and that we have been invited to participate. Right. And so it
puts all of that, I think, in balance.
Speaker 2 [00:09:07] Like that, because it's not it's not one or the other. Like you said, you
know, often it's the opposites, the work, the rest, you know, this or that.
Speaker 1 [00:09:17] Like their enemies with one another.
Speaker 2 [00:09:18] Right. And really, they do go hand in hand. And I think we see this, if
you really do look at it in just life in general, you see this in a lot of areas, like even with
with like you're eating right. You can eat healthy, healthy, healthy, healthy, healthy,
healthy. But sometimes you got to go over there and have that cheeseburger every once
in a while, you know, saying and that. And they there's even like some studies that say you
can't just go all the way on this one side. There is some some play some.
Speaker 1 [00:09:47] Bad or a good deluxe because.
Speaker 2 [00:09:49] Sometimes you just got to double up on that pepperoni. You got to
do this and you got to do it. But yeah, like that. If you look at that and begin to put that
framework on on a lot of things, you know, that you have to play in that a little bit. Right.
Right. I mean, even light in dark right there. Without light there's not dark. Without dark
there's not light. And there has to be that that balance. And they play together. It's not
either or it can you can easily put them on the pendulum like that and say either or, but
they actually play together and there's something beautiful in there. And when we see that
in the idea of work and rest, we can work hard and not feel guilty and we can rest well and
not feel guilty.
Speaker 1 [00:10:28] Right. They're they're they're not enemies. They're meant to go
together. So let's I mean, let's talk about the flip side for just a second, because I do think
there seems to be a bit of a countercultural movement today that sees rest and freedom
from all work. Right. As the purpose for human existence. Right.
Speaker 2 [00:10:48] Work is the enemy and work.
Speaker 1 [00:10:49] Is always there. And if we go back to, like our theology one on one.
Yeah, you know, this idea that work was just work is here because Adam and Eve sinned
and I got stuck with an 8 to 5. Right. Thanks a lot, guys. Right. So but but there is this idea
that work is the enemy. Work is. And freedom from work is really the purpose of existence.
So there's a legitimate anti work movement. Mm hmm. You Google it, go out and Google
it. And I would say not only do these people not understand basic economics, which is
something I think actually and we could we could do a whole series that yeah, the second
understanding economics is actually a sacred responsibility. And I could talk about that all
day, but we'll, we'll do that at another time.
Speaker 2 [00:11:35] They'll get going. They'll get.
Speaker 1 [00:11:36] Inside. Yeah, exactly. They don't understand basic economics, but
they also don't understand God's design for human flourishing. I mean, again, let's go back
to Genesis two, second chapter. Right? The Lord God took the man and put him in the
Garden of Eden to work it and keep it. Yep. So we see a God who both works and rests,
but we also see a God who created mankind with a mandate to work and keep his
creation. Is work broken by sin? Yes, absolutely. Thorns and thistles, right? Thorns and
thistles, thanks to sin. Does humanity abuse work? Do we idolize work? Do we place our
hope and identity in our work in properly? Absolutely right. But again, Darren, the broken
caricature is not the real thing. We were created to work and keep God's creation. Work is
not the enemy of our souls. Yeah, sin is the enemy of our souls. Work is not the enemy of
our souls. Work and rest are meant to be partners. They are meant to to go together. And
we need to learn to dance to the rhythm like that.
Speaker 2 [00:12:44] Designers, too. Yeah, I love that. I love that. And I think, you know,
for me as I'm sitting. And obviously, like you said, you know, I think I would probably lean
towards the extra work or the extreme work. Even if it's not productive work, it's still you
know, it's like just work, work, work, go, go, go and and forgo the resting. And and I think
for me, it's setting up not only those times. I mean, we see it biblically, you know, it's at
least a day, you know, and taking that time to rest. But also I think a challenge for me is
that when because I lean that way, I think what I have to do is I have to go towards the
opposite for a little bit. Right. So if I lean heavy towards the work, let's go towards the rest
a little bit. Let's, let's work or work, you know, let's.
Speaker 1 [00:13:31] Work on this.
Speaker 2 [00:13:32] Work on rest. But you know what I'm saying? But let's move towards
rest and see that in in almost kind of fight against some of those things that are naturally
pulling towards us. Right. And I think in doing so or I guess the opposite way, right, if you if
you lean towards rest, let's step into work a little bit. Let's let's go against the grain of even
how you feel right now and see what that produces and how that can bring some really
beautiful things out in your in your life.
Speaker 1 [00:14:00] And yeah, and I would go back maybe just as we close this, this part
of the conversation and just go back to that that story of that, that challenge from my, my
missionary friend. I don't know what God would be saying to you today, but, you know, if
you don't know how to rest, repent of that sin and ask and ask Jesus to help you. That's
the beauty of the gospel, right? It's not it's not even us in our own power. Right? It's the
gospel renewing and reshaping and reforming in our will and our desires. Yeah. So say to
Jesus today, Lord, I struggle with this. Help me, help me learn how to rest. But if the Lord's
convicting you today that you don't know how to work, that you don't, that that you see
work as the enemy, that you do it as little as possible and you don't understand its role in
God's creative wonder. Then I would say to you same thing Repent and ask Jesus to
renew and bring that that resurrected sense of what work is intended to be and how those
two things work and rest can dance together to the glory of God and to the love of your
Speaker 2 [00:15:05] Yeah, and I love the idea of a dance, too, because I just. It brings so
Speaker 1 [00:15:09] You're a musician.
Speaker 2 [00:15:10] Well, that too, you know, but it just brings so much beauty to the
idea of it, right? Like it's not a this or that, it's a back and forth. It's a moving within it. And
yeah, yeah. There's something, there's, there's something beautiful there. Good when and
then in a complete pivot here into what you said we were going to dove into a little bit at
the start of this is is the word retirement. Yeah. When can I stop this thing called work
ethic? I just need to get there. Is it at 55? Is it a 57? 62. When is it.
Speaker 1 [00:15:43] That's right. That's right. Yeah. Well, I think I may irritate some
people because this, this thing we call retirement here in our Western American culture.
Right. That the way we've viewed retirement in our culture is actually not in Scripture. No,
it's it's not in the Bible.
Speaker 2 [00:16:04] Everybody's mad now.
Speaker 1 [00:16:05] Yeah.
Speaker 2 [00:16:05] Oh, shut this off. They've just completely shut it.
Speaker 1 [00:16:08] That's right. Now now we're going to, we're going to frame this and
shape this. Okay, so before you before you take around, stick around, you know, throw
your your phone out the window. No, I think this idea that you dutifully serve some job or
some organization for 40 years while you save up a little money, I throw in an IRA, you
wait till you qualify for Social Security, and then thank God all of that serving slavery, you
know, serving the man, right. All that stuff. Right. It's over. And now I just get to serve
Speaker 2 [00:16:45] Yeah, I get to.
Speaker 1 [00:16:45] Do for the rest of my days. That is what I'm talking to. That is not that
is not in Scripture. The closest thing we actually see to retirement in Scripture seems to be
all right. Okay. The Levites in numbers eight and the Levites were the they worked in the
temple. They did the sacrifices. They took care of the temple and all of the pieces that
went with that. If you read through numbers, usually that's where most people checked out
and they're read through the Bible here plan. Genesis. Exodus yeah, a little bit. And I'm
done. I'm done by.
Speaker 2 [00:17:17] Gone through Leviticus, then you're here, you know what we're
Speaker 1 [00:17:20] About. But there's actually some really good stuff in here. There
really is. But but the Levites, they served in the temple from age 25 to age 50, and then
they no longer could serve at age 50. So I'm like literally just a couple of years from now.
Oh yeah, I'm a we're almost there now. Now. But but I think what's interesting about this is,
is Scripture says they no longer do all of the the minutia and components of serving in the
temple. But they stand guard. They stand guard. They still. They still oversaw and spoke
into and encouraged. And they stood guard for enemies that wanted to come in and and
Speaker 2 [00:17:59] Yeah. Their role changed, right?
Speaker 1 [00:18:01] Their role changed. They still had a role, but the way they did, that
role changed. And so it wasn't that. They just they're done now. They did. They're 25.
Yeah. And and now they're out. Now they just go, you know, hang out. Yeah. Until. Until
they die one day. Right.
Speaker 2 [00:18:20] Waiting for.
Speaker 1 [00:18:21] It. So. So I am not suggesting. Hear me. I am not suggesting that
that we are intended to stay and our careers or a normal day jobs until death do us part.
Speaker 2 [00:18:31] That's not what you're saying.
Speaker 1 [00:18:32] No, I am suggesting that that you never get to as a believer in Jesus,
you never get to stop thinking about the ways your life and your gifts and the way got wired
and made. You can serve his purposes in the world. His mission in the world. To to honor
him, to love your neighbor. And to proclaim in the name of Jesus. We were meant to honor
God and love our neighbor and add value to creation until our dying breath. Yeah, to our
Speaker 2 [00:18:58] Yeah, well, and that's it. I like the way you said that is it's you're not,
you're not saying that if you retire in the Western sense of the word. Right, then get.
Speaker 1 [00:19:08] Back to work. Yeah.
Speaker 2 [00:19:09] No it's not like oh you've now, you've now done wrong and you're
ready to repent of that. No, no, no, no. But it is, it is staying in the game. And what does it
look like to stay in the game? And I think we've had some some beautiful examples of that.
There's a handful of people that we know. Yeah, but some that we want to highlight today
that have been been really beautiful examples of this. I my my role might have changed,
but I'm not out of the game. That's right. And so who, who are some of those people that.
Speaker 1 [00:19:38] Mean, I think about my friend Chuck and we're actually going to talk
to Chuck in this week's Missional Moment. Oh, yes. That initial mission. Right. But but
Chuck, I'll let you tell or I'll let him tell you some of his story. But, you know, he worked in
the marketplace for 40 years. I've known Chuck since well, since we were little kids. And
you were very close to Donner. We went to the same church together. And and Chuck.
Chuck had an incredible career in corporate life. Right. And just a few years ago, retired
from that career, maybe in somewhat of a traditional way. Yeah. You know.
Speaker 2 [00:20:15] That's very.
Speaker 1 [00:20:16] Much of a built up. My, you know, my retirement account, my my
broker said it's okay for me right now, you know, that kind of thing. Yeah, but, but Chuck
just didn't go, you know, hang out by the lake somewhere and go fishing all day. Right. He
did do some of that. Right. But he actually he actually took a role with a missions
organization based here in Indianapolis. And he he's he's going back and forth to Africa to
be a part of their church planting endeavors and movements and things that are
happening there in Africa. And so he's actually giving his retirement years to to really
pushing forward this great commission mandate and core. Right. So I think about I think
about guys like Chuck, I think about I think about our dad for sure. I mean, literally, as we
are sitting here having this conversation outside that door down the hall about 15 feet.
Yeah, our dad is sitting there putting together financial numbers or for our annual board
meeting that's coming together. Right. And Dad's position and role is shifting and
changing, and he's dumping more weight on me and on other people around the
organization. Right. But he is he still says, look, I got I got value to add for sure. You know,
I may go play golf this afternoon, but I still got value to add the organization to who we are
and to what God has called me to. And so I'm going to continue to do that, maybe not in
the same way I did before, but I'm going to continue to do that change and until the Lord
leads me on. But I've got value to add and I'm going to add it. And then I think of our our,
our pastor that we grew up here.
Speaker 2 [00:21:49] You have Roger.
Speaker 1 [00:21:50] Tom piano still still alive. 98 years old.
Speaker 2 [00:21:54] 98 years.
Speaker 1 [00:21:55] Old. His wife is 99. They're still married, you know.
Speaker 2 [00:22:01] And they're still like really mobile.
Speaker 1 [00:22:03] Just just celebrated their 78th wedding anniversary.
Speaker 2 [00:22:06] That's amazing.
Speaker 1 [00:22:08] And Tom has has slow has slowed down by design.
Speaker 2 [00:22:12] Yeah.
Speaker 1 [00:22:13] By by reality. Yeah. Over the last 20 years of his life. But it's not
abnormal for him to still call and say, hey, I was on the phone with with the missionary and
there's a project where we're trying to strategize about and then that the story I really
remember is not too long ago he came over to my in-laws house for dinner with some
friends, and he had a sermon, like a new sermon that he had just written. I wrote.
Speaker 2 [00:22:41] This sermon this week.
Speaker 1 [00:22:42] And he's like, I don't know if I'm ever going to get to preach this
anywhere. Would you guys mind if I just shared it with you and he was. But what I. I guess
what moved me about that was that he's he's still creating that woman, still speaking to
him. He's still he's still processing. How can I pour out and give of myself? And 90 years.
Speaker 2 [00:22:59] Old, he's not just mailing it in. He's saying, I have something to
contribute. And even in that moment, right sitting around a dinner table, he didn't know
where that that sermon was supposed to go. But he's like, hey, there's an opportunity here
and there's an idea. And so I'm going to share it with you guys. And that might not look like
what it look for him 20, 30 years prior.
Speaker 1 [00:23:18] Yeah.
Speaker 2 [00:23:19] But that's a beautiful expression of even saying, no, I still have
something to give. And even if it is for the five, six, seven of you sitting around this table,
I'm still here. I'm still in the game.
Speaker 1 [00:23:28] My kids get tired of me preaching messages to them.
Speaker 2 [00:23:31] You're going to be 98 doing the same.
Speaker 1 [00:23:32] I'll probably be doing the same thing. And my kids will, you know,
they'll be in their sixties still rolling their eyes at me. Right. Oh, here goes Dad again, right?
Yeah. You know, there. And I love it. Maybe we'll just close with this. But, you know, we're
in the property management business here. You know, we own manage and construct
affordable housing and we've got some senior apartments, you know, and there's some of
my favorite people, you know, they're they're they're a joy to be around. They get some
great stories. But I think one of the things I've noticed is if if they don't handle this season
of their life properly, what they're not meant. We are not meant to spend the last 20 years
of our lives only thinking about ourselves. Yeah, right. Yeah. And we get, we actually get
weird. Like, I'm a little weird now, but like, imagine me, like, just totally. Oh, boy, right.
Speaker 2 [00:24:23] Dog boy.
Speaker 1 [00:24:24] Totally thinking about myself. But one of the stories that I love and
we kind of outline it in the book a little bit as well, we actually had an assault with a deadly
cookie. One of our yeah. At one of our oh, my property's one of our senior properties. They
Speaker 2 [00:24:40] No, it was a chocolate chip. Or was it. I think it was.
Speaker 1 [00:24:42] Only oatmeal raisin.
Speaker 2 [00:24:43] That's the only way that that's why it was a deadly cookie.
Speaker 1 [00:24:46] That's it's nobody wants those. Right? So we'll just throw them at
each other. Yeah, exactly. But they were playing bingo, right? They were playing bingo.
And house rules say you can only call bingo three times.
Speaker 2 [00:24:56] Three and you're done.
Speaker 1 [00:24:57] And you go back to your room. This guy had the gall to call it for.
Speaker 2 [00:25:02] Oh, my gosh.
Speaker 1 [00:25:03] And he got confronted by some of the other residents and he got
mad and he chucked a cookie right at the face of one of the other residents. Right. And I
love to tell that story because, you know, I guess we're all prone to do it for sure.
Speaker 2 [00:25:19] For sure. Absolutely.
Speaker 1 [00:25:20] But to think that we would actually get violent over a game of bingo.
And I just I think what happens to us there and if we're not careful, if we're not pouring out,
if we're not saying, how does my life honor God and love my neighbor today if we're not
taking the gifts and talents and bent that God has given us and pushing His kingdom
forward, even if it's in a small, tiny way, right then we become less than what we were.
Speaker 2 [00:25:46] Yeah, for sure. And you can see that in, in stories like that, even
though it's kind of tongue in cheek and funny, you know, I saw the deadly oatmeal raisin,
but that that is that idea, right? That if we we begin to focus so much inward that we kind of
lose a little bit of who we were created to be in. Christ can act in ways that are not not
aligned with that. Yeah.
Speaker 1 [00:26:10] So well and I guess my, my encouragement just as we close here is,
you know, you were made to work and keep and add value to God's creation in God's
kingdom. You don't have to do that through an 8 to 5 until your dying breath. That's not
what we're saying here. Right. But we do have to say, how am I gifted? How am I
equipped to continue pushing that forward? There's no expiration date on the Great
Commandment in the Great Commission. There's no expiration date on our story being
embedded in God's story. There is no expiration date. And so how are you and I going to
run to the finish line, I think is the nature of the question that we want to wrestle with.
Speaker 2 [00:26:51] Yeah, that's that's huge. And so again, hopefully that kind of gives
you some some ideas or some words or language that you didn't have before about work,
about rest, about retirement. You can see this in a bigger way, in a different way. And
yeah, we just hope that encourages you today. And so, yeah, let's transition here into our
missional moment. You've already kind of teed it up a little bit with saying that we're going
to talk with our good friend Chuck, but that's what it is about. I can't wait for you to hear
from Chuck just about his story and kind of his journey into this. A very I like what you said.
It was a very traditional road to retirement for him. And so it had been easy for him to just
kind of mail it in the next few years. But he said, no, I still have more to give and just really
stepped into that. And I think this is a beautiful story that will really encourage you. So let's
step into our missional moment.
Speaker 1 [00:27:46] For this week's missional moment. We talked to my. Long time friend
Chuck Rap. Chuck has known me since I was actually a little kid. I was a mentor of sorts
as I grew up and got into my early married years and my early ministry and career years,
and Chuck has just recently retired from his job. And in that process we had captured
some of his thoughts on retirement for the Stone Table Resource page on on what it
means to retire and to do it in a way that glorifies God. And so we wanted to ask him,
Chuck, why was this a passion for you? Why did you want to retire differently than what we
see in our normal Western context?
Speaker 3 [00:28:29] My parents, they took early retirement. They were in their early
sixties and they went overseas and taught school two years in Papua New Guinea and
then two years in in the Philippines. And so I had that example in my own home, and then
one of my heroes like you, my grandfather was a pastor and I remember my maternal
grandfather. He he preached until five days before he passed away. So, yes, so that's
what I saw modeled in my home. And then, you know, just theologically, you know, the the
the apostles and the heroes of the faith, they didn't go off to the sea and or they didn't they
had invented golf yet. So so they obviously couldn't golf. But you just don't see that
concept in Scripture.
Speaker 1 [00:29:18] In many ways. Chuck had your typical corporate career working for
companies of various sizes, you know, large corporations doing project management and
I.T. work. And finally, the day came that it was time for him to retire.
Speaker 3 [00:29:34] Yeah, in February of I think it was 2018, had a conversation with our,
our, our financial advisor. And he he informed me that you're now working because you
choose to, not because you need to. And so shortly after that, and, you know, prayer and
conversation with Pam walked into my boss and said, you know, David, you know, it's time
for me to go or something to that effect. I think that I think, yeah, my words were work is
getting in the way of all the things that I want to do. And so we we made succession plans,
executed that plan. And so my final day was in July of 2018.
Speaker 1 [00:30:15] You know, this week we unpacked how this Western idea of
retirement is not really in the Bible. And Chuck knew he wanted to put some things in his
path that would keep him from falling victim to this idea that you just run to a finish line and
then you quit. And a lot of it went back to some encouragement a coworker had given him
many years earlier.
Speaker 3 [00:30:37] Some of the best advice I ever received was was back all the way in
2000 and was talking with the senior director at Lilly. And he was he was cashing in his
chips, so much so to speak. And he said, you don't just retire from something, but to
something. And that stuck with me for a couple of decades until it was my time.
Speaker 1 [00:30:56] So as Chuck was wrapping up his corporate career, he connected
with an incredible missions organization, 100 plus year old missions organization right
here based right here in Indianapolis called One Mission Society. Chuck had always
carried a passion for global missions, and he wanted to take all of his years of corporate
skill and throw it into something that would continue to add value for the kingdom for years
Speaker 3 [00:31:21] And so my initial role was probably about one quarter full time
equivalent, you know, that type of ten, ten, 15 hours a week. And it was what what we call
a church multiplication facilitator, which is a mouthful. But basically, I walk alongside one of
our leaders in Africa, a man who oversees our work in in five countries. He oversees 93
training centers where over a thousand men and women are being trained to church, to
plant churches. So that was my initial role.
Speaker 1 [00:31:58] Over the course of this podcast, we've been talking about how there
there really are no sacred skill sets and secular skill sets that that redeemed by the gospel.
All of our gifts can pay dividends into the kingdom. And so Chuck began to wrestle with all
that he had learned in his corporate career over 40 plus years and and thought, how in the
world can those skills translate now into my new calling at One Mission Society?
Speaker 3 [00:32:25] One of the skills that I developed in my probably goes all the way
back to my my sales career is just networking and and, you know, working with friends of
friends and that type of thing. And so this story is pretty fresh. My daughter is is working on
a master's degree in international leadership and. So it was about a year, year and a
quarter ago. She said she was in her first class and she said there are some really cool,
some impressive leaders from Africa in this class. And she was telling me about one man.
His name is Ray. And I said, well, can you introduce me to him? Fast forward to earlier this
month and we have an a an initiative that I'm working on and have asked a Cameroonian
man to lead for us will be based in Cote d'Ivoire or Ivory Coast. And we intend to work with
the coalition of denominations in Ivory Coast and in missions agencies in the Ivory Coast,
indigenous mission agencies, because there are Africans sending agencies that exist. So
our leader that I've asked for to help with this, his name is Augustine. He already has those
contacts. And I'm just providing some some opportunity and some open doors and some
funding so to to further those relationships. But what we want to do is we want to mobilize,
equip and help send Africans for near culture and cross culture experience or ministry. So
back to my friend Ray. He's doing something similar with One Way Africa based in Ghana.
And so I spent four days with him earlier this month, just learning, benchmarking and and
those types of things. And Augustine and I had the privilege of tag teaming not not
virtually, but face to face with his current cohort of young leaders. And so it's just exciting
the the connections that that are made. The you have the networking in God's kingdom.
It's it's just amazing how God connects the dots.
Speaker 1 [00:34:51] So we asked Chuck what he would say to encourage people in this
arena of retirement and biblical retirement. How do we keep the great commandment in
front of us as the people of God? How do we move from our traditional careers into a
biblical retirement in a way that honors God and loves our neighbor?
Speaker 3 [00:35:11] If I can close with a scripture that it popped into my mind and it was
on on repeat. Shortly after that conversation in Ethiopia, when I was asked to take on
these responsibilities, the Lord brought to my mind Romans 15 one and two in the
message version. And he said, Strength is for service, not status. Each of us needs to look
after the good of the people around us asking ourselves, How can I help? And I would say
that, you know, there's still a lot of strength that folks in their sixties and beyond have. But
we don't we don't consume that upon ourselves. It's not for our status, but it's it's for
service. And so that's what God's calling me to in this season of life.
Speaker 1 [00:35:56] Strength is for service, not status. Thank you, Chuck, for reminding
us what it means to live a life that runs to the finish line. If you're interested in hearing more
about one mission society, you can go to one mission society dot org and learn more
about the incredible work they are doing to take the gospel across the world. So thank you
so much to my friend Chuck for the impact he's made personally on my life and the impact
that I know he is continuing to make in this new season of biblical retirement.
Speaker 2 [00:36:30] Oh, Chuck, we got to love Chuck.
Speaker 1 [00:36:33] Got to.
Speaker 2 [00:36:34] Yes, absolutely. And like I said already, I hope that that encourages
you a little bit maybe gives you some ideas about what that might even look like in your life
in some way, shape or form. Yeah, but that is it. For this episode. We've officially wrapped
up number eight. We're rocking and rolling.
Speaker 1 [00:36:52] Right? We're landing the plane on the Great Commandment. And
next week, we we jump into really what what drives us here. You know, we say
accelerating the great commission through the marketplace. We've talked about the great
story. We talked about the great commandment. And next week, we're going to get into the
Great Commission. And our last four episodes are really going to focus on work and the
Great Commission. So we're going to be talking about business as mission. We're going to
be talking about the role of the marketplace and seeing the name of Jesus declared to the
ends of the Earth. And so I can't wait for some of those discussions.
Speaker 2 [00:37:25] Oh, for sure. And you'll begin to see, like you said, you know, some
of the work of the stone table and how that plays in and hopefully give some even stories
in our missional moments of people that are out there doing some amazing things. So
can't wait to dove into that. Absolutely. And so, hey, if you've listened, if you're either
watching on YouTube or you got Spotify or Apple Podcasts or whatever, would you take a
second just to like rate review.
Speaker 1 [00:37:48] To.
Speaker 2 [00:37:49] Follow all that kind of stuff? That is a huge help that helps spread.
The news of this podcast establishes us as a new podcast and we'd be greatly
appreciated. We'd love for you to even leave that five star.
Speaker 1 [00:38:03] That's right. I mean, yeah, if you're going to review.
Speaker 2 [00:38:06] This for five stars, you might as well be.
Speaker 1 [00:38:08] Five. Yeah, right. Exactly. So all of this.
Speaker 2 [00:38:10] Yeah, all of them. As many as you can give. So if you could do that
for us, that would be awesome. Also, Eric's book, Missional Marketplace. You can get your
copy at Amazon anywhere that books are sold as well as Eric Cooper dot me Eric Link.
Speaker 1 [00:38:28] And we're good Scandinavians here got it. We're good
Speaker 2 [00:38:31] Got to be so Eric with AK Eric Cooper dot me you can pick up your
Speaker 1 [00:38:35] Yeah and you can the stone table dot or we've got a whole resource
page there that's got free articles and videos and you know links to other things. And then,
you know, of course we've got Instagram and Facebook and we're on LinkedIn as well and
we'd love for you to connect with us there. But, you know, we just hope this is an
encouragement to you in some way, shape or form. And so thanks for spending some time
with us. Pass it along to some friends. And, you know, we'll we'll just we'll continue to have
this conversation here about the of marketplace and accelerating the great commission
through the marketplace therein.
Speaker 2 [00:39:09] Absolutely. Absolutely. So thanks for checking out this week's
Missional Marketplace podcast. We'll see you next time.