“May God Bless My Screwdriver”

By Fletcher Lowe, reprinted from Living God’s Mission. Blessing the farms and the fields, blessing the boats and the bait….  So in more rural times, congregations gathered as a way of asking God’s blessings. What were our rural friends asking God’s blessings on, but the means of production: farms, fields, boats, bait, for a good harvest and a good catch.…

Christian Responses to a Post-COVID Workplace

Reprinted from Workship. Recently I was asked to speak to a theological college about some of the changes happening in the wider world of work and how they might impact on Christian organisations, including churches, as well as the experience of workplace Christians in our congregations. The changes have been and continue to be massive. Employees don’t want to go…

The Work of Our Hands

By David Gill, reprinted from The 313. Right now, after a year of pandemic-enforced distance-learning and distance-working for many of us, to speak of “hands-on” work seems more like a dream than a reality. It seems like most of the time our hands are on our keyboards while we sit in isolation. But how can we not recognize and stand up in…

Competition: It’s about Me vs. It’s about You

By Jim Grubs, reprinted from Minding the Gap.  The story is told about the little boy who was sitting on his grandpa’s lap when he asked, “Grandpa, when did we begin competing?” (This kid was very advanced.) Grandpa replies: “It all began at the very beginning of creation when the first people were playing in the field. They were having a…

Seminary Spotlight: Grand Rapids Theological Seminary

By Darrell Yoder, reprinted from the Oikonomia Network. Note: Appropriately for the new pandemic reality, this update comes to you via video. A transcript, with links to the resources discussed in the video, is provided below. Hey, my name is Darrel Yoder. Greetings from Grand Rapids Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I serve on the faculty here and provide…

[Not] Changing the World

By Laura Cerbus, reprinted from the Salt & Light Australia Daily Devotional.  It’s not a classroom I’m used to. I’m seated at a long table, chairs gathered around. No orderly desks lined up facing a whiteboard. Instead, we’re set up in the middle of a community space. Toys litter the room, a kitchen opens onto our space, glass walls reveal the gymnasium…

Work from the Beginning: Genesis 4

By David Williamson, part five of a series. The revised script, the new drama of life post-Genesis 3, starts to be played out. Chapter 4 of Genesis begins with a comforting and hopeful statement: In spite of sin and God’s judgement, God’s grace enables Eve to bear a child. Indeed, all work, all labor, all production should be with the understanding…

Beat the Devil Out of Your Brush

By John Terrill, reprinted from Made to Flourish. I recently watched with interest CBS Sunday Morning’s featured segment on Bob Ross, the unlikely, yet iconic television personality who, through his 12-year PBS show, The Joy of Painting, inspired Americans from 1983 to 1994. Ross – a denim-clad folk hero with a permed afro bigger than life – was a soft-spoken teacher…

Why Your Church Is Called to Help the Materially Poor

Reprinted from the Chalmers Center. Adapted from When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty without Hurting the Poor…and Yourself, 37-44 Is your church called to help the materially poor in your community and around the world? Most Christians would answer “yes,” but not nearly as many would also root that call in the very mission of the church, seeing it rather…

Learning from Lean, Part 4

By Andrew Parris and Don Pope, reprinted from Christian Business Review. Citations have been omitted. Part four of a series. Christian Parallels to Lean Wisdom Given the Japanese manufacturing context of the development of Lean, a Christian leader may be reluctant to adopt Lean personally or in a Christian ministry, out of fear that Lean is only for manufacturing or is culturally or…