Vocational Stewardship

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Steward YOUR Vocation

Latest News

Read the latest interview of Kingdom Calling here

Check out recent research showing that more pastors are preaching on work. here

IVP says: Kingdom Calling to be produced as an audio book
Release date to be announced later this year

Check out Today's Christian Woman interview with Amy Sherman
Read interview here

Kingdom Calling awarded Book of the Year
Kingdom Calling was chosen as Christianity Today's Book of the Year in the category of Christian Living.

Connecting Our Work to God's Mission
Sherman’s sermon on work & God’s Mission featured on preachingtoday.com

Sherman highlighted in Christianity Today
Amy Sherman was chosen by Christianity Today as one of the 50 most influential Christian women shaping the church and culture

Rejoicing the City

Upcoming Events

May 13-14, 2015
SURGE School
Phoenix, AZ

April 22-24, 2015
National Vocation Infusion Learning Community Retreat
Kansas City, MO

March 16, 2015
“Talking Points” @ Grand Rapids Theological Seminary
Grand Rapids, MI

Feb 3, 2015
Wheaton College Faculty Development Day
Wheaton, IL

May 7-8, 2014
SURGE School
Phoenix, AZ

June 18-20, 2014
Acton U
Grand Rapids, MI

August 2, 2014
City Gates National Conference
Columbus, OH

See All Events

Temptations of Pathway 4

Temptations of Pathway 4

The principal temptation to be fought on this pathway is the failure to undertake the work in a “ministry with” paradigm, as opposed to a “ministry to” paradigm. For example, if the church has targeted an economically distressed community, it must guard against its talented, fast-paced, powerful members running roughshod over community residents in so-called “helping” initiatives. As Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert explain so well in their recent book, sometimes such “helping” actually hurts. The biblical approach to effective community outreach is one based on shared power, mutual respect, and equal dignity.

As in Pathway 2, believers with significant vocational power to draw upon must do so without an over-inflated sense of their own importance, and with a genuine regard for the different skills sets those they are serving bring to the table. A great practical way to cultivate this is for church leaders to ensure the involvement of the community residents. Leaders of a targeted neighborhood initiative must engage the residents of that neighborhood, learning what their desires and dreams for the community are. Community residents must be involved in the design, implementation, and evaluation of the initiative. Church leaders mobilize parishioners to come alongside the local residents to assist them in advancing their dreams by drawing on their own particular vocational assets, knowledge, and networks. Similarly, when the focus is on an issue rather than a place, Christians stewarding their vocational power should partner well with the people most affected by that issue, and seek their input into diagnosis, prescription, implementation, and evaluation.

Finally, church leaders on Pathway 4 can also help congregants to avoid the temptations of paternalism or superiority by taking care to point out the mutually beneficial character of ministry. They should intentionally remind their flocks that the people being served are those serving are as different from one another as they might initially believe. They should emphasize that both sides will learn much from another and that God’s desire is to see both transformed.

 Return to Pathway Four. 

Vocational Stewardship In Action

  • Cliff Nellis: Combining Law and Urban Youth Ministry

    Cliff Nellis: Comb...

    Cliff Nellis: Combining Law and Urban Youth Ministry by Amy Sherman and Kelly Givens Cliff Nellis, a graduate of the University of Chicago’s School of Law, became a Christian near the end of his clerkship for a federal judge in Colorado. He took some time off to bike cross-country, studying the bible with all the delight of the brand-new believer. During the trip, Nellis reports, “I started feeling called to ministry. I started thinking about whether I’d stay in the law or not.” Looking back, he sees that as a young believer, he “had this very narrow view: ministry is …

  • Anne Hughes and Jenny Oliver: Realtors Going the Extra Mile

    Anne Hughes and Je...

    Anne Hughes and Jenny Oliver: Realtors Going the Extra Mile By Kelly N. Givens December 7, 2011 As anyone who has tried to buy or sell a house in the past half a decade knows, the housing market is currently in a state of crisis. In the aftermath of the burst housing bubble, we’ve seen investment banks going broke, the government bailing out companies, and the U.S. economy in recession. Foreclosures have steadily risen since 2006, draining wealth from consumers and eroding the financial strength of banking institutions. Home prices have tumbled, and it’s unclear if they’ve hit their lowest …

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NEW! Great short video on Work as Worship
A new perspective on work.

Discussion Questions for Use by Vocational Guilds
Does your church gather members into small groups by profession (e.g., law, medicine, business, art)? If so, invite them to try out these discussion starters.

Ten Ways to Encourage Vocational Stewardship in Your Church
Here are some doable action steps you can take right now.

Small Group Discussion Guide on Vocation
Use these questions to enliven your small group’s ability to support members in living missionally through their daily work.

Annotated Bibliography
Short summaries of helpful books on vocation, for pastors and individual believers. Check back frequently as this list will be updated regularly.