Resources to help grow a worker-friendly church
Where do the people in your church engage with the world each day? Where has God placed them to be salt and light? Many go to work, where there’s lots of oppo...
Our work, after all, either contributes to making the world a better place or worse one. And God works, too. In Eden, his work creates order, brings beauty, provides what is needed, and releases potential. Through our various tasks and jobs, we can do the same.
There’s another aspect to work that is easily overlooked: work is a primary place where people are both discipled and work out their discipleship. As Lesslie Newbigin put it, ‘The primary action of the church in the world is the action of its members in their daily work.’
For all these reasons and more, many church leaders want to be intentional about creating a community where working Christians find encouragement and discipleship, and where exploring work becomes a regular feature of church life.
Here are six ideas to start you off:
An innovative workplace discipleship journey, run in an engaging yet easy-to-use multimedia format, Transforming Work combines teaching, skills development, prayer, Bible study and group conversation all with working Christians in mind. Its rhythm means that it’s easy to integrate into church life and programmes.
This eight-session small group course will help you see your everyday life through God’s eyes – spotting where he’s at work in your job, home, and beyond, and exploring how you can make a difference with him there. Also comes with sermon guides so you can unpack the themes on Sunday mornings. Perfect as a follow-on to Frontline Sundays, five services that will help your congregation identify the places and roles God has put them in for his purposes.
Many churches publicly commission people into church ministry – but what if we did the same thing for people’s jobs out in the world? Run a commissioning service to encourage your people that wherever God’s called them to work, they have a ministry with and for him.
Celebrate God’s gift of work and help everyone to see the whole week as worship too. Do it as a one-off, or better yet, use it as inspiration to incorporate work-focused elements into every service.
They’re the best way to find out about people’s work and workplaces! Getting to know in detail what people in your church do Monday to Friday will help you support and disciple them for their jobs. And it’ll reassure them that their work really matters to you – and God.
Over coffee or with people in their workplaces, here are three questions to kick off with:
Need someone to deliver a talk or sermon on work? We’ve got experts for that. Whether you want a quick introduction to why work matters to God, or a deeper exploration of how Christians can make a difference through the kingdom through their jobs, get in touch!
‘The gospel reminds us that God cares about the products we make, the companies we work for and the customers we serve. He not only loves us, but also loves the world and wants us to serve it well.’
– Katherine Leary Alsdorf