Every Friday we connect you with some of our recent favourite links. This week:
Posts and resources from the marketplace ministries movement.
Economic Freedom is Not Enough for Human Flourishing – Institute for Faith, Work and Economics
Economic freedom may be our world’s more powerful poverty relief system, but it’s not enough for human flourishing. It is the reason why economists report 80 percent of the world’s abject poverty has been eradicated since 1970, thanks to open trade, entrepreneurship, and free enterprise. In China alone, small market reforms since 1978 have raised 600 million people out of extreme poverty. Christians are called to care for the poor (the Bible mentions the words poor and poverty 446 times!) and economists have shown us that economic freedom is a powerful way to make that happen.
The Bible’s High Tech Business Woman – Business4Blessing
Few people realize that we have our own High Tech businesswoman in the Bible. She became a Christian under Paul’s preaching, leading her staff to the Lord. Her name? Lydia from Thyatira. We don’t know if Lydia was married, or a widow, but a husband is not mentioned and she is clearly an independent, wealthy businesswoman. Her business is most interesting. She is called a “seller of purple.” In those days, dying fabric to a specific color was not easy like it is today with our chemical dyes.
How Intentional Are You about Integrating Your Faith with Your Work? – Institute for Faith, Work and Economics
“The problem with Western Christians is not that they aren’t where they should be, but that they aren’t what they should be where they are” writes Os Guinness in his classic book, The Call. This astute observation even describes many of us trying to live out our faith in all the work we do, especially in our vocations. Yet, often in the “real world” of work we don’t seem like we are making much progress.
Is the Gap Between Pulpit & Pew Narrowing? Read the Latest Research – Center for Faith & Work
New research conducted by the Barna Group for the Center for Faith and Work at LeTourneau University shows a substantial uptick in the number of pastors who say they preach on the topic of work. However, most church-goers still doubt the significance of their work to God. The research revealed that 70 percent of Christians do not see how their work serves God’s purposes, and 78 percent see their work as less important than the work of a pastor or priest.
Books You Should Read – A Great Bibliography – (re)integrate
Wide reading helps us realize that all of life is being redeemed in Christ, that we can witness to His grace and point towards His Kingdom most fruitfully as we live out a uniquely Christian perspective in our callings and careers. An integrated Christian way of working and living requires a framework, a foundation, a coherent narrative, which some call an intentionally Christian worldview. Reading faithfully is one tool for developing a Christian worldview, way of life, and normative way of working. In order to grow in such faithfulness, we must see ourselves as life-long learners.
Image via Business4Blessing