I wrote the following post a few years ago but have lately been revisiting the themes of work, vocation, and calling as they relate to ministering to men. Since I’ve established my “ministry purpose” (at least, one of them) as helping men become all God has created, redeemed, and called them to be, it’s been much on my mind.
I thought I would share this again because it has some great links to websites and ministries that are doing important work in this area of ministering to men. (I've updated the list since the first time I shared it.)
Grace and Truth,
One of the men in our men’s ministry began his talk several years ago by introducing himself as an ordained lawyer. That was the point he and I were trying to drive home to our men that morning… to think of themselves as ordained ________ (fill in the blank with whatever it is that they do.). In other words, your work IS your ministry.
To think of your job as your ministry is foreign to many of us. Many of us grew up thinking that only pastors and missionaries "did ministry." Thankfully, there has been a surge of books and studies that have tried to steer folk away from that sort of thinking.
What we want to get people thinking about is “vocation” or calling. This is a horrible paraphrase, but Martin Luther once said something like, “A cobbler who makes shoes to the glory of God during the week is every bit the minister as a pastor who preaches a sermon on Sunday morning.” The Bible does not draw a distinction between the sacred and the secular. All work should be for the glory of God (1 Cor. 10:31). Paul wrote in Colossians 3:23-24,
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men,  since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
While God may give you the opportunity to communicate the gospel, hold a Bible study, or wear a John 3:16 button in your workplace, it’s more likely that your faith will be exercised by simply doing your job well. Beyond that, it may include representing Christ faithfully to hurting, lost, angry, bitter, fearful, restless, or despairing people. How can Christ use you to minister to those sorts of people in your workplace? What might that look like?
In order to help you with those questions, here are a few links to enable you to discover what your faith at work might look like in your spheres of influence…
The High Calling
Center for Faith and Work
The Institute for Faith, Work & Economics
Christian Business Men Connection
Called Into Work
On Call in Culture
Called to Business.com
Christian Faith at Work
Fellowship of Companies for Christ International
How to Build a Ministry through Your Work by Pat Morley at Man in the Mirror
Work and the Man in the Mirror (audio and video messages) by Pat Morley
A Biblical View of Work by Ken Boa
The Theology of Work (print and mp3 audio available) by Robert Rayburn
Working out a Theology of Work and here by Justin Taylor (also see the related resources at the bottom of the article)
Theology of Work (website)
Business for the Glory of God (book) by Wayne Grudem
God at Work (book) by Gene Edward Veith
Blog posts on vocation by Gene Edward Veith
Grace and Truth,