- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Crossway (Oct. 5 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1433526670
- ISBN-13: 978-1433526671
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 0.6 x 21 cm
- Shipping Weight: 9.1 g
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #203,399 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Work Matters: Connecting Sunday Worship to Monday Work Paperback – Oct 5 2011
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“God has created us for relationship and work for his honor―to bring hope and justice to the nations and our neighbors, and joy and purpose to our own hearts. In Work Matters, Tom Nelson examines how God uses our work, even the ordinary and routine, to transform us and to reveal our gifts and calling. I have known Tom for several years, and his life and work exemplify these profound and practical truths. His book will inspire and encourage you to reexamine not only your understanding of work but yourself as well.”
―Ravi Zacharias, Founder and President, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries; author, Jesus Among Other Gods
“Tom Nelson does a marvelous job of walking his readers through a robust theology of work, and he does so in a very provocative way. We are all Jesus’s apprentices and our work lives are filled with opportunities for spiritual growth and discipleship. Work Matters will compel you to approach work differently.”
―Moe Girkins, author, Mother Leads Best
“Tom Nelson and I have been walking down the same pathway as we have been learning together more and more about how God views work. Tom’s conclusions, insights, and examples will help many people get a better grip on serving God and finding purpose in the work place. This book is thoughtful, practical, entertaining, and true to Scripture. The lights are going to suddenly come on in many readers’ minds, and that’s not just great fun but a good thing as well.”
―John Yates, Rector, The Falls Church, Falls Church, Virginia
“By definition, every Christian is in full-time ministry. Yet, unfortunately, many of us see a great divide between the secular and spiritual, ministry and work. In Work Matters, Tom Nelson helps to bridge the artificial and unbiblical gap that keeps us from fully realizing our calling and full potential in Christ. Read it. It will change the way you think about Monday to Friday.”
―Larry Osborne, Pastor, North Coast Church, Vista, California; author, Sticky Church
“More than just a book, Work Matters is a kaleidoscopic testimony to the power of calling in the lives of a vibrant local church, inspired to engage their community and city. If every pastor taught like this and every church lived like this, America would be a very different country.”
―Os Guinness, Cofounder, The Trinity Forum; author, The Call
“Not many pastors are adept at encouraging the Christians they serve to think deeply about the work they undertake during the six days when they are not gathering for corporate worship. So many of our applications and exhortations, as important and as faithful as they are, deal with prayer, Bible reading, family relationships, and evangelism, and not with the work that takes up much of our time and that we are called to offer up to God. I first heard Tom Nelson bring some clarity to these matters in some addresses at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, and I am delighted to see his reflections expanded and put into print. This book is greatly needed.”
―D. A. Carson, Research Professor of New Testament, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School; Cofounder, The Gospel Coalition
“Each week people gather to experience a time of worship. The idea that this moment on Sunday can actually be a time for both celebrating the Savior and for strategically shaping what happens when we leave those four walls is rarely considered. Work Matters takes a look into the Christian’s life, offering strategic insight into the work place as a key part of God’s Kingdom agenda and explaining how Sunday’s worship experience can spill over into Monday through Saturday. A great work indeed.”
―Stan Archie, Vice President, Missouri State Board of Education; Senior Pastor, Christian Fellowship Church, Kansas City, Missouri
“This is a very important book written by a pastor who I respect immensely. Work Matters will change how you view your vocation and in the process it may just change your life.”
―Adam Hamilton, Senior Pastor, The United Methodist Church of the Resurrection, Leawood, Kansas; author, The Journey: Walking the Road to Bethlehem
“Tom Nelson offers the world a profoundly rich vision of vocation as integral to the mission of God in history―by a pastor who has spent the years of his life helping his people understand what they do and why they do what they do in light of the truest truths of the universe. Theologically serious and pastorally aware, no one has tried to do what he has done, and has done so well. For pastors and for their people, indeed for everyone who wants to connect the vocation of the ministry with vocations in the marketplace; it will change the conversation about calling because it will change the way we understand worship and work.”
―Stever Garber, Director, The Washington Institute for Faith, Vocation, and Culture; author, The Fabric of Faithfulness
“In a most readable and engaging style, Tom Nelson gives us a complete, biblical understanding of work―starting with ‘in the beginning,’ when God created us to work. Coming from his engagement with workers of all sorts in his own congregation, Nelson has seen the truth of the gospel transform their lives and work in a powerful way. This book delivers no small message: the gospel changes everything! It transforms people at the core of our being, our motivations for work, how we behave, and the influence of our work in God’s creation. Thank you, Tom.”
―Katherine Leary Alsdorf, Founder and Director, The Center for Faith and Work, Redeemer Presbyterian Church
About the Author
Tom Nelson (DMin, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School) has served as senior pastor of Christ Community Church in Leawood, Kansas, for more than twenty years. He is the author of Five Smooth Stones and Ekklesia as well as a member of The Gospel Coalition.
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Nelson endeavours to explore work both theologically and practically. He wants the reader to perceive the profound honour of work due to its theological foundation as well as help the reader transform how he actually works.
Nelson explicates a theology of vocation by considering work in light of the meta-narrative of the Bible; creation, fall, redemption, and restoration.
Simply put, 'To be an image-bearer is to be a worker' (22). Nelson maintains that God is a worker, and one of the most important ways we reflect His glory is through our work. We were created for this. However, as a result of sin, work has become difficult, disillusioning, and distorted. 'We must recognize that at this point in redemptive history, our work will not be all we want it to be' (47). The futility of work is not the end of this story the author reminds us. Though sin has marred and maimed work, Christ's work of redemption encompasses what we have called 'the daily grind'. Nelson informs us of the positive and negative aspects of the gospel's effects on work. We are encouraged that 'as new creations in Christ ... we are again able to do the work we were created for' (58) and yet we are warned that without Christ 'your work will never be all that God intended it to be' (61). Finally, the author touches upon a few ideas concerning the afterlife. Our work here on earth will be rewarded. And, writes Nelson, 'if our daily work ... in some way carries over to the new heavens and the new earth, then our present work itself is overflowing with immeasurable value and eternal significance' (73).
I found this section of the book very encouraging as I considered my job and the daily work-a-day life that many of us live. These deep theological truths infuse our work with value, significance, and purpose far beyond the accumulation of money. These are the types of teachings which will indeed help us connect worship and work.
Though Nelson never leaves his theological and doctrinal moorings, he moves on to practical implications of the theology he has just demonstrated. Nelson covers topics such as the witness of our work, our sanctification through work, and common grace and our work. He also examines individual work issues such as contentment, calling, giftedness, and growth.
This was a helpful book written convincingly. It offers a solid theological basis for holding work in high regard and helps us see the inseparable connection between our lives as worshippers and our lives as workers. The truths in this book are fodder for continual application of truth from God to our lives as they are lived daily. For and educational and engaging look into vocation and its theology, I recommend this book.
I received this book from Crossway for review.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Tom opens Work Matters with a strong theology of work, taking the reader to the opening verse of the Bible, where we are "introduced to God as a thoughtful and creative worker." (Pg 20) He then lay out in a practical, easy-to-understand framework, that since we are made in God's image, "we have been designed to work, to be fellow workers with God." (Pg 22) I appreciate how he addresses the Hebrew word, avoda, which translates as work, as well as worship. Based on the Biblical teaching, he states, "That our work has been designed by God to be an act of worship, yet is often missed in the frenzied pace of a compartmentalized modern life." (Pg 27)
I highly recommend Work Matters for all seeking to find more meaning and purpose in their every-day work world. I'm adding this book to my Dantotsu, Best-of-the-best, collection.