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Most recent articles

Dreading Monday (Comment Magazine)

Posted by on Apr 4, 2019 in business, Culture, Economy, Theology, Work, World | 0 comments

The spiritual crisis underneath our jobs. Reviewing:  Working The New Press, 2004. 640pp.  Bullshit Jobs: A Theory Simon & Schuster, 2018. 368pp. The Job: Work and Its Future in a Time of Radical Change Currency, 2018. 416pp. “I had no concept of the horrible dread I would feel getting up in the morning to spend all day sitting in an office trying to waste time.” Rachel grew up in a poor family yet graduated from a prestigious British university with a physics degree. Yet soon after graduation, student debt forced her to take a job as a “catastrophe risk analyst” at a big insurance company. Rachel recalls the day she hit an...

Why We Should Redeem Retirement (ERLC)

Posted by on Apr 3, 2019 in Culture, Work | 0 comments

“What am I going to do with my retirement?”  The anxious question came from Anne Bell, a recently retired researcher at the University of Northern Colorado. As a staff volunteer for the 5280 Fellowship, a young leaders program in Denver, Anne decided to give her first year of retirement to young professionals struggling with questions about calling. Bright and soft-spoken, wearing dark-rimmed glasses and carrying her teacher’s bag, today Anne came to the office with her own questions about calling.  As our staff team discussed our weekly reading, Anne looked out on the snow-capped mountains from our seventh-story office. “What do you think, Anne?” I asked. She paused. Her...


Posted by on Mar 24, 2019 in Culture, Theology | 1 comment

These three paragraphs, penned in 1991 by Lesslie Newbigin, changed my life as soon as I read them. Part of a larger treatment of “the gospel as public truth,” I repeat them here so I don’t forget the central why behind my seemingly endless (and multiplying) labors at Denver Institute. And I post them for you, my fellow “undercover agents,” so that we might both know that we are not alone. First, while the Church as a corporate society cannot identify itself with particular political programs, it must be the responsibility of the Church to equip its members for active and informed participation in public life in such a...

Don’t Waste Your Retirement (The Gospel Coalition)

Posted by on Mar 15, 2019 in vocation, Work | 0 comments

John Beeble recently retired from his job as construction executive in Denver, Colorado. Not wanting to fully retreat from working life, John started his own consulting company. “There’s only one rule about my consulting company—no employees. I did that for 20 years,” he said, with a note of weariness in his voice. Yet he violated his rule less than a year into starting his firm. As clients multiplied, he needed an executive assistant to manage the demands on his time. “I’m trying to discern what’s next in this phase of life,” said Beeble, feeling the tug between rest, family, and work. “I want to stay engaged, but not in...

Saving Retirement (Christianity Today, March 2019)

Posted by on Mar 4, 2019 in Economy, Work | 2 comments

Growing old is not what it used to be. For millions of retirees, that may actually be good news. Pat Poole felt a mix of relief and uncertainty once he decided to retire from his sales management job at Halliburton at the end of March. An Oklahoma Sooners football fan and an avid golfer, Poole looked forward to more leisure time after leaving the Houston-based global oil service company. But he also had questions. One morning, he put down the TV remote and asked his wife with complete sincerity, “What am I going to do?”   The world is undergoing a massive demographic shift. More than 70 million Baby...

The Thinker

Posted by on Mar 4, 2019 in Craftsmanship & Manual Labor, Faith and Work Movement, Work | 2 comments

Back of the beating hammer    By which the steel is wrought, Back of the workshop’s clamor    The seeking may find the thought; The thought that is ever master    Of iron and steam and steel, That rises above the disaster    And tramples it under heel! The drudge may fret and tinker,    Or labor with lusty blows, But back of him stands the thinker,    The clear-eyed man who knows; For into each plow or sabre,    Each piece and part and whole, Must go the brains of labor    Which gives the work a soul! Back of the motor’s humming,    Back of the belts...