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Posted by on Jun 22, 2017 in business, Economy, Theology, Work | 1 comment

The Quiet Unraveling of Work in America

The Quiet Unraveling of Work in America

  On July 16-19, I will be presenting a brief paper at the Christian Economic Forum in San Francisco entitled, “The Quiet Unraveling of Work in America: Three Economic Challenges and What Christian Leaders Can Do.” The CEF Leadership collated the conference papers into a book, and kindly provided a PDF of my paper for distribution. The content of the paper is below, and the PDF can be accessed by clicking the link above. The Quiet Unraveling of Work in America Three Economic Challenges and What Christian Leaders Can Do On August 1, 2007, the I35W bridge over the Mississippi River in Minneapolis looked like any other bridge in America. Commuters stuck in rush hour were waiting impatiently, talking on their phones, and assuming they would get safely to their destinations. Yet at 6:05 p.m., a strange noise was heard underneath the bridge. Suddenly it collapsed, sending 111 vehicles and 18 construction workers plummeting 115 feet into the river. In total, 13 people were killed and 145 injured in an unexpected tragedy....

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Posted by on Jun 4, 2017 in Faith and Work Movement, Theology, Work | 0 comments

Collective Impact: The Missing Piece of the Faith-Work Puzzle

Collective Impact: The Missing Piece of the Faith-Work Puzzle

  What will the faith and work movement look like in 2067? What are we doing today that could genuinely last for 50 years, and even reshape American culture? These are tough questions. Not only because 50 years is such a long time, but it forces us to think not only of our own organizations, but the larger networks across the US involved in this space, and the institutions that can outlast individual personalities. It also forces us to think: what, specifically, are the long-term goals shared among overlapping networks of churches, businesses, universities and nonprofits involved in spreading a Christian message about the far reaching effects of Jesus’ death and resurrection for our work, culture, economy, and world? After pondering this question, I’ve come to believe something rather disconcerting. The single biggest problem with the faith and work movement today is fragmentation and the absence of shared goals. In April of this year, Jeffrey Walker penned a provocative article for the Stanford Social Innovation Review, “Solving the World’s...

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Posted by on May 23, 2017 in business, Economy, Work | 0 comments

Am I an Imposter? The Weary Souls of Entreprenuers

Am I an Imposter? The Weary Souls of Entreprenuers

  Banks Benitez said it perfectly. When I was interviewing Banks about his work as the VP of Global Expansion at the Unreasonable Institute, a start-up school for social entrepreneurs, one of his founders shared about what it feels like to be an entrepreneur: “It’s like I just joined the very front of the parade and people are cheering me on.” He continued, “Today it seems like entrepreneurship is almost this embodiment of the American dream. You have this small idea and then you figure it out along the way and you grow and become really wealthy and successful – and you’ll also solve a global problem. Everybody wants you to become like Tesla, and the world is cheering you on…” But on the inside, being an entrepreneur is fraught with emotional pain and difficulty. One of his founders said in a post-experience survey, “I don’t deserve to have this platform. People don’t really know who I am, and once they really find out who I am they’re going to be...

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Posted by on Apr 25, 2017 in Theology, Work | 0 comments

Work Makes the World

Work Makes the World

  Note: The following is a speech I gave at the January 13, 2017 fundraiser “Work Makes the World.” To make a donation to Denver Institute, go to our give page. Thank you for coming tonight. Thanks for Jim Howey and Steve Hill hosting us at Blender Products, and thank you to Cañon Catering for the delightful meal. And thank you to our table sponsors. And in case I don’t get another chance: a huge thank you to Joanna Meyer, our Program Director at DIFW, for organizing this tonight. Incredible work. I’m often asked by friends and donors why I started Denver Institute for Faith & Work (DIFW) in 2013. Seems like a strange thing to do in the evenings while working a full-time job that barely paid the bills! I’d like to share with you tonight three reasons why I started DIFW back in 2013. I want to camp on the question of why because What we do is easier to explain: we’re a Denver nonprofit that provides theological education on issues...

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Posted by on Apr 21, 2017 in Economy, Technology, Work | 1 comment

Your Smartphone is Neither a Cancer nor a Cure-All

Your Smartphone is Neither a Cancer nor a Cure-All

A balanced, biblical take on the devices we can’t seem to live without. I remember the day I got my first smartphone. Upgrading from a “dumb phone,” I was dazzled. Crisp and clear pictures. Email and calendar in one place. Ready access to Twitter, Facebook, and any search engine I wanted. In the words of the AT&T ad, I could now “move at the speed of instantly.” But as the months went on, I realized my smartphone was not a neutral tool that would leave my life unaffected. My days started to change—sometimes drastically. It began with email. I started checking it almost obsessively. Wake up, turn over, check email. Get coffee, check email. My daughter would ask a question. “Hold on, honey, I’m just finishing this email.” Then came social media. I could now post pictures directly to Facebook. Yet rarely did I consider whether my 300 “friends” needed to see my weekend family adventures. Twitter became my news source. Even though I clicked on dozens of articles,...

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Posted by on Mar 22, 2017 in Economy, Education, Work | 4 comments

How Do We Change? Formation in the 5280 Fellowship

How Do We Change? Formation in the 5280 Fellowship

  How do we change? I’m 34 years old, have four kids, and have been in the workforce for 9 years. And for me, there is no more pressing question in my life today than How do I change? In the past three years, the stress of leading a growing organization, trying to be a good father, and accomplishing my professional goals has exposed, well, cracks in the foundation of my character.  My precious wife has been so patient with me as I stumble, fall, and get up again – only to find myself back where I started. As I’ve spoken with peers about their lives, careers, and relationships – especially young professionals in Denver and Boulder – I’ve seen common traits among many of us: We’re around people and “social networks” all the time, but we feel lonely, and not deeply known by others. It’s the great irony of a social media age. More noise, but less deep relationships. In our careers we’ve gotten good at a technical...

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