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Posted by on Aug 5, 2015 in Theology | 0 comments

A Prayer of Praise

A Prayer of Praise

Oh Lord, in you are waves of pleasure, oceans of joy! But our hearts seek pleasure in created things, rather than the Creator. Yet, we still long for a lasting satisfaction in the depths of our souls. Our hearts are restless, until they find rest in You! Draw us, Redeemer, Maker, Love Almighty, into the song of the universe! Oh planets and stars, corners of darkest space, be filled with His light! May your rotations and orbits be a timbre or praise! O supernovas, shine for Him! Oh angels, join me with shouts of praise! Together let’s serve him, the sweet joy of our hearts! Oh demons, you who scorn your Creator, be filled with terror, for the fire of his holiness is dread to you, but mercy to us! For one day, he will burn away our iniquity and we shall see him, the bright Morning Star, face to face! Oh mountains of Colorado, oh oceans of the Far East; oh mighty trees of the Amazon, oh sands...

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Posted by on Jul 28, 2015 in Theology, Work | 0 comments

Why Work Is at the Heart of God’s Mission

Why Work Is at the Heart of God’s Mission

Almost every Sunday morning at church, as we finish the final songs and benediction (and I prepare to pick up my crew of girls from Sunday School – now four!), I find myself asking the same question: What is the Church sent into the world to do? This is a question that my friends in pastoral ministry think about often. They do so because it’s so foundational. The “why” of Christian mission, I think, is far less in question: our motivation for ministry is the gospel of Jesus Christ, his atoning death for our sins and his resurrection for our salvation. The free gift of new life in Christ is the spark that ignites the heart of his global people. But what, then, is the church to do about it? In a previous post, I noted that John Stott, the framer of the Lausanne Covenant and best-selling author, saw a unity between service and witness as central to the church’s mission. Both were at the heart of why God...

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Posted by on Jan 27, 2015 in Theology | 0 comments

10 Steps Toward Becoming a Culturally-Engaged Church

10 Steps Toward Becoming a Culturally-Engaged Church

We’ve made huge strides in the past several years on bringing the topic of work to church. But I’ve noticed an ongoing tension. It’s a tension between what we say about work on Sunday and what we do (or don’t do). On the one hand, talk of “faith & work” and cultural engagement have been popping up across the evangelical landscape. From Lecrae waxing eloquent on the sacred/secular divide at Liberty University to the forthcoming publication of a Faith and Work Study Bible, it’s becoming blessedly normal to embrace the importance of work for Christian cultural engagement. But on the other hand, painfully few churches actually do anything on a regular basis to equip their own people for works of service in their daily work. Most church services and weekday programs have gone untouched. This leaves many folks sitting in the pews feeling a bit like Van Gogh’s Starry Night – a city full of light, but a church that has gone dark. This is really perplexing considering the sheer scope of programming some churches can offer.  Ministries for every...

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Posted by on Dec 31, 2014 in Theology, Work | 0 comments

Video Release: Eugene Peterson on Vocation

Video Release: Eugene Peterson on Vocation

On New Years Eve, 1868, Andrew Carnegie sat alone in his room in the St. Nicholas Hotel in New York. Only 33 years old, he had already been successful beyond his wildest dreams. That year he made $56,110 and had accumulated $400,000 in assets. But his heart was restless. New Years Eve was a time of sober reflection for Scottish Calvinists. Though an atheist, Carnegie the Scot picked up a pen and wrote that night, “To continue much longer overwhelmed by business cares and with most of my thoughts wholly upon the way to make more money in the shortest time must degrade me beyond hope of permanent recovery.” Though he delayed in taking action, that night he committed to get a thorough education, take part in “public matters especially those connected with education and the improvement of the poorer classes” and “choose the life which will be the most elevating in character.” For many of us, New Years is a time to examine our lives and make plans...

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Posted by on Dec 1, 2014 in Theology, Work | 0 comments

Four Sermons on Work

Four Sermons on Work

In the past several months, I’ve been honored to give four different sermons on work in the Denver Metro area. If you have some time this week, download them onto your iPhone or iPod (remember those?) and listen on your way to or from work. I’d love to get your feedback. Here they are. I’ve included the title, time & place, biblical text, description, brief outline, and highlights for your scanning pleasure. Happy listening. “The Gospel as Public Truth” Listen Now: The Gospel as Public Truth Date: July 27, 2014 Location: Fellowship Denver Church Key Text: Acts 25:23-26:27 Description: Why does it seem like the public worlds of business, politics, technology or art seems so isolated from the world of church? In this sermon, Jeff Haanen explores Paul’s testimony before King Agrippa and Festus in Acts 25-26 to find a model for cultural engagement for our modern culture. Based on Paul’s own call, Jeff explains what it means to be a witness and servant of the gospel of grace in...

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Posted by on Oct 2, 2014 in Theology, Work | 0 comments

Saving the Three “E”s

Saving the Three “E”s

  I think we’ve been a bit too hard on the three “e”s. Here’s how the argument often goes. In a past generation, those interested in “faith at the workplace” stressed the three “e”s: excellence, ethics, and evangelism. Each of these are “good but insufficient.” We need people to actually see the value of the work itself, and not just get people converted or be nice to co-workers. Now, I sympathize with this line of reasoning. I was recently at a Christian business conference, and one man gave his testimony of how he lives out his faith at work. As the owner of a company that produces dental products, he proudly noted how he begins staff meetings with prayer. What he failed to mention, however, was that producing artificial teeth for his clients was itself an act of neighbor love and a way to provide for the needs of the world. Indeed, for many of us younger folks interested in faith/work integration, we react against a highly individualistic view...

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