Vocation and the Church

Ken Myers highlights a needed area of improvement in the church:

I meet many students who struggle with keeping their faith intact while in college. There are numerous ministries devoted to encouraging them in that struggle. That encouragement often takes the form of well-crafted arguments defending basic Christian beliefs, and these are obviously valuable resources. They reinforce the foundational convictions on which we all build. But I sometimes wonder if these students might be even more sustained if they had a robust sense of the rich and comprehenisve structure of Christian intellectual life. If the congregations in which they were raised had confidently and expectantly taught and preached and conversed in a way that assumed the unity of all truth, and if they affirmed the value of intellectual vocations, would these students be more likely to deflect skeptical questions about their faith?

By and large, evangelical churches do a good job in “sending off” and encouraging those among their congregations who go into ministry vocations, but what of those whose vocations are more oriented to the secular world? Typically (at least in my experience) these folks—who, incidentally, constitute the vast majority of the church—are left to fend for themselves.

We need to do a better job in dispelling the myth that some vocations (i.e., “full-time Christian ministry”) are more sacred than others. After all, all believers are considered among the royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9-10). If indeed all truth is God’s truth, the engineer, physician, homemaker, janitor, teacher—even lawyer!—are all in positions to further God’s truth to a world in need of redemption.

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