Monday, August 20, 2012

Taking Your Soul to Work

Taking Your Soul to Work: Overcoming the Nine Deadly Sins of the Workplace, by R. Paul Stevens and Alvin Ung. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2010. 200 pp. $14.00. ISBN 978-0-8028-6559-9.
This is the author's version of a work that was submitted/accepted for publication in the following source:
The Christian Librarian, Vol.55, no.1, 2012, p.37
Many Christians separate their Christian lives from their work lives. Taking Your Soul to Work: Overcoming the Nine Deadly Sins of the Workplace by R. Paul Stevens and Alvin Ung show that this is not a good idea. Instead, God is Lord of all areas of our life, even our work life. Stevens is professor emeritus of marketplace theology and spirituality at Regent College in Vancouver. Stevens believes that work is a life-long calling. Ung—a former student of Stevens— is a Fellow at a national investment agency in Malaysia and workshops for CEOs on the integration of faith and life.
Taking Your Soul to Work includes three parts: The nine deadly sins of the workplace—pride, greed, lust, gluttony, anger, sloth, envy, restlessness, and boredom; the “ninefold” fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23); and the nine positive outcomes of integrating faith and practice. Each chapter begins with a dialogue between Stevens and Ung on the chapter’s theme which is followed by discussion and application of the theme.
Ung asks the question “How do I grow spiritually at work ?” (2) This book is a result of this question and conversation between Stevens and Ung on spiritual work in the workplace. Taking Your Soul to Work provides many excellent ideas on how to apply one’s faith in the workplace. For example, one of the deadly sins is restlessness. This is the temptation of thinking that the grass is greener on the other side. One of the consequences is that when things get difficult, we want to look for another job which prevents us from growing in tough times. Taking Your Soul to Work will be helpful for all Christians seeking to live out their faith through their work.  
The following is new to the earlier version: I believe the idea of work is very important to the Christian. We spend most of our time at work, but very little is spoken about work from the pulpit. I believe God wants to use our work to shape us into Christ-like character. Since this idea is important, I will discuss more ideas about this book in future blogs.

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