This post originally appeared at Grateful to the Dead.
Friend Phil Harrold at Trinity School for Ministry in Pittsburgh asks (in the comments area of this post), “What are your top picks for books on Christian faith and vocation?” Here’s my off-the-cuff answer:
If you are willing to do some selection, a great sourcebook is Callings, by William Placher. Steve Garber’s new Visions of Vocation is more involved, but also more narrative – likely especially appealing/useful for millennials or at least younger Christians. It may be too long to read for a small group study – more a resource book or something for a leader to read and choose from judiciously.
God at Work by Gene Veith is a slim volume that might be helpful. Lester De Koster also has a slim volume, from a Reformed perspective: Work: The Meaning of Your Life. The Acton Institute series of short videos, For The Life of the World, is very good – an absorbing experience that should generate a lot of conversation. Also best for millennials, but accessible for all ages. It comes with a study guide and may be purchased in many forms, including download, or even rented.
If you have this question still in early 2015, I highly recommend a two-part video documentary I’m working on (helped secure funding for, and have had a hand in scripting and editing): Going On Vocation. It is advertised on the back cover of the Christian History magazine Vocation issue, which is another excellent resource for such a group as yours. Click the link in the preceding sentence for a full-color downloadable pdf of the issue; if you go to the main level of www.christianhistorymagazine.org you can also find it in online flipbook format under “back issues.” They can also be purchased hard copy in “bulk” – including smaller orders.
Also there is plenty of fine material connecting faith and vocation (and work in general) at a web channel I help to edit: http://www.patheos.com/Faith-and-Work.html. Watch the channel for a soon-appearing new book review blog, to be titled “Work Cited.” It will review lots of faith-related books on vocation, work, and economics. [Thanks for the shout-out, Chris!!]
Finally, a wonderful annotated bibliography of books on vocation is provided online by Byron Borger of Hearts and Minds books. Despite the fact that I link the above titles to Amazon, I encourage you to buy any or all of these resources from Byron. He’s awesome. 🙂