Tom Nelson: Every Pastor Needs a Solid Theology of Vocation.

Video / Produced by The High Calling

This is a longish interview, a much longer video clip than we normally post. It is also not a video that we at The High Calling produced. However, we think Tom Nelson is raising some wonderful points here, and he shares out of his vulnerabilities.

That is certainly a brand of rhetoric that we support and model here at The High Calling.

Here are some of the highlights of Tom Nelson's answers:

"This book has come out of my own inadequacy, and that’s part of the health of the book.… I missed this. To my congregation, I apologized because I didn’t have a rich enough theology to help equip them to follow God where they were called. I made a big mistake of not communicating a rich theology of work that goes through all of Scripture, and I did not help them apply it to their context. And I used language that created a dichotomy, when Scripture shows a seamless integrity about this faithfulness of honoring God in our work. That impacted my ministry and hindered them from fully being the people God created them to be. I thank God that he gives us a second chance and gives us grace. The book comes out of that where I really missed it."

"...If we miss the central thread of work and vocation throughout Scripture, we are really not equipping people the ways we are called to equip them as pastors. So the first thing I would say is that every pastor or leader needs to really look at the Scriptures and to build a really solid theology of vocation. The theology of vocation is really a theology of the whole Christian life. That’s what I was missing, the fullness of it. Then, begin to teach on it. Celebrate it… It really helps people make sense of their life. One of the things that I hear over and over again in different vocations of people that I work with, 'Tom, tell me that what I do every day really matters.' So many people live under a drudgery, a theology, that what we do doesn’t matter. The theology of work and vocation is transformative at every level in people’s lives."

At the end of the video around 10:00, Tom Nelson also comments on how a good theology of work can help people who are struggling with unemployment.

Good work, Tom! Thanks for honoring God by sharing your thoughts about faith and work.

(Special thanks to High Calling Community member Karen at Nightly Tea who sent me an email to this video.)