Sunday Faith and Monday Work

Made to Flourish, a pastor’s network for the common good, fosters outstanding pastoral leadership by helping a rising generation of pastors — and their congregations — overcome the sacred-secular divide between personal piety on the one hand and our responsibilities as faithful workers in the larger economy on the other.

Whether churchgoing or not, a clear majority of Americans appreciate pastoral leadership and healthy churches for their leavening function in our cultural life — especially at a time when political campaigns have become so rancorous and divisive. The Made to Flourish pastors network — which includes the leaders of more than 950 evangelical congregations — is cultivating a community of pastors who specifically affirm human dignity and the value of work, arguing that because free enterprise improves human life, it is therefore a moral, not merely material, good.

Churches need this argument precisely because they are — or should be — the deepest institutional wellsprings for fostering empathy toward our fellow man, for connecting discipleship and daily work and for extending lasting hope to the poor.

Economic freedom and poverty

In the sweep of human history, we live in a time of unparalleled global prosperity — and yet many U.S. Christians are unfamiliar with this fact.

Consider, for example, a 2011 study from Yale University and The Brookings Institution that showed that, in 1981, 52 percent of the world’s population could not provide for its basic needs, including housing and food, meaning those men and women lived below the extreme poverty line. Just 30 years later, that percentage plummeted to 15 percent. Why? To cite the Yale-Brookings study: “the rise of globalization, the spread of capitalism, and the improving quality of economic governance.”


Read the rest at the Washington Times.

Topics: Economics and the Bible
Church: Christ Community Church, Kansas City

About the Author

Matt Rusten serves as the executive director for Made to Flourish. Rusten received his master of divinity degree from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and has served in churches in North Dakota, the Chicago area, Kansas City, and most recently as pastor of spiritual formation at Blackhawk Church in Madison, Wisconsin. He and his wife, Margi, and their daughter, Olivia, and son, Owen, live in Kansas.