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Kingdom Calling: Vocational Stewardship for the Common Good

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  380 ratings  ·  46 reviews
Imagine the scenarios: Now imagine a parade in the streets for each event. That's the vision of Proverbs 11:10, in which the --the people who see everything they have as gifts from God to be stewarded for his purposes--pursue their vocation with an eye to the greater good. Amy Sherman, director of the Center on Faith in Communities and scholar of vocational stewardship, us ...more
Paperback, 271 pages
Published November 18th 2011 by IVP Books (first published November 2nd 2011)
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Jul 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
My expectations were so high for this book that I finished it deeply disappointed. Maybe I had already bought into the premise that the author belabors (we should use our vocations to bring foretastes of the Kingdom) before even picking up the book and wanted more ideas for how to do it.

I still can't answer the question about what the difference is between doing your job with excellence and stewarding your vocation for the Kingdom. At certain points in the book, it sounds like one and the same
Bob Wolniak
Nov 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a remarkably applicable book on a theme that just doesn't get enough attention--vocational stewardship. We are reading it for our task force to create a track for upper classmen in InterVarsity right now. Sherman's Pathways to deploying vocational power are very insightful and filled with many real and good examples. Dimensions of vocational power is also really helpful moving the discussion beyond the obvious. What righteousness looks like is also helpful. Very appreciative for this boo ...more
Cheryl Boyd
Mar 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is a book packed with examples, vision and theology that helps us connect our 9-5 vocation with the highest purpose imaginable.
Mary Lou
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
In Kingdom Calling by Amy Sherman, she makes an important case for God’s kingdom agenda. She says: “The kingdom Gospel…leads us to invest more thought and energy to the missional work of enacting and demonstrating the heart of God in the world” (p. 84). This means that believers must be involved in social righteousness, acting “in concert with God’s will for the shalom of the community’s well-being…as part of God’s creative justice establishing efforts” (p. 55). She believes that the empha
Tamara Murphy
Oct 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
We read this in our church’s reading group for the liturgical season of Pentecost. During Pentecost, we celebrate the power of the Holy Spirit to equip each one of us to live out the gospel. One key way we get to do this is through our work, and this book helps us explore the intersection of faith and work. It’s a theologically-sound treatise on the goodness of work with inspiring examples of the ways Christians are working for the common good of their communities and workplaces. One glaring omi ...more
Russell Gehrlein
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I found Sherman’s book to be extremely enlightening. She made me think about this topic in so many ways I had not encountered before. Sherman summarizes the basics of a theology of work. It confirmed what I had already known from earlier readings and my own understanding of God as a worker, humans as His co-workers, and how the fall impacted work. She shares a unique concept of God as our vocational model, crediting author Robert Banks from his book "Faith Goes to Work", where Banks describes th ...more
Paula Vince
Nov 24, 2019 rated it liked it
This one was a Uni text book for which I had to write an assignment. I found it an interesting read full of evidence of how personalities are as varied as the examples of calling we may find ourselves moving into. Not the worst or most dry academic text by any means. Amy Sherman offers some interesting terminology based on Old Testament understanding to help us form more of a biblical picture of calling, such as the wealthy 'tsadiqim' who owed it to poorer people to use their wealth for the adva ...more
Feb 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A book that can increase the relevance of your church in today's culture

Dr. Sherman knocks down the walls separating church and work showing how, with great and plentiful examples, your church can be God's hands and feet bringing in His kingdom. Ideas will blossom on how you can and should be moving your church from Sunday bench warmers to the true body of Christ without kicking and screaming. An example of why God made each of us unique with special gifts.
May 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Sherman has some really helpful and convicting things to say about vocation. This book has really helped shift the way I think about vocation and how we, as God's people, are to properly steward our work as part of God's mission. My only complaint is that, at times, her "examples" felt really forced and out of place. I thought there were just way more of them than there needed to be. ...more
Mike Sr.
Dec 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Comprehensive and well researched book for pastors and staff regarding the importance of whole-life discipleship. Highly recommended, but probably better for people who spend most of their life working for a church or a para-church ministry.
James Kelley
Sep 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-reads
I was put off by the odd ball pronunciation by the reader of various theological terms. Also, environmental stewardship seemed to supercede caring for people. However, it had many merits when sticking to the subject of integrating vocation as a part of Christian living.
Richard Moore
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great handling of God’s view of work

This book made me think more deeply about how I understand and view work in light of being a child of God. Not sure I agree with all principles presented, but I am definitely thinking and praying through how God wants me to work in his name!
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Finding ways to serve with the skills God has uniquely given us is critical and this book shares many great ideas and frameworks for doing just that. The book was a bit long at parts, but overall a worthwhile read.
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great Framework for living out vocational stewardship. Sound theology.
Rand Hall
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Exploring multiple angles on deploying vocation in God's service. ...more
Feb 15, 2021 rated it really liked it
This “work and faith” book is an easy read that builds on other good books by Any Crouch and Tim Keller. Amy Sherman brings together stories and rhetoric to deliver a persuasive and actionable book.
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Solid look at what it takes to get a congregation to use their giftings/skillsets to further kingdom work. Honest assessment that while everything isn't necessarily smooth, the efforts can have long-term positive results for those served as well as those serving. ...more
Oct 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: work-vocation
I read this book more than a year ago, but it still has had a deep impact on me. I think what I liked most about the book was Amy Sherman's enthusiasm about the ability of Christ-followers to make an impact in the world through their everyday work. Her enthusiasm is infectious and made me feel as though, with God all things truly are possible - the sky's the limit!

Now, having said that, as other reviewers have commented on this site and elsewhere, the book is somewhat geared toward ministry lea
Mark Oppenlander
Feb 10, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: theology
Sometimes, when you're in the choir, you don't need to be preached to. I've read a lot of books on work and faith, business and theology. So Amy Sherman's addition to the canon, "Kingdom Calling" was not full of many surprises for me.

Sherman starts in an interesting place however. She begins her discussion of vocation with Proverbs 11:10 "When the righteous prosper, the city rejoices." The Hebrew word translated as "righteous" is tsaddiqim, an idea that encompasses more than just those who are m
Michael Kearney
From the earliest days of the New Testament church, Christians have struggled with the question of how their work can be done in a God-honoring way. It is often difficult to see how our menial occupations can have a permanent impact on the world and serve toward the advancement of the kingdom. Our jobs feel mundane and futile, and we wonder whether they have any long-term impacts at all.

As a response to these doubts, Kingdom Calling offers some degree of comfort. Amy Sherman's focus on productiv
Sep 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I've long been saddened that much of the church has failed to tap into a deep reservoir of giftedness in its people. I deeply hope Amy Sherman's book gets into the hands of many pastors to stir their thinking of how people might employ their giftedness in pursuing their calling beyond the walls of the church.

She begins this book with the idea from Proverbs 11:10 that when the righteous prosper, the city rejoices. Her premise is that the righteous "prosper" when they employ their gifts and call t
Apr 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
If you are a Christian pastor or leader do yourself, and those in your community, a favor and read this book.

Many Christians in America believe their work, the stuff they do most hours in their week, does not matter to their faith. The spiritual stuff happens on Sunday or at church, the rest is irrelevant. Or if it is relevant, it is so only as a means of evangelism (be an engineer so you can work among non-Christians and get them saved!) and as a means of making money to financially support chu
Samuel Kassing
Sep 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book was a helpful corrective to the sacred secular divide. Sherman writes with a robust understanding of the Kingdom and much of what she says would be encouraging for the common person in the pews. This book is directed at pastors so they can equip their flock. I found it encouraging and challenging, I've already started teaching my college students some of the principals and categories in this book. ...more
Joel Ohman
May 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
We are called to be the Tsaddiqim, the righteous, as we pursue Shalom, God-centered human flourishing that works by the power of the Spirit to usher in the consummation of the already victorious reign of Jesus Christ, our King. As we do this, the city rejoices.

When we strive for a holistic approach to dedicating our vocations, and our very lives, to the service of God, then we will be freed from the constraints of a compartmentalized, Sunday-only type of thinking that restricts service to God a
Steve Watson
Apr 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Read this as part of a Vocation Infusion Learning Community I'm a part of this year, and that Amy is leading. The first of the book's three sections develops a rich theology of the well-rounded, holistically righteous citizens of the Kingdom of God, advancing God's perfect shalom on earth. It's a good foundation for motivating a Christian to care about engaging more constructively with the world we live in.

The last section is really practical and helpful. There are four pathways Sherman describ
Jan 31, 2017 rated it liked it
This book laid out a useful a theology of work that was Biblical, helpful, and robust. However, the examples, while inspiring, left me a bit exhausted - most were of remarkable people who'd had remarkable impacts both in a kingdom and earthly sense. Examples of steadfast faithfulness in ordinary work (without great earthly success, or even with earthly failure) were not really given; a future work might take up the theology of frustration in work. The language and writing quality were distractin ...more
Dec 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Kingdom Calling combines theology with practical strategies and numerous inspiring case studies in this call to expand our notion of the gospel beyond evangelism to the myriad kinds of work Christians do every day. Though written mainly as a handbook for clergy, the book would also make thought-provoking reading that individuals and small groups can use to bring more of their talents and vocational resources into serving God.
Peter Bringe
Aug 30, 2015 rated it liked it
Ok. It included many specific examples of how people with various vocations have brought a foretaste of the kingdom to their world. My main concern was the lack of the law of God. Their was a whole section on justice, for example, that didn't mention the law of God. Thus, I think the point of the book is good (encouraging Christians to pursue their vocations and callings in a God-glorfying, kingdom-oriented way), but it could be misdirected if it is not grounded in the law of God. ...more
Lee Bertsch
Mar 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theological-all
This is the best book on the the topic of the Christian and his/her vocation that I have read. It is rooted in carefully considered theology of work, the implications of which the author draws out in ways that were new and challenging to me. It is also replete with many examples of Christians who have discovered kingdom significance in their work.
Justin Edgar
Jun 12, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Sherman's book is a fantastic look at vocation, and its importance for the Christian. I enjoyed the book very much. The book is filled with stories of Christians who understand their vocations and their place in the story of God. The stories were captivating and challenging. I felt like some of the book was redundant, but overall an excellent book.
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82 likes · 22 comments
“Every faithful act of service, every honest labor to make the world a better place, which seemed to have been forever lost and forgotten in the rubble of history, will be seen on that day [at the final resurrection] to have contributed to the perfect fellowship of God's kingdom.... All who committed their work in faithfulness to God will be by Him raised up to share in the new age, and will find that their labor was not lost, but that it has found its place in the completed” 2 likes
“One helpful way of identifying these kingdom features is to examine closely the "preview" passages in the Bible. Pop a movie into your DVD player, and you'll first see previews of coming attractions. Similarly, throughout the Bible are previews of the "feature film": the kingdom of God in all its consummated fullnness. These texts offer us glimpses into what live will be like in the new heavens and new earth.” 2 likes
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