What Am I Going To Do With My Lifeis A Question That Young People Commonly Face, While Many Not So Young People Continue To Wonder About Finding Direction And Purpose In Their Lives Whether Such Purpose Has To Do With What Job To Take, Whether To Get Married, Or How To Incorporate Religious Faith Into The Texture Of Their Lives, Christians Down The Centuries Have Believed That God Has Plans For Them This Unprecedented Anthology Gathers Select Passages On Work And Vocation From The Greatest Writers In Christian History William Placher Has Written Insightful Introductions To Accompany The Selections An Introduction To Each Of The Four Main Historical Sections And A Brief Introduction To Each Reading While The Vocational Questions Faced By Christians Have Changed Through The Centuries, This Book Demonstrates How The Distilled Wisdom Of These Saints, Preachers, Theologians, And Teachers Remains Relevant To Christians Today This Rich Resource Is To Be Followed By A Companion Volume, Edited By Mark R Schwehn And Dorothy C Bass, Featuring Texts Drawn Mainly From Fiction, Memoir, Poetry, And Other Forms Of Literature A Study Guide Is Available From Programs For The Theological Exploration Of Vocation PTEV On Their Website Ptev

10 thoughts on “Callings: Twenty Centuries Of Christian Wisdom On Vocation

  1. says:

    This is an interesting chronologically structured anthology of christian thinking on the topic of calling There are four sections, each a particular time period in Christian history, with selected writings from some of the most influential voices in that period this is worth buying the book alone , along with an opening introduction to each section outlining the contextual differences that attributed the development of thought on calling There s also a small introduction to each particular selection explaining why it was written The downside to this book, the particular selections of writing can lack specific contextual details that would help with understanding.

  2. says:

    It took 445 pages to say that any work that is done well, no matter if it is religious or secular, can be our calling Also, that our callings are than just the work we do for pay But, from a Christian point of view, our calling is to be the Christian God wants us to be The book shares essays from famous theologians over the last 2000 years I had to read it for class I guess I am not a fan of long essays written hundreds of years before It was a tough read.

  3. says:

    Very informative as an overview of Christian thought on vocation throughout history It doesn t offer a conclusion on the subject, but rather, broadens the reader s perspective on the issue of vocation.

  4. says:

    Great collection of historical writings on vocation organized chronologically

  5. says:

    Summary Placher creates an anthology of the last two thousand years of theologians who have written on the topic of vocation His selections include the early church e.g Ignatius of Antioch, Athenasius , the middle ages Bonaventure, Aquinas , the Post Reformation Luther, Calvin, Loyola, Edwards , and Moderns Kierkegaard, Bonhoeffer, Barth Some of the selections that Placher choose did not directly address calling as ones particular career or work vocations, but spiritual vocations Thus, for my particular interest some selections were not relevant.Observations Each era of thinkers deals with this topic in a very different way depending on the needs and presuppositions of that time period However, it is interesting how authors from a certain time period took very similar stances as other authors of their time In most cases Post Reformation thinkers said roughly the same thing, just with their own minor correctives to previous authors Two thinkers that stood out to me were Richard Baxter and Williams Law Baxter emphasis that healthy minds need to work and exercise, not only at an intellectual level but at a physical level When we exercise both our minds and bodies we keep our thoughts from vanity and sin, and also keeps out vain words, and preserves the soul from many sins 281 He also indirectly argues against Aquinas views of vocation, and by extension Aristotle, who states the highest vocation is the theoretical life Baxter does this by stating that if the body have not also its labor as well as the mind, it will ruin your health, and the body and mind will both grow useless 284 William Law uses scripture to show that it is not the work that brings God glory it is the heart of the worker He presents a thought experiment of a man named Calidus latin for eager or hasty who works for too many hours during the week that he never stops to consider Gods work in it Calidus also fills his weekends with play and no contemplation on divine things Law argues that people who live like this can no imagine that they are born again of the Spirit that they are a new creature 308 The only way to prevent this mindset is to consider ones trade as something that they are abiliged to devote to the glory of God, something that they are to do only in such a manner as that they may make it a duty to Him 310 Kierkegaard directly looks into the problem of ethics and calling as he looks at Genesis account of God calling Abraham to sacrifice his son.

  6. says:

    This is an excellent resource for anyone thinking about their calling in life, or about what callings have meant through, as the title says, twenty centuries of Christian wisdom.I was impressed by the selections in the book the names will be familiar to theologians, and represent a pretty strong sampling of the traditional canon of western theologians It isn t the most diverse group, though they re good about including female voices for every time period they consider The snippets made me want to revisit the long versions of a lot of works.Four stars for being a well executed project, and the fifth for being worth anyone s time to pick it up.

  7. says:

    I m going to miss this book which I used as a daily reader devotion since last November There are a wide range of Christian readings concerning vocation calling from all across history representing various denominations and religious traditions This is a very fine ecumenical collection Highly recommended reading.

  8. says:

    This book was not what I was led to believe by the blurb It was in fact much better A historical chain of writings that show how the perspective on vocation has changed over time I found it very interesting and although it was dense, the short pieces were collated in such a manner that they were full of variety and interest Not to be read quickly, but over time, interspersed with life.

  9. says:

    Excellent resource book on calling.

  10. says:

    Anthologies as I ve said before are hard to rate Some excerpts can be good and some can be very bad.