Suggested reading on Christian Vocation
Explore this list of publications about Christian Vocation
On Our Way: Christian Practices for Living a Whole Life
Dorothy C. Bass and Susan R. Briehl, editors
Upper Room Books
This collection of twelve spiritual practices, including “Discerning God’s Will” and “Making a Good Living,” was created primarily for emerging adults in their 20s although may be of interest to those who do not find themselves in that demographic.
Video interviews with the authors and guides for each chapter are also available.
Leading Lives That Matter: What We Should Do and Who We Should Be
Mark R Schwehn and Dorothy C. Bass, editors
This anthology is designed for people who want to lead lives that matter. The collection of readings have been chosen because they can help us think with greater clarity and depth about just what that might mean. Writers include Albert Schweitzer, Frederick Buechner, C.S. Lewis, Malcolm X, John Steinbeck and Thomas Merton.
Call Waiting: God's Invitation to Youth
Larry L. McSwain & Kay Wilson Shurden
Developed as part of Mercer University’s Lilly-funded research project on vocation, this book speaks directly to young people as they seek to answer questions such as “Where is God leading me and how do I follow that path?” and “Is there a connection between my interests and God’s call?” Also included is an appendix of session plans for leaders and group use.
Vocation: Discerning Our Callings in Life
Douglas J. Schuurman
According to Douglas Schuurman, many Christians today find it both strange and difficult to interpret their social, economic, political and cultural lives as responses to God’s calling. To renew this biblical perspective, Schuurman argues Christians must recover the language, meaning and reality of life as vocation, and his book helps do just that. It examines the theological and ethical dimensions of vocation as these have been understood historically and in relation to our modern social setting.
Callings: Twenty Centuries of Christian Wisdom on Vocation
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.
A study guide is available from Programs for the Theological Exploration of Vocation (PTEV).
What Am I Supposed to Do with My Life? Asking the Right Questions
Douglas J. Brouwer
The book presents a personal, spiritual response to the vocational questions people ask and locates our true purpose in following Jesus' greatest commandment: love God and love your neighbor. This high calling is all the vocation most people will need, Brouwer contends, for we find meaning and purpose by living not for ourselves but for something bigger than ourselves.
Career and Calling: A Guide for Counselors, Youth, and Young Adults
Ginny Ward Holderness, with Forrest C. Palmer Jr.
Young people often dread hearing the question "What do you want to do?" Holderness and Palmer assert that t more appropriate question is "What is the first thing God is calling you to be and do in the future?" God, they say, calls individuals to both a lifestyle and a career, but one's career may change throughout a lifetime. Good career counseling should help people know themselves as well as help them choose a career.
Is It I, Lord?: Discerning God's Call to Be a Pastor
James O. Chatham
Westminster John Knox Press
This book provides an excellent introduction to the mystery of how God calls people into ministry. Reader-friendly and down-to-earth, Is It I, Lord? presents questions for anyone who feels called by God — and offers insight into the process of declaring a vocation in ministry. The book is an excellent resource for those who feel called as well as those who walk beside them.
Let Your Life Speak: Listening for the Voice of Vocation
Parker J. Palmer
With wisdom, compassion and gentle humor, Palmer invites the reader to listen to the inner teacher and follow its leadings toward a sense of meaning and purpose. Telling stories from his own life and the lives of other who have made a difference, he shares insights gained from darkness and depression as well as fulfillment and joy, illuminating a pathway toward vocation for all who seek the true calling of their lives.
Listening Hearts: Discerning Call in Community
Suzanne G. Farnham, Joseph P. Gill, R. Taylor McLean and Susan M. Ward
Listening Hearts addresses the challenge of remaining faithful and attentive to God's call and tells how a faith community can be a source of support.
Way to Live: Christian Practices for Teens
Dorothy C. Bass and Don C. Richter (Editors)
Upper Room Books
"I want a way to live that keeps me involved in what God is doing in me and in the world around me. Do you know a way to live that is like that?" Eighteen Teens and 18 adults tackle this question in Way to Live: Christian Practices for Teens. Their different points of view and personal stories make living a Christian life real.