Gospel Relevance

Gospel-Centered Resources For The Gospel-Driven Life

Tim Keller on How To Glorify God at Work

I used to think that the only way to glorify God at work was by evangelizing my co-workers. If my co-workers weren’t converted, God wasn’t glorified.

Then I read Tim Keller’s outstanding book Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work, and my views shifted. I later realized that evangelizing my co-workers was simply one of the many ways to glorify God at work.

how to glorify God at work

Most of us spend upwards to 40 hours a week at work, so this is certainly a topic pertinent to every believer. So how do we do it?

Tim Keller on How to Glorify God at Work

On page 22 of the book, Keller outlines several ways we can glorify and serve God at work.

  • The way we serve God at work is to further social justice in the world.
  • The way we serve God at work is to be personally honest and evangelize your colleagues.
  • The way we serve God at work is just to do skillful, excellent work.
  • The way we serve God at work is to create beauty.
  • The way we serve God at work is to work from a Christian motivation to glorify God, seeking to engage and influence culture to that end.
  • The way we serve God at work is to work with a grateful, joyful, gospel-changed heart through all the ups and downs.
  • The way we serve God at work is to do whatever gives you the greatest joy and passion.
  • The way to serve God at work is to make as much money as you can, so that you can be as generous as you can.

As long as it’s not sinful, you can glorify God doing any kind of job. Don’t put too much emphasis on your status as an employee as it relates to society. If you have a high status, it may go to your head; if you have a low one, it may go to your heart. Don’t let it. Your identity is in what Jesus has done for you, not what you do for a living.

Keller adds, “In the Old Testament, God was a Gardener; in the New Testament, he came as a Carpenter.” There is no menial work. Whether you’re the CEO of a company, or you’re an employee at a restaurant, the status isn’t the big thing, but God’s glory is. “Whatever you do,” Paul says, “work heartily as for the Lord, and not for men” (Colossians 3:23). Keep your eyes focused on his glory.

You may also like: 

  1. How to Stay Christian When You Hate Your Job
  2. How to Witness at Work 
  3. Why Money is Not the Root of All Evil 

About David Qaoud

David Qaoud (MDiv, Covenant Theological Seminary) is associate pastor of Bethesda Evangelical Church in St. Louis, Missouri, and founder of gospelrelevance.com. His work has appeared on The Gospel Coalition, For the Church, and Banner of Truth. He lives in St. Louis with his wife and son. Learn more>

12 Replies

  1. David, thank you for the thoughts. I read the first couple chapters of “Every Good Endeaver” (I hope to read the whole thing sometime) and was encouraged by it. I work for a Christian university, but at a more administrative level. I was able to share some thoughts about work, as work itself, to the glory of God. It went over really well.

    I think a lot of us think of work as a necessary evil. What strikes me, as I reflect on the nature of work, is that man was made to work before the fall (Gen. 1:26; 2:15). Our work was currupted, but it is to be redeemed, not put away with.

    1. Yep. You hit the nail on the head. Keller’s book is excellent in explaining that principle.

  2. I needed to hear this, thank you. And God bless 🙂

    ~Jones

  3. Good words my friend. We complicate our role as Christians daily, don’t we? All we need to be is God’s hands and feet. What an honor.

  4. Great post. My fiance and I have been particularly reminded of this over the past year, as we are both still chasing our dreams. He longs to be a youth pastor at some point, but in the immediate he has to prepare to start a family life with me, and so he must work elsewhere. He has been working in construction, something that he was not naturally inclined to do or very skilled at before he started. But it was the job that the Lord brought him to, and he has learned so much about dependence upon Him as he goes through it. For me, I am pursuing the Master’s degree that I need in order to get to my professional goals three to five years down the road. In the immediate, I must still work to provide for my current needs and prepare for marriage. Both of us are working in jobs that are not our dreams, but we have actively prayed about and practiced how we can worship and honor God in our jobs still. Our views about honoring God have been broadened this past season.

    1. Thanks for sharing. Seems like God has you guys in a season of preparation.

  5. A powerful reminder of a great truth taught by the Reformation fathers. Thank you for reminding us to do all things to the glory of God (1 Cor 10:31).

    1. Anonymous

      Thank you, brother. I always appreciate hearing from you.

  6. It’s great to see you were blessed with Tim Keller’s book on work, as I have as well. My review of it can be found at https://veritasdomain.wordpress.com/2013/08/21/review-every-good-endeavor-by-timothy-keller/

  7. Thanks for stopping by my blog. Yes it is most important to work for God. It is through joyfully serving that others see what we have and want it. My son helped a little girl at the playground this last weekend and later the parents sought me out to let me know what a great boy I have. He had no clue that others were watching. Meghan

  8. I think one of the way to share about GOD such as in workplace and at school is through our love to others. When you show love to others, people will see. As the bible have prophesized about people’s heart growing cold in these last days, when you show love, while others don’t they may ask you “why are you so loving?”, and you may say to them “because of GOD..” and start talking about the love of GOD through the gospel to them.