Deep Work is one of my all-time favorite productivity books. But even having read it before, there was something amazing about reading it along with other productivity-minded believers, discussing and discerning through it together, holding the ideas up to the light of Scripture, and challenging one another to actually put the principles into action in ways that honors Christ.
It felt great. It felt like fellowship.
I don't know about you but usually when I think of "fellowship" it's in a rather narrow scope: Bible studies, conversations in the church lobby, accountability groups. These are all excellent occasions for fellowship. But in my experience fellowship gets 10x better when a bunch of believers are applying themselves to a common task.
If you've ever built something together with believers on a mission trip, you know what I'm talking about. It's been amazing to experience that same kind of Christ-centered camaraderie even as we study secular books on personal development.
God has designed us to work, labor, investigate, and subdue this wide world. And as Christ's church, He wants us to do that work together with other Christians.
So here's a question to ponder: What are you pursuing and who are you pursuing it with?
P.s. If you're interested in joining our book club, there's more information at the bottom of this issue.
Alrighty, let's get into the Roundup!
✨ New on Redeeming Productivity
Who doesn’t want to be more productive with their time? But Christians must be careful that in pursuing efficiency we don’t fall for these five lies of productivity.
"My pursuit of productive labor is not a search for an identity but an expression of my true identity in Christ. I want to work hard not to earn something, but because I’m worshipping someone in how I work."
The Real Protestant Ethic (6 mins)
If you read just one article from this week's Roundup, let it be this one.
"For Protestants, the first word, and the foundational word, about work is that the labor of our hands cannot get us right with God. Human effort and exertion, no matter how impressive compared to our peers’, cannot secure the acceptance and favor of the Almighty."
(David Mathis / Desiring God)
Should you move somewhere with a lower cost of living? This is a thoughtful consideration of how we choose where to live.
"The slant of American life is to become busier, wealthier people who used to have friends. None of us sets out to be this way, but most of us end up that way because we default to practical decisions that emphasize money and jobs over church and friends."
(Justin Whitmel Earley / The Gospel Coalition)
I typically have a goal for how many books I'd like to read each year. It keeps me honest. But if the only way we measure our reading productivity is by the numbers, we might be doing it wrong.
"I think the best way to calculate the productivity of our reading is by determining our learning and personal growth. Scripture makes much of our ongoing sanctification and transformation, telling us to pursue wisdom (Proverbs 4:1-13), set our minds on the things above (Colossians 3:1), and be transformed into the image of Christ (Romans 12:2; cf. 2 Corinthians 3:18). Therefore, it seems reasonable that this should be the measurement of our reading."
(Robert Zink / Soli Deo Gloria)
"While I do think that there are folks who are naturally smart. I do believe that they keep being smart because they are also curious."
If you have to take medications according to a schedule, Meddify: Pill Reminder is a great app for keeping it all straight.
👍 Something I Like
I was recently turned onto the Bitcoin and the Bible Podcast by a reader (thanks, Micah). And I absolutely devoured season 1.
"A show for Christians who love God’s Word, care about sound money, and want to learn about the moral case for Bitcoin. Join us as we hold fast to God’s Word and hodl in our debt-based fiat world."
Whether you're already deep down the crypto rabbit hole or just have a passing interest in the subject, I think you'll enjoy this podcast.
🎓 Redeeming Productivity Academy
Join the community to grow in your personal development, get accountability for your goals, and connect with other productivity-minded believers!
Here's a peek at what's currently going on in the community:
- Book Club. For the month of October, we are reading and discussing Doug Wilson's Ploductivity: A Practical Theology of Work & Wealth.
- Taming Overcommitment. Each month I release new exclusive teachings for RPA members. This month we are looking at the subject of overcommitment from a biblical perspective and exploring how to manage your time and obligations so you can focus more on what God has called you to.
- Learning Obsidian. Bodie gave us a master class on how to set up, manage, and get the most out of the knowledge-management tool Obsidian.
- Goal-Setting Seminar. Next week James, a professional coach, is going to teach us a framework for how to prioritize what we do.
- October Habit Challenge. Members are committing to specific daily habits for the month and their progress is tracked on our habit scoreboard so we can give each other accountability and encouragement.
- And more. The membership also includes access to all past trainings, Tool Shed sessions, and our vibrant online community. Come connect with the coolest group of Christian productivity nerds on the internet. Registration will be reopening soon. I'd love to see you there!
⌛️That’s All for this Week
Thanks for reading!
If you're enjoying the newsletter, share it with a friend. And as always, you can just hit reply to send me a message.
See you next week!