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Author: Jennifer Woodruff Tait

Jennifer Woodruff Tait (PhD, Duke University) is the editor of and frequent contributor to Life for Leaders. She is also the managing editor of Christian History magazine and web editor for the Theology of Work Project, and a priest in the Episcopal Church. She has written a book of poetry, Histories of Us. Jennifer lives in Berea, Kentucky, with her husband, Edwin, and their two daughters.

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A church with the words "Jesus Saves" on its bell tower

Be Ready (Part 2)

We cannot control the timing of Christ’s Second Advent, nor can we control the movements of the Holy Spirit. What we can control is our own behavior: our own readiness, our own desire to be a disciple, our own prayer life, our own daily practices. We can use this Advent to grow closer to Christ.

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A woman standing on the seashore looking into a sunrise

Be Ready (Part 1)

Wake from sleep, be ready, and live honorably, Paul writes to the Romans—and to us—because you never know when the day of Christ’s coming, so near for so long, will finally arrive.

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A man on a street corner with a sign that says "The Beginning is Near"

The Beginning is Near

Jesus came once, and he is coming again. In the midst of the darkness our Lord offers us hope. Not escape, but hope. The beginning is near.

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A man looking in the window of an expensive bakery

Jesus is Coming; Look Busy!

I don’t know if, as you’re reading these words, you are poor or rich, tired or energetic, flourishing or beaten down. I do know that I serve a Christ who offers grace and who does not want me to look busy in order to love me.

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Nativity figures of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph with halos

It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

The first chapter of the Gospel of John doesn’t begin like any of the other Gospels. Matthew roots the coming of Jesus in the history of Israel.

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The Bible open to Ecclesiastes

Surprise!

The fact that daily work done well, and leadership performed with excellence, matter to God is a motivating idea behind not just the faith and work movement in general, but the De Pree Center in particular.

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Stained glass windows in St. Columb's Cathedral in London depicting Jesus, his disciples, and an angel at Gethsemane as the Roman soldiers arrive to arrest him.

Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord

This story challenges me in a number of ways, but one of them is this: look for Jesus where you least expect to find him.

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Two women talking in a Bible study group, one of them pointing at her phone.

Day by Day

A pretty good description of the life of discipleship we are all called to follow as workers who do not need to be ashamed is this: Trust Jesus.

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Two men sitting on benches, one wealthy and one homeless

Poor Man Lazarus

You cannot serve God and money. You can, however, serve God and other people—sometimes with money, sometimes without. But don’t be too quick to assume that it’s without.

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A sign on a pile of pocket change reading "Love > Money"

The Root of All Evil

We may find ourselves loving money because money buys security. And security may make us think we are the ones who made ourselves secure, rather than the One to whom we owe everything.

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A window washer cleaning a revolving door of an office building

The Janitor

Whether we got lost by ourselves or whether the systems of society lost us does not matter to the Lord. What he’s interested in is finding us, saving us, and rejoicing with us.

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Graffiti reading "God is Love" with a large heart

The Chief of Sinners?

No matter how exemplary our mentors were and how well and deeply they followed Christ, they still, as my grandma used to say, put their pants on one leg at a time just like everyone else, spiritually speaking. They were still saved by the grace of Christ, just as we are.

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A table crammed with food and drink

Compel Them to Come In

Confusing and yet overpowering images and implications come out of these parables. All are welcome. Turning down Jesus’s invitation has serious consequences.

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Colorful computer code

Yesterday, Today, and Forever

Jesus has been with you in the past and will go with you into the future.

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Two baby lambs sleeping

Have No Fear, Little Flock

If we do not put the kingdom first, then we run the risk of being hypocrites who do things behind closed doors we would not want spoken of openly..

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