Author: Mark Roberts

Dr. Mark D. Roberts is a Senior Strategist for Fuller’s Max De Pree Center for Leadership, where he focuses on the spiritual development and thriving of leaders. He is the principal writer of the daily devotional, Life for Leaders, and the founder of the De Pree Center’s Flourishing in the Third Third of Life Initiative. Previously, Mark was the Executive Director of the De Pree Center, the lead pastor of a church in Southern California, and the Senior Director of Laity Lodge in Texas. He has written eight books, dozens of articles, and over 2,500 devotions that help people discover the difference God makes in their daily life and leadership. With a Ph.D. in New Testament from Harvard, Mark teaches at Fuller Seminary, most recently in his D.Min. cohort on “Faith, Work, Economics, and Vocation.” Mark is married to Linda, a marriage and family counselor, spiritual director, and executive coach. Their two grown children are educators on the high school and college level.

Four people standing with their arms linked watching a sunset

Jesus Didn’t Do Life and Work Alone

As Jesus began his messianic ministry, one of the first things he did was to call people to follow him as his disciples. His example reminds us that we are not meant to do life and work alone. Like Jesus, we need companions and coworkers. 

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A mother holding her son on her lap and smiling at him

Right From the Start Jesus Didn’t Do It Alone

From the very beginning of his existence on earth, Jesus was not alone. He began human life in the womb of his mother. He grew up in a faithful and loving family. He had plenty of friends and relatives in the community in where he lived, people with whom he shared the good and the hard things of life. When God came to be among us as a human being, God in human flesh was not alone, right from the start. So it should be with us. If we’re to live as Jesus lived, we can’t do it alone. 

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A man sitting at a table in an office with bright sun streaming in the windows

Workday Prayers: Glorify God in Your Work

We have a variety of motivations for our work, and this can be just fine. But in all we do, our ultimate motivation should be the glory of God. We have been created and saved so that we might live for the praise of God’s glory at work, rest, and play.

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Mt. Hermon and the Sea of Tiberias

The Pleasure of Unity

Though our relationships can be a source of pain and frustration, when we are living and working together in unity, this can be “very good and pleasant.” That’s what we learn from Psalm 133. Working, leading, and sharing life with others can be a generous and delightful gift of God. 

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Two wooden mannequins who appear to be fighting each other

Relationships Can Be Difficult

Though it’s true that if we want to experience the best life has to offer we can’t do it alone, this doesn’t mean sharing life and leadership with others is easy. Relationships with other people can foster some of the greatest joy in life and some of the greatest pain. Recognizing this reality encourages us to reach out to God for help. Through God’s grace in Christ, we are able to be patient with each other, to put up with and forgive those with whom we are “doing” the Christian life. 

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A rope with a knot tied in it

Not Just for Weddings

Ecclesiastes 4:9 is popular at weddings. It begins: “Two are better than one.” But the truth of this biblical passage relates to more than just marriage. No matter what we’re going through in life, we need other people. And we need Christ woven into all of our relationships, all of our activities, all of our defeats, all of our victories. 

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Max De Pree and Walter Wright, Jr. sitting at a table talking to each other

Elijah the Mentor

As the Old Testament prophet Elijah was coming to the end of his life, God told him to anoint his successor, a younger man named Elisha. Elisha followed Elijah for several years, serving him and learning from him. The relationship between Elijah and Elisha suggests that one way we “don’t do it alone” is through mentoring. When a mentor comes alongside a mentee in a caring, learning relationship, both mentee and mentor benefit greatly.

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Third Third in the News – February 2023: Ageism in Hollywood and the Question of “Old”

Ageism in Hollywood The problem of ageism in our culture and, indeed, our whole world, is being addressed more frequently and more publicly these…

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Why Are People Finding Our Flourishing in the 3/3 Course So Helpful?

We continue to get encouraging feedback from churches and individuals who are using our Flourishing in the Third Third of Life video-based course. For…

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Some Excellent Resources for Third Third Flourishing – February 2023 Edition

In my leadership of the De Pree Center’s Flourishing in the Third Third of Life Initiative, I’m always looking for excellent resources that speak…

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Water flowing over rocks

Workday Prayers: God Turns the Rock Into Water

The mighty power of God makes the earth tremble.

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A man and boy praying by the Wailing Wall

Moses Didn’t Do It Alone, Part 10

As Moses came to the end of his life, he wanted to be sure that the Israelites would be well-led when he died. So he asked the Lord for help. God instructed Moses to choose Joshua as his successor, publicly endorsing the younger man. The example of Moses reminds us that part of not “doing it alone” is recognizing that we won’t always be doing what we are doing now in our work, both paid and unpaid. Like Moses, we can be intentional about seeing that our work continues on after we are no longer doing it.

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A man putting a wedding ring on a woman's finger

Moses Didn’t Do It Alone, Part 9

Exodus 19 shows us that God set the Israelites free from Egypt, not only so that individuals might enjoy a fruitful life, but also so that the people of Israel would enter into a covenant relationship with God and with each other. We will experience the abundant life God has for us when we live in a deep, committed relationship with God and God’s people.  

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A group of people in a circle joining hands at the center

Moses Didn’t Do It Alone, Part 8

Exodus 18 reminds us that wise delegation is essential if we’re not going to “do it alone.” We must delegate appropriately if our work is going to be both successful and sustainable. But even the very best delegation doesn’t eliminate the need for God’s presence and guidance. Only with God’s help will we be able to delegate and manage in a way that leads to productivity and peace. 

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Two construction workers looking out over a construction site

Moses Didn’t Do It Alone, Part 7

The example of Moses challenges and encourages us to be humble leaders. This means we will be open to receiving advice from others and, at times, even criticism. Our top commitment will be, not to our own egos, but rather to the flourishing of whatever it is we’re leading: a company, a school, a city, a church, a non-profit, a studio, or a family. In this way we will not do it alone.

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