Reflections on Work from Praxis’ Rule of Life


A few weeks ago NIFW’s Executive Director, Missy Wallace, had the privilege of attending a three-day gathering summit organized by Praxis, an organization dedicated to the concept of redemptive entrepreneurship.

At the conclusion of the event, a written “Rule of Life,” especially for high-capacity entrepreneurs in mind, was unveiled. Yet, a case can be made for the nuances of this particular Rule of Life to be relevant to anyone working in positions of influence where there is temptation to overwork and play God.

“At its best, a rule of life is an expression of community, undertaken in the belief that we need help from one another to live the lives God meant for us,” the Rule states. “It also expresses humility, recognizing that we are prone to specific pitfalls that require us to take extra care with our practices.”

These principles are impactful not only for the work of entrepreneurs but those in the workforce at-large who find themselves with tensions of overwork, ambition and influence.

Key elements of the Praxis Rule include the following:

Instead of endless productivity, we practice a rhythm of work and rest, attending to our need to grow in all the dimensions of being human: heart, soul, mind, and strength. We commit to take one full day every week for complete rest from our daily work, and to make Sabbath possible for everyone within our sphere of authority.

Instead of being preoccupied with money and possessions, we practice simplicity and generosity. We commit to give away a minimum of 10% of our gross income, with special attention to the needs of the materially poor.

Instead of having our imagination saturated by media, we seek to be transformed by the renewing of our mind. We commit to disengaging from screens of all kinds on a daily, weekly, and annual basis. We establish structured limits for our consumption of entertainment, in quantity, frequency, and moral character.

Instead of willful autonomy in decision making, we practice active dependence on God. We commit to daily prayer, and at times of major decisions, not proceeding until we have actively submitted our own desires fully to the will of God and have inner peace about the decision.

Instead of accumulating power to benefit ourselves or exploit others, we use it to generate possibility for those who have less access to opportunity. We commit to the practice of gleaning — frequently sacrificing opportunities for our own advancement to intentionally create pathways for others. We also practice chastity and fidelity, honoring the men and women with whom we work.

Instead of individualism and isolation, we practice real presence with others who are not part of our daily work. We pursue diversity across class and ethnicity in our friendships and mentoring relationships. (Praxis Rule of Life, 2018)

Visit the Praxis website to read the Rule of Life in full or to make a confidential commitment to the Rule as your own spiritual practice. Praxis also has small hard copies available for the Rule here.

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