Retired engineer Roland Heersink is on a mission to help Christians live out their faith where they spend most of their time — in the workplace.
Heersink is the founder of God & Work and the co-author of “How to be a Christian at Work: A Handbook for the Working Christian.” The University’s new Center for Biblical Leadership, directed by Dr. Sam Voorhies, hosted Heersink last week.
The God & Work initiative, led by Heersink and Dr. Szaszi Bene, professor of theology at Tyndale Theological Seminary in the Netherlands, was launched as a class at Crossroads International Church in Amsterdam. The class was met with overwhelming demand, and the duo now offers Bible-based workshops focused on practical application at churches around the world.
“We need to teach, ‘What does it mean to be a Christian pharmacist? To be a Christian finance person?’” Heersink said. “I see a great opportunity for partnership between Palm Beach Atlantic and God & Work. It’s a divine connection for sure.”
Heersink spoke to undergraduate students at morning chapel and to graduate students in the evening leadership program. Based on Romans 12, he encouraged students to develop their gifts into talents that they can use to serve others and glorify God. There is no one right job, although different people are suited for different jobs based on their gifts, he said.
He shared his own experience graduating college with a fistful of job opportunities. Rather than take the job with the highest pay or best location, he took the one that would allow him to grow closer to God.
Heersink’s mantra is “do your best, and let Jesus do the rest.” For Christians, that means reading the Bible, praying often, seeking counsel, checking emotions and waiting. It also means turning down jobs that are unethical and produce no benefit to society, he said.
Heersink has held the positions of president, vice president and CEO. He never focused on what his next job should be, or how to get promoted, he said. But that doesn’t mean Christians should do nothing.
“God created us in His image, and God took action in creation,” he said. “I’m responsible for following up on what God puts in my heart. I’m not responsible for the result.”
The God & Work curriculum draws business techniques such as not compromising, silent negotiating, protecting the boss and exercising diplomacy, all from the people and stories of the Bible.
Heersink’s mission with the ministry is to “wake up Christians to their calling.”
It aligns with the Center for Biblical Leadership’s efforts to engage and equip marketplace leaders, as well as the University’s faculty, staff and students, to integrate spiritual formation and biblical knowledge with the practice of leadership.
Photo 1: God & Work Founder Roland Heersink, a guest of Dr. Sam Voorhies and the Center for Biblical Leadership, speaks to students in chapel about "The Wrong Way to Find the Right Job." Heersink's passion is equipping Christians to live out their faith in the workplace.
Photo 2: God & Work founder Roland Heersink, a guest of the Center for Biblical Leadership, speaks to students during chapel. He spoke to graduate students in the evening.