S1E9: A “Rule of Life” for 2019

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The change from one year to the next often includes times of reflection and planning. In this episode, Denver Institute staff talk about the concept behind a "rule of life" and how to put one into practice. The team talks about DIFW's corporate rule of life, as well as ways to incorporate one into your daily routine. Hear highlights from 2018 as well as plans and goals for the year ahead.


Check out Scatter.org, our online learning platform, and learn more about Stephen Blankenship, the newest DIFW director.Jeff recently wrote the cover story for Christianity Today and examined what is missing in the typical discussions around faith and work.Stephen's reflection and journal questions:

  • How am I doing at my work?
  • What can I do better this week?
  • How am I doing as...[insert relationship here; ex: spouse, partner, parent, child, etc.]

From Jeff: "People over estimate what they can do in a year and underestimate what they can do in three years." A "Rule of Life" defined:

  • It originates from the idea of a trellis; the structure allows for the healthy growth of a plant or a vine.
  • Our common understanding comes from St. Benedict; he developed a set of practices for all the brothers who lived in the monastery.
  • St. Benedict's rule of life included set times of prayer, times of work, and times of reflection and silence.

From Brian, on a rule of life: "You cannot be legalistic about it, but you can be very intentional about it."Examples from DIFW's Rule of Life:

  • Liberal arts style learning twice per year on a subject not directly related to your work, and share in a 10-minute presentation;
  • Daily group prayer (8:30 a.m. & 11 a.m.);
  • Daily private silence and reflection (no screens);
  • Weekly sabbath; and
  • Annual silence and solitude days (3x per year).

Ways to structure your own rule of life:

  • Consider reading scripture through the lectionary at different times during the day;
  • Incorporate breath prayers or pray for a co-worker at regular times ("Lord, Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me a sinner.");
  • Use your commute to prepare and reflect;
  • Schedule sabbath time (and stick to it!); and
  • Find ways to strengthen relationships among your colleagues or employees (ex: offer a workplace chaplain, periodic barbecues or activities outside of the office, etc.).

Joanna recommended the book For Women Only in the Workplaceby Shaunti Feldhahn.*Learn more about these spiritual disciplines as part of the 5280 Fellowship. Applications for the 2019–2020 class will open later this spring!Download the episode transcript.

*–Purchase with purpose. Amazon donates to Denver Institute when you shop at smile.amazon.com.