About the Book

We are created in the image of an infinitely creative God, The First Entrepreneur who brought our world out of nothing, established order out of chaos, and created for the good of others. Why does this matter? Because this truth validates the deep desire in our souls to create. We are made in the image of the Creator God; thus, when we follow His call to create new businesses, art, books, and other products, we have an opportunity to reflect His character to the world.

If you’ve ever wanted your work to feel like a calling rather than a job, this book is for you. If you’ve ever felt like your creating is anything less than God-honoring service to the world, this book is for you. Whether you’re a business owner, an entrepreneurial employee, a student looking to make something of the world, a mompreneur, a photographer, an artist, a musician, an author, or a chef, this book is for you.

In Called to Create, serial entrepreneur and best-selling author, Jordan Raynor, sets out to answer a series of questions about what it looks like to reimagine our creating as service to God and others, including:

  • Is my work as a creative really as God-honoring as that of a pastor or missionary?
  • What are the best questions to ask when discerning God’s calling on my life?
  • What does it look like to create not to make a name for myself but to glorify God and serve others?
  • How can I use my work to fulfill Jesus’s command to create disciples?
  • Will what I make today matter in eternity?

To answer these questions, Raynor brings in compelling stories from an eclectic group of 40+ Christian entrepreneurs including the founders of TOMS Shoes, Charity: Water, Chick-fil-A, In-N-Out Burger, Guinness, and HTC, as well as creators who might not normally be considered entrepreneurs such as C.S. Lewis, Johann Sebastian Bach, and J.R.R. Tolkien. Raynor’s “show” rather than “tell,” story-driven style makes you feel as if you are sitting at the feet of some of the godliest and most successful entrepreneurs of all time.

Whether you are someone who traditionally identifies as an entrepreneur, or someone who just knows they are wired to create, Called to Create is sure to inspire, challenge, and equip you to view your work as nothing less than service to God and the world. Pre-order your copy today!

Part I: Calling
Part I deconstructs bad theology around work and calling, helping us discern and embrace the call to create.

Chapter 1: The First Entrepreneur
Chapter 1 makes the case that God was The First Entrepreneur, the One who brought something out of nothing, established order out of chaos, created for the good of others, and then called humankind to co-create with Him.

Chapter 2: The Goodness of Work
Chapter 2 attempts to dispel the false storyline the Church has bought that says work is inherently bad and meaningless unless you work in “full-time ministry,” replacing these lies with a much more hopeful, meaningful, and Biblically grounded view of all work.

Chapter 3: Discerning Our Calling
Chapter 3 sets forth a series of practical questions to help discern the call to create, replacing purely selfish questions with a framework that analyzes how our passions, gifts, and opportunities can be used to serve others through our work.

Part II: Creating
Part II examines how creating for our Caller changes the why, what, and how of our creating.

Chapter 4: Why We Create
Chapter 4 challenges us to think deeply and honestly about ambition, replacing the desire to create to make a name for ourselves with motivations to reveal God’s character and love others.

Chapter 5: What We Create
Chapter 5 examines how the motivations behind our endeavors manifest themselves in the products we choose to create.

Chapter 6: How We Create
Chapter 6 explores what it looks like to holistically integrate the gospel into our entrepreneurial endeavors, beginning with striving for excellence in everything and prioritizing people over profit.

Part III: Challenges
Part III wrestles with the challenges unique to or especially acute for the Christian creator.

Chapter 7: Trust, Hustle, and Rest
Chapter 7 grapples with the tension between trusting in God and hustling to make things happen in our ventures, making the case that we can only find true rest when we embrace the tension between these two ideas.

Chapter 8: Responding to Failure
Chapter 8 confronts the issue of adversity and failure that is inevitable for risk-taking entrepreneurs and how we as Christians should respond to these challenges with hope rooted deeply in Christ.

Chapter 9: Renewing Our Minds
Chapter 9 looks at how regular communion with God, our partners, and other believers can help renew our minds as we create in a world that is constantly trying to break our focus on eternal perspective.

Part IV: Charge
Part IV issues a charge for Christian creators to create for the Kingdom.

Chapter 10: Commanded to Create Disciples
Chapter 10 examines Jesus’ command to create disciples and how each of us can fulfill the Great Commission through our whatever creative endeavor God calls us to.

Chapter 11: The Purpose of Profit
Chapter 11 wrestles with the multifaceted purpose of profit and how we should steward financial abundance in light of the generosity we have been shown in Christ.

Chapter 12: Creating for the Kingdom
Chapter 12 explores how what we create today can last on into eternity, as we lay our creations down at the feet of The First Entrepreneur as He builds His final Masterpiece.

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About the Author

Jordan Raynor is a serial entrepreneur and best-selling author who leads a growing community of Christians following God’s call to create. He is the Founder of Vocreo, where his team helps entrepreneurs across a wide range of industries launch and grow their businesses. In 2016, Jordan took an indefinite leave of absence from Vocreo to take on the role of CEO at one of the firm’s portfolio companies: the venture-backed tech startup, Threshold 360. Jordan is also a Co-founder of Citizinvestor–the largest crowdfunding platform for government projects in the United States.

In 2011, Jordan’s first company was acquired by Engage–deemed a “mega-interactive agency” by Mashable. At Engage, Jordan’s team led digital strategy for some of the most high-profile political and consumer brands in the world including Paul Ryan, Newt Gingrich, Google, Foursquare, and Walmart.

A highly sought-after public speaker on the topic of entrepreneurship, Jordan has spoken at Harvard University, SXSW, TEDx, the World Forum for Democracy, the Guardian’s Activate Summit, and many other events around the world. Jordan has twice been selected as a Google Fellow and served in the Bush White House in 2006. He is a sixth-generation Floridian currently residing in Tampa with his wife, Kara, and their two young daughters Ellison and Kate. The Raynors are members of The Church at Odessa.

Endorsements

Mark Batterson

Mark Batterson

New York Times best selling author of The Circle Maker / Lead Pastor of National Community Church

Creativity isn’t optional, not if we’re serious about conforming to the image of Christ. Creativity is the natural, supernatural byproduct of a Spirit-filled life. I’m so thankful Jordan wrote this book to challenge the Church to embrace creativity and entrepreneurship as a means of glorifying God and loving others!

Scott Harrison

Scott Harrison

Founder and CEO / charity: water

Creating a purpose-driven business or a non-profit can be one of the significant ways to live out the gospel and serve others around you. This book will inspire and challenge you to action and change.

Krystal Whitten

Krystal Whitten

Creator / The Lettering Prayer Journal

Called to Create is a book that will warm your soul and light a fire in your heart. In this book, Jordan has brought to light an aspect of God’s character that is both beautiful and compelling. His words will inspire you to look at your creative work - whatever it may be - as an act of worship and a reflection of God himself. Called to Create gives validation to the creative work you do and challenges you to continue that creative work as a service to the world around you. You will be motivated to go create something beautiful and live out the calling on your heart. Called to Create is the book that will give you the confidence to say, “My work is valuable.” This is a must-read book for all Christian creatives, whether you’ve started your work or are still dreaming about it.

Dave Blanchard

Dave Blanchard

CEO and Co-Founder / Praxis

Entrepreneurship provides a blank canvas for Christians to put their belief into action, and in Called to Create, Jordan gives us a strong theology and a great imagination for what this might look like in the world. This is a key reading for both the aspiring entrepreneur and the active founder alike.

Ron Blue

Ron Blue

Founder of Kingdom Advisors / Best-Selling Author

I have had the privilege of starting several businesses, both secular and faith based, but never writing about my experiences. I would hope that had I done so, my book would have been the one that Jordan Raynor has written. He has captured the essence of being entrepreneurial and, better yet, being an entrepreneur following the call of God. At my age and stage of life I look back with fulfillment and gratitude that when God calls, He also equips. May thousands of new entrepreneurs read this book and follows God's call to create for the glory of the Great Creator.

Mike Sharrow

Mike Sharrow

President and CEO / The C12 Group

Millions of Jesus followers live in suspended animation, missing their true destiny in Christ and vocation. Called to Create is a tomahawk missile on course to set these captives free and invite them into a wild adventure of honoring God in the marketplace, reimagining calling, purpose and vocation while embracing whole life discipleship. It is a bold work that will inevitably change lives…perhaps yours!

Mark Russell, Ph.D.

Mark Russell, Ph.D.

Founder of Elevate Publishing / Author of Our Souls at Work, Work as Worship and The Missional Entrepreneur

Whether you’re a business owner, an entrepreneurial employee, a student looking to make something of the world, the founder of a non-profit, a mompreneur, a photographer, a painter, a musician, an author, or a chef, Called to Create will help you see how your creative work can be an act of worship to God. There is no hierarchy of callings, whereby “ministers” or “missionaries” are doing the work of the Lord. God has called us all and in Called to Create, Jordan debunks this bad theology and offers Christian creators an inspiring, biblically-based invitation to embrace creativity as a means of serving God and others.