Over the past year Jenny and I have become “accidental” entrepreneurs. It started with Jenny selling her hand-made caramels, as a fund raiser for a group going to Scotland, and has grown into a bustling business venture. I have also found a niche market, with Kingdom Coaching, that appears to have a lot of potential. This sudden success has us attempting to understand how “business” fits into our seek first the Kingdom lifestyle.
Business can be a fairly simple concept:
⁃ Create a desirable product
⁃ Market the product
⁃ Sell the product.
We are aware of the need to monitor expense/profit ratios, have consistent marketing strategies and make wise decisions regarding where and how we present our products. As good, hard working Americans we are also aware of the hard work, dedication and sacrifice that is required to grow a successful business in our culture.
Those of you who are familiar with our story know that, as a family, we agreed to always say yes to God. We also agreed to follow Him wherever He directed and to simply trust Him, as our good Father, to provide for our needs. As a result, we have had an incredible 5 year adventure that has seen miraculous provision over and over again. Now God has opened doors for these business ventures and we feel like we are at a crossroads. Do we follow the tried and true business practices of our culture, or do we seek God’s direction for each step. The obvious Christian answer is to seek God’s direction for each step, but we have found that the obvious Christian answer holds up in a Sunday sermon, but does not fair well in day-to-day living.
The Bible is full of examples of people seeking God for each step. It is also full of examples of God directing people to do seemingly disastrous things. As modern, American Christians we are often okay with giving lip service to the concept of seeking first the Kingdom, but we tend to shy away from following the seemingly disastrous directives that may come from seeking God’s plan. In modern Christianity God is not allowed to give crazy directives.
We experienced this as we followed God “off of the cliff”,so to speak, when we sold our home, quit work and followed God with only His promise of “seek first the Kingdom and I will take care of your needs”. We reluctantly followed as each step got crazier and crazier. Along the way we lost many good Christian friends who could not comprehend God directing us to do seemingly disastrous things. I don’t fault them, because I wanted to abandon the crazy directives as well, but found myself needing to answer the same question that Jesus’ disciples had to answer, when Jesus asked, “do you want to leave me as well?”. I reluctantly answered, as Peter did; “where could we go, only you have the words of eternal life”
Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?
We began this journey in the spirit, and we intend to complete it in the spirit. That means following God’s directives as it pertains to our business ventures as well. We are not entirely sure what that looks like, but we invite those of you who are full of faith and confidence in the goodness of a God whose ways are not our ways, to join with us as we invite heaven to invade our earthly conception of business.