We Christians are a strange lot. Frequently, we say we believe one thing but live out our lives quite differently. While hypocrisy is one thing, "spiritual blind-spots" are another. Problematic as hypocrisy is, it is not my concern in this article; rather, I am concerned with our "blind spots." A blind spot is an area of speech, action, or thinking that we have and practice which we simply don't see or acknowledge.
Virtually every believer called to the marketplace desires to work in, help manage, or build a business enterprise honoring Christ. Many have called this idea, working with or building a "Christian business." That, of course, raises the question of exactly what a Christian business is, and if it exists, what does it look like? Over the years, I have sat in many a discussion trying to definitively answer that question. It raises interesting issues we need to continue to discuss. What follows is an attempt to at least broadly sketch out some of the main concerns surrounding this issue and, hopefully, some helpful observations and working conclusions.
As we all know, the vast majority of adults spend more time working at their jobs in the marketplace than any other social activity. To many, if not most of them, work is "work" - a toilsome tedious necessity that must be done to survive but often carries little of their hearts. It need not be so, but for many it will likely remain their reality.
Ultimately, managing our "business" is about managing ourselves, whether or not we actually own or oversee our place of employment. As we have all been told before, true freedom begins in godly self-government. While we cannot control many factors in life and in our external environment, we can control our reactions to them. In uncertain times like these it is wise to re-ground ourselves in these kind of "basics." Indeed, under pressure, the basics of truth that we know and have practised are what help to stabilize us and all those we influence. It therefore behooves us in both our personal and professional lives to be very clear on the truths upon which we rest our lives, our families, and our fortunes.
The best way to evangelize anyone anywhere is to simply live our faith. Our most effective witness as individuals, a church, or a company is to embody evangelism as a lifestyle rather than a contrived program. People sense the difference between the authenticity of our love for them in Christ and our targeting them as part of our "soul-winning" endeavors. As in all things, only the real deal works
"For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. And when he had agreed with the laborers for a denarius for the day, he sent them into his vineyard." Matthew 20:1-2
The purpose of a marketing plan is to simplify the execution of the marketing idea: moving goods or services from concept to customer. You may ask, "Why do I even need a plan?" The answer is because without it, you are likely to use your limited resources in a wasteful way and thereby fail in the effort. For almost everything we do, we have a plan to accomplish it.
Do you find yourself in a season of adversity? If so, meditating on scripture is one of the most important things you can do right now. Os Hillman has compiled some of his most helpful scriptures he has meditated upon during times of adversity.