Any business generally reflects the values of its principle owners or managers. It is the reflection of these values that determines whether or not a business is labeled Christian or non-Christian. If a business is to be used to serve God, it should have but one overriding purpose-to glorify Him. As such, I feel that there are five basic business functions that, together, constitute the activities of a Christian business: (1) evangelizing; (2) discipling; (3) funding God's work; (4) providing for needs; and (5) generating profits. As a means of funding God's work, many Christian business owners or managers have chosen to give a tithe from the business.
A successful businessman once confided in another businessman known for his wisdom. "I've made a lot of money. I will soon be able to retire comfortably and do just about anything I want." "John," the wise businessman replied, "I've noticed that every time someone thinks they've built a tree that is so tall it almost reaches heaven, God often decides to shake the tree."
The minute we start trusting in riches, God will, in fact, "shake the tree" to demonstrate who is the source of wealth to turn us back to trusting Him completely. He did it in my life, and He'll do it in your life too because He loves us too much to allow us to continue down this destructive path.
Owning a car is a fact of life in our society. To be sure, there are those, particularly in large urban areas, who are able to get around by using public transportation, but the lifestyle of today's average family makes owning at least one car a practical necessity. So, having this need for a car as a "given," what is the most economical way to meet that need?
I know what it's like to see years and years go by and feel you have forfeited a life. For the first thirty-seven years of my life, the bottom-line was my god also. I remember thoughts similar to my email friend after I was fired. I gave my life to a company, working 60-65 hours a week to produce revenue for them, and what did I have to show for my sacrifice? A significant contribution to my failing marriage, overdue bills, and bad back. I thought I was building a better future. Unfortunately my misguided energy was destroying my future. Financial slavery is such a vicious-yet subtle-trap. Not only did chasing money make me a slave to this master, but I actually justified the chase. Looking back, I realize that getting fired was a tremendous blessing in disguise. It led me on a path to finding the Truth that set me free from the bondage of a never-satisfied, bottom-line god.
Have you ever considered what the real purpose of money and business is? Bob Fraser, in his book, Marketplace Christianity, has done a masterful job of explaining this in chapter 5 of his book, Marketplace Christianity. This is the chapter in full.