It’s time for faith-drive entrepreneurs to emerge
As the pandemic continues, we need an outbreak of something more powerful than a virus: the spirit of enterprise. It is time for new business enterprises that create value and jobs to replace the hundreds of thousands being lost.
We need initiatives that can create social glue, capable of bring the disparate parts of our lonely and isolated society together.
As a follower of Jesus, my go-to place for inspiration is the Bible, which says, “Remember the Lord your God, or it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth.” (Deuteronomy 8:18). Clearly, wealth creation is a gift of God, not a gift of capitalism.
The word “wealth”, which has come to mean financial abundance, derives from the Old English word “weal”, meaning wellness and wellbeing. True wealth is not simply the sum of our cash and assets, but is also the relational capital that exists in our families, communities and society. This is the essence of the Hebrew word “shalom”, which means peace, harmony, completeness, welfare and prosperity.
God’s gift of wealth creation can unleash untold levels of human flourishing and thriving. The “Faith Driven Entrepreneur” movement explains, “We believe that business has God-given power to transform nations by creating jobs, generating prosperity and catalysing human flourishing” – an entrepreneurship, not driven by motives of selfish ambition and greed but rather of compassion and a desire to benefit all.
While high street spending is down, we are seeing the “at home” market grow. These market changes are not temporal, so initiating a new enterprise now will build benefits for years to come.
As the old saying goes, “necessity is the mother of invention”. Let’s innovate, launch and grow rather than pause, retreat and retrench. Maybe you have a creative enterprising or innovative idea, an idea that could be deployed to create wealth and wellbeing in your community, across our country and around the world?
From my experience in coaching entrepreneurs, the greatest barriers are self-limiting beliefs. We might think that our idea, resources or experience are too small to come to much. God is in the habit of taking the little we offer him – such as the boy who offered Jesus five small loaves and two fish to help feed a crowd – and making a lot out of it.
At other times the resistance to our idea may come from those we try to get on board in the early stages. But it’s actually the spirit of innovation, creativity and enterprise that will help to pull us through this pandemic. Let’s overcome our feelings of self-doubt and fear of rejection and failure and instead dig deep in tour reservoirs of determination hope and compassion.
Now is the perfect time to launch a venture. There is no shortage of human need and opportunity for the people talent, technology and financial capital required. Let us unleash the spirit of enterprise to create livelihoods and wellbeing: true wealth and shalom.
Matt Bird – The Times – 23rd Jan 2021 (reprinted with author’s permission)
Matt is the founder of the Cinnamon Network
The Bible is the relationship book. It is a book of relationships not a book of religion. It demonstrates how God has reached out through history to have a relationship with humanity. In turn, it teaches us how we can build relationships with God and one another. The Relationship Book explores 28 Biblical principles which when applied will enable you to build life-transforming relationships in your family, business and community.