A Question of Biblical Values

biblical values in businessWhen we talk about business, we talk about mission statements and value statements. Yet, we forget the foundational values of the Christian business owner based on God’s word.

We talked about the action of integrity and the decision of character.  Today, I want to get into the values found in God’s word.

Biblical values are the core beliefs that guide everything we do in life and business as a Christian. . . or at least they should be.

Instead of listing all the values we can find in God’s word let’s look at a good and bad example of using values from God’s word.

Let’s start with the bad.  There was a time, horrible as it was, when people used God’s word to force others into slavery.  They took the Bible out of context to fit what they wanted in this life.  They distorted God’s word to suit their needs.  Honestly, there are some churches that exist today that distort God’s word to make life comfortable for them or miserable for others.  That is not and has never been what God’s word is about!

Now the good.  I could recount hundreds of personal stories and all kinds of business stories I have read about God’s word impacting lives.  I could talk a bunch about Zig Ziglar who built an ’empire’ based on Christian values.  He is famous for saying, ‘You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.”  I heard him say he got that right out of God’s word.   He ran his business and his life on the Golden Rule. (Here’s a great interview with Zig about his faith.)

Christian values simply means we are basing our lives on the Bible.  We have a foundation to God’s word that undergirds. . . upholds or braces…our entire life.  We use God’s word as the ‘glasses’ by which we see the world.  They tell us how we worship God, treat people, and interact with the world we live in.

The only way we can live by God’s word is to know what is says.  2 Timothy 2:15 reminds us that we must “correctly handle the word of truth.”

As Christian entrepreneurs, we must understand God’s word foundationally.  We must dig down deep into the solid foundational truth of what God says.  If God does not directly state a fact, we must be cautious to tread where only angels dare walk.

The Bible is not a convenient book.  It is however a book that will shape your life and your business in ways that will stand the test of time.  I think back to Zig Ziglar.  He left this world and what he built still stands and still grows because he based his entire concept of life on God’s word.

How good is your biblical understanding of God’s word?  How much do you really know about what the Bible says about business?  How much time do you spend digging into God’s word to find how He wants you to run your business and live your life?

If you need some help getting started, we have a free membership to help you get a strong foundation to what God says about the Bible.  If you would rather, I have a 10 minute webinar that helps you understand how to understand the Bible better.

Whatever you do, take action.

I urge you, plead you!  Until we dig into God’s word and apply His principles to our business and personal lives, Christians will never be respected as the Children of God we are called to be.  Do something TODAY, Christian!

 

Biblical values are the core beliefs that guide everything we do in life and business as a Christian. #ChristianEntrepreneur #ChristianBusiness Click To Tweet

 

Here’s some additional reading:

A Question of Character

business characterWhile integrity is something people see through actions, character is what arises beyond those actions and causes the decision to act with integrity.  It is something that comes from the core of who we are.

In our last article we defined integrity as treating others as anything less than valuable children of God.  Let’s try to nail down character in the same way.

Character is the internal driving decision to act with integrity.

Character is internal and never changes.  Having a high character does not mean you always do the right thing, we all mess up.  It means that you always strive to do the right thing no matter how you feel, how someone treats you or how the circumstances look.

One of the questions we had in the article on integrity was: Do you pay what you should pay even if you are charged a different price from a supplier?

Character is what it takes to notice the difference.  Most people would write it off as getting a good deal, but a person of character would make the call and verify the price.

Another question was: Do you show up when you say you will show up even if an emergency pops up?  This one is a tough one, but let’s identify character.

Character takes the moment the emergency arises and communicates to all outstanding responsibilities.  In other words, you would still be a person of integrity if you did not make the meeting if you called and explained the situation to the person you were meeting before the meeting actually takes place.

Integrity would make the meeting.  Character takes care of the emergency and communicates value to responsibilities outside of the emergency.  Character prioritizes while still handling responsibilities and the emergencies.

I guess you could say that integrity is the action and character is the decision that initiates the right action.  We have to become aware of what the right thing is to do and then our integrity comes out to make it happen.

Some people will say that character and integrity are the same.  That is fine.  But if you dig into the word origins you can see a difference. “Integrity” comes from the word ‘in tact” or “complete.” “Character” comes from a word that describes a stamping tool and means “a distinctive mark.”

As Christians, we are set apart and called to a higher purpose.  We act with a high moral character no matter what this fallen world throws at us. Character is the root of integrity, and ultimately, the internal drive that makes integrity possible.

 

 

Character is the internal driving decision to act with integrity. #ChristianBusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur Click To Tweet

 

Other reading on character

A Question of Integrity

business integrityWe are going to talk about attitude.  One of the first things we talk about as Christian entrepreneurs is integrity.

Integrity is one of those things that you know it when you see it, but it is hard to really nail down.

I want to make it as simple as possible and define integrity with a question and break that down into a statement:

Do you do what you say you will do? But, it does not stop there.  Anything less than valuing others as children of God is a loss of integrity.

With that simple definition in mind, let’s branch out on the various edges of the question and really ask yourself how your level of integrity is doing:

  • Do you give the highest quality to your customers as promised, even if it cost you a bit extra?
  • Do you do your best to get your products to your customers as expected and quickly fix any problems by going above and beyond to make up any errors?
  • Do you pay the extra hours when an employee forgets to put them on their time card even though you know he/she worked additional hours?
  • Do you pay what you should pay even if you are charged a different price from a supplier?*
  • Do you show up when you say you will show up even if an emergency pops up?*

*We will talk about character in our next article.

Integrity is something that Christian business owners should be known for.  A customer should never feel ripped off or slighted.  They should never feel that advertising and marketing leads them astray.  They should never feel like the business treats them anything less than a valuable child of God.

Anything less than valuing others as children of God is a loss of integrity. #ChristianBusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur #Integrity Click To Tweet

 

Here are a Couple of Interesting Reads on Integrity:

Faith in the Workplace: VIDEO

Henry Blackaby wrote “Experiencing God.”  I did not know until I saw this video that he was so involved in the workplace.

Listen as Blackaby shares about faith in the workplace:

 

Here’s some wisdom I caught from the video:

  • Character determines assignment.
  • Success is much more difficult to handle than stress and failure.
  • You are not to be recognized by man, but be recognized by God.

What did you find helpful from this video?

God wants you to be available to Him in business. -Blackaby #ChristianEntrepreneur #Christianbusiness Click To Tweet

May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance. 2 Thessalonians 3:5

Listen as you read along

(running time 2 minutes 08 seconds)

(Right click here and “save as” to download audio MP3 – 2:08)

Paul starts this chapter with a request for prayer.  He is praying that we, as believers, will continually spread the message of Jesus.  He asks for prayers of protection, deliverance and strength.

In verse 6 his whole message changes.  He warns about idleness.  I love verse 11.  Paul talks about idle people.  He says, “They are not busy; they are busybodies.”

He talks about how idleness leads to disruption.  When people don’t have a reason to work, they get involved in everyone else’s business.

This may sound like a weird passage to bring out for business owners, but there is a lot of value for us in this passage.  Look at how Paul set the example of others.  He did not take handouts.  He worked hard so that he could help others.  He was always in business and spreading the word of God.

I think we miss that point in scripture.  Paul worked in business as a tentmaker everywhere he went to minister.  He was called to spread the word of God and did so by working in his business ‘as an example to us.’

We must not discount how powerful our testimony is as a business owner.  We have the message of Christ living in our lives.  We have the privilege to be able to tell others about our Savior as we go about our business.

Let’s make sure we don’t get lost in the message here.  He is talking about idleness and working.  We are not to be busy for busy sake.  We are to work to make a good living for our family, help our employees and be a positive influence in our community.

If we provide a valuable service, others will want to get involved in what we are doing.  Those that are idle will see how we have developed a business based on integrity, faith and biblical values.  They will see you as an example.

In verse 13 Paul says, “as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.”  It is good to be in business. It is good to spread the love of God.  It is good to share the message of hope to an idle and disruptive world.

God gave you a great purpose. He placed you in business so that you may be an influence for Him.  You can’t influence others if you are idle and not lining your life up with what God wants for you.  God gave you a purpose, live out that purpose with His power, love and guidance.

May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance. 2 Thessalonians 3:5

Grow Wealth Biblically

grow-wealth-biblicallyHow to grow wealth biblically from Proverbs

I get asked if God wants us to grow our money.  My answer is always “yes.” If God placed you in a business, He has done so with a purpose.  Your purpose is to help others and add value to the world.

The caveat is that God wants us to grow in a way that we are able to handle the money that He gives us.  In other words, we must grow in our knowledge of money in order to make our money grow and be able to properly manage it.

You have probably heard of the stories about people who win the lottery or get big sums of money only to lose it all and be right back to square one?  Many have none of that money left and are actually in a worse place after having lots of money. Most of them return to where they were financially within a year or two.

In high school, I had a teacher who I found out had won the lottery a few years earlier.  You would think he would quit and live off the money, but he did not manage it right.  Sure, he drove a Jaguar, but he was forced to work each and every day of his life just to maintain a basic standard of living.  He even started a side business to try to gain money again.  Last time I checked, he was still a teacher.

(Note: Teaching is an honorable profession.  Personally, I think good teachers should be paid more.  This teacher did not teach because he loved students.  He taught because he had to after losing his fast gained wealth.)

Here’s our proverb for today:

Proverbs 13:11 Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow.

We talked yesterday about how we lose our money, it dwindles away especially quick if it is earned dishonestly.  We are always having to watch our backs and cover our trails when we act deceptively.  However, that is not what God wants for us.

As believers, God wants us to be blessed.  Blessing does not just mean money.  It means family, friends, community and an ever growing relationship with Him.  We get involved in church and we give as needed.  Living a life of blessing is about being able to help when we want and letting God get all the glory.

Proverbs 28:8 Whoever increases wealth by taking interest or profit from the poor  amasses it for another, who will be kind to the poor.

God does not want us to give all of our money away.  He wants us to be kind to the poor and not take advantage, but our money is meant to do good. We are meant to care for our family.  As business owners, we are meant to pay fair (above average) wages.  We are meant to care for our community and get involved.

Proverbs 13:11 talks about gathering money little by little.  We will never get wealthy by how much money we spend.  We won’t get wealthy by gambling, begging or stealing.  We get wealthy by how much money we earn, keep and use properly.

Wealth is an ever growing balance of earning diligently, spending wisely, and giving cheerfully.

Look at your budget.  Break down how much you spend on entertainment (movies, cable, etc.), going out to eat versus eating at home, giving to church, saving, etc.  Where does your checkbook say your priorities are?

Let me just say, if you spend more money on entertaining than you do for God, something is not working in your budget. Checkbooks are the truest test of where you place your priorities. Doing a quick evaluation of your budget will show where your priorities lie.

If you want to be wealthy learn to manage money.  Increase your financial education and learn to use money properly.  Grow it little by little by adding value to the world. Then, when you begin earning, learn to give and help others.  This helps us keep money in perspective and think more eternally about our wealth.

 

Wealth is a balance of earning diligently, spending wisely, and giving cheerfully. #ChristianBusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur Click To Tweet

How to lose wealth biblically

lose-wealth-biblicallyHow to lose your wealth biblically from Proverbs

We are often afraid of losing our money.  We are afraid of taking risks and sometimes that keeps us from making good decisions.

It’s all about perspective.  If we know God is in charge of things, why don’t we listen to Him when it comes to our money?

Let’s look at the biblical way you can lose your money.

Proverbs 28:8 Whoever increases wealth by taking interest or profit from the poor  amasses it for another, who will be kind to the poor.

There is nothing wrong with earning an interest from our money, the issue is taking advantage of the poor.  God cares for His people and He will help those who are helping His people.  He wants us to earn money in a way that helps others.  If we are charging crazy interest rates, then we are taking advantage.

Imagine if there was a credit card company or a bank that was run on Christian values?  They would charge a fair interest and it would be spread among other Christians leaders who are able and willing to take a little bit of mitigated risk to help other Christians with their financing.

Here are a couple of other Proverbs that warn us about how we can lose our money:

Proverbs 1:19 Such are the paths of all who go after ill-gotten gain;    it takes away the life of those who get it.

Proverbs 11:18 A wicked person earns deceptive wages,  but the one who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward.

Proverbs 21:6 A fortune made by a lying tongue   is a fleeting vapor and a deadly snare

The quickest way to lose your money is to live outside of biblical integrity.  When we step outside of God’s will for our lives, we step into a world that is looking to devour us.  God wants us to live above reproach.

We must not be lie, cheat or swindle.  We must not steal, kill or destroy for money.  We must live our life and run our business on our values.  We must do the right thing no matter how much it hurts.

In the long run, living by our values will always bring us closer to God and His blessings.  If you want to grow your money, do it the honest, hard-working, smart way.  Follow God and His principles and He will never lead you astray.

The quickest way to lose your money is to live outside of biblical integrity. #ChristianBusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur Click To Tweet

building-wealth-biblicallyBuilding Wealth Biblically from Proverbs

Proverbs has a lot to say about life and often it talks about money. Do you ever wish you could grow money the way the Bible says?

Let’s look at a common proverb from the Bible about making money.

Proverbs 10:4-5 Lazy hands make for poverty, but diligent hands bring wealth. He who gathers crops in summer is a prudent son, but he who sleeps during harvest is a disgraceful son.

Let’s start simply.  If you are lazy, you will not be able to grow wealth.  There are no get rich quick schemes that last.  Our integrity and values always catch up to us.

Diligent” is a great word to use in this passage.  In the original language it means: “to cut, sharpen or decide.” Wealth does not just happen.  It takes a determined decision.  You must cut off those things that are holding you back and strive for the things that brings God’s blessings.

Proverbs 10:22 The blessings of the Lord brings wealth, without painful toil for it.

God does not want us to toil painfully.  We should not be afraid of hard work, but we must work with our minds as much as our bodies.  It takes intelligent planning.  We must ‘gather crops’ when it is time.  We must know our seasons.  We must work in the knowledge that we have and the experience that we gain.

It all comes down to trusting God with our decisions and always moving forward as God gives us more wisdom. Always work with integrity and diligence.  Plan out how you will grow.  And remember, growing wealth is as simple as adding value to the world and getting paid for the value you add.

Growing wealth means adding value to the world and getting paid for the value you add. #ChristianBusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur Click To Tweet

Listen as a Christian Business Coach shares biblical insights for your business.  He starts in Psalm 91: 13 so have your Bibles ready so you can hear directly from God’s word.

It is not enough to believe in God and be in business.  We must be in God’s business.

 

It is not enough to believe in God and be in business.  We must be in God’s business.

It is not enough to believe in God and be in business. We must be in God's business. #Christianbusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur Click To Tweet

Christians grow business3 Reasons Christians should grow a business

I think Christians miss out on many blessings because they are not willing to step out and take chances.  Whether it is witnessing to a friend, or growing a business, Christians should be bold about their faith in a God who gave them wisdom, courage and strength.

Today, let’s talk about three reasons Christians should grow their business.  I am sure there are those that say, “We’ll just wait for God to grow our business.”  I want to make sure you understand that waiting on God is a good thing.  Waiting without taking action is not wise.  God does not steer a parked car.

 

Growing a business means helping more people.

First and foremost, your business is helping people.  You want to help people with your product or service.  Beyond that you are helping your employees, your community and your family by providing for them.  When you grow your business wisely, you are helping an ever increasing number of people.

 

Growing a business means you are becoming more influential.

As your business grows, you become more influential and more people will listen to you.  They will see you as a success and you will have a larger platform to tell them of the blessings that you have received from God.  Don’t discount success as a means to introduce people to Christ.

 

Growing a business is the most spiritual thing you can do as a business owner.

This may sound counterintuitive, but I want to put this in perspective.  Growing your business gives you a larger platform from which to share about God.  People listen to people who are successful and it allows you to impact their lives.

When you succeed, people look at your habits and want to copy what you do.  The reason growing your business is such a spiritual endeavor is because you are reading your Bible, actively getting involved in church, leading others, serving, and giving.  People will see that you are living a life of integrity because ultimately God is your CEO.

 

Conclusion

I am not going to pretend growing a business in and of itself is spiritual.  What makes is spiritual is the enlivened power of God working in and through your business.

Remember the prayer of Jabez?  “Jabez cried out to the God of Israel, “Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! Let your hand be with me, and keep me from harm so that I will be free from pain.” And God granted his request.” I Chronicles 9:10

God did not bless Jabez just because he asked.  God blessed him because He knew Jabez would be an influential person who would speak for the King of Kings.  The Bible says his influence came from his honor and that honor was directly rooted in the power of God.

Christian, I want to encourage you to grow your business.  If you need some help, get involved with our growth membership and get on the right path or at least find a mentor or accountability partner that can help you grow. We grow best when we grow together strengthening and encouraging one another.

Be blessed and be a blessing.

Growing a business is the most spiritual thing you can do as a business owner. #ChristianBusiness #ChristianEntrepreneur Click To Tweet