I’m the true vine, and My father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit (John 15:1-2).
Imagine planting a garden in your backyard with strawberries, tomatoes, blueberries and so on; all these great fruits and vegetables that your family enjoys. However, after spending months watering and caring for them a bad storm appears out of nowhere and destroys all of your hard work. Worst of all, imagine you were a farmer and you depended on these fruits and vegetables to provide for your family and now all of your hard work is destroyed. This makes you wonder whether God truly cares. Is He concerned about your daily needs? If He is, then why would He allow a storm to come and destroy all that you have worked so hard for?
This is how many kingdom business people around the world feel at this time. Many of them worked hard throughout the past several years to build a business that would honor God, meet market needs and expand the kingdom of God. However, the recent economic storm seems to have caused major damage to their business and for some it completely threatens to shut down their entire industry. They wonder whether God can cause them to be fruitful in the midst of the current economic reality. Of course He can. There is no greater time for God to demonstrate His power and sovereignty. Although the world’s macro-economy is in jeopardy, this is nevertheless the best time for God’s micro-economy to thrive and provide solutions. Unfortunately, because we are in the world we will suffer along with the world the consequences of sin and man’s mismanagement of God’s resources but it does not have to create permanent damage to us nor destroy us. We can be fruitful in the midst of economic storms.
A kingdom business is fruitful when its productivity results in an acceptable net profit margin while manifesting the fruit of the spirit. Financial gain without spiritual increase (evidenced by the presence of the fruit of the spirit) is a net loss in God’s economy no matter how wide the margin of profitability. Though it is acceptable to experience temporary financial net losses as you seek to be fruitful you cannot afford to compromise the fruit of the spirit. That is the difference between a kingdom business and other businesses. Can we profitably steward resources in tough economies without becoming a victim of the works of the flesh? The fruit of the spirit is evidence that we are indeed operating by the spirit and not by the flesh (Galatians 5:16-26). I continue to be convinced that making a profit in business is not difficult – it all depends on how wide the gate is through which you are operating. It becomes difficult when you must operate within the boundaries of kingdom principles – this is the narrow way. As Jesus stated, it is difficult. With man it is impossible for it to be achieved but with God all things are possible (Matthew 7:13-14, Matthew 19:23-26).
How do you ensure that you experience fruitfulness through your business during the tough uncertain times?
1. Abide in Christ – The bible clearly states that we must first seek the kingdom of God and his righteousness if we want God to provide for us. Abiding in Christ is submitting your heart and mind to God’s word and will so that His rule may govern your lives and everything you do. This also ensures that we manifest the fruit of the spirit.
2. Have a clear mission – revisit your mission statement and make sure it is clear and relevant.
3. Be a faithful steward – evaluate your current expenses and make the proper adjustments to demonstrate your contentment, determine your breakeven point and the acceptable margin of profit. It is not how much you make that makes you fruitful but rather how much you do not spend.
4. Be diligent – if you do a scriptural word study on the word diligent you will find that in most bible references the words riches, wealth and success is often preceded by diligence. Diligence is the consistent application of effort towards a single goal with determination.
In spite of the many horror stories about the number of kingdom businesses that have been devastated by the economy, there are equally (if not more) stories about those businesses that are experiencing fruitfulness during this time; some are even having the best year of their business journey. One of those is Bruce Woodard of BSI, a Certified Biblical Entrepreneur who was awarded our Rookie of the Year award in 2009. Bruce recently shared how his business is currently overflowing and he is abundantly blessed to be serving so many people. Another success story is Junior Anderson of Royalty Transportation. He is also a Certified Biblical Entrepreneur who was the winner of the Atlanta BE Business plan competition last year. Junior is experiencing such an increase in demand that he is reviewing his current operation to ensure that his capacity can meet the growing business opportunity without compromising quality.
Where is your business productivity? Can you believe God to make you fruitful? My prayer for you is that your business will become so fruitful that it will draw your unbelieving family, friends and associates to take notice and acknowledge that your God is God and submit their lives to Him.
Copyright © 2010 Patrice Tsague ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Scripture quotations are taken from the King James Version of the Bible.