“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”
CHRISTIAN LED BUSINESSES THRIVE!
As an author I love to read reviews. All authors seek them out. We do to see if the reader was helped. Did we help change their lives? Was my book valuable? Any review is important, because it gives us author’s insight into how we are helping the world. Sure, we get disappointed with reviews that are bad and overly excited with good reviews. But we write to help and these reviews guide us for the future.
Recently I read a review of my book, Jesus & Co., that said, “I wish I worked in this company, I wish my employers focused on these values and learned the lessons of Jesus.” Immediately I was dismayed and empathetic for this woman who wrote the review. Then thought, “It isn’t this hard, why couldn’t she work at a place she could respect.” I had this life, why couldn’t she? A friend of mine, said, “Bruce you lived in a bubble for most of your life! Her life is normal.”
It is true that I was blessed with two wonderful parents, who ensured that I had a childhood of riches, even though they weren’t wealthy. I had a guidance counselor in high school who knew my limitations and sent me to the right college for my abilities. And with what limited resources they had, my parents paid for my education. I was fortunate to work for great companies that cared for their employees. I was fortunate to be married to a woman of grace and intelligence. I was surrounded by four daughters, who in each has a special sweetness. Whatever turmoil existed in my life, it was self-induced. Maybe I do live in a bubble.
But shouldn’t all people have this life, especially this woman who wrote the review. Shouldn’t she be able to go to work and look forward to the day. Shouldn’t she be able to support her family without feeling enslaved. Sure, she should! It is sobering to know that this life of drudgery exists.
Running a business on Christian values isn’t that hard and all people should be able to enjoy the fruit of these values. For employers it starts with a purity of the heart. A heart that seeks out good, for their employees and customers. Not one driven by numbers first and everything else second. Surely, employers have to worry about paying the bills and staying afloat. The irony is that having a generous heart and caring for both employees and customers actually create a more sustainable business. A business that is driven without self-interest and is focused on the values of Christ will not only survive, but thrive.
Running a Christian business means replacing the fear of scarcity with faith in the future. It means giving into the needs of others and not protecting our own self-interest. It means letting the power of humankind act independently and not commanded through excessive control caused by fear. The greatest asset a Christian led business has is not its hard assets, besides Jesus’ values, it is its people, employees and customers. And they only require direction with the purity of heart.
For some, giving up fear and control is hard. But Jesus tells us that there is a powerful future when we employ our values with a heart that does good. Imagine this woman working in an environment that cared for her, how much better would she work? Imagine if she was given the freedom to do what she thought was right, how much better the company would perform. Running a business with Christian values means giving up on fearful management and embracing the values of Jesus.
I have lived in a bubble and am thankful. From this pinnacle of being surrounded and nurtured by wonderful people, life has been good. But all people deserve this same chance. It is much simpler than we think, it means leading with a heart that is filled with the purity of Christian values.
Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman