This article was written for an essay competition i participated, since it didn’t make the final selection, i decided to publish it here to my audience.
On the 2nd of January 2016, Haruna Malik King started a YouTube video channel. He set a goal to get over 20,000 subscribers in 2 years. I could not believe someone, especially a Nigerian Christian, could make such level of commitment.
In most cases, Nigerian Christians commit more time to fasting and prayer for business success, far less than they do to imbibe kingdom principles like diligence, quality delivery, and faithfulness in their enterprise. As I write this, Mr. Haruna has over 20, 000 subscribers and 4 million video views.
For a business to be termed “Christian”, that simply means it has been structured to reflect kingdom principles. It suggests that every activity and resource has been primed to not just attract revenue, but ultimately fulfill Jesus’ redemption command in Matthew 28:19 & 20.
A Christian business should be built to attract and serve especially unbelievers. Jesus Christ in Luke 5:32 (NIV) said, “I have not come to call righteous ones, but sinners, to repentance.” If we kingdom-preneurs, understand our calling in Christ and the idea behind Jesus’ above statement, we must strategically position our enterprise to become an unbelievers’ magnet. Making financial profit, for a kingdom-preneur, is a secondary goal to the higher goal of delivering remarkable customer experience.
In the story of the ten talents as found in Matthew 25:14-30, the Master entrusted His property to his servants “each according to his ability”. It therefore brings to light that a kingdom business owner should not only hire a skilled team, but first assign responsibilities according to each person’s ability, and then encourage them to develop other skills.
Mahatma Ghandi was asked, “Mr. Gandhi, you have been working fifteen hours a day for fifty years. Don’t you think you should take a vacation?” Gandhi smiled and replied, “I am always on vacation.” Give each team member what they love doing, and everyday will seem like vacation.
This also leads to the question about whether a believer should employ an unbeliever. Why not? The twelve disciples of Jesus were not believers until they encountered Him. Refusing to hire anyone except Christians is illegal (at least by Nigerian law) and prevents a business from fulfilling the redemptive purpose of Jesus. It is the life of an environment that influences an individual.
The personality of the Christian business owner, his or her words seasoned with salt, the quality of Christ-centered leadership and corporate culture he or she engineers, backed with interceding prayers, are the alluring ingredients that melt even the brick heart of an unbeliever in the team.
A Christian business should be structured to be accountable to godly mentors. According to Micromentor, an organization that matches small businesses with suitable mentors, mentored businesses increased their revenue by 83% while non-mentored businesses only increased their revenue by 16%.
A Christian business owner should intentionally seek godly men who are producing the results he or she dreams to produce, and submit to their mentoring. “Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.” Proverbs 13:20 (NIV)
For Christian business owners, building our businesses according to these principles is a responsibility. The mandate to make disciples is non-negotiable, and should be proudly and strategically built into our enterprise.