I've listed 5 reasons business as missions leaders and companies fail... not the only 5, not the most common 5, just 5 I see.
Pray first, during and after everything you do... without ceasing. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you in the big decisions, day to day tasks and in every conversation you have. Go to him with questions and needs.
Listen to him more than you speak.
Develop an intimate relationship with God and you'll have the very best business advisor, available to you at all times. And when he asks you to take a risk and trust him, obey in faith.
2. no plan
Believe it or not, a lot of Business as Missions companies are started without much strategic business modeling, analysis or even a plan. The premise "I can buy/make it for X and sell it for 2X; therefore it should be easy to make a profit!" fails to account for some of the most important costs of business (your time, marketing and a million other non-product expenses). Consumer needs, market conditions, government policy, competitive landscape, and so much more has to be considered.
If you aren't a business person and have no experience creating a business plan, partner with someone who does.
3. inability or unwillingness to hire help and/or delegate
Some small businesses must scale to survive.
Great leaders are willing to sacrifice some control and take risk by hiring and equipping others to help and therefore multiplying their capacity.
4. your church
I consider partnership with the church a key to success and will further develop my thoughts on this another day. However, it can also be a hinderance to business. If your church is so "supportive" that the tell you your idea is wonderful and help fund your business without fully vetting your plan, they are doing you more harm than good.
You need someone who cares enough to tell you why it might not work, potential snares to avoid and how to improve your product or idea... sadly, it can be difficult to find someone like that at church. Of course, this isn't always the case.
5. failure to recognize the opposition
I'm not referring to the business competition, but spiritual and demonic opposition.
"12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.
13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm."
1 Peter 5:6-11
"6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, 7 casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
8 Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
9 Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.10 And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.11 To him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen."
The Bible is clear, I've heard many trustworthy testimonies and I've experienced it myself... we have an enemy.
If you are planning to produce fruit for the kingdom of God you better also be planning for a battle against his adversaries.
Its worth it.
"May the Lamb that was slain receive the just reward for His sufferings."
a Moravian missionary
Today I have the privilege of posting on (in)courage, one of DaySpring's blogs.
I work on (in)courage every day from behind the scenes and pray over this website and community almost every day. I'm honored to be able to share my story today. I took it as an opportunity to talk about a few of my favorite things: Jesus, DaySpring and Business as Missions.
A guy writing on (in)courage… kind of strange and a little awkward.
That’s likely what you’re thinking and that’s certainly what I was thinking when Holleysuggested I write this post.
But as I considered the idea, I started to get excited about the opportunity to share the heart of DaySpring, the company behind (in)courage.
My personal relationship with God and understanding of His heart really began to grow while I was in college. As I started to study the Bible, my life was turned upside down by this God that loved me enough to send His son Jesus to earth to suffer, die, and defeat death for me. I was blown away by His love and the fact that He calls me His son and has a plan for my life.
During this time, I realized that a life devoted to anything except Him and His glory would fall short of the purpose I was created for. My heart’s desire became to see His name lifted up in every tribe, tongue and nation. I knew God had called me to ministry and I quickly began to look into seminary as a next step in that direction.
I originally went to college to get my business degree because I’ve always enjoyed marketing and I felt strongly that God had given me a natural inclination toward business; but I never really understood why.
As I planned out my future at seminary and in ministry, I had one ever-present question in my mind:“Why did God give me a passion for business if it wasn’t a part of His plan for my life?” I wrestled with this question for several months.
The absolute most important part of doing successful Kingdom business is dependence on God.
His Holy Spirit must be your guide, your consultant and your chief advisor.
Submit all things to the Lord; before every decision, big or small, ask him "what is it you would have me do here?".
Make listening a priority component of your prayer life.
Seek God. Seek his face, his will and his glory alone.
Everything else is secondary.
Those people around me who have done something truly remarkable have been single minded in their focus and approach. This is something most people, including myself, really struggle with.
The Bible asks us to be single minded in our faith and dedication to Christ.
Kingdom Business or Business as Missions should not be a double minded approach splitting our vision between business and ministry.
Instead, God's glory must be the motivation and our only focus, with business as an effective means to that end.