If we look across the country at the major issues facing most urban communities - and in particular the minority populations - three common themes emerge... the lack of Jesus, jobs, and justice. In the video below I share my thoughts on this and how Greater Works Vocational Discipleship Program is addressing these three issues in South Atlanta.
OUR SOLUTION TO A RED HOT INNER CITY SUMMER
Over the past few months many urban cities across the U.S., including Baltimore and Ferguson, have seen a sharp rise in tensions as a result of police shootings and subsequent protests and rioting. At the core of this unrest for many inner city men is a deep sense of hopelessness that stems from the lack of opportunities and in particular jobs.
Baltimore has shown us that our young men need training and institutions where they can learn to function as real men. An idle mind is the devil’s workshop. Instead of rioting, our inner city men could be learning life skills with promised employment in the Greater Works Vocational Discipleship Program. This is a GAME CHANGER!
We Need Your Financial Assistance to Help These Men
We believe joblessness and homelessness leads to hopelessness and idle time which always leads to violence. Your financial support of Greater Works will enable us to provide training and job opportunities to men and women in South Atlanta / Lakewood who are genuinely interested in improving themselves and their community. Please donate today to the Greater Works initiative.
God bless you and thanks in advance for helping us ignite the changes the need to happen in our communities!
Watch as I share my thoughts on a source and potential solutions of problems in Baltimore and many other urban communities around the country. Let’s ignite the change we want to see. I look forward to your thoughts and feedback.
Of the three components of the Triple Bottom Line, social impact can sometimes be the hardest to quantify and evaluate. However, some basic principles apply that will give you some guidance as to how to incorporate this area in the overall assessment of your company’s health.
The first thing to consider is similar to the maxim taught in school to all healthcare students and is a fundamental principle throughout the world, which states, “First, do no harm.” Your business should do no harm to people or the planet (environmental). As a good steward of what God has entrust you with, it definitely would not be good for your relationship with Him if you are using your business to harm people. That is why I would not consider you a Kingdom entrepreneur if you were engaged in any kind of business that is opposed to principles taught in God’s Word. If your business could somehow drive people away from Jesus rather than closer to him, you need to pray and ask God if you need to go do something different or change how you do business.
In terms of the environmental side of this, we are not just stewards of people; we are also stewards of our planet. I am not a staunch environmentalist, but I do believe we have a responsibility to do our best to take care of what God has provided to us. You should be able to determine fairly easily whether your business is violating God’s principles of taking care of the earth, especially if they have a negative impact on people’s health.
I would consider “do no harm” as a passive approach to social impact management. However, I believe Kingdom entrepreneurs can be more intentional with their businesses and resources. That’s what Business as Ministry is all about. In Luke 4:18-19, Jesus clearly laid out our job description as marketplace kings and priests:
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.”
I use the term “economic evangelism” to represent initiatives where you take the opportunity to invest your time, thoughts, talents, and treasures in bringing spiritual, economic, and social impact to struggling people and areas. Here are a few practical ways you can activate these initiatives as a Kingdom CEO:
Social impact initiatives may often take a long time to reveal the results of the activities in which you choose to engage. Nevertheless, our job is to obey God and He is responsible for the results (1 Corinthians 3:6-8). If you genuinely give your best in one or more of these areas you can be confident that He will bless your efforts. Although you may not see all the results of your investments, you will be able to experience the promise of Isaiah 58.
It is far time for us tear down the kingdom of darkness and raise up the Kingdom of Light within impoverished communities. As a Kingdom CEO you are in a prime position to do so.
Learn more about Economic Evangelism at www.economicevangelism.org.
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I want to share some exciting news with you. In my last post, We're Bringing Jobs to South Atlanta, I discussed the launch of Greater Works Vocational Discipleship Program. We have hit the ground running. After the successful launch and orientation of 21 young male participants into our program last week, little did I know that our crew from South Atlanta/Lakewood would witness our Heavenly Father's "Greater Works" in a most powerful way, with a blessing that exceeded our wildest expectations.
30 and Counting
On Thursday, March 26, we made a passionate plea for “Men of Means” via our social media contacts to stand up and become a blessing to our the inner city men we had just recruited. Well guess what? The very next day Father God heard our cry and directed us to a business owner who had a heart of sincere compassion for these men. Although he was not even a professing Christian, his personality is of the most genuinely Christ-like character I've seen in a while. God's ways are not our ways…
For literally 4 hours Mr. Sayeed Imran, Founder/CEO of Elegant Staffing, a high end event staffing company, sat down with now 30 of our men to interview each of them individually. The shout of joy came when after this interviewing marathon he proceeded to offer ALL OF THEM employment in his business - the majority at $10 an hour - even those who had no previous work experience!
An Opportunity to Rebuild Men
Although he employs over 700 people, unfortunately Mr. Imran's experience has been that the men he has employed have been less reliable than the women. So he was thoroughly impressed and excited to know that in addition to pre-employment training, Greater Works will provide loving, follow-up life development coaching often missing from our young men's lives, which will enable them to maintain their employment and high performance on the job long-term. Moreover, he understands that this will also have a positive direct impact to his bottom line!
Praise God for providing us a visionary business owner who believes in Greater Works Vocational Discipleship and is giving us a chance to REBUILD THE CITY by REBUILDING IT'S MEN!
We Need Your Support
Please continue to pray for this God-inspired initiative and how He would lead you to support this opportunity to expand the Kingdom and transform lives. We are still in the process of raising our start-up capital, and would greatly appreciate your gift. You can give today at www.Greater-Works.com.
God bless you and thanks in advance for your support!
Greater Works Employee Development Initiative is a pilot project formed by the unique collaboration between Kinsman Ministries and Rebuild The City Inc., specifically tailored to challenge the vicious cycles of poverty and hopelessness by providing unemployed inner city men job opportunities through spiritual discipleship and job training. This much needed initiative will:
Click here to watch a video about Greater Works
We need your help to bring more job opportunities to men in South Atlanta. Our initial budget for the pilot project is $20,000, which will cover:
As stated in my previous post (click here to read), "banning the box" will assist a lot of returning citizens, but that's not the total solution to lowering the recidivism rate and improving the lives of men and families in our communities. We're going to equip these men to be godly employees, husbands, fathers, and community leaders.
Please click here to support us in bringing jobs to South Atlanta. Your tax-deductible contribution will assist us in this much-needed effort.
We thank you in advance for your support!
Job seekers applying for work with the state of Georgia will no longer need to disclose prior criminal convictions on their initial applications. This is a major development considering how hard it is for former prisoners to get a job. And the more difficult it is for them to acquire gainful employment the higher the possibility they will return to the lifestyle that lead them to prison in the first place.
Georgia is the first state in the South and 13th overall to adopt this policy. About 97 percent of those sentenced to prison in Georgia will eventually be released, and more than 1,300 re-enter society each month without employment, according to Deal’s criminal justice reform council. The council’s report said this was a barrier to employment that could exclude released inmates from consideration even if they are qualified for the job and the conviction has no bearing on the work. (Source: www.ajc.com)
Of course the implementation of this policy doesn't guarantee anyone a job, but it does open the door for those who previously would have been automatically excluded.
The timing of this order is great for an initiative that Kinsman Ministries (see Creating Prosperity in Urban Communities Through Jesus, Jobs, and Justice), which is planning to kick-off April 1st, called Greater Works Employee Development Initiative.
This is a new beginning, but it's only a beginning. Now the real work begins serving inner city men who have been underserved and overlooked in the job market.
Almost 15 years ago we heard a message preached on Ruth and Boaz, describing Boaz as a kinsman redeemer. The message struck my wife, Shawnice, deeply and left a lasting impression. Because of Boaz’s willingness to take on the responsibility of caring for his family, both Ruth and her mother-n-law were rescued from poverty and possible demise. Not long after hearing this message, God gave her the vision for Kinsman Ministries, and the development for the organization began.
A “kinsman redeemer” is one who has been prepared and positioned to rescue the family of God from the spiritual, economic, and social slavery systems of the world. The most known reference of a kinsman redeemer is found in the biblical book of Ruth, when Boaz purchased Naomi’s estate and married her daughter-in-law Ruth in order to redeem the property and rescue Ruth from a life of poverty and servitude. And of course Jesus was our ultimate Kinsman Redeemer, “… the firstborn among many brethren” (Romans 8:29).
From this truth Kinsman Ministries was birthed from our shared desire to be catalysts for faith-based, holistic personal, family, and community transformation. We are based in Atlanta, GA through a collaborative 501c3 partnership with FCS Urban Ministries. Although we had a soft launch last year, we are now moving forward full speed with the mission God has given us.
Redeemed to be Redeemers
The vision of Kinsman Ministries is the restoration and renewal of communities as places of purpose, peace, and prosperity for individuals and families to thrive as God intended in every area of their lives. We will pursue this vision through Christ-centered training and developmental programs and workshops that equip them to be empowered for success in every area of their lives.
We are Christian social entrepreneurs commissioned to use "Economic Evangelism" strategies to bring redemptive solutions to transform the mind, body, and spirit of people in specific communities that we are called to serve in. Essentially, we aspire to equip people to live abundantly now and for eternity.
Creating Generational Cycles of Godly Prosperity
We hear a lot of talk about breaking cycles of poverty. What we don't hear a lot about is creating cycles of prosperity in families and communities that are used to systemic poverty. This requires innovative, comprehensive strategies that involve spiritual and practical elements. At the heart of the "economic evangelism" focus that we have are spiritual and financial empowerment tools that meet the practical needs of people through holistic, faith-based business development and job skills training. The three driving principles that we focus on are:
We have already hit the ground running with our first major venture, Greater Works Community Employment Initiative (click here to learn more).
It's been a long time coming for us, but we're truly excited to be partnering with God and others to serve and empower people for His glory.
Please visit us online at www.mykinsman.org to learn more...
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12
Too many Christians walk live a life of unfulfilled promises from God. They are broke(n) spiritually, relationally, emotionally, and financially. He is not the problem. Your ideas, talents, knowledge, skills, and experience are not the problem. This issue is with your heart.
In this special webinar presentation, How to Build Spiritual Capacity to Receive Your Dream, I discuss the difference between "heart work" (God's way to success) vs. hard work (the world's way to success).
You don't have to be broke(n) anymore if you don't want to be.
Click this link to learn more...
This article is from a guest blog post I wrote for Gospel Today Magazine...
We all have dreams. I’m not talking about the dreams that you have at night. I’m talking about the thoughts and desires that are so much a part of you, you seemingly can’t get away from them. It’s that hunger and drive inside of you to be something more than what you are right now; to do something far beyond what you have accomplished at this point in your life. It’s the thing that you love to talk about more than anything else. Even if you don’t talk about it much, it’s still got a hold of you more than you have a hold of it.
While our life’s dreams should inspire us to be and do more, they often lead to frustration when we don’t know how to transform them into reality. One of the key reasons is that God is often left out of that process. We hear people tell us to “dream big,” but if your big dream is not connected to God plans for your life, your efforts will be futile.
Finish reading this article at: http://www.gospeltoday.com/blog/2015/02/15/b-i-g-dreams-require-b-i-g-prayers/#sthash.aJpZlxD3.dpuf
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