There's a lot happening in our society and culture today that the enemy is using to keep us divided. Recently I did an interview with host Kenny Pugh on Brotha Live discussing some of the current headlines of today dealing with racism, sexism, classism and a bunch of other "isms." We have to be very careful when we base our connection with others on the ways that we are divided.
Click below to enjoy!
My guest this Thursday on Passion in Action TV is author, motivator, and cancer conqueror Eddie Connor. Eddie Connor was born in Southfield, Michigan but grew up in Kingston, Jamaica. The British Education that Eddie received, during his formative years in Jamaica, can be attributed to his thirst for knowledge. As a product of a divorced family, Eddie realizes that he was not born with a "silver spoon" in his mouth, but was raised by a strong mother, who instilled in him life long values and the importance of governing himself as a positive individual.
Eddie has garnered prestigious honors for his community activism and role model leadership, such as the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award, Eastern Michigan University President For a Day, and the NAACP Male Student of the Year.
As an Author, Educator, Evangelist, Motivational Speaker, Poet, Radio and TV Host, Eddie Connor shares his story of overcoming cancer in his three books, "Purposefully Prepared to Persevere", "Collections of Reflections: Symphonies of Strength, Volumes 1-3", and "E.CON the ICON: from Pop Culture to President Barack Obama".
From Cancer to Conqueror to more than Conqueror, God has truly given Eddie Connor a voice to reach individuals of all ages and backgrounds in this day and time. A young man of passion, determination, and intellectual fortitude, desires to impact minds in perilous times, by enhancing the lives of others and expressing the power to persevere, which will ultimately propel individuals beyond all obstacles.
To hear more of Eddie's story of conquering cancer and more, join us Thursday at 7 pm ET. Watch online on your computer or mobile device at www.passioninaction.tv.
This week on Passion In Action TV we will interview Pastor J. Calvin Tibbs, author of the newly released "Massa's Back But Now He's Black?" In this thought-provoking book the author makes a call to the people of the United States to see the present climate of political dissatisfaction and racial antagonism as a modern expression of the master/slave mentality of America's past.
The author sees government-sponsored assistance programs as disguised vehicles by which the assisted trade their liberties for aid and laments the partisanship of both the political Right and Left as having superseded religion and common sense which, the author feels, has substituted popularity for substance and caused a sharp decline in morality and the economy.
Pastor Tibbs, a native of Hampton, VA, is currently pastor of Kingdom Dominion Church in Villa Rica, GA.
Now that the election is over, it's back to school for Christian entrepreneurs. Why? Because I believe there are some lessons that God wants to remind Christians of related to our misplaced trust (and fears) in people, including presidents. And based on the election results, there are almost as many people who are elated that Barack Obama won as there are that are disappointed that Mitt Romney lost.
Regardless of which side of the fence you are on, this country is still facing some daunting economic challenges. High unemployment. Slow high-caliber job creation. Fiscal cliff. Foreclosures. Housing values. Skyrocketing healthcare costs. Child poverty. Do you see a pattern here? All of these major issues are directly or indirectly related to economics and finances.
Economics and finances are not just your concern, they are God's business. He is interested in your spiritual, physical, and financial welfare. Unfortunately, many times we do not seek His wisdom, will, or ways when it comes to our money, which means we do not get His results.
The current financial challenges faced by this country and the world are tied directly to the fact that we have been doing things our own way without God's input. As a society, we want God's favor and blessings without submission to His will. We often choose to operate in business with our eyes focused on the bottom line instead of our eyes focused beyond the hills where our help truly comes from (Psalm 121:1).
We are not the first people to make this mistake. Jesus' own parents nearly fell prey to our human tendency to move in a direction different from God's. Early on in Jesus' life, Joseph and Mary realized that if they didn't understand or follow God's plan, they would miss out on what He was doing. Luke 2:41-52 reads,
“His parents went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the Passover. And when He was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem according to the custom of the feast. When they had finished the days, as they returned, the Boy Jesus lingered behind in Jerusalem. And Joseph and His mother did not know it; but supposing Him to have been in the company, they went a day’s journey, and sought Him among their relatives and acquaintances. So when they did not find Him, they returned to Jerusalem, seeking Him. Now so it was that after three days they found Him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, both listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard Him were astonished at His understanding and answers. So when they saw Him, they were amazed; and His mother said to Him, “Son, why have You done this to us? Look, Your father and I have sought You anxiously.”
And He said to them, “Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” But they did not understand the statement which He spoke to them. Then He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them, but His mother kept all these things in her heart. And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.”
Also read A Kingdom Perspective on Politics
This story has some powerful lessons for business leaders and our society as a whole as it relates to us recovering our financial health and stability. Let's look at a few of these lessons.
1) Make Sure God Is With You
Like many of us have done in business when we were too busy to focus on eternal things, Joseph and Mary lost track of God's Son while on the way to their planned destination. They assumed he was with him although he was not. This happens to us to when we make choices and decisions in our business while excluding God from the process. When we have not dedicated our business to the advancement of God's agenda, we lose track of what God is doing and what He desires from us.
Like parents who have just realized their child is missing, it is a scary feeling to look up and realize God is not with you like you previously assumed. Many people in this country are fearful right now because there is economic chaos and confusion in the land. They may or may not realized that at some point in the past God was left out of the boardroom, Congress, White House, Wall Street, city councils, school boards, classrooms, and other significant places where they thought they could handle their challenges and opportunities better without Him than with Him. Furthermore, many people mistakenly thought He would be ok with only being God on Sunday in a church building. We are now eating the financial fruit of that kind of thinking.
2) Look For God In The Right Places
As the story continues, when Joseph and Mary finally realized that Jesus was missing, they went looking for him in all the wrong places. They sought Jesus among relatives and acquaintances who had no knowledge of where he was (Check your relationships. Are they pulling you closer to or further away from Jesus?). It took them three days to find him in the temple. Why didn't they find him sooner? Because the last place they looked for him should have been the first place.
This is reflective of many people today who are looking for answers to this financial mess that we're in. They are looking to Wall Street and they do not have the answers. They are looking to the White House and they do not have the answers. They are looking to economic “experts” and they do not have the answers. They are looking to radio talk show hosts and they do not have the answers. They are even looking to pastors, and unfortunately many of them do not have the answers either because they are representative of point #1 (God is not with them).
The answers to our financial problems will be found in the Word of God. Jesus was found in the house of God, teaching from the Scriptures. The answers to poverty, profitability, healthcare, housing, unemployment, and all other economic issues are tied to one Source. God gives answers to those who diligently seek Him (Psalm 84:11, Hebrews 11:6).
3) Operate Your Business With A Kingdom Purpose
When Joseph and Mary finally found Jesus, he was in his Father's house, engaged in his Father's business. It is very interesting that Jesus would use the words “about My Father's business” to describe what he was doing in the temple. Jesus knew his Kingdom assignment from an early age. He was operating in his purpose before he was even old enough to drive. He was doing Kingdom business at an age where all the other kids were still playing with toys.
As a Christian entrepreneur or business leader you must understand that God's mandate for you in the marketplace is different than everyone else's. Money should not be your primary focus. The advancement of God's business should be your obsession. Your business is a platform for God's purposes. He wants to use your business savvy and skills to demonstrate His glory. He wants to give you influence and affluence to use as tools to shine your light before people that they may see your good works and glorify Him as a result.
When you are focused on God's purpose for your business, you realize that your business is an answer to someone's prayer. Your business can be a job generator. Your business can be a solutions provider. Your business can be a poverty destroyer. Your business can be an economic engine.
Make the advancement of God's Kingdom your #1 business priority and watch Him blow your mind with opportunities that far exceed your expectations (Matthew 6:33, Ephesians 3:20).
4) Refocus Your Business To Do What God Is Blessing
Ideas are a dime a dozen. However, ideas that work are extremely valuable right now. The financial experts are scrambling to come up with strategies and plans that will reverse the negative economic trends that are currently plaguing our economy. Regrettably, we often fail to realize that God is not bewildered or baffled by our present circumstances. He already has all the solutions we need before we even ask Him the question.
We must get to place where we are like the sons of Issachar, “who understood the times and knew what Israel should do” (1 Chronicles 12:32). Our attention needs to be on doing what God is blessing, instead of continuing to ask God to bless what we're doing. Based on the current environment, some things are going to work and others will not. How do you know if you are in the right lane? Ask God.
One thing you must keep in mind is that God only reveals His deep secrets to His sons and friends through His Spirit (John 15:15, 1 Corinthians 2:10-16). If you do not have an intimate relationship with God, do not expect Him to reveal fresh ideas, key concepts, and ground breaking inventions that will prosper you in the midst of an economic famine like He did for Isaac (Genesis 26).
If you are too busy to consult God in your business dealings, then you are too busy. If you are too focused on transactions rather than getting transmissions from His Spirit, your vision is blurred and your blessings will be blocked. If you are too anxious to wait on God to make critical decisions, then you are rushing to get into trouble. If you are too fearful to trust God for your livelihood, then you will be stuck in a position of paralysis.
No matter who the President is, God will allow your business to prosper only when you are doing business that He is blessing.
How can you as a Christian entrepreneur demonstrate more of a commitment to keep God in the middle of their personal economy? Please leave your comments below...
After being on hiatus for about 6 months, I am excited to announced that Passion in Action is relaunching Thursday, October 11th! Our new partnership with Nebo Media Group (creator of Brotha Online Magazine and others), will allow us to get more creative and strategic in bringing you insightful interviews with influential guests who will motivate you to turn your passion in action.
Our first show this season will be "Double Platinum", because we will livestream musical artist Lisa McClendon and her husband, pastor and motivational speaker Marcus Brailsford.
So I'm sure you're asking where can you watch this incredible show? We livestream online Thursdays at 7pm est on InternetFabulous.TV. Also, while you're watching you can send us questions and comments, which we can respond to during the show. Or you can watch past and present shows on demand at your convenience. Either way you're going to get some great information to help you move forward in fulfilling the life calling that God has for you!
More about Passion in Action...
Passion in Action is an Internet TV show that ignites Christians for purposeful, passionate, and prosperous living. Believing that changing the world starts with changing one life at a time, we promote people, businesses, organizations and events that serve to empower, educate, enrich, enhance, and equip others to thrive on purpose in every area of life. Learn more at www.realpassioninaction.com.
In case you didn't know it already, being a real Christian business is not as easy as sliding a few words into your mission statement or slapping a fish on your logo. This is real world stuff with real world considerations and consequences. We're playing for a prize that's eternal, not just our next quarterly earnings target. So whether you realize it or not, being a entrepreneur who is committed to representing God in your business will put you in the crosshairs of those who are hostile to Christianity, reject Biblical standards, and want you to conform to societal pressures.
"Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect." ~ Romans 12:2
Unless you've been totally disconnected from the media in the past couple of weeks, you are well aware that recently Dan Cathy, CEO of Chick-fil-a, stated in an interview that he supported the Biblical definition of marriage. I'm not sure he could have predicted or was ready for the incredible backlash he is receiving for simply stating what he believed. He has been vehemently blasted by those who support gay marriage. Interestingly, for simply stating his beliefs - not declaring hatred or discrimination against anyone - vitriolic intolerance has been a common response by those who demand tolerance for their lifestyle choices.
The treatment he has received really shouldn't be a surprise, because the issue is much bigger than just his position on gay marriage. Christianity as a whole is under attack and marriage is just a part of that. I would even say that the intolerance directed towards Biblical beliefs these days is as much or greater than the intolerance directed towards the LGBT community. But this overall societal response really shouldn't be a surprise to Christians according to John 15:18-21:
"If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. Remember the words I spoke to you: 'No servant is greater than his master.' If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me."
Attacks are the norm for those who don't understand the "foolishness" of the Gospel (1 Corinthians 1:18-25). In fact, Jesus said, "Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you" (Matthew 5:1-12).
So how does all this tie into you as a Christian business owner? Many Believers try to compartmentalize their faith and leave it out of their business affairs. They think they must suppress, downplay, or compromise their beliefs in order to make a dollar or grow a successful business. I don't believe that's true. You can stand up for what you believe in and build a successful business. It just depends on whose definition of success you are using, God's or the world's.
Let's look at five things Christian entrepreneurs can learn from the Chick-fil-a controversy:
As a Christian entrepreneur when you are willing to make similar choices in spite of the potential opposition you might face from people who are hostile to God's ways, you will hear "well done good and faithful servant."
“... The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!” ~ Revelation 11:15
Whether you realize it or not (which you should just based on the announcements of the past week), the culture war in our society is intensifying. This war is so much bigger than Democrats vs. Republicans or even nation against nation. I'm talking about the war between the culture of the Kingdom of God and the culture of the earth, which is being greatly influence by satan, who is constantly embedding his values into this world which are in direct conflict with God's desires for humanity. The enemy is fighting hard to keep God's will from being established on earth as it is in Heaven.
Fortunately, the issue is not whether the Kingdom of God will win. That outcome has already been determined (see Revelations 11:15 above). The real issue is how many people will be on the winning team with God. We are fighting for the hearts and minds of people to be freed from the evil entrapment they often easily entreat, due to its subtle nature. Christians must be more proactive in living and teaching the Gospel, so that more people can be rescued from the deception of the enemy, who draws people into lies about who they are, who God is, and what He wants for and from their lives.
In this culture war eternity is literally hanging in the balance for many people. As the "salt and light" of the earth, bringing lives into God's Kingdom should be our #1 priority.
Our engagement is essential. Our commitment is crucial. Our power is unstoppable. And our victory inevitable!
Join us this weekend in Suffolk, Virginia for the Kingdom Culture Connection Conference as we discuss strategies to influence the culture for God. Click here for more info...
How are we supposed to engage the culture using the agenda of God's Kingdom? Leave your comments below...
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