Evangel Ministries in Detroit comes from a very different perspective as it relates to transforming lives in their community. They focus on using entrepreneurship to teach work skills and financial literacy, teach congregants on the details of permitting, and even in some cases provide investment capital for particular businesses. Watch this video to learn more about how they engage their community.
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.
Terence Lester, founder of Love Beyond Walls, has made a choice that most people probably wouldn't make even if they were getting paid. He has decided to live on top of a bus for 30 days to raise awareness and money for a unique idea to restore dignity to homeless people. His goal is to raise funds to retrofit a 30 passenger bus and turn it into a mobile barbershop, closet, and shower to serve homeless individuals in the city of Atlanta, and under resourced communities.
So he started camping out on December 14 and he won't be coming down until January 14. 11 Alive News in Atlanta just did a story on him and this great initiative...
If you're interesting in supporting Terence and this very meaningful project please visit his crowdfunding page: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/mobile-makeovers
“Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature” ~ Mark 16:15
This is an excerpt of an email devotional sent by Patrice Tsague, Chief Servant Officer of Nehemiah Project International Ministries…
I recently heard a story of a kingdom business steward who, after many years of sharing the Gospel with an employee in his sales department, finally won him over to the Lord. During an event the employee was asked to share his testimony with the guests. He stood up and shared how excited he was when his boss kept talking to him about the Great Commission. As a sales person who was primarily paid on commission, hearing about the Great Commission excited him. Of course the commission his boss was referring to was a commission more valuable than a percentage of any sales transaction. This commission would give him an invaluable and eternal compensation. Like this sales person, I too was brought to the Lord through finances. It was in the early 1990’s when I was introduced to a kingdom business steward. While my interest in him was purely driven by economic incentives, his interest in me was motivated by the fact that I was a lost soul who desperately needed to be saved. As I pursued him for money and wisdom, his commitment to fulfilling the Great Commission was unwavering which finally led me to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior, and my life has never been the same since. How did you come to Christ? Who was the disciple whose commitment to the Great Commission led you to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?
The Great Commission is an eternal mandate to all who claim to be disciples of Jesus Christ. As Christians, we have an obligation to share the good news we have received with the lost and commit to disciple them until they conform to the image of the Lord Jesus Christ. This commission originated from God the Father. The first person to receive the commission was Adam, the first earthly son. The earth was unpopulated so Adam’s commission was to populate the earth with other children of God who would reflect His image and likeness and carry out His will in the earthly realm (Genesis 1:28). After Adam sinned, the Lord raised up Abraham and gave him the same mandate. It would be through Abraham that all the families of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3). Though Abraham’s commission would bring blessings to the people of the world, it could not undo the spiritual damage that Adam committed since that required the shedding of blood. So God sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ to restore spiritual order by dying on the cross (John 3:16). Jesus then passed the commission to His disciples and to all of those who would come to believe in Him (Mark 16:15).
Among all of Jesus’ disciples, kingdom business stewards are uniquely positioned to fulfill this great mandate since the marketplace is where most unsaved people spend much of their time. No matter what industry or type of business you are involved in, each of us must have as a part of our business plan a great commission strategy. How will you, through your businesses, share this great news with others and support those who accept it towards maturity in Christ?
Read more great devotionals by Patrice at www.nehemiahproject.org.
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Read more testimonials at www.kingdombusinessuniversity.com/bible-study
By now most people are familiar with Duck Dynasty and the Robertsons, who built a multi-million dollar sporting empire manufacturing duck calls in Monroe, Louisiana and according to A&E TV "have earned a seat in homes across the country with their special brand of downhome practicality, southern charm and sharp sense of humor." To me the best thing about this family is their opportunity to share Jesus with the world on a weekly basis.
The video below, featuring the patriarch of the family Phil Robertson, is a powerful example of how a life can be eternally changed that initiated from a simple business transaction. This Christian entrepreneur is having a Kingdom impact on their customers and others.
Many Christian entrepreneurs don't think they're qualified to preach because they don't stand in a pulpit on Sundays, but don't realize God has already given them a platform to shine from Monday through Friday in their business. If you want to have a great impact in the world, start right where you are and watch God work through you while you're at work!
How do you use your business as a platform to represent Jesus? Leave your comments below...
It's extremely important for Christian entrepreneurs to realize that your business is a ministry. Otherwise you will undervalue the opportunities God gives you everyday to serve and impact people through your business.
One of the foremost experts in the Body of Christ who articulates better than most is David Doty, who has more than thirty years' experience as a three-time small business entrepreneur, board membership, and business coach for several not-for-profits and small businesses. He is the author of Eden’s Bridge: The Marketplace in Creation and Mission – which is the first articulation of a biblically-based theology of the marketplace as an institution of God. In a recent blog David discusses the significance of business as ministry. Here's a excerpt:
"So, how exactly is it that business is ministry? The answer lies in the nature of creation itself, which emanates from the nature of the godhead. The central focus of God as God and of creation as a product of God’s nature, character, and will, is relationship. Ministry is simply the mediation of the relationship between God and humankind, and business, as a vital institution in human society, is fundamentally about the facilitation of relationships. It is not the only institution that mediates the relationship of the divine and the temporal but it is perhaps as significant as any simply by the fact that it is the institution by which we survive and even thrive.
Read the entire article Business is Ministry here: http://edensbridge.org/2013/10/18/business-is-ministry/
What are you thoughts on the concept of business is ministry? Leave your comments below...
Today is a great day! My good friend Charles Clark Jr. of Nebo Media Group celebrated the 4th anniversary edition of their online magazine BrothaOnline.com. And I'm extremely humbled and privileged to have an article in this edition. The focus of my Kingdom Business column for this issue is "God's Purposes at Work in You at Work" which focuses on how God wants to use your daily work environment to change you and the people around you. Here's a short excerpt:
Finish reading God's Purposes at Work in You at Work...
How do you approach your work life from a spiritual perspective? Please share you thoughts below...
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For more than a decade I have had a deep desire to create environments that inspire, equip, and empower people to reach their God-given potential. A strong part of this vision was connected to teaching business and entrepreneurship in ways that empower people to maximize their financial potential. That's why I'm super excited to announce a new opportunity that I have to lead an emerging business incubator in South Atlanta called Metro Merge.
Launched on MLK Day 2009, Metro Merge is apart of a collective of community development non-profit organizations under FCS Urban Ministries (Focused Community Strategies). FCS was founded by Bob Lupton in 1976 with the mission “to create healthy places in the city where families flourish and God’s shalom is present.” Metro Merge adds its part to this mission by serving as a catalyst to help opportunity and potential emerge in Historic South Atlanta through promoting sustainable enterprises and economic development solutions.
Working in partnership with Kingdom Business University, we are developing a full service business incubator and business programming that emphasizes transformational leadership, financial literacy, technological literacy, and social community impact. Learn more at www.metromerge.org.
Here is the official press release...
WILL YOU INVEST WITH US?
Fight Poverty. Grow Businesses. Create Jobs.
Metro Merge is a division of FCS Urban Ministries, a non-profit with a 30+ year track record. We’re one of multiple initiatives that all work together with a wholistic emphasis.
We rely on ongoing donations to sustain our not-for-profit mission. And we’re working to build a sustainable model to reduce our need for fundraising. Please consider co-investing with us as we join God’s restorative work in the city. Click here to learn more about donating to Metro Merge.
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life." - Proverbs 13:12
In 2004 God called Bishop Kenneth Obi to return from the United States to his home country of Nigeria to start Mission Africa Project in Ido State. Through his leadership and hard work this organization started a school, orphanage, HIV/AIDS clinic, and job skills training center for youth and young adults. In May 2004 his church and MAP's offices were demolished by the local government based on the enforcement of eminent domain at the direction of the new governor. Nearly 8 years of work was destroyed in less than 48 hours.
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