If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Hebrews 11:15
Over the past decade, I have had the opportunity to work closely with hundreds of business people and speak with many more. Many have had exposure to a kingdom way of doing business: they have seen, they have tasted, and they have documented what it might look like in their business. None of this guarantees that they will shift to the kingdom way of doing business. We do not receive the kingdom by observation but by obedience. We do not obtain a country by planning a journey, but by moving into it one step at a time. Some have come to the border of Biblical Business and have returned to their old ways. Why?
Well, it seems a little easier to avoid returning to Ur or Egypt than it does to avoid going back to “business as usual.” One is a tangible place, the other is not. Second, we encourage people to stay in the marketplace and not abandon it, especially not to do “full-time ministry.” We want people who have been through the rēp Repurposing Business® process to actively engage in marketplace reformation. But when you are wearing the same clothes, driving the same commute, and working in the same office it is a little harder to remember that you are not the same, and you no longer play by the same rule book.
Each of us has to search our own hearts on this matter, and a good place to start is by taking a pen and jotting down the characteristics of “the country they (you) had left.” What was it like before? What is it that God has challenged you to make difference?
The second thing we need to do is to check the longings of our hearts: are we dwelling on what we have given up to join this army of kingdom businesspeople? Are we longing for a stable career, work without spiritual warfare, decisions made solely on simple logic and common sense? Are we chafing at having to inquire of God, engage the enemy, be dependent on miracles and live in the broader eternal context? Are we thinking about a country where we are President, the decisions are ours and the laws are written in our Operating Manual, and God is a Vice President of Occasional Spirituality? Are we looking back to a country where our career was ours, we schemed for promotions, and we got ahead with God’s help, but without his sovereign rule? “If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return.”
Beloved, we have so far to go in understanding and living in the new dynamics of kingdom living in the marketplace. We are hardly scratching the surface. We have even further to go in becoming a force for societal transformation. Three months of training or two weeks in a consultation is a good way to get a road map, but it may not be enough for some of us to stake claim to a piece of the new country. What are you thinking about—what you have left, or where you are going? What you think about will determine your opportunities. Friends, the people of faith did not think back, they did not look back, and they did not turn back. You end up where you think.
Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God. Hebrews 11:16
My prayer for each one of us is that we will think kingdom, live kingdom today, look forward to his kingdom in its fullness… and that God will not be ashamed to be our God.