The reason why many Christians fail in business or become unhappy even when they succeed in a particular Christian based business is often due to the fact that they did not choose the right Christian business opportunity that is in tune with their God-given S.H.A.P.E. (S.H.A.P.E refers to your Spiritual gifts, Hearts desires, Abilities, Personalities and Experiences).
This article will discuss the ‘P’ and the ‘E’ aspects of your S.H.A.P.E as it relates to choosing the right Christian business opportunity. Every diligent Christian must aspire to be in the Will of his Creator in all things, including his business
Recognizing The PERSONALITY FACTOR in choosing the right Christian business opportunity:
It must be recognized that God deliberately gave each and every one of us a unique temperament and personality. There is definitely a reason why God did not mass produce human beings with the same personality traits. God created a variety of personality traits so that He can use each and every one of us in different ways in His Kingdom and in the kingdom enterprises He wants us to run for His glory.
Too often we make the mistake of judging some personality traits as good, while we judge others as bad. This attitude is wrong. We know that everything God produces was good, and therefore every creature of God, regardless of their temperaments must be inherently good. However, many times the good purposes God intended in creating a particular person with particular traits are often perverted to other purposes or uses that He never intended.
Our personality is crucial to selecting the right type of Christian based business. There are businesses that are most suited to somebody with an extrovert personality, while other business opportunities call for people with introvert personality. For instance, it would be a mistake for an introvert to choose a Christian business opportunity that would require him to talk to people, persuade people, or entertain people. Likewise, it would be a mistake for a person who is not comfortable in the presence of strangers or crowd of people to choose a Christian business opportunity that requires him to deal with strangers and crowds all the time. Many are not experiencing fulfillment in their businesses because their vocations are inconsistent with their temperament or personality.
The relevant questions to consider in this area are: Are you outgoing or reserved? Do you like to work with people or just by yourself? Do you take spontaneous decisions or do you have to think deep before you decide on issues? Are you aggressive or passive? There are many good tests out there, that will help you to clarify your personality traits and it will be worth your while to check some of them out.
Applying the EXPERIENCE FACTOR in choosing the right Christian Business Opportunity
The Scriptures makes it clear that our experiences are never random. They are often pointers to where God wants us to go or what He wants us to do for Him. For the aspiring Kingdompreneur, a very close examination and analysis of past experiences, pleasant or otherwise, is also critical in determining the business God created him for.
Paul made this clear in the book of Romans, when he said “And we know that all things works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28). This suggests that God has a good purpose for everything that happens to us and it would be wise for one to examine where he has been and where he is in order to determine where God is sending Him. God is too good and organized to waste an experience. No matter how painful or worthless an experience may appear to us, Our Father is always looking to make it work out to our own good, if only we are smart enough to see it.
God wants us to use our pain, sorrows and joys to help others who may end up in similar situations. The Bible tells us that God sometimes allows us to go through some difficult trials and circumstances for His own purpose that may not be clear at the time. After he has comforted us and given us a testimony in those trials, he expects us to use those same experiences in our ministries and enterprises to bless other people.
As Paul beautifully put it in one of his letters to the Corinthians, Our Father and the God of all comfort often “comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God”. (2 Cor 1:4). Therefore, when we go into businesses or vocations, we are more likely than not to be in the will of God if we take into consideration what God has taken us through in determining the type of enterprise we will engage in.
For example, people who have survived a painful experience in their marriages will do well in businesses ministering to troubled marriages. Same way, those who have survived painful experiences with regulatory bodies like IRS, Social Security etc will thrive in a business that provides consultancy and advisory services to those who may be going through the same experience.
The relevant questions to consider while considering our past experiences as a guide to choosing our businesses include “What has God taken you through?” “What special experiences have you suffered or enjoyed?”. The useful experiences God wants us to consider before deciding on our choice of business enterprise may vary from individual to individual. They include spiritual experiences, family experiences, employment experiences, painful experiences, educational experiences, and Church or ministry experiences.
Once you have considered your SHAPE, you must recognize that God wants you to:
a) Discover it
“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.” (Romans 12:3)
We must make a clear-headed effort to discover all that God has deposited in us and apply it in choosing the right Christian based business for us. We must consider, without emotion, the unique abilities that God has blessed us with and how that will complement any Christian business opportunity we choose.
b) Accept It
“But who are you , O man, to talk back to God? Shall what is formed say to him who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’ (Romans 9:20) Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for noble purposes and some for common use?”
Since there is nothing to be gained by questioning our Maker, it is wise to accept who we are and look for options in putting them to the best use in our Christian based business. There is no point in wishing and dreaming for the the gifts other people have. Rather you need to celebrate your unique personality and use that as part of the barometers to check out any Christian business opportunity.
c) Develop it
“For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but of power, of love and of self-discipline.”(2 Timothy 1:6)
God expects you to discover your talents, to accept them and to ultimately develop them for the purposes of your ministry in the kingdom, which certainly include you Christian based business.
See You At The Business Mountain Top!