I was reading this article on My Christian Daily recently by church consultant and former Lifeway CEO, Thom Rainer, which, as a businessperson and not a ministry leader, really spoke to me.
Thom refers to the importance of numbers and why churches need to keep a close eye on their numbers – both their revenue and the numbers in their congregation.
In his article, he states:
“God said that numbers do matter. He ordered a counting of all the people of Israel shortly after the people fled Egypt. You can see the specific mandate in Exodus 30:12-14. An entire book of the Bible is devoted to the progress and results of the census. The book is aptly named Numbers.
“But another census of the people of Israel was clearly instigated by Satan. The Bible is straightforward on that matter in 1 Chronicles 21:1: “Satan rose up against Israel and caused David to take a census of the people of Israel.” Apparently, David ordered the count for his own self-aggrandizement.
“The point is simple. Numbers and counting are either good or evil according to the motivation of those counting.
“We are in a historical cycle in the evangelical world where the mood is to disparage counting, attendance, and other numerical metrics. Consequently, we are in danger of losing accountability that is inherent with following numbers.”
Numbers and counting are either good or evil according to the motivation of those counting. This is probably the part of the article that spoke to me the most. As a Christian in business, numbers actually really matter to me, and they should do in your business too.
I am motivated to grown the kingdom, to build out a crazy Christian media group with many associated businesses around it to build out a powerful community, and so my vision is enormous.
I love revenue and profits going up, I love watching our expenses and seeing where we can trim costs. Essentially, I am like everyone else in business. My motivation is good and not evil and I aim to harm no one as we build our company.
It’s easy as a Christian in business to buy into the belief that if you really care about numbers and you want growth, then you must be worldly and all about money. This is a lie from the enemy – in fact it would only be true if you have evil intentions with those funds.
Get a vision to grow your business so you can employ others, so you can bless your local church and other ministries. If you have a vision for what to do with all that money, and you’re generous, I can assure you that over time, God will bless your business so that you can not only pay your bills and feed your family, but you can help others.
Business is actually a legitimate ministry for Christians, so while you’re pouring coffees, completing tax returns, putting cavities into people’s teeth, or adding a story to a client’s home, know that, unless God has specifically spoken to you about being in ministry, you’re in one of the most powerful ministries right where you are.
So dare to dream big and see your revenues – and profits – growing year by year. Be proud of growing numbers and not shamed into thinking you’re all about money. The more you make, the more you can do to help others.
Matt Danswan is the CEO of Initiate Media, publishers of Christian Woman & Co. He is also the author of NOT Business As Usual.