My accountant called me one day warning me that I was going to owe a lot in taxes that year. See, I had a really good year in sales that year. Business was booming!
However, nobody wants to pay taxes, right? Although I had a great year, there was a seed of anger, resentment, and greed in me that was not thinking about how great of a year I had.
So, when my accountant told me I'd be owing taxes, I immediately started scheming up ways to not pay the taxes. Then my accountant said these profound words: you should WANT to pay taxes!
She explained that paying taxes means your company is doing great! Her reasoning was that the better the company does, the more it can contribute to the growth of this awesome country.
Wow, I was mind-blown. That conversation shifted my mindset. Instead of plotting on how to work around paying taxes, I needed to focus on trusting that paying taxes are part of the plans God has for my company and that my business and that I'm part of the growth of my country!
We all have ways where we are tempted into deceit. Sometimes we have friends propose illegal business opportunities. Other times our clients ask us to do illegal things on the books or in licensing, permits, contracts, etc.
A “Godpertunity” would never come across your desk that asked you to do something illicit. Although Robin Hood might have thought he was doing a good thing, it was illegal and not from God.
In the Bible, we read the story of Nehemiah and his quest to rebuild the wall at Jerusalem. During that rebuilding project, he faces many obstacles that threaten the success of the entire endeavor. It got to the point where outsiders were sending spies and trying to play tricks on him so that he would commit a sin, be arrested, and the entire project of rebuilding the wall would come crumbling down.
Case in point, in chapter 6, Nehemiah shows us his skill to discern a lie - a lie that could have ruined his career as a developer.
Nehemiah speaking, says
"But I said, “Should a man like me run away? Or should someone like me go into the temple to save his life? I will not go!” I realized that God had not sent him, but that he had prophesied against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. He had been hired to intimidate me so that I would commit a sin by doing this, and then they would give me a bad name to discredit me. (Nehemiah 6:11-13)
Nehemiah was the governor and the leader of this rebuilding project. He needed to show a good example of undaunted courage. He has shown such resolve and confidence in God's calling over his life to rebuild the wall. He's so far into this project, he's thinking why now would he dishonor God and religion, and betray the people and city of God, by his cowardice? God forbid! Nehemiah feels, not that he would profane the temple by making it into a place of refuge, but that he would break the law by simply entering it.
Being a leader and taking on BIG projects that bring glory to God in the marketplace means the enemy will expose you to many ways you can cut corners and perform illegal activities. Some could lead to a damage of reputation and integrity, some risk relationships, others can lead you to jail.
The greatest mischief our enemies can do us Godpreneurs, is, to frighten us from our duty, and to lead us to do what is sinful. We can't allow ourselves to decline doing a good work with a bad one. We can't always avoid getting advice from others, however, when we do, we need to reject what is contrary to the word of God.
How can we stand firm against the enemy's various schemes to derail what God wants us to build (or rebuild) for Him?
In my experience as a Godpreneur, I've only been able to discern the enemy's plots by staying in the word of God.
We, Godpreneurs, need to be consistently studying the Bible. This is the only way we can guard ourselves against the anger, resentment, and greed that comes about when our business is being threatened. Following Jesus's examples is how we yield to impatience, discontent, or anger that could lead us to sin.
We are Godpreneurs, our boss is God, and the Spirit would never lead us to deceit. God will provide, always and forever. We don’t have to engage in illegal activities, even if disguised as good. If its illegal, its not of God. We can let our spirit guide us to stop doing anything illegal.
P.S. I did a Business bible study called 40 Days to Restarting Your Business, God's Way. Check it out:
A business Bible study to help you rethink, reinvent, and restart your business, but this time, God's Way!
We parallel Nehemiah's rebuilding of the wall to your journey in rebuilding your business.
Also, coaches and Christian business leaders, you can use, edit, and repurpose the teachings for your own tribe! Check it out.