01 Jun Making Sense of Making Money for Making a Difference
The title of this blog post is the mission statement of WealthBuilders. I know many of you have heard the “why” behind our company before, but we have a lot of new readers here in the WealthBuilders family, so we think it’s worth touching on again.
I didn’t grow up in affluence, and for many years of my life, I was chasing after money. I know that sounds bad but when you are living paycheck to paycheck struggling to make ends meet, it’s easy to make money an idol. It’s easy to believe that if you had more money, all of your problems would be solved. Because of real estate investing, I got to a place in my life where I was building bigger and bigger barns for myself. I had more money than I knew what to do with, so I kept investing it and kept buying more things. God showed me, however, that my money could make a difference in the world. He showed me that my money had a higher purpose, and that’s what I want to share with you today.
The Higher Purpose for Money
The Economy of the Kingdom
One time, a famous Christian evangelist preached a crusade in Nairobi, and thousands of people were saved. Then, a religious group came in right behind him and offered micro-finance loans to the new converts, so many converted to his religion. While the Christian evangelist had a gospel of salvation mindset, which is essential, this group had a gospel of the kingdom mindset. Their kingdom gospel is what captured the hearts of those people.
This is because faith without works is dead (James 2:20). I’m not saying that evangelist’s faith was dead, but the way faith had been preached was. If after those people took the first step of accepting the Lord, the evangelist’s group would have followed up with poverty-eliminating empowerment, those people might have truly understood and become a follower of Christ. Evangelism alone, without bringing the kingdom of God to earth, can fall flat.
One of the aspects we find in the Jewish understanding of wealth is Tikkun Olam, which means perfecting the world. In “Secrets of Jewish Wealth Revealed”, Rabbi Celso Cukierkorn says,
“One of the great differences that set Jews apart from other cultural groups is that we see our wealth as a means to partner with God, as a way to bring God’s Kingdom into this earth, a concept that we call tikkun olam – perfecting the world. We perfect the world by using our God-given wealth to further God’s realm on this planet. So, what you see is that the Jewish people’s pursuit of wealth is often paired with the pursuit of charitable works, not only for selfish purposes.”
The problem we sometimes have in the church is that the only place we see true empowerment is in the area of giving. As a result, we give people fish. We give a lot of fish. Believe me, to support Christian ministries and local churches, we need to bring our tithes and our offerings. However, there is an empowerment process that happens when you enable an individual to have their own business or assets. We honor God when we make these things happen through our position in life.
Jesus made it clear when He said, “For you have the poor with you always.” (Mark 14:7). There is an important distinction we need to make about caring for the needy. Let’s look at Africa, where I’ve personally had the most experience. There have been many studies done in recent years showing that aid from western nations has created a welfare mentality. The people don’t feel the need to till their garden because they can just go to a truck and get a meal.
Let me be clear – aid is important when people cannot help themselves. The reason we, at Tricord Global, give loans is that it brings people back to us every week. When we collect the loan payment, we offer training, teaching, coaching, and mentoring in order to empower them. They walk away from the deal thinking, “I paid my loan back. I’m worth something.”
I hope you recognize the mindset shift we have to create in order to have a kingdom impact. The key to perfecting the world, I believe, is to empower those in need. Empowerment can change lives and convert them to the love of God.
The opportunity to invest in Tricord Global begins on June 5, 2020. You can learn more by visiting www.tricordglobal.com.