Restoring Enterprise to its Place in the Body of Christ

Business as Mission, Kingdom Business, Great Commission Companies, Purpose-Driven Business, Enterprising Ministry, Kingdom Entrepreneurship - It goes by many names, but there is a new, and yet very old calling in the Global Body of Christ. Many believers are called to walk out their calling in the marketplace. A subset of those believers are called to plant and grow businesses that serve God and the rest of the church. It is their ministry, enterprising ministry, that we describe, support, and explore here.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Low Profit Limited Liability Corporation ( L3C) Update

I believe Low Profit Limited Liability Corporations (L3Cs),  are key entities that will allow believers to fund  BAM initiatives in mission environments.. L3Cs are entities that may allow Corporations to Fund Entrepreneurial Projects and yet still receive Charitable Contribution tax credits.

It's  still complicated to set up, but there is legislation pending, the PRIs Promotion Act,
which is aimed at making funding of  BAM and other social enterprise start ups easier.

The following article is an update on the status of the L3C and the legislation.


by  Steve Gunderson, president and CEO of the Council on Foundations.

Earlier this year, Americans for Community Development held its inaugural conference, “L3C A to Z,” in Evanston, Ill., to educate nonprofits on Low-Profit Limited Liability Companies (L3Cs) and the advantages they provide for those pursuing program-related investments (PRIs).

At the opening plenary, I served on a panel, along with Robert Lang and Max Martin, on new philanthropic funding structures-focusing primarily on PRIs.

PRIs are an increasingly attractive tool because they allow achievement of charitable goals without depleting endowments, even producing a modest return in many cases. Such investments can provide much-needed capital to initiatives for which a foundation cares about and can often lead to innovative solutions. Examples include low-interest loans and equity investments to entities aligned with the core values of a foundation.

Another type of PRI is the L3C, a special IRS designation for for-profit companies whose primary goal is to provide a social benefit.

  • It is a cross between a charity and a for-profit company. 
  • While PRIs offer several advantages to foundations, government regulations are extremely burdensome. 
  • Under the current system, before a foundation can enter into a PRI it must make a determination that the investment is primarily intended to further a charitable purpose. This is a legal determination based on the facts and circumstances of each transaction. 
  • For old tried and true PRI models, this can be relatively simple because IRS regulation, published letter rulings, and other experience provide guidance about what is and is not allowed. 
  • Newer models for PRIs, particularly L3Cs, are not so straightforward because there are not many examples to rely on to determine when a particular investment’s structure will be considered “charitable” by the IRS. 
  • As a result, foundations may be uncomfortable with the uncertainty of a particular PRI, potentially leading to two choices: advising against the investment or recommending the foundation seek a private letter ruling from the IRS-in other words, killing the opportunity outright or delaying it so long it dies out. 
To ease the burdensome regulations and assist foundations in mission-driven investing, the Council supports legislation creating a voluntary procedure for entities seeking foundation participation in PRIs to obtain an IRS determination that such participation constitutes a permissible charitable activity.
  • The PRIs Promotion Act would restrict how much time the IRS has to respond to these requests, thus encouraging lawyers to seek IRS approval rather than advise against the investment. 
  • The legislation also would increase the efficiency of the system by allowing multiple foundations to rely on a single determination that a PRI is charitable. Currently, each foundation has to make its own determination-increasing the costs and time involved. 
The PRIs Promotion Act has yet to be introduced in Congress, but it is among priority legislation contained in the Council’s legislative agenda. To stay up to date on this and other legislative priorities relating to philanthropy, sign up for our weekly Public Policy Update and visit our Legislative Action Center.

And if you are attending the Council’s 2011 Fall Conference for Community Foundations, you have a great opportunity to learn more about L3Cs: Attend the preconference session, “The L3C-New Opportunities for Community Foundations.”

The Council has lined up a number of speakers, including Sanders Davies, senior partner, PKF O’Connor Davies; Ericka Harney, assistant director of development, The Council of State Governments; and Robert Lang (moderator), founder, Americans for Community Development. Community foundations will have the chance to learn more about using this new tool to help fulfill their mission. Steve Gunderson is president and CEO of the Council on Foundations.

Friday, August 26, 2011

From the Regeny

Three Kingdom Business/Business as Misssion related books

Reinventing the Wheel: A New Spin on American Business Leadership By Jonathan D. McDowell

 As America loses faith in current models of leadership, the current need for a new type of leadership is described. A reinvention of leadership is suggested through the use of Romans 12:9-21 as a baseline. After laying that foundation, three foci for a leader are outlined: Purpose, Community and Fortitude. These ideas from contemporary business thought are then applied to business with the text of Romans 12:9-21. The result is what a reinvented American business leader should aim to achieve in personal and organizational leadership.

 Servant Leader Workplace Spiritual Intelligence: A Shield of Protection from Workplace Stress By Gary Roberts, Ph.D. and Daryl Green, Ph.D.

 Servant leader spiritual intelligence is the foundational scriptural approach to leadership. Servant leadership is the essential character attribute that enables managers to promote the Great Commandment and Great Commission in the workplace. This article describes the constituent elements of servant leader spiritual intelligence and its benefits. Servant leadership spiritual intelligence helps managers develop a capacity for transcendence, achieve a higher state of God consciousness, interject the sacred into everyday events, use scriptural principles to solve workplace problems, and engage in ethical and virtuous behavior such as forgiveness, love, transparency, and humility.

  • Our preliminary study indicated that managers who scored higher on servant leadership, an important workplace spiritual intelligence attribute, reported lower levels of job stress and higher levels of workforce engagement (more satisfied with peers and job challenge, higher organizational commitment and loyalty, greater motivation to improve performance, and higher overall performance level).
Examining Viral Marketing and the Diffusion of the Gospels By Lisa Renz and A. Gregory Stone, Ph.D. 

Viral marketing is emerging as a viable strategy for organizations as part of the marketing mix. Research into viral marketing is still in its infancy. Socio-rhetorical criticism is one approach to examine viral marketing, and more specifically, the diffusion of the Gospels to gain insights into what factors led to their successful long-term diffusion. Future research may choose to examine the influences of gender, age, intrinsic and extrinsic incentives, and feedback. Making Sense of the Journey:

The Christian Business Leader as Pilgrim By Corné J. Bekker, Ph.D.

Recent voices have argued that the discipline of faithfully reading and interpreting the sacred Scriptures of the Old and New Testament in the context of business can have a positive effect on economic development. There also seems to be clear evidence that communities in the early Church benefited economically from their conversion to Christ experience.

This article proposes that theological reflection on Biblical perspectives on work and business assists the manager or business leader to interpret her deepest inner values and beliefs as they relate to the workplace, correlate those interpretations with the other information gathered through the tools of management and leading, and finally assess the adequacy of both the theological and business interpretations and correlations to the world in which they labor..

From  Regent University Newsletter

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Friday, August 12, 2011

Is My Business Labor an Act of Worship?

The word "ministry" carries different meanings depending who's using it and what's being described.
In the last decade, there's a movement among some workplace-based believers who pursue business labor as an act of worship.One of the names the movement carries is  Business as Mission (BAM).
People involved in Business as Mission, Workplace Ministry, "tentmaking", church planting, Kingdom Business Professionals, Great Commission Companies use the word ministry in a way that appears to carry  a different meaning than when the word "ministry" is used by clergy. Some clergy participating in BAM discussions cautiously explore what BAM people mean by the word "ministry".
Some questions they ask are:

Do you mean ministry alongside of your work to make money?
Do you mean ministry during work breaks with people you meet at work?
Do you mean ministry to the body of Christ by providing employment, so that those employed can do ministry?
Do you mean out-reach in the workplace so that you can draw them into a church somewhere?
Do you mean generating wealth to give to ministries?

To answer, I wanted to look at how the word "ministry" is used in the Bible:

The old testament uses three Hebrew root words that most English versions of the bible translate as "ministry":

Kahan - To  act  as  priest or mediator between God and Man, a ministry before God and men. For example, offering sacrifices.

Aboha - To labor in bondage or in service to a religious project such as a craftsman ministering by labor to build the temple.

Sharatch - to assist or serve alongside: this was the word used for Samuel when he first came to Eli as a child to minister in the temple.

The New testament only uses two Greek root words that most English versions of the bible translate as "ministry":

Hupo -  or rower, as in a ship a  low level laborer. God spoke directly to Paul at his conversion on the road to Damascus and said that his ministry was to be a "rower".

Leturgio  to perform religious or  priestly Service:

Acts 13:2 (worshiping, fasting, ministering before the Lord) 
Romans 15:16, 27 Gentiles churches ministering to  the Jewish churches financially
Hebrews 1:7, 8:6, 9:21, 10:11: When Paul was teaching Jews about the ministry of Jesus as mediator of the new covenant. He called that Jesus' ministry.

Business-based believers are saying that their activities in business are no less than leturgio ministry before the Lord, Acts of Worship.Financial support of other ministries is also part of their worship.

Apostles, Overseers, Elders, Deacons etc are a different question of service (ministry). For example, Diaconia by a diacano (Service done by a deacon) is used  for other acts of service or ministry to the body of Christ.


Under the new covenant, ministry is not restricted to clergy or to acts of church administration. Some people minister before the Lord in acts of worship by conducting business. Yes, they share their faith, do out reach and serve the body of Christ in many other way, too.

The clergy do litergio ministry to God, serving in the role of administration for  the body of Christ past, present and future. They sometimes do this full time.

Some believing entrepreneurs do literugio ministry to God by serving the Body of Christ, past, present and future in the role of the administration of business.

Neither is more is more anointed (Set apart) than the other.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

5 Christian owned Companies Uncomfortable With BAM

Christian entrepreneurs who own some kinds of businesses will become uncomfortable the deeper they get into Business as Mission. BAM Questions the world view that make them successful,and when they ask the hard questions, they must either embrace BAM  or turn away from it. People who own these five kinds of businesses will be challenged by real  BAM concepts:

1. Business by The World's Book :Acknowledge Responsibility only to the law and shareholders. Shareholders are majority Christian but exert not influence or do not believe they are accountable for the actions of the company.
2. Old School Sacred/Secular Separatists: Businesses who's Christian owners believe that business is inherently "old nature", and they separate secular and sacred activities and standards. Their job is to operate in the"dirt business world" according to its rules, and reclaim "mammon" to give to the church. Only an organization who's home is in a church building can do God's work. Often in co-dependent complicit relationship with a sacred only church.
3. My Kingdom Business. An un-surrendered business by me, for me and mine from which I donate occasionally to God's work.
4. A Jesus-free Business. Humanitarian based  Social Enterprise. May be Christian in name only, and thereby inoculated against any real Kingdom of God Contribution. a "good place" to work as long as you keep your god generic. Perhaps worships a large religious institution like "The Church" or has a large christian denomination in its name.
5.  Ministry wearing business clothes. A business designed to create interactions with people whether it grows revenue or not. Run by gifted Church planters, pastors or Missionaries, who have no entrepreneurial business gifts. Requires regular cash infusions from other sources to survive, and has no business plan that leads to long term profitability and growth.

More to be published later

-Lee Royal

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Does BAM Pursue Business Success or Business Fruit?

- (David Skews )The best thing I ever saw on success in the 30 years I have worked as a business owner grappling with the challenges (both business and spiritual) of taking a small business (survival) to a medium one (health and growth) and now to transaction while balancing a heart for mission - was from Henri Nouwen, it went like this...

"There is a great difference between successfulness and fruitfulness. Success comes from strength, control, and respectability. A successful person has the energy to create something, to keep control over its development, and to make it available in large quantities. Success brings many rewards and often fame. Fruits, however, come from weakness and vulnerability. And fruits are unique. A child is the fruit conceived in vulnerability, community is the fruit born through shared brokenness, and intimacy is the fruit that grows through touching one another's wounds. Let's remind one another that what brings us true joy is not successfulness but fruitfulness".

I suspect God wants to see more businesses that are fruitful and for His glory - how else can we measure what we do? It seems to me that business can no longer be considered with a purpose to increase shareholder value (Friedman) but for us it has to be to bless the nations (all our stakeholders). God gave His business people the ability to create wealth - so that His covenant will be fulfilled, the one he spoke to our forefathers (Abraham) that was - to bless (apologies for messing with Deuteronomy 8:18ff)

Yes, I know its hard, but so was going to the moon and that's why they did it!

David Skews

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Actions of Living A Surrendered Work Life

How do I inhabit my new life as a fully empowered ambassador of Christ in the business world?

A little word study of
Colossians 3: 1-18

Deliberately choose to set your mind on things going on in the spiritual world, in God's kingdom, in the heavenlies, things above the things being acted out in the natural world.

Because you'r dead to the natural world, and are hidden away in Christ.

When Christ is revealed, you will be too.


Make a well reasoned and thoughtful decision to categorize your earthly parts as dead, as unresponsive to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed (If my body is conditioned to reflexively respond to to those things, it amounts to being a slave to, or worshiping those things)

Why is this important? Because, it's those things that bring the wrath of God upon the sons of disobedience.

You once walked on that path yourselves, you were once living inside those things.

But now, step out of those things, abandon that place, leave it deserted. Don't try to redecorate the house you used to live in that was  created by the four walls of anger, wrath, malice and slander. Don't even keep it or rent it, or even allows  someone else to live in that house you built. Walk away, leave it abandoned, deserted. Don't even try to destroy it yourself, that's God's Job. That's not how it works for us believers. We must abandon that stronghold of the enemy. Don't let your rage and greed "motivate" you to do good things. Thats like a broken water tank. It looks like it can satisfy your thirst, but when you try and drink from it you find no water.

Your actions are to abandon that house and  live in the world, not in a house but in fully protective new clothes provided by God.

So how do we do that?

First, we don't  lie to one another,since you have left that old house behind, and since you have put on the new self, like new clothes, new beautiful clothes that you sink into, clothes that completely cover and protect you, not clothes that try and dress up your old self.

Like clothes, we put them one one piece at a a time.

Five Principles

First, Dress. Put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience, letting them cover us completely, sinking deep into their covering.

Second, bear and forgive. with others when God's Children are doing or saying things that are offensive to you, and if they succeed in giving you offense, forgive them, right on the spot before it has a chance to fester and grow into something else.

Third, Peace is your Umpire act under the assumption that  the peace of Christ act as an umpire in your heart, an umpire that makes rulings as things come up in your life. What does The peace of God's Spirit tell you you should do, or you should not do?

Fourth, invest  frequent cosnsistent time time God's Wordtime so that the word of God completely fills you up, with a plethora of things, with all wisdom, teaching and lovingly correcting one another with pslams, hymns and spiritual songs. Singing them with thankfullnes in your hearts to God.

Fifth Do all  in your Master's Name, what ever you do in word or deed, in business, at home at church in all recreation, in all practcingof the arts, in entertainment, in your sleep, at night, in the day, do it all in the name of Jesus who is your highest authority, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

So How Do I  apply these five Principles in my  work life?

First, Put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience, letting them cover us completely, sinking deep into their covering with every candidate, employee, prospect, customer, Potential vendor, vendor, delivery driver, receptionist, warehouse worker, banker, project manager, trainer, leader, cleaning person.

Second, when God's Children are doing or saying things that are offensive to you ( and they will). Bear it without striking back, and even responding in love and affirmation both publicly and privately. Tf they succeed in harming you or giving you offense, forgive them, right on the spot before it has a chance to fester and grow into something else.

Third, listen carefully to peace of Christ in your heart, for every response, for every action, decision interaction.Let it umpire that makes rulings as things come up in your life. What does The peace of God's Spirit tell you you should do, or you should not do?

Fourth, invest time so that the word of God completely fills you up, so that His word is present as tools, in your heart mind and spirit, in your mouth. It is the sword of God for your workplace, where ever your are. And join together with other believers in your workplace and fight the good fight together, whether they goto your home church or not.

Fifth, what ever you do in word or deed at work do it all in the name of Jesus who is your highest authority, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.


These are the ACTIONS we take while on our journey in the workplace. We are not asked to passively take what the world gives us until we can run back to church to get cleaned up. We are  to take action in our role there by sinking deeply into the new clothes Christ has given us to cover us; we are to bear and forgive, listen to the peace of Christ as he umpires our interactions, stay steeped in His Word, and live an integrated life, doing every action including business in the name of the Lord.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A BAM Awakening

Have you ever felt as a business person or professional that you’re about the only person in church who hasn’t got something to offer mission? I certainly did.

I can remember watching teachers, builders, medics, plumbers, electricians, cooks, parents, social workers and all other manner of other people being exhorted to get involved in short-term mission trips. Along with the others who were seen as ‘business people’, ‘office workers’, ‘consultants’ or ‘professionals’, I was exhorted to get involved too, but only by contributing money. We were left with the sense of being second class, good for nothing but tithing and bringing work colleagues along to church events. Little did I know the journey of learning that God had in store for me.

The Rest @ YWAM BAM

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Three Moments in time

Over 2000 years God brought forth the pivot point in his plan to restore, Mankind, his most favored creation to himself. He did this in three moments, in the birth, the death and the resurrection from the dead of Jesus Christ.
We have since been engaged in a great presentation of these facts and their purpose to the world. He that originally enslaved us, separating us from God in the beginning, received his death blow in those three moments in time. Still, in his death throws, this enemy of God and man resists in every possible way the presentation of these facts, of this great news, in every possible corner of the earth. This struggle will not end until every nation has heard this good news and individuals have chosen to accept or reject the Gift.
And so we serve in this battle-field today. God does not require men to take over any institution or to kill in this great struggle, though  as the battle becomes more decisive believers are killed.. God requires service and sacrifice for people in things that matter as God himself, by means of his Holy Spirit, pursues every one of his un-reconciled ones.
Therefore, It is altogether fitting and proper that we live a life of purpose, commitment and resolve, avoiding distractions in order to honor the sacrifice God made to reach us. In a larger sense, we can never repay the debt He has paid for this reconciliation. We cannot honor the Cross anymore than Jesus Christ, God Himself has already done.
The sacrificing followers of Jesus, living and dead, who spread this great news of Jesus have consecrated a path for us to follow. The world will not long remember what is said in the protected confines of this text, but it can never forget the impact of the spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is for us, the living, to be dedicated here to this unfinished mission until we join those who have gone to rest before us, or until He returns and the earth is discarded like a vale.
It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that we take increased devotion to spreading the Great news of  these three moments in time at every opportunity.Where ever we are in each moment by chance and where we are by great planning, sacrifice and purpose, we have no higher or more pressing work than to love his people and spread His message.

 I highly resolve that I shall not not live my life in vain malingering and dissipation—that I, as a faithful follower of Jesus, shall beg God for  a passionate re-awakening in me and in his local church around the world. That we shall not succumb to the false religions and philosophies that dilute and distract us from  the great news of Jesus. That we shall not sleep sleep while the enemy stalks like a lion.

We Beg You Father God, to make my life, our lives available, useable and useful, instruments of Your Great News to all men.

-A 21st Century Believer

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Clarifying the 7 Mountains - 10 Principles

What REALLY is the 7 Mountain Message? from Os Hillman on Vimeo.

(Lee Royal, 5-27-2011)
The Seven Mountains Strategy is Not:
The Seven Mountains Strategy is:

A simple organizational strategy for bringing the full message of Christ  across a wide cultural spectrum.
  • It illustrates that believers are called to influence individuals at different places in time and culture
  • It helps believers value gifts used by people in other areas to reach people
  • It is a helpful strategy now, but like any strategy it will fall by the wayside when it is no longer helpful,   (for example, during the "Great Awakenings" tent meetings were effective)
  • Like any good strategy,  a heretical group may use it in appropriately
Some seem to have misunderstood or co-opted the 7 Mountain Strategy, so here are 10 Principles guiding how the vast majority of evangelical Christians engage culture in America.

As a Christ Follower in the United States of America,
  1. We support the constitution of the United States.
  2. We have the right to carry our faith where ever we have access in the culture, in private or public.
  3. We have the right to to try and persuade others about our faith, as well as about our political beliefs.
  4. There are laws and practices in place that prevent from harassment and unwelcome advances; and they are adequate to prevent abuse without infringing on #3. above.
  5. We do not have the right to force others to participate with us in our faith.
  6. Our faith shapes our beliefs about justice and government, and we have the right to try and persuade elected officials, like any other member of American society; we also have the right to vote our faith-born convictions.
  7. A law shaped by voting our faith-born convictions is not a religious law, it has become a civil law under the constitution.The constitution does not provide for the stripping of religious principle from underpinning civil law.
  8. We support the protection of the rights of voter minorities to practice or not practice their faith, and to have a meaningful vote of their counter-majority convictions. This prevents the tyranny of a man-made theocracy.
  9. The constitution of the United States prevents the establishment of a theocracy, even if the majority of voters vote it to be so. 
  10. The Gospel of Jesus stands on it's own legs in the face of any other faith or human institution;  
The 7 Mountain battle strategy used by a few Christian Reconstructionists must not be confused with a 7 Mountain framework used more widely by Christians not trying to create a man made theocracy.

-Lee Royal

does this answer your question Bill?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

25 BAM Lessons Learned

I was part of a BAM Environmental Engineering business called Paradigm Engineering Owned By Johnny and Karen Combs. Their vision was to operated a kingdom Business. I served several roles there, including Human Resources and Community Services Officer. I was the Business as Mission Officer for the company. We collaborated with many pioneering BAM organizations,as well as doing our own activity.

What follows is a quick summary of some lessons learned about BAM.

Background of  the Paradigm Engineering BAM Movement

Many people in leadership came from Baptist and Bible Church backgrounds; however, since the Business was not affiliated in anyway with any particular mission group, we were able to cross mission  organization boundaries well.  We partnered with a number of  denominational and Non -denominational groups who generally came from the evangelical Christian world.  We also workd with a  number of local churhces in the developing world. With them, and on our own, we completed a body of business and market research across cultures, east and west across rural, urban and suburban settings. The work and research was based on best practices, interviews, and trial start up business plan analyses.Next,  Two single enterprise business start ups were then conducted using a water purification/bottled water store in developing country suburban and rural environments, one in Mexico and one in Liberia. Both are in operation in one form or another. Our next project was the SEED Center. Glenn White of  businesstry, who had been doing alot of work and writing in that area came on board to develop the concept.

Servant Entrepreneur Enterprise Development (SEED) Centers(r) is the name Waters of Mercy, doing business as as Business Without Borders  gave to our concept of mutual supporting business enterprise start- ups.

Some Lessons Learned

1.   There is no "one size fits all" set of businesses that work for BAM everywhere. Even similar settings in similar cultures may not work. Therefore, a detailed individual project assessment is needed for each proposed BAM business or SEED Center, in each location, even if they are in the same region.

2.   Local church leadership in areas that could benefit from BAM/SEED centers often have incorporated the worst the western church has to offer in terms of their understanding of the place business in God's Kingdom. In some cases the local church leadership even believes that business is, by its very nature, corrupt work of the devil. This belief system must be assessed and understood before a time line is developed for implementing a BAM Project.

3.   Both the formal and the informal business practices of the target area must be fully understood in the business plan development for a SEED Center.

4.  The agenda and measurable objectives of the Funders/underwriters of BAM projects, including SEED Centers, must be clearly defined, in writing, before a BAM Project is launched.

5.  There are several systems that must be assessed before a project is implemented and findings incorporated into the design. For example, security, political stability, organized criminal activity, etc. must be assessed. A safe with a chain link embedded in a concrete may be essential equipment in the the business plan.

6.  Most Western business equipment is designed with high technology and low labor needs in mind. In most BAM Project settings, low-tech equipment is the most resiliant choice, and design we need to help the local entrepreneur design work processes that employ more people to make up for it. a business franchise designed in the west for the west and supported by a western small business specialist needs a complete rethinking and redesign, and will have higher labor needs than one would expect in the west.

7.  Some sort of microfinance system should be part of most SEED Center  or business cluster.If not, the financial transaction processes for the businesses should be carefully thougt through

8.  Highly Motivated Believer Business Behavior (HMB3) is an essential ingredient for BAM success anywhere. It is characterized by self-directed positive, ethical, entrepreneurial actions like selling, consistent process discipline, product improvement and excellence, assertively monitoring the competitive environment, creative problem solving, good shepherding of people, product and money, and good listening skills.In short, taking ownership of all business activities. Hireling Behavior is characterized by being an ethical steward,who has traded their time for money. They are not willing to take many risks on behalf of the business. They treat the tribal leader or real owner like a respected boss. It is really about commitment.

If  ham and eggs are needed to make a meal, the pig demonstrates an HMB3 level of commitment, while the chicken that produced the eggs demonstrates a hireling level of commitment

10.  Tribal ownership, including local church group ownership, diffuses individual responsibility and discourages HMB3. Even Strong believers demonstrate Hireling Behavior under tribal ownership.

11.  An international denominationally planted BAM project or SEED Center often suffers at the hand of tribal ownership. Most missionaries know that in the developing world, if you, a westerner built it, you are expected to maintain it, where it is a Church Roof or a BAM Project.

12.  Every business needs an accountability structure made up of mostly believing business people. An accountability structure controlled by church leadership is tribally owned. If denominational group church leaders do not not trust the believing business people they brought in, this needs to be sorted out before you initiate a BAM project and spread that mistrust to the local BAM Project.

13.  A BAM business makes a profit and hires people; a BAM-Titled Mission Project creates business-like activity until the money runs out. There may be a place for both, but it is destructive for future projects to mistake one for the other.

14.  Just like a new new church plant has some spiritual barriers to over come, so does a new BAM activity.
Like any successful church plant, a successful BAM activity needs to prepare for spiritual "pushback". It needs to have the same prayer support as any other mission activity no matter were it is.

15. Every piece of machinery, equipment or supply needs to be available locally. To design a business that requires special outside help creates dependency on believers outside the local church; this should be discouraged.

16. One on One discipleship is needed for every new business owner. This can be done by local church leaders, and can create a healthy non-controlling interaction for ethical discussions. Local church leader coaching by supporting church leaders is needed to make this key relationship work.

17.  Pray for discernment about influences that are not readily transparent. Believers in other countries sometimes display one set of behavior to Western visitors, and another to each other.

18.  Funding plans should include awareness of the "burn rate" for a start up.  The funds needed for start up are like fuel. If you run out of fuel before your covering your own needs the business must end. It should be clear there is no more. Therefore, monitoring the the "burn rate" is a healthy activity for everyone.

19.  Every business has a business cycle and a life cycle. Individual businesses have births, lives and deaths.An anointed, called, gifted entrepreneur will start many businesses in their lifetime.

20.  Church leaders will need help to not "freak out" if a business phases out or dies. The SEED Center or business cluster can lengthen the life of a business,  They design churches to last for the long haul, so this is a hard concept for them.

21. The most important thing to remember is that any BAM activitiy is about investing in the local believer, who is called to be an entrepreneur.  Every Believing Entrepreneur needs at least one, preferably many, mentors, coaches, and peers.

22.  Understand the role of BAM support people and organizations. Our calling is different. God gives us a love for entrepreneurs, even if some of us are not entrepreneurs ourselves. The must have a God given love for the believing entrepreneur.

On a Trip back to Texas from Zacatecas, Mexico, where we we had set up a BAM project that supported a kids feeding program, paid for by mothers who now bought their bottled water from the Water Store, the Missionary said to me, "Lee, don't those kids and mothers make you just want to sell everything and come down here to work?" I had to stop for a long time to pray about why I did not feel led to do that. I said "No, but I want it makes we want to stop and do everything I can to Help guys like you all over the world."

23.  There is a need beyond Micro-enterprise. For every micro 100 entrepreneurs, perhaps 10 move on to hire workers outside their family. There is a need for different support structures as well as training, and especially, mentoring needed for these transformational entrepreneurs.

24.  Budget about 1.3 the amount of time and money you think you may need to implement a BAM project.

25.  The vision of the local believing entrepreneur is what God blesses. The western entrepreneur supporter brings encouragement and technical skills

Business as mission is not a new concept, but Christianity has seen a resurgence in reestablishing work as worship. Missions with business  has grown as doors to traditional missionaries have closed But unless we learn to love and invest in Kingdom Entrepreneurs, and figure out how to share our lessons learned, BAM will be relegated to become just another missionary tactic.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

What is Business as Mission? ( BAM )

First, BAM or Business as Mission is the idea that there is a "calling" to business. Why, how and where do carry out my calling? How do I interaction with other people in the Body of Christ? How do I connect? Here is a brief introduction.

In 2004 a group of  believing global business leaders gathered, and after much prayer and work, wrote  The Lausanne Occasional Paper 54 They said that God is at work in a new way, all over the world, both in the market place and in the Church. This dynamic movement within the Body of Christ is based  on God’s love for the world and His call to His Church.  It is a new wave of activity that is closely linked with the work of the Holy Spirit throughout history.  It is a relevant strategy for the 21st century.  God is raising up a new work force of men and women from around the world.  These men and women are on a mission for God’s

glory in and through business.  Christian leaders in business, church, missions and  beyond have all concurred that God is at work and business as mission is  dynamically meeting the various needs of a world in desperate need of the whole Gospel.

In a nutshell:
  • Workplace ministry or Marketplace ministry  can be done in any workplace and is vital component to BAM but is not, in itself, BAM
  • Tentmaking is a way to earn a living while doing missionary work, but is not BAM
  • A business owned by Christians may or may not be BAM activity
  • Using business as a "platform" to send missionaries is not BAM, and many BAM practioners have questions about the integrity of this approach
  • A Kingdom Business Professional is a believer serving his or her purpose in any worplace that may or may not be a BAM activity.
A BAM business is a business a real business, a purpose driven business, created and designed by entrepreneurs with the express -purpose of  serving their role to advances the kingdom of God, not to take anything over, but to full fill the great commission (Matt 28 19-20), using the gifts that some believers were given.

A fully grown and balanced  BAM organization has Six defining characteristics:

1.   It makes a profit
2.   It's enterprises engage the world by creating business
3.   It deliberately engages its believing and non believing employees with workplace ministry
4.   It deliberately engages the community where it lives and works as Ambassadors for Christ
5.   It deliberately engages its customers and venders knowing it overtly represents Christ
6.  It deliberately engages the local Body of Christ as a siblings in the body of Christ here on earth.

There are two kinds of BAM Organizations:

a. A Greenfield BAM organization ( a start up owned by believers designed according to BAM principles)
b.  A Brownfiled BAm organization (a business owned by believers started in the traditional way and having been redesigned.

A BAM activity also usually  has Chaplains integrated into workpliace ministrt, and intercessors integrated into the business processes of the company.

 Here are some Great Resources:
BAM Books:
I hope this is you jumping-off place. May God make your way straight and clear, and may the seed He planted in you produce a hundred-fold in advancement of God's Kingdom.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

My Calling to be Both Leader and Follower

The Holy Spirit's strategic vision comes by inspiration to those leading in their place of calling. In most other places in the Body of Christ, everyone is called to wash feet, in skillful and excellent ways, at the direction of others. It is rare that any believer is called to be the head of  the body in many different places of service.

Watch what happens when a business Shepherd tries to create a strategic vision for a Church Shepard, or a Church Shepard tries to create a strategic vision for a Business Shepherd . Discord  and Chaos.

I Corinthians 12:7 -27: Lays these principles out....

The problem is I see my own calling and gifting as being the main effort that advances the kingdom of God, and that all others are called to support me, as their most spiritual opportunity, now and in the future. I am unintentionally spiritually self-centered.

I am called to lead in one area, and wash feet in another. This myopic view of ministry can be seen, for example in the differences in world views between Church shepeherdhip and Business Sheperdship.
I believe there is a subtle-but-significant difference in worldviews between those believers called to Church Leadership and those called to Business. This has caused division that has been exploited by the enemy . The result is that business leaders don't understand why their Spiritual leadership can't see the business person's calling. It has also resulted in Church leaders who don't understand believing business peoples' resistance to their attempts to enlist them in church service.

For Two generations back, on both sides of my family, and even among my younger cousins, we have been predominantly called to be pastors and missionaries, sometimes both. I am a pastor/missionary kid. Yet I am called to business; and am deeply passionate about church leadership.Threfore, as a beliver firmly planted in both groups, I see this division  arise time and time again, and I believe it is a result of both God-given differences and unintentional human spiritual self-centeredness.

Believers newly called to "the ministry"  those called to or aspire to "full-time Christian service" believe they have set aside any idea of gaining material possessions, and that God will give them unique insitght to advance the Kingdom of God. (I am not talking about those who choose the clergy as a profession, without a calling)Those called believe that they and their families are likeley to pay a high price to do that service.

Believers newly called to business, (I am not talking about those who choose business as a profession, without a calling). They believe that they and their families are likely to pay a high price to develop business, putting their financially futures at risk on a daily basis, and  that they are personally called to advance the Kingdom of God. While they volunteer at church, their purposeful ministry is to the lost and estranged, and support of  other believers in their workplace ministry. Their passion is for the workplace, for creating business as a means of, not a platform for advancing  Gods kingdom.

Anything as a "platform" to share the gospel in difficult places seems to irritate those called to business. This suggests that the church-based leadership who uses this phrase consider the platform itself is just a means of carrying the real workers to their place of ministry.  It is unintentionally spiritually self-centered. I have see church leaders at high levels, in their writings using phrases like "business armor bearers" for mission and church ministry work. They see their ministry  as the main force for moving God's kingdom forward.
Believers called to business love their pastors and church leaders, and volunteer to help support the pastoral staff in their ministry inside the church building, and are often called upon and willing to provide financially over and above the tithe in significant ways. But their passion will always be to create and expand enterprise as a core means of  deliberately spreading gospel..

Those called to business often feel alienated from the work of the ministry inside the church. They see  churches growing larger and larger, and see what they consider inefficiencies in church that would never survive in business. Those called to work as Church staff tolerate the business person's input, but they are carefully to put boundaries on the business person's efforts. As Shepherds of the flock, church leaders see that they must protect the body from what may be a distraction. Business people, who's leadership is valued in the workplace, find their leadership at looked up with wariness by church leaders, at best, and unwelcome or a threat at worst.... And rightfully so.

The business leaders call is to serve and support the work of the Church's shepherds, but their real ministry call is in enterprise. The Holy Spirit's inspiration comes to those leading in their place of calling. In most other places of leadership in the Body of Christ, they are called to wash feet, in skillful and excellent ways

There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.

- Lee Royal


There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.
7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues,[a] and to still another the interpretation of tongues.[b] 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.

Unity and Diversity in the Body

12 Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. 13 For we were all baptized by[c] one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. 14 Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many. 15 Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 16 And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. 17 If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? 18 But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. 19 If they were all one part, where would the body be? 20 As it is, there are many parts, but one body.
21 The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” 22 On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, 23 and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, 24 while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26 If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
27 Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. 28 And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. 29 Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? 30 Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues[d]? Do all interpret? 31 Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.

- I Corinthians 12:7 -27 NIV

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Call of Christ to Business

I recently read a great statement of the enterprising ministry of a beliver called to business.

"My business is my mission. It is not a cover to sneak in someplace it is an expression of who I am. In the process of doing business with excellence and being genuine, I will have influence in whatever culture I'm in.
As people observe our Christ-like behavior they will ask us why we do things the way we do them. This will lead us into a natural conversation of our faith. Our business behavior, that is, fair prices, integrity in our advertising, going the extra mile and being willing to take a loss rather than take advantage of someone, will lead to natural opportunities to share our faith.

Jeff Testerman

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Moving Through The Valley of Tears and the Matt 6:1-4 Group

Moving through the Valley of Tears, one outpost at a time on pilgrimage to the city of refuge. God has provided natural springs along the way, and unexpected Autumn rain from a group named Matthew 6:1-4.

“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret.

Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.
I thank you, who ever you are, and pray that indeed, God will rewar you.

When I pray for understanding, so that I can cooperate with what he is doing, God always answers, one way or another. Recently he gave me this verse:

.... Blessed are those whose strength is in you, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage.  As they pass through the Valley of Baka, they make it a place of springs; the Autumn rains also cover it with pools. They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion....

-Pslams 84: 5-7, Biblegateway, NIV

A little background:
The Valley of Baca, also called the Valley of Bochin in Judges, was the only passageway into the high hills where Israel’s Cities of Refuge were located. Some scholars state that the Valley of Baca was also representative of the valley that led up to the city of Jerusalem where the temple of God was found. A weary traveler, searching for safety from those who were pursuing him because of an accidental death or some inadvertent sin that he had committed, would have to travel this valley to find refuge and safety in the House of God or the Cities of Refuge.

The Valley of Baca was part of the desert country. The valley was filled with thorns, wild animals, pitfalls, vipers and all sorts of danger. In addition, there were wells of water but they were often far apart and hard to get to. It was nearly impossible to travel this valley without facing extreme hardship and suffering. That is why the Valley of Baca was named because it literally means “Valley of Tears”.

-Sermon Central

-The Word "Strength" in verse 5 as in Blessed are those whose Strength is in You is the Hebrew word  "oz", meaning mighty fortress, a loud powerful stronghold.     
-The Word "Strength" in verse 7,  as in "Strength to Strength" is the Hebrew Word  "chayil" meaning brave, capable, efficient, excellent and substantial warriors. It also is used to mean substantial worth resources.
This verse speaks to me about where we are right now.

(Holman Exhaustive NASB Concordance)

For me and my house, we follow the way, Jesus Christ, who God gave to reconcile us with Him. As we walk through this current valley, He is out fortress, our statement, our place. It is impossible to walk through this valley without him. As we become more dependent on Him, he is an ever increasing source of might strength and resource as we move from one point to the next.  Some sources have been like the wells; rare but naturally provided by God. Some have been like the Autumn Rain, unexpected, and supernatural.

The most notable unexpected way of his provision has come by the hand of an anonymous group called the Matthew 6:1-4 Group. Though I don't know who they are or how they know about our pilgrimage, they sent substance by mail; resources, and even more importantly, encouraging words. I will likely  never know who they are, but they were used by God to provide  pools of Autumn rain in my  family's pilgrimage through the valley of tears.

So I praise God because of this group's sacrifice; may God reward them with peace and every spiritual blessing.


Saturday, February 26, 2011

My Fruit in the Space and Time God Gives Me

 It's a profound mystery that God uses broken people to advance his kingdom. There is an amazing continuity of believers before you and me, and believers coming after us that God uses to advance His Kingdom. Therefore, as followers of the way , we have been given a God-ordained space in the lineage of his Kingdom. 

The question is, what am I doing with my work of gratitude, in my space in time?

Whether I am called to the ministry of enterprise, in the for profit or the non-profit world, I have things to do to advance his kingdom. Small things, large things, long and short things. What am I doing with the moments He has created for me? like Joel Gregory once said, "We're obsessed by trivial things, and miss the monumental things."

It is likely, like best men and women of the bible, that I will have both successes and failures. Either way I will be both rewarded and held accountable for my actions in my space and time.

Case Study - Asa

After David and his son Solomon, Israel was divided. Jeroboam, appointed King of Israel by 10 of the 12 tribes, led his tribes away from God, and forged golden goat and calf idols. He kicked out the priests of God, and appointed his own priests to his new idols.

Abija, king of the other two tribes, fought to maintain the Independence of the two remaining tribes, Judah and Benjamin. His son, Asa kept the two tribes in peace for ten years; Then:
The Spirit of God came on Azariah son of Oded. He went out to meet Asa and said to him,

“Listen to me, Asa and all Judah and Benjamin. The LORD is with you when you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you.  For a long time Israel was without the true God, without a priest to teach and without the law. But in their distress they turned to the LORD, the God of Israel, and sought him, and he was found by them."  

(In those days it was not safe to travel about, for all the inhabitants of the lands were in great turmoil. One nation was being crushed by another and one city by another, because God was troubling them with every kind of distress)

"But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded.”

- II Chronicles  15:1-7 , NIV @ Biblegateway

Asa's reign ended up uneven. He drew the two tribes back to God in many ways, but when he was threatened by a larger country, and later with his physical sickness, he did not go to God, but went to a king in Damascus, an ungodly country.  God withdrew his favor from them, and Asa was at war the rest of his reign.


What Am I doing in My Space and Time that advances God's Kingdom?

What Am I doing in My Space and Time that works against God's Kingdom?

What Am I doing in My Space and Time that dissipates my spiritual energy and initiative, that entertains myself alone, that makes me unavailable to serve God's Kingdom?


Monday, February 21, 2011

BAM's Four Components

Business As Mission (BAM) has four core components.

  • First, it involves the creation of a business controlled by Great Commission minded owners and senior management who seek to glorify God with every aspect of the their business operation. This eliminates Tentmaking which focuses on individual impact rather than the business impact.
  • Second, it has profit (or at least sustainability) as a goal. This eliminates business "platforms" and other ministries and NGOs which cannot operate without donor funds.
  • Third, it exists primarily to advance the gospel among less reached peoples of the world. This eliminates marketplace ministries which are typically not cross-cultural in emphasis.
  • Fourth, it is socially responsible; it does not seek profit at any cost. Restricting our definition in this way is not to say that these excluded strategies are not desirable or effective.
-Source WikiBAM

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Ten Principles For Enterprising Ministry Leadership

Principle One: The workplace is the primary appointed place of ministry for those called to Enterprising Ministry leadership.

The Marketplace is the is field ripe for harvest, the church building is the seed store. We some times operate as if the workplace is the seed store and the church building is the field for harvest. We are the workers, the church leadership is delighted to be the equippers of  workplace saints.

Principle Two: Enterprise without profit is like a local church without the gospel. 

Even non-profit enterprises must generate more income than they spend to invest in stability and growth.

An enterprising ministry that spends more than it takes in looks and sounds good, but it is no more than a representation of  a real enterprise, a fruitless fruit tree. It has no strength to stand in adversity, no passion to advance the kingdom. It has no real opportunity to support families or fund other kingdom work. It is facade, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Principle Three: The Workplace must be reclaimed as a place of salty light for believers to carry out their primary ministry, not a place of contamination for the

There is an unspoken belief among "old school" Christian business and clergy people that business is at least a place of compromise, and at worst a stronghold of the enemy, and that Christians called to business operate there only to reclaim the enemy's money so that it may be redeemed in "real" ministry outside of the marketplace. This is a tragic myth; the marketplace must be reclaimed as a place of  salty light for believers to carry out their primary ministry.

Principle Four: The marketplace is a primary place to for relationships to develop between believers and those who will be believers.

Construct your work processes with Purpose Driven Design Principles, maximizing opportunities for believing workers to interact as believers with those around them that don't know Christ both inside and outside the Enterprise.

Principle Five: A Business owned or controlled by believers  belongs to the Lord,  and they are Stewards of the Enterprising Ministry.

No believer owns anything. The enterprising business is of God, by God, and for God. The owners are Stewards with a burden and responsibility similar to the ones Pastors and Elders hold for a church.

Principle Six: A godly enterprise may be mundane and simple, but it is sin for a Steward to operate an enterprise that advances the enemy's kingdom.

No business services or products that enslave people, draws people away from Christ or facilitates the enemy's agenda. 

Principle Seven: believer in enterprise operates under the same standards of ethics and behavior as the rest of the body of Christ.

As ambassadors for Christ in a non-Christian world, as standard bearers in a Kingdom Business, you may not keep two set of  behavioral books.

Principle Eight: Stewards of Enterprising Ministry are by definition equipped by God to be contributors toward other ministry.

As stewards of financial, job, and business resources and assets, as well as opportunities, you have a responsibility to listen to petitions and requests, submit them to to the Lord in prayer, and respond as directed by the Lord.

Principle Nine: At the End of the day, Enterprising Ministry, business, is about People that matter to God. How you treat your employees, suppliers, and customers is carried to God by Christ as worship, an aroma, a perfume..

Principle Ten: Enterprising Ministry Stewards are teachers, responsible to develop the next generation of Kingdom Entrepreneurs.