Few people have impacted our missiology like my friend Dick Brogden. In an interview for The Stone Table website, I asked Dick why business has become such a vital mechanism for missions work. Here was his answer:
“Business goes beyond pragmatism. The pragmatic view is we can’t get into these countries or access these communities unless we have a credible platform. That’s true and legitimate. We do business, and we do it well, so that we can get visas and get into communities.
But it goes beyond pragmatism to fruitfulness. The normal person, if he had no job and no business, he might share the gospel with his neighbor, or the guy he buys fruit from, or his landlord, but he’s not actually built to generate new relationships all day long so that he can keep sharing the gospel and see more people get saved.
Most people can’t just generate new relational contacts out of thin air. They need a gym, they need a coffee house, they need a language center, they need a tourist company, they need a consulting corporation. They need something that propels them into life-on-life, face-to-face conversation with people.
You can’t just sit in a coffee shop all day and think people are going to drop into your lap and say, “What must I do to be saved?” You need that credible offering to get out in community that is renewable. That renewable content is really important. Why? Because so many people hear the gospel and reject it. If you don’t have a way to meet new people, you’re not going to see a lot of people saved. That’s why business is not just pragmatic, but it’s powerful, because it’s continually propelling us into new conversations, relationships, and opportunities where we can proclaim Christ, find those who are interested, and then drill down into discipleship with them.”
Maybe this resonates with you. Perhaps one of these examples of how BAM creates access, adds real economic value, and fulfills the Great Commission around the world stirs something inside you. If you have marketplace skills, if you’re an entrepreneur, you may think your money is the only gift you have to offer the Kingdom. Don’t get me wrong because financial generosity is vital! But the way God made you and wired you, the skillsets you developed in college or over the course of your career, all of it is designed to play a role in God’s kingdom work in the world.
Is God calling you to invest in BAM development? Is God calling you to take your marketplace skills into a cross-cultural, unreached corner of the world for the sake of the gospel? Maybe you have a scalable business model and could offer an expansion or franchise to BAM practitioners on the field.
Marketplace skills are missionary skills. Is God calling you?
This week on the podcast we continue our discussion about business as mission (BAM) by looking at different ways (both good and bad) that BAM is being used in global missions efforts. We also finish our powerful interview with Dick Brogden. I hope you’ll listen, subscribe, rate, and share it with others. That means a lot to us.
THIS WEEK ON THE WEBSITE:
PODCAST: Episode 11: Marketplace Skills are Missionary Skills
VIDEO: Why is BAM So Necessary?
VIDEO: The Injustice Under Every Injustice
ARTICLE: A Servant’s Heart in the Shark Tank (by Kelly Delp)
Accelerating the Great Commission through the Marketplace,
Erik Cooper | The Stone Table
Don’t forget to pick up your copy of Missional Marketplace: Finding Your Everyday Work in God’s Eternal Plan in your choice of print, e-book, or audiobook by clicking here!