Friday, April 19, 2013

Recognizing the Higher Calling of Business

For many decades, the call to business has often been seen as a call to hard work and materialism, leading those involved to a self-centered and unspiritual life.
In recent years, we have seen that these paradigms have been challenged by the awareness of the biblical principles of work and how business resources can be used in the service of God's kingdom.
Partners Worldwide in Honduras, through its local affiliates Diaconia Nacional and Stewardship Christian Ministries, has been intentional about transmitting these values ​​to its network of entrepreneurs. In Honduras, the materialistic perspective of business is prevalent. However, in rural and marginal business sectors, business is basically "a mean of survival to put food on the table."
In business training classes that both of these institutions lead, they share a devotions time with the purpose of inspiring entrepreneurs to incorporate kingdom values in their business and to see the opportunity to bless and impact through relationships with suppliers, customers and employees.
Attendants to Taylor University Training
During Holy Week , a group from Taylor University shared a time of a business/spiritual retreat in order to impart principles of marketing, accounting and operations to a group of 28 businessmen from Olancho, Tegucigalpa and Nueva Suyapa. This retreat had a dual purpose of encouraging business development as well as spiritual growth.
Through dynamic support and prayer groups, worship, and a bonfire, entrepreneurs got outside their conventional environment and felt free to meditate, meet other entrepreneurs and also have a leisure time in the forests of El Hatillo.
Ramon Almendares, owner of Almendares upholstery,
leading worship songs during the retreat.
Leda Rivera, loan officer of the PW fund administered by Diaconia Nacional, says, "Entrepreneurs shared with me how special they felt, and how they recognized the dignity of the work they do. That, although it provides for their family, business involves more than that and has a greater impact than what they had ever recognized before. "
During this retreat two people reconciled with Christ and one who was discouraged and closed her business due to external factors reopened her business saying "these two days I have been inspired with new ideas to put into practice."
We recognize that our remaining work is arduous and we're just starting on the path of creating a "training culture" but it gives us joy to know the impact in each of the entrepreneurs goes beyond helping them to develop a balance sheet, create a flyer, or know the unitary cost of their products. Our work in training is also to open the eyes of those who have disparaged their work in business and to help them have a sense of dignity in what they do.

Entrepreneurs, team from the National University, and Taylor team.

We thank each member of the groups such as Taylor University and the Honduras Pella Affiliate, as well as mentors and local institutions such as the Autonomous University of Honduras who through their human, financial resources and knowledge make these trainings possible.

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