I retook my seat across from Trent*, a client of my company Software Development Pty Ltd, to discuss a project at the local Coffee Club in Brisbane.
As I sat, Trent said, “I read your article posted on Faith Driven Business earlier today before coming for lunch. I never knew you were so heavy into faith.”
His eyes shifted side to side, avoiding eye contact as he took a bite of his toasted ham, cheese and tomato sandwich. After finishing the mouthful, he added, “When we have talked in the past you are more intellectual, into science and logic.”
Why Christian Entrepreneurs Need Faith in Business and Everyday Life
Before speaking I glanced at the chef, then at Trent’s sandwich. “For something each of us uses in all walks of our life, I class faith as an important topic. Andrew Newberg, a leading neuroscientist, proves as much in his book How God Changes Our Brain. He states faith, above exercise, even diet, is the best thing a person can do for their wellbeing.”
“What do you mean ‘everyone uses faith’?” Trent asked as he bit into his sandwich.
Everyone Exercises Faith in Work and Life
“If I told you as I left the toilets earlier, I witnessed the chef leave slightly before me without washing his hands, what would you do?”
Trent stopped chewing, screwed up his nose, and lightly coughed before his Adam’s apple raised, then dragged the food down his throat. He placed his sandwich on his plate as he wrestled his facial muscles, tensing into a contorted, disgusted expression. “You serious?”
“No, but what makes you think the Chef does wash his hands?”
He breathed a sigh of relief and picked his sandwich back up. He hesitated just before his teeth were about to close down to take another bite, then withdrew the sandwich from his mouth. “Not sure? I guess I believe the chef would be hygienic.”
“Why do you believe that?”
“Government health standards, I guess, enforce certain levels of hygiene.”
“And you believe they follow the laws here?”
“How do you know they do?”
“I guess I don’t.”
“So then, how do you come to trust in eating the sandwich?”
He paused a moment. “I believe the standards are upheld.”
“There is a difference between belief and faith,” I replied.
Belief vs. Faith
“What do you mean?”
“There is the story of a tightrope walker who walked the thin wire across the Grand Canyon. On returning to a waiting crowd after a successful attempt, he asked them, ‘Do you believe I can walk across this tightrope to the other side?’ The crowd, seeing he just did, yelled, ‘Of course, yes.’ On his second crossing he walked across the wire carrying his short and stubby colleague on his shoulders. Back at the crowd he asked, ‘Do you believe I can walk across this tightrope to the other side with a person on my shoulders?’ After just seeing with their own eyes him performing the deed, the people yelled, ‘Yes, of course, without a problem.’ The performer then asked, ‘OK, who wants to be the next person on my shoulders?’ With that the audience became silent.”
Trent’s eyes widened as he contemplated the difference. He said, “I see. It’s one thing believing in something, but another thing in having faith in accomplishing the task.”
“Indeed,” I replied, “faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”
“You make that up?”
“No, it’s from the Bible, Hebrews 11:1. You required faith to drive here today, whether you realized it or not. Hoping in your car, you know, being the statistical person you are, there is a possibility of death or serious injury. Yet knowing those stats you still drove. To do so, you drew a sense of faith from the safety systems of your vehicle, the people around you, and your own abilities. You cannot know for sure you will not be the next statistic on the nightly news. Faith is what allows you to accomplish that task without being overcome by fear.”
Putting Faith in Christ
“So then why would I need God for faith?” Trent asked.
“When you lose faith in your government, doctor, safety devices, rules and regulations, where are you going to draw your faith from?”
“Why would I lose faith in those?”
“When your doctor tells you, you have an incurable disease. When the government passes laws that contradict a personal belief. When a safety device fails. Many things cause us to lose sources of faith. If we lose too many we become consumed by anxiety. For some, that escalates into panic attacks, even to the point of fear preventing a person stepping outside their own home.” I let Trent, knowing he experiences occasional anxiety issues, ponder that statement before continuing. “When we come to know God on a personal level through Jesus Christ, we have the strongest source of faith available.”
With an inquisitive look, Trent asked, “How does one like yourself, an intellectual whose life revolves around logic and science, come to believe in God?”
“For me, it came from reading and studying the Bible,” I said. “I’m far from the first intellectual type person to come to know God. John Lennox, William Lane Craig, Francis Collins, Rosalind Picard. There are many who have. Many who understand the power faith grants them during life. While science can theorize the universe started with a Big Bang, it can’t answer why there was a Big Bang. Only a relationship with God answers that.”
Why I Need Faith in Business and Everyday Life
On a sidenote, whenever I start a project or work towards a worthy goal, I exercise faith. Faith I will finish the job, and to a standard that exceeds the client’s demands.
In life, people start projects, from writing a song, to writing a novel, to landscaping their backyard. Some fail, not because they were incapable, but because they lost faith in achieving the goal. Drawing strength from faith in Christ empowers a person to go beyond their deemed limits. (Tweet that!)
With prayer, all things are possible. “For with God nothing shall be impossible” (Luke 1:37 KJV).
What do you put your faith in? What does it mean to your business, work, and life?
*Trent not his real name. Trent gave permission to share this meeting on the basis his name was changed.
Article originally published on Faith Driven Business. Used with permission.
After a difficult childhood, Steve Goodwin developed a fascination with the nature of the supernatural, spiritual and physical words and how they affect the lives around us. This led him on a journey spanning two decades of studying, experiences and discovery. As well as demonstrating a profound respect for faith and the battles of doubt, he seamlessly mixes reality with creativity, inspired by biblical concepts and personal understandings. Steve's successful faith driven software development career allows him to juggle being a Christian author while still creating compelling software solutions for his clients. He tweets from @sg_author.
Publication date: April 8, 2014