Continuing with the theme of partnering with God we speak with South African author, thought leader and businessman Thabo Mahlobo. Drawing from his book and recent events he had the following to say about marketplace leaders, nation building and role of the church.
My nation finds itself at the crossroad, with a triple challenge of poverty, unemployment and inequality our nation seem to be in need of hope. Our present economic growth rate of below one percent falls far short of what we need in order to address these challenges. This low growth reflects both depressed global and domestic conditions, including low business confidence, government policy uncertainty, and recent Standard & Poor downgrading to junk status. Today as I write this article our nation is marching to our capital to call for the President to step down. Well the good news is this is obviously not the time to panic or react negatively; it is a time to evaluate our relationship with God and our understanding of what it means to partner or work with God in the midst of negativity and crisis.
Three ways I believe we can partner or work with God as Marketplace Leaders in order to see transformation in our nation.
- We need to raise a New Breed of Marketplace Leaders with a solution for our nation’s failing economy
I believe that God is raising up people who will be used mightily and partner with Him in the world of Business and Economics, they will view their businesses as an extension of what God is doing in their lives and their goal is to advance the purposes of God in the earth. These men and women will come up with many innovative ideas no one has ever heard of, new industries will be born, and new economic policies will be established in their countries that will benefit all the citizens, not just a minority.
Joseph emerged at a time of economic crisis in Egypt. He became one of the best ruler and Prime Minister; his Kingdom economic policies saved the Egyptians and so many nations. He won the battle for culture. He was entrusted with the whole economic system of Egypt to bring reforms and change to it. Can God entrust you with a solution for this current economic crisis in SA or any crisis in your nation?
We have produced the greatest prayer warriors and worshipers the world has ever seen, but we are not consistent in producing the greatest thinkers, entrepreneurs, and strategists the world has ever seen. I believe the time has arrived when the Parliamentarians, Cabinet, Provincial and local council members must come to us for advice and answers on how to deal with the pressing problems our nation is facing. Presently our nation is waiting for a person to articulate answers regarding its failing economy. Will you be that person?
- We need to re-affirm our position and role as the Church within the economy.
God is deeply involved in the process of economic reformation in my nation. By empowering godly people (just like Joseph and Joshua) in the world of economics (and in other facets of society) He seeks to bless humanity as a whole. The Church plays an integral role in being the resource centre by providing leadership, information and being a moral compass for business enterprises that will emerge. Economics affect every sphere of life. We, the Church of Jesus Christ, are about to inherit the largest piece of real estate – it is, planet Earth. Preparation for this must precede the actual conquest. The Church must prepare their Josephs, Daniels, and Zerubbabel’s to rule the earth. Economic salvation is an integral part of the heart of God for His people and should not be treated as a carnal and un-spiritual aspect of life. Under Joshua’s leadership, the people were transitioned into a community of landowners with an enterprising spirit. The Church re affirms its role in the society by preparing more ethical business leaders who wants to see God’s kingdom come and His will be done in our nation.
The body of Christ is in an exciting new place. The possibilities of God’s will being done on earth as it is in heaven are unbelievable. As we continue to understand our role in the economics of the nation, we will have the privilege of being front line participants in the great revival that God is preparing to send in our midst!
I believe that the next spark for revival in our land will be in the Business, Economic and Finance industry. I believe that the business people have the potential to impact society as much as the Reformation did…It is what the Spirit is saying to the churches today
- We need to be at the forefront of social and economic justice
Partnering with God will also include addressing the disparities and imbalances caused by illegitimate systems such as colonization, imperialism, apartheid in our nation and globally. We must re-evaluate our paradigms about economics and our understanding of why economic empowerment of the people is so important. Christian businesses are called to social and economic justice, but not just mere humanitarianism. We do not only need the heart for the poor, we need the mind for the poor. Our charity must be grounded in truth, the truth of economics and the truth about the human person that they are created in the image of God with a creative capacity that must be given an opportunity to flourish. They need access to markets, property, land rights, fair trade policies and the rule of law that favor them, and not just a minority.
Source: The New Economy Book.
About Thabo Mahlobo
Thabo Mahlobo is the Co-Founder of Mahlobo Foundation, a private equity company with a fund raised and managed by investment professionals to perform a broad economic development function and engage in the business of extending long term support to small businesses and entrepreneurs. He is also the Founder of the New Economy Leadership Institute, a 7 mountain curriculum institute with an on -going objective to resource marketplace leaders to become effective and transformational leaders in the marketplace. He is the Author of two books, The New Economy and Why You Should Become the Bank.