The importance of prayer for entrepreneurs
From a podcast by Faith Driven Entrepreneur
Kim Avery is the vice president of marketing at the Professional Christian Coaching Institute. In 2020, she authored a book, The Prayer Powered Entrepreneur. Kim believes an open line of communication with God is the singular most important discipline every successful business owner should incorporate into their daily routine. Here are some excerpts from the podcast interview:
In relation to starting my business, I wish I could say from that moment when I started praying, you know, God became my functional CEO and everything was just sailing along fine. But truthfully, I had a lot of misconceptions about prayer.
I tended to think of prayer in these kind of weird, spiritual, floaty categories that it's somebody who intercedes for people overseas or people who do prayer walks around the city, or people who fast for 40 days. And those are all wonderful things, and I'm thankful that God uses prayer warriors like that.
But I knew that God called me to build a business, which meant I had to do the marketing. I had to service the clients. I had to figure out the vision and the mission and all of the things in between. And I had no idea how prayer played into the very rightly busy life of an entrepreneur. And so I think like a lot of people, I kind of disconnected prayer from my everyday business life.
I'd pray in the morning, "Lord, bless this business." and then I go work hard all day. And truthfully, my operating engine was similar to 'if it's going to be, it's up to me'. You know, through my self wisdom and self-sufficiency and knowledge and power and strength and connections. And then at the end of the day, when I was exhausted, if it was a good day, I'd give God a high five. And if not, you know, I think, did he bless me? Did he answer that prayer? How would I even know?
And that's when I realized that if I looked at my business, all my clients' businesses and all the businesses I knew of people who were not Christ followers, they all looked very similar. And that's a tragedy. Why in the world, if my CEO is the all knowing, all loving, all resource, all connected God, would my business look the same as someone who didn't know God? And that's what sent me on a hunt for there's got to be a better, different way to do this.
it began a hunt through scripture from almost beginning to end looking at clear scriptural promises and principles that God has laid out that apply, in many ways to all of us, and in many cases, specifically to business people and entrepreneurs. What do I know that he is working on in me, through me and for me, because scripture promises? So then how can I pray in conjunction with the way he's working? How can I cooperate with him on what's important to him? Then I actually do see growth and improvement and differences between the way I do business and frankly, the way I used to do business.
I'm passionate now about praying throughout the day. I think about it this way. Suppose you had Warren Buffett want to sit next to you all day, every day and advise you, "If you have a question, if you need a connection, if you lack wisdom, if you're discouraged, you just turn to me and ask me." Then every day I came in and sat down on my desk and ignored him and went about my business all day long. But then at the end of the day, or maybe once a week, I met with him and said, any input, Warren, any thoughts on how I'm doing? That's the way I was treating God. It's as complicated and as simple as realizing God's closer than the breath that I breathe. And he's so much smarter than Warren Buffett, knows everything and cares about my business and has a plan for it. And so I pretend physically that I see him and turn to him and ask him. You know what? He's really smart and things go differently.
One of God's favourite ways of growing our businesses is by growing us. He does like to work internally as well as do things for us externally. A personal example that I'll share. About two and a half years ago, our daughter unexpectedly passed away, and right after that I just felt the Lord saying, "You know, just lay down these private clients. Just work here, just work there, just honour your grief, take space.". Of course, as somebody who worked very hard on building the business all these years, I was like, "But what about this, but what about that?" "Trust me in this.". And in two and a half years since then, I've made more money. I've worked less and to the point where I look at my account and I'm like, I have no idea where this money came from. I really don't want to know. It's just fun. It's just fun to see. God said, "Do less. Trust me more. Don't worry about it.".
With prayer, that worry, hurry and stress that we tend to carry, feeling like it all depends on us and the weight is on our shoulders just disappears. You can enjoy the weekend when you know you still have so many things to do. Why is it? You're not worried about things that used to drive you crazy. It's the power of knowing that God has it and learning to see how he always faithfully provides.
Listen to the full podcast here.
See also the article Are you willing to give God your diary?
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