Go into the World
(by Janet Schultz)
“Go into the world. Go everywhere and announce the Message of God’s good news to one and all.” (Mark 16:15 Message translation)
Nearly 25 years ago I was asked to become a volunteer Business Counsellor by a State Government agency that provided ‘advisors’ to small business people. Having been the CEO, Marketing Manager and Business Manager of five different medium sized enterprises in my career, and having run my own business I was excited by the opportunity. I was somewhat overwhelmed by the thought of being an “expert”, and being up to challenge of solving other business peoples’ problems.
I was a new Christian and had recently married Michael Schultz, who was running his own consultancy business in partnership with a fellow believer, George Barrett. Their approach to his work was not to “tell people what they should do”, or give them the benefit of their own experience, but to facilitate business owners and their teams, to identify their own problems, agree what they wanted their businesses to look like, and to empower them to come up with a strategy that would work for them. They referred to this as the Jesus Model.
I was fascinated by this approach and was able to tag along a number of times and write up the summaries of the plans that their clients came up with. I could see how powerful this methodology was, as people owned the issues, envisioned their own futures, and strategized solutions and plans to put into action. It was exciting work and God began to show me how he was working through Michael and George to change people’s businesses and subsequently their lives.
I love the quote from St Francis of Assisi who said, “Preach the gospel and if all else fails, use words!” I could see that their role modelling was changing their clients’ lives and businesses. The power of the prayers of Michael and George were impacting these businesses, with strikes being avoided, legal claims dropped, sales increased, profits rising, harmony restored and marriages saved.
This was real Kingdom work in the marketplace. God was in charge and he had sent these two believing men who were using the Holy Spirit to guide them and inspire them to transform the businesses they were working in. Over time, questions were asked and people saved and I wanted to be part of this exciting work.
As my involvement and experience increased I was able to utilise the processes I had observed working with Michael, I too saw God do amazing things. I learnt to hear God’s voice when stuck in a difficult situation with a client and to follow His leading in these meetings. Often, I was stunned when He gave me a tool to use or words to speak that were really beyond my technical ability and knowledge. It was a totally new way of working and together with a few more Christians, we began a new “organism” called Mentors and Business Coaches International. (MBCI)
Michael insisted that God was telling him we should take what we were doing and train other believers across the globe to undertake this work, so we added ‘International’ to our name, having no idea how we would make this happen. Not long afterwards we were asked to address a n ICCC (International Christian Chamber of Commerce) conference in Johannesburg, South Africa on mentoring and miraculously met a beautiful Christian brother Renier Schonken. Renier was to be supporting another conference speaker but felt God telling him to hear the session about mentoring the MBCI Way. At the conclusion of the presentation Renier ran up to Michael, threw his arms around him exclaiming, “You are the answer to a prayer.”
Renier took the MBCI Way across Africa to Europe, training and raising up Believers, but so sadly COVID took him home recently, but we will never forget him and his voice always reminding us, “What is the Father saying?”
Over the years I have had the opportunity to lead people to Christ in their workplace and to have the joy of clients recognising that we are Christians from the way we work.
Recently in a workshop situation with 2 colleagues, one of the participants came up to me and said, “You guys are Christians aren’t you?” When I asked how he knew, he said that it was the calmness in the room and the way we worked together. Considering it was a room full of angry, loud, aggressive high-vis workers it had to be the presence of God!
My prayer for the Marketplace and those Believers who work in it, is that they too will be Monday to Friday Disciples in a world that thinks God is irrelevant. That we will transform the way business is done and bring the Good News to those around us in our places of work. There is a huge harvest in the marketplace and we don’t need to “hit people over the head” with our Bibles, we just need to be Jesus in every situation, but especially at work! The people we mix with are not necessarily going to wander into our church buildings on Sunday, but they are going to become curious about who God is when we work His way, not the way of the world!
May God bless you and inspire you in your work to transform the marketplace one company at a time!
Mentors and Business Coaches International
Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.
Not, how much of my money will I give to God,
but, how much of God’s money will I keep for myself?
O Christ Jesus,
when all is darkness
and we feel our weakness and helplessness,
give us the sense of Your presence,
Your love, and Your strength.
Help us to have perfect trust
in Your protecting love
and strengthening power,
so that nothing may frighten or worry us,
for, living close to You,
we shall see Your hand,
Your purpose, Your will through all things.
(St Ignatius of Loyola)
I continually ask You my Lord God
to fill me with the knowledge of Your will
through all wisdom and understanding that Your Spirit gives,
so that I may live a life worthy of You Lord
and please You in every way:
bearing fruit in every good work,
growing in the knowledge of You,
being strengthened with all power according to Your glorious might
so that I may have great endurance and patience,
and continually give joyful thanks to You my Father,
You has qualified me to share in the inheritance
of Your holy people in the kingdom of light.
For You rescued us from the dominion of darkness
and brought us into the kingdom of Your Son whom You love,
in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
All glory to You forever my Lord and my God!
(Bjorn Schmid, based on Paul’s letter to the Colossians 1:9–14)