While some people are busy arguing about whether God is for or against prosperity, others are striving to make life better for themselves and those around. A look at what some inspiring and famous Christian business owners and leaders achieved and still achieving proves otherwise. Prosperity comes with hard work, dedication and a solid set of values. Without these, I doubt we would be reading about these men and women today.
There are many successful entrepreneurs and inspirational Christian figures around the world and it was hard to pick only ten of them. The 10 of the many inspiring Christian business owners chosen have made an impressive mark in the business world and the in lives of many people. My prayer is their lives would be an inspiration and the push we need to succeed in what the Lord has called us to do and be.
John D. Rockefeller was the founder of the Standard Oil Company, a superior name in the oil industry. He revolutionized the petroleum industry and set the standard for modern philanthropy. Rockefeller was a devout Christian who supported various church-based projects throughout his career. He was quoted as saying “God gave me money,” and he never apologized for it either.
He believed in John Wesley’s principle of “gain all you can, save all you can, and give all you can.” Rockefeller gave 10 percent of his earnings to his church, from his very first paycheck to his last.
Sam Walton was a popular American entrepreneur and businessman, best known for founding the popular Wal-Mart retail stores. He was a management trainee with J.C. Penney early in his career. With a strong Christian background and hard work, Walton excelled in school, college and business.
Walton was featured in Time magazine’s list of 100 most influential people of the 20th Century in 1998. Forbes magazine ranked him as the richest man in the United States from 1982 to 1988.
Truett Cathy is best known as the founder and visionary behind Chick-fil-A. He attributed his success to running his business on Christian principles. Cathy was very involved in the youth. He offered an enormous amount of scholarships and programs to help young people. Samuel Truett Cathy had an estimated net worth of $4.2 billion in 2012 and also received the Lifetime President’s Volunteer Service Award in 2008.
This American businessman was the founder of J.C. Penney and a renowned philanthropist. After the 1929 stock market crash and the Great Depression, he was left financially ruined. His health was affected. He checked himself into a sanitarium and eventually became a Christian after hearing the hymn “God Will Take Care of You.” He recovered financially and continued to do a lot of charity work throughout his career.
Cher Wang is a devout Christian and a Taiwanese entrepreneur who co-founded the HTC Corporation, a popular smartphone maker, as well as VIA Technologies. Her late father was also one of the richest men in Taiwan. His name was Wang Yung-Ching. Wang says that the Bible is “the best book for management practice”. One of the most important things she has learned from the Bible is that a person must have a vision, otherwise he or she will be destroyed.
Henry Heinz founded the Heinz Company in 1869. He based his business on Christian principles. He attributed his success as a direct result of his faith in God. The Heinz Company was known for its fair treatment of workers and for pioneering safe and clean food preparation. The Heinz Company is worth more than $12 billion today. It’s most famous product is tomato ketchup, with 650 million bottles of Ketchup being sold every year.
Strive Masiyiwa, a businessman from Zimbabwe, is the founder of Econet Wireless, a South African based global telecommunications group with operations in more than 15 countries. Masiyiwa is a born again Christian and was quoted as saying that he reads his Bible for at least 4 hours a day – if he’s busy! He gives 10 percent of his annual income to his church. Masiyiwa personally pays the school fees for over 22,000 Zimbabwean orphans.
Mary Kay Ash decided to retire in 1963 after she was overlooked for a promotion in favor of a man that she personally trained. There and then she decided to write a book to help women in business. In 1963, she began Mary Kay Cosmetics with a $5,000 investment.
The founding principle of her business and her “Golden Rule”, is to allow women to advance by helping others to succeed. She advocated “praising people to success” and her slogan “God first, family second, career third” expressed her belief that women in her company should maintain balance in their lives.
Madame C. J. Walker was an American entrepreneur and philanthropist and also regarded as the first self-made female African-American millionaire in America. Born in 1867, she started her own hair care product line in 1905 after suffering from a scalp condition that resulted in her hair loss.
Tenacity and perseverance, faith in herself and in God, quality products and “honest business dealings” were the elements and strategies she prescribed for aspiring entrepreneurs who requested the secret to her rags-to-riches ascent.
Madame C. J. Walker passed away in 1919 and her business was estimated to be worth more than $1 million. As the sole owner of her business, she left a third of her estate to her daughter.
David Green is a billionaire and founder of Hobby Lobby, a chain of arts and crafts stores that has more than 520 outlets throughout the United States. He has an estimated net worth of $4.5 billion and ransk among the 400 richest Americans.
He said, “If you have anything or if I have anything, it’s because it’s been given to us by our Creator.” Although Green keeps the total amount of his giving a secret, Forbes has estimated the total of his lifetime giving at more than $500 million.
May Olusola is the Publisher of MannaEXPRESSonline.