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Storm clouds brought by the problems on Wall Street, other SEC investigations, and severe conflicts of interest by some stock analysts have cast a dark shadow on the American business landscape.

These tribulations were caused by a failure to follow basic biblical teachings about honesty, integrity, and avoiding conflicts of interest. As our society has drifted away from its adherence to absolute principles - in our classrooms, the halls of government, and our places of business - is it any wonder that corruption is the result?

We've become a bit like Israel in the period of the judges, about which the Bible says, "In those days . . . everyone did what was right in his own eyes" (Judges 21:25 NASB).

Amid the bad news, sharing the gospel is the only solution that will bring light back into the marketplace and the world. As Christians, we all have a responsibility to share our faith.

Just as Paul instructed Timothy, we are to "do the work of an evangelist" (2 Tim. 4:5 NASB) and thereby fulfill our mandate from Jesus to "Go into all the world and preach the gospel" (Mark 16:15 NASB).

Successful marketplace discipleship encompasses four key steps: diligence, prayer, caring, and sharing.

First, our work must be excellent in every aspect. When Daniel was challenged, his accusers "could find no ground of accusation or evidence of corruption, inasmuch as he was faithful, and no negligence or corruption was to be found in him" (Dan. 6:4 NASB).

Likewise, when the queen of Sheba came to examine King Solomon, she marveled at his wisdom and success (see 1 Kings 10:1-9). When our colleagues see the quality of our work, our effectiveness on the job will earn us the right to share our faith.

Poor performance will negate our witness.

Second, we must pray for our colleagues in accordance with 1 Timothy 2:1: "Pray for all men." Ed Silvoso, of Harvest Evangelism, defines prayer evangelism as "talking to God about our friends and neighbors before we talk to our friends and neighbors about God."

Pray for God to uncover any disobedience in your life that would hinder others from coming to Christ. Pray to develop boldness, confidence, and perseverance toward non-Christians.

Ask God to give you the compassion and the sensitivity to see the needs of others and help to bring out the best in them. Prayer focused on others may include asking God to show you their needs, to remove their spiritual blinders, that they would ask you spiritual questions, and that God would convict them of wrongdoing in their lives.

Third, we need to demonstrate care. Jesus taught, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself" (Mark 12:31 NASB). Our genuine care for others will distinguish us from our co-workers. We demonstrate a caring attitude when we "bear one another's burdens" (Gal. 6:2 NASB).

Other caring steps we can take may include listening rather than talking, give affirming comments, bringing treats to share, or giving Christian CDs or books that will hit a mark in their life. Keep Christian greeting cards available for your co-workers' birthdays, illnesses, and special occasions.

Finding and utilizing opportunities to share our faith are the natural results of effective prayer and genuine care for those around us. We are instructed to "always be ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence" (1 Peter 3:15 NASB).

An invitation to church might be resisted, but offers of prayer and acts of kindness are usually well received. We need to develop comprehensive strategies, including asking for specific prayer requests, giving glory to God when positive things happen, and carrying simple tracts that present God's plan of salvation.

I had the opportunity to share "Steps to Peace With God," a tract from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, immediately after a colleague was dismissed. Having the tract available in my planner was crucial for sharing Christ during a difficult moment for my associate.

We need to develop a sense of urgency about sharing our faith. How many of the nearly 3,000 people killed in the World Trade Center thought tomorrow would come?

The doors will open and close with our colleagues. Our responsibility is to walk through those doors faithfully in God's timing. Combining focused prayer, genuine care, and diligent sharing - backed up by our strong work performance - will bring those around us to Christ.

This article is used by permission from Steve Marr's Business Proverbs.
Steve's passion is to empower ministry and business leaders
with God's ancient Wisdom for enhanced performance and
excellence. He resides in Tucson, Arizona with his family.

Author Biography

Steve Marr
Web site: The Life
Steve Marr has learned from 40 years of business experience that God's way works. As an author, speaker and business consultant, Marr helps companies and organizations apply the ancient wisdom of the Bible to avoid the common mistakes and headaches of growing a business.

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