Occasionally we like to spotlight some things in culture that while they might not fit in the defined box of entrepreneurship they speak truth to the same concepts we face. As we look back at the Final Four and the end to March Madness we couldn't help but share the story of Josh Langford, the stand out guard from Michigan State.
On this episode, the team spends time with Andy Crouch, partner for theology and culture at Praxis, an organization that works as a creative engine for redemptive entrepreneurship, as well as an accomplished writer and journalist, having authored several books as well as articles published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine.
This week’s podcast has us listening in on a talk Tim Keller gave to Sovereign’s Capital last September where he meticulously unpacks the hidden truth of identity formation, its habits and rituals, in both the Western and greater world. We are fed these belief systems from the moment we breathe and too often we are defined by the greater world without our consent.
“Successful entrepreneurs who just happen to be Christians (entrepreneur Christians) are often praised, celebrated, and asked to serve on ministry boards either because of their business prowess or their deep pockets and ability to give funding. These people are sought after as mentors to the next generation. Unfortunately, the entrepreneur Christian’s values are passed down through the gene pool of the church. What is far better, of course, is to find great Christians who just happen to be entrepreneurs — then and only then can we really get somewhere…”
“In this post, my aim is to encourage founders of businesses who want to bring God’s kingdom into the foundation of their business and their everyday operation. I’ll use my story of founding, building and selling a B2B software company, VendorHawk, as the context for my ponderings on what it means to be a “faithful founder.” Some lessons are driven by my failures…”
Henry Kaestner’s VLOG series continues. In this edition, you can catch a quick behind the scenes look at how Henry is collaborating with Professor Dan Lewis from Asbury College to share with his students the lessons that God has taught him at Bandwidth and Sovereign’s Capital.
Jason Johnson, serial entrepreneur and founder of August Smart Homes, talks to Rusty and William about when the entrepreneurial itch first hit him while working at a large tech company. From humble beginnings, Jason explains how receiving a scholarship to Pepperdine University introduced him to the responsibility of calling and that entrepreneurship was a natural expression of that calling.
In part two from the Alpine Inn, Henry, Rusty, and William field more questions from our guests but first gave some background on Inklings, the gathering of faith driven entrepreneurs in the Bay Area who meet regularly in the same vain of the original Inklings gathering of faith driven thinkers C.S. Lewis, J.R.R Tolkien, Dorothy Sayer and others.
In this week’s episode, one of our listeners,, Marty, asked "how do you discern your calling". This is an incredibly light and easy to answer question that barely impacts an entrepreneur's journey, so this will be short. Of course I'm kidding, this is something we have all asked ourselves, and is something that is incredibly difficult to navigate alone ... so we had to phone a friend. We are super super lucky to have Dave Blanchard from Praxis join us on the podcast to help our listeners think through this issue.
Two months ago, I woke up as lead pastor of Christ Community—a church I helped plant in 2011 with two of my closest friends. This morning I woke up as COO of FarmAfield—an ag tech company that is using software to create new connections between farmers and investors. At first glance, these may seem like two very different ventures and, in many ways, they are. At Christ Community, I spent my days preparing sermons, counseling congregants, and officiating weddings. In my new role at FarmAfield, I spend my time pitching investors, interviewing customers, and helping to develop software. The differences are so stark that even I wondered how much I’d be able to draw from the former as I engaged in the latter.
But it wasn’t long into my time with FarmAfield that some old, very familiar doubts came rushing back:
“Did God really call me to this?
Silicon Valley celebrates founders with super-human ability to focus, work hard, and survive the extreme pressure startups. We retell their heroic stories and celebrate their successes. However, there is a glaring absence of information regarding how to develop the character traits required to overcome the intense stress and hardships of starting a company.
Faith-and-work content consistently beats the drum of affirming that marketplace vocations are as important to God as professional ministry. That message is crucial, as resources like this one give those of us with non-church giftings the confidence to pursue our callings. But we can’t stop there. Even if all believers in the marketplace one day know that our vocations matter, we still need to understand why. Otherwise we may run successful businesses guilt-free, but miss the motivation and focus that come from knowing our place in God’s story.
At first glance (or in this case, listen), this sermon delivered by Ryan Jones at Reality San Francisco doesn’t have much to do with entrepreneurship. This isn’t one to listen to if you want to crack the code on how to hire or fire folks, or even how to set a culture. But if you listen to it I think that you’ll come way feeling that it was written for you, the entrepreneur, and that you’re better for having listened to it. I bet you forward this to at least one person.
In the first podcast, Rusty, Henry and I tell you a bit about why we started this podcast and what you can expect on the coming episodes. Included are the heart behind the project and a fantastic discussion of which colleges we are faithful too.