Many of us who run a business can feel like a one-armed wallpaper hanger at times and it's easy to become too busy or tired and forget to pray. My Bible verse theme for the year is Jeremiah 29:11-13. So many of you shared this verse and when I read it, I felt so encouraged. This verse keeps me grounded, and I hope it does the same for you.
At the top of each year, I pull together my favorite Bible verses to encourage you along your entrepreneurial journey. Running your small business is a spiritual journey as much as a road trip to business success. Along the road, you will be tested, stretched and stressed and these words from the bible will give you needed encouragement. This is my fourth year of writing Bible verses every small business owner needs, and I wanted the Bible verses that so many of you have shared with me in the comments section of this blog over the last few years. You all have inspired me. Here are 13 Bible verses for small business owners in 2013.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NIV) "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." In order to have a successful business, you must trust in the Lord. God's will is what is best for us. There will be times when you do not understand why things are happening in your business, but God is always trying to teach us and protect us.
Romans 8:18 (NIV) "I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us." One of the things my father used to say to me growing up was, "You wouldn't know good days, if it weren't for bad days. So you need to thank God for bad days too." Often in business when we don't close a sale or get a contract that we invested a lot of time in, we take it personally. Start thinking about things in your business differently. When you don't get a contract, it's because it wasn't meant for you. In some cases, God might have been protecting you from a nightmare client.
Exodus 35:35 (NIV) He has filled them with skill to do all kinds of work as engravers, designers, embroiderers in blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen, and weavers--all of them skilled workers and designers. God has given all of us talents that we can sell, but that doesn't mean you should start a business. Make yourself a student of business, first. Make sure there's a paying client for your product or service. Develop your business and leadership skills so that you can turn your talent into a real business.
Psalm 37:4 (NIV) Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Always remember who you are and who you are in Christ. We are not defined by our bank accounts or by how many plaques are on the wall. Never hesitate to share your testimony with others about what the Lord has done for you in business. God wants us to be fine examples of his light and love.
Joshua 1:8 (NIV) Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. The most important thing you can do for your business is pray daily. Start each day in meditation and prayer and you will stay calm as the day's struggles come upon you. Read words from the bible to stay encouraged and balanced.
Proverbs 16:3 (NIV) Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans. Whenever you have doubt, go to the Lord in prayer and wait on God to give you the answer. Remember that he speaks to us through visions and dreams, and sometimes he will send people who will speak his words to you.
Isaiah 45:3 (NIV) I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name. There is no such thing as luck, only blessings sent from God. When unexplainable things happen, do not be fooled that you did anything to make them happen. Always remember that God has already prepared a place for you to succeed and to learn.
Titus 3:14 (NIV) Our people must learn to devote themselves to doing what is good, in order to provide for urgent needs and not live unproductive lives. God helps those who help themselves. If you do nothing, nothing will happen. Focus your activities each day on trying to accomplish five things before 11 a.m. daily. You will feel less stress and get a lot more done each day.
Psalm 37:5-6 (NIV) Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun. There will be times in your life when no one will think that you are going in the right direction with your business. But no one can stop God's anointing. If he gave you the idea for your business, he will bless it. Stay faithful and focused. When you think you have no more to give, give some more and you will be rewarded.
Romans 8:38-39 (NIV) For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. No matter what you do, God loves you. He will forgive you. He believes in second chances and hundreds more, if you need them. Be quick to forgive and pray for a forgiving spirit. How would your life change if you loved unconditionally?
2 Corinthians 2:14 (NIV) But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ's triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. Be thankful that you know God for all of his goodness. God wants us to be fine examples of his light and love.
Deuteronomy 30:16 (NIV) For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess. Walk in God's ways and he will bless your business ventures. I want you all to know that I write these verses for myself, as much as I hope to inspire you.
Isaiah 54:2-3 (NIV) Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities. You do not need to wait until you are rich and super-successful to help others. You should help others now as you are building your business. Now, that does not mean you should go hungry to help others, but do not be afraid to enlarge your tent to partner with "so called" competitors. There really is enough business for everyone.
Examine which of these verses speaks most clearly to your heart. I pray that you will be healed by God's powerful holy word. God Bless you in 2013.
What Bible verse speaks most clearly to your heart?
This was originally published under the title: 13 Bible Verses Every Small Business Owner Needs for 2013 at www.succeedasyourownboss.com
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Melinda F. Emerson, known to many as SmallBizLady is America's #1 small business expert. As CEO of Quintessence Multimedia, Melinda educates entrepreneurs and Fortune 500 companies on subjects including small business start-up, business development and social media marketing to fulfill her mission to end small business failure. She writes a weekly column on social media for The New York Times. Forbes Magazine named her #1 woman for entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter. She hosts #SmallBizChat Wednesdays on Twitter 8-9 pm ET for emerging entrepreneurs. She also publishes a resource blog http://www.succeedasyourownboss.com. Melinda is also the bestselling author of Become Your Own Boss in 12 months; A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works and the ebook, How To Become a Social Media Ninja; 101 Ways to Dominate Your Competition Online.