BlogsThoughts and insights from Jubilee Church Wirral
What is it like being a Christian businessman?
By Michael O’Brien, Life group leader, Jubilee Church Wirral
Gardening work by Michael O’Brien of Jubilee Church Wirral
I started working for myself 25 years ago, I did not know what a businessman was supposed to be.
I started digging-over gardens for £2 an hour and it grew from there. As the years rolled by I learnt new trades in the garden business but still I did not know where I was going with all this knowledge.
All I knew was, I could make money and talk people into getting jobs done that they didn’t really need doing. More money for me.
False selling for gain, and as a businessman I thought it was the norm. As I learnt even more skills like fencing and laying patios and decking I asked God if I could become a landscaper, but all doors were shut – by God.
I wasn’t ready, I thought, and for years I hoodwinked people out of their money and I thought there was nothing wrong with this practice and then the realisation of what I was doing was highlighted by God, who said change your ways and I will bless you.
Boy that was hard, and I struggled with doing a good job, God wanted excellence in my workmanship. Over the years I had got sloppy with my work, getting call-backs for bad jobs.
It was very difficult to price jobs properly, treating rich people the same as poor people, ie a flat rate.
It took me years to refine everything with the help of the Holy Spirit, prompting me and encouraging me. I am now God’s servant, working for Him, and the big jobs are coming in.
I work in excellence, no call-backs, no guilt, peace from God.
Now when I go to price a job I am there to bless people, to listen to their struggles, I am God’s counsellor.
God helps me with pricing, some jobs I do for nothing, some I go the extra mile and God blesses. Do I always get it right? No. Do I have bad business habits? Yes.
I am a yes man, to everybody that asks me to do a job by saying “yes” I sometimes let them down, I should be saying “no sorry, I am too busy,” so I am still a work in progress.
When I was writing this, I reflected on my actions. The money I was making, before I changed, was dirty money. Being born again means you work for God, not yourself.
God is holy and that is how He expects His servants to behave.
From now on I will always try to put God first.
Michael O’Brien with his wife Helen
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Helen on the importance of Friends and what God has to say about them in the Bible.
Andrew on evangelism, how we are all evangelists whether we like it or not, and how to evangelise easily.
Dawne on the parable of the lost sheep and the lessons we can take from it as followers of Jesus and members of His flock.
Yvonne on loss and how God has helped her deal with the loss of her mum and the impending departure of her eldest son to his first job
Nicki on serving at Newday and the impact it has had on all three Frodsham children and many, many others
Simon on the frustrations of not being able to get to sleep properly, and the Bible verses that help him stand firm against sleeplessness.
Gerry on how easy it is to be drawn into gossip. “If you can’t say anything positive, don’t say anything at all” isn’t just good advice, it’s Biblical wisdom.
Sylvia on being an encourager: “God knows our troubles. When we open up to Him, He’ll use other people to encourage us through His word.”
Lynne on doing what God wants us to do even when we really don’t want to do it – and why it’s important
Chris on the power of our words and how having a relationship with Jesus can give us the power of the right word at the right time.
Helen on why Psalms have taken the place of Proverbs as her favourite book of the Bible
Andrew Greenhalgh on being much better at giving advice than at taking it – and what happens as a result.
Chantal Robertson on how God and the gospel of Christ has never changed over time – even though the way we package it has.
Nicki on how she was planning to work in the marketing and advertising industry until God led her in a different direction.
Dawne challenges us to look at life with the enthusiasm, joy and exuberance of her Macedonian dog Floki and find joy in the everyday.
Jen on how taking the Alpha Course because she had nothing better to do on a Tuesday afternoon led to a life-changing wheelchair for her daughter Daisy and many others.
Gerry on how her ideas of what love truly is have changed over the years, and how love can be so much more than a feeling.
Matt Wilson on how God is weaving a tapestry – and knows what that looks like. He can see the big picture. Our part is to trust him with the threads he has given us.
Denise Griffiths on resolutions and why she has resolved not to make the usual New Year’s resolutions such as giving up chocolate, eating healthier or doing more exercise!
Vernon on the transience of life, and how, through all suffering, God’s steadfast love has the capacity to satisfy us every morning.
Andrew Greenhalgh on how he ended up going to church on Christmas morning for the first time at the age of 11 – and what it has taught him.
Helen on how preparations for Christmas vary from family to family and country to country. And what happened to Helen’s Lindt advent chocolates?