The Unexpected Leap: Trading My Strategic Ideas for God’s Purpose

By Joi Freeman

Have you ever taken a professional leap of faith? Was it like Naaman taking several dips in the water or Peter’s fearful steps as he walked on water?

I have experienced both. Yet, my most impacting leap of­ faith was not a leap at all. It was more like an abrupt, unexpected plunge down a cistern which was followed by what I can only describe as a series of “be still” moments that felt more like spending my young professional years stuck in an Egyptian prison for a crime I didn’t commit versus feeling like a season of growth.  

“But when all goes well with you, remember me and show me kindness; mention me to Pharaoh and get me out of this prison. I was forcibly carried off from the land of the Hebrews, and even here I have done nothing to deserve being put in a dungeon.” -Joseph (Genesis 40:14-15 NIV)

These moments of solitary confinement with God have equipped me with a new vocabulary. I learned that “leaping” is not always an action verb. In the Kingdom of God version of the dictionary, to “leap” is often passive. In this season of my life, leaps of professional faith are lessons on how to allow God to unfold his purpose for my life. My professional mentor Joseph (yes, the one from the book of Genesis) has taught me incredible lessons about the art of staying put in faith and trusting the vision God planted in me even when the road is unpaved and full of detours.

Like Joseph, God gave me a vision at a (relatively) young age. In 2010, while reading a foreign affairs magazine article about the predictions of population growth, God painted a clear picture that I would help open doors for the next generation to positively impact the world and major industries. And through this amazing bold view of what He called me to; I saw all the ways that I could influence this next generation, and especially youth of the African diaspora, to be the force for positive change and restoring what God intended when he gave us dominion in Genesis.

A person may have many ideas concerning God’s plan for his life,
but only the designs of his purpose will succeed in the end. -- Proverbs 19:21 TPT

So as any driven, passionate, talented professional would do, I took it upon myself to convert God’s vision into an action plan.

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The chief cupbearer, however, did not remember Joseph; he forgot him. –Genesis 40:23

This revised journey in which God designed for me includes moments of professional disappointment, frustration, and pain. Yet each of my “Egyptian prison” moments helped create a conviction that God permits us to undergo difficult experiences; and it is those experiences which develop our character, increase our endurance, and prepare us for the journey ahead. Without Joseph facing the cistern, the false accusations, the prison sentence, and delayed parole; the people of Egypt and surrounding regions would not have survived the famine. Joseph’s family would not have been spared, and the vision he saw at age seventeen could not be fulfilled.

When I started this leap of faith, I was certain that I could change the world. Yet, inspired by Joseph, I now understand that it is not my plans or ideas that will carry me. Rather, it is my willingness to sit at the center of God’s will for my life and with that posture his purpose for my profession will prevail. And as I learn to imitate Joseph’s work ethic and outlook on professional detours, I believe this new outlook on leaping into faith will ultimately lead me to my original Step 6.

“The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’ – Jesus, on Stewardship & Investment (Matthew 25:21)

Joi Freeman is part of our third Chicago Cohort. She is currently doing some part-time consulting work and also in a leadership MBA program in Chicago .

Meet our Singapore City Director - Poh Yu Khing

By Yu Khing

Born and bred in Singapore, I’ve grown-up and lived here all my life. I love this country. Singapore is nothing short of an economic miracle, and God’s blessing has been on this nation.

Having worked for 19 years in government and private sectors, in 2017, I took 3 months off work to attend the School of Leadership programme at Tung Ling Bible School Singapore. This turned out to be a spiritual milestone and a life-changing event for me.  

During the course, I found myself asking God: “How do we win Singapore for Christ?”, and “What role do you want me to play?” Later in April 2018, I left my corporate job with these two prayers still on my heart, seeking God for what’s next. 

Today, 13 months after that faithful (actually fearful) step of leaving my job, God has confirmed and brought to fruition prophecies that I received over the last 2 years. He has opened the doors for me to be involved in an exciting portfolio of marketplace work – seemingly random, but fully integrated. A freelancer, but fully employed by God. 

The first area is marketplace consulting work – helping to bring Kingdom into the marketplace by working with small business owners on their vision, strategy and organisational development. On the flip side, I also seek to help bring the best of marketplace practices into Kingdom organisations, to help them do God’s work with a level of excellence and efficiency.

The second area is marketplace outreach. I’m the coordinator for the Alpha Everywhere campaign 2019 in Singapore - a nation-wide effort in the Year of Evangelism to provide more opportunities for non-Christians and new-Christians to learn about the Christian faith through Alpha. I also serve as the Workplace Coordinator for Alpha Singapore, helping to seed Alpha Workplace runs.

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The third area is in marketplace education and mentoring. This year, I’ve started teaching an elective module at Tung Ling Bible School on Our Calling as Marketplace Christians. And recently, I started my appointment as Singapore City Director for Resource Global, which I am extremely excited about.

Work is such a dominant part of Singaporeans lives. People are our country’s only resource and we work long and hard. It’s our people who have made Singapore into a thriving city and first world nation. Singapore is a global player and regional hub for many spheres of economic and societal development. I truly believe that if we can bring Kingdom into the marketplace starting in Singapore, we can see God’s global mission of discipling nations being spread through the marketplace from Singapore to regional cities.

My personal mission now is to inspire & equip marketplace Christians to actively live out their spiritual calling as Disciples of Christ - bringing Kingdom into marketplace and community to impact lives, transform businesses, and bless society. The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few. There is much work to be done.

 

Poh Yu Khing is our Singapore City Director and he (along with our team) is hoping to launch a Resource Global cohort in Singapore in 2020.

Invest in a Few, Impact the Multitudes

By Noah Chung

One of the common questions we get asked at Resource Global is... “Why do you choose to invest resources and time in young leaders that may already be wealthy and successful in the workforce? Shouldn’t our resources be given towards efforts in church planting, evangelism, or ministry to the poor or oppressed?”

First of all, there is no doubt in our hearts and minds of the continual need for resources, time, and efforts to make disciples (Matt. 28:19-20) and to also remember the poor (Gal. 2:10). This is foundational to the mission and life of the Church, and we wholeheartedly stand by it. However, one of the temptations that we see in our Western evaluation of Christianity, is valuing the immediacy of results and numbers over the depth and discipleship that happens over time. How many people were saved? How many mouths were fed? How many Bibles were given? And so on...

Now don’t get me wrong, numbers and results matter in Kingdom work. But the question for us in America (or the West) is... How effective are our current methods and investments towards making long-term Gospel impact in global countries and cities? OR Are we settling for numbers and results over building up and training local leaders to carry the mantle of God’s mission even when we are gone?

The temptation with much of our investments and giving toward global missions is that we, as Americans, want to see immediate or tangible results to our efforts. But when we look at how Jesus decided to start the Church, it wasn’t through just healing people or proclaiming the good news in the streets; it also included the time and energy spent discipling the Twelve. Even with the knowledge that Jesus would not see the Church grow with his own eyes. In addition, the Twelve were not ministers or priests. They were tradesmen, fishermen, a tax collector, and political radicals. Jesus decided to start the church by investing in common people with professional skills, who would be future leaders of the Gospel movement after he left.

And the rest is history…

The early Church exploded. Even amidst harsh persecution, the Gospel took hold of Jews and Gentiles all across the Roman Empire, even outlasting Rome itself. Jesus’ investment in a few impacted the multitudes. And it still impacts us today.

So at Resource Global, we are passionate about investing towards the long-term leadership development of young professionals in global cities. There are many young Christians who are strategically placed in these global cities, who have the networks, are self-sustainable, know the culture, and are passionate about how to impact their spheres of influence with the gospel. They are Zacchaeus who has great wealth. They are Cornelius the Centurion who works in the government. They are Lydia who owns a successful business. They are the Ethiopian Treasurer who has access to powerful people. But these people of influence, still needed the guidance, support, and discipleship from teachers and leaders like Jesus, Paul, and Peter. And at Resource Global, we see young versions of these individuals as having the potential to make an impact 30x, 50x, or 100x more than we could ever imagine.

Already, with three years of working in Indonesia, we’ve seen gospel impact that would have taken way more resources or time if we did it ourselves. We have had a leader start floating hospitals to support those without medical care in the thousands of islands in Indonesia, because of her resources and networks. We have had leaders give abundantly to local ministries and churches that are gospel-centered and they are locally a part of. We have had leaders approach their companies and begin to implement wholistic change away from the typical corruption and bribery that is common in SE Asia. As our cohort alumni continue to invest in their sphere of influences, we see Jakarta, Indonesia, and even SE Asia being impacted with Gospel-centered professional leaders.

So at the end of the day, our goal is not to see immediate numbers and results that is attributed to our skill or our people. Our goal is to see the people we invest into be used for Gospel-centered work in all spheres of life. And one day, we hope that through their passions, skills, resources, and networks, they will impact the multitudes with the power, hope, and love of the Gospel that has changed their lives too.

Noah Chung is the Director of Impact and Communications at Resource Global. He’s been with Resource Global for about four years. He also is a pastor and lives in Chicago.