As I have mentioned several times here at Jayperoni.com, I am an avid reader. I read a lot of financial, biblically based, and business books – sometimes even a combination of the three:) I try to read at least a book a week. It keeps my mind fresh and I tend to get a whole host of new and exciting ideas.
This week I received a copy of the new book by Dwight Short called Kingdom Gains: What Every Christian Should Know Before Investing, and How to use Socially and Biblically Responsible Investments (BRI) as a Steward of God’s Money. Other than the subtitle being a tad too long, this is a fantastic read!
“One of the greatest challenges that we face as Christians is how to integrate our faith into our financial decision-making. Some things are obvious to us such as tithing. What is less obvious is how to make our investment decisions faith-based. There are two aspects to this; one is the process that we use, and the second is the actual investment or investment vehicle that we use.”
Throughout Kingdom Gains, Dwight lays the groundwork for Christian investors to both develop a biblically based investment process and wrestle with the moral and social concerns that arise while investing. Not only does he help the reader understand the moral responsibility we have as Christian investors, Mr. Short takes it a step further by offering the following challenge:
“As Christians who hold stocks, bonds and mutual funds in today’s world, it is time for us to wake up and realize we have been negligent as owners and stewards of what God has entrusted to us for investments.”
This message, if you have known me more than five minutes you would know, is right up my alley. For the past 8 years I have been calling out a similar challenge. As we seek to me more like God’s character, shouldn’t we love what He loves and hate what He hates? As investors, shouldn’t we seek to invest like Jesus would? Yes, I know there are no perfect investments. We all fall short of God’s glory, but look I personally see three categories of moral investments:
1) Positive: Investments that positively reflect Christian values and biblical principles
2) Neutral: Investments that are morally neutral (no clear violation of godly principles but no positive implementation of biblical principles or Christian values)
3) Negative: Investments that clearly violate biblical principles (abortion, pornography, embryonic stem cell, etc.)
Though those in categories 1 (positive) & 2 (neutral) may not be perfect, aren’t they at least better than category 3 (negative)? In God’s Word it was spoken “”Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much,” (Luke 10:16) That is why reading books like Kingdom Gains will not only help you become a better investor, it will more importantly make you a wiser steward of what God is entrusting to you.
Over the course of eleven chapters Dwight will help you tackle such deep questions as:
- Does God care how I make my money?
- Should the Church care how we as Christians invest?
- How should Christian financial advisors help invest their clients’ money?
- How do you get started with biblically responsible investing (BRI)?
- Where should you draw the moral line in the sand?
- How do you find a professional that can help you with BRI?
- How much should you expect to pay for BRI services?
- How can Christians make a difference with the way they invest?
Kingdom gains is quick, easy to read, but at the same time convicting, challenging, and thought provoking. I sincerely believe that if each Christian read this book, prayed about its principles, then went about investing, Wall Street would notice some severe, drastic changes. This book is that powerful! As believers we can sit back and allow the darkness to take over or we can all start shining a light. With Kingdom Gains, though the process is far from perfect, the desire and attempt to place Christ at the center of our investment decisions is a step closer to hearing God say, “’Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’ (Matthew 25:23) Do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of Dwight’s new book at www.kingdomgains.com. I highly recommend it!