Christian-owned business enterprises have been tipped to play a greater role in evangelising the world than any other sermon given out off a pulpit if owners prioritise God in their daily endeavours.
FDH Financial Holdings Limited group chief executive officer Thom Mpinganjira made the remarks on Wednesday in Blantyre during a motivation talk he gave, on request, to a women leadership conference which the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) church organised.
A member of the church himself, Mpinganjira explained that it would have been easier for the world to ‘see Christ in most a Christian life’ were believers to trust God more than they normally do.
“All wealth comes from God, whether people accept this reality or not. I want to impress you with the fact that God gives us the power and means to create and to manage the wealth for Him. However, this also requires a spiritual return on investment,” said Mpinganjira.
The talk, titled The bolts and nuts of entrepreneurship, was aimed at inspiring women towards becoming successful entrepreneurs without losing their Christian values.
Mpinganjira said he drew his inspiration from Deuteronomy 8: 17-19 that cautions mankind from disregarding God in their wealth accumulation and management.
“I feel God is faithful to reward anyone who truly believes His word, and trusts on all His promises. In so doing, the world can learn more about the God we serve through us displaying the character of the Creator. I may have my own weaknesses for I am human, but if you are looking for some living testimony, here I am. Otherwise, I would urge you to stick to the Bible; it’s the best success manual ever,” he explained.
He told the conference that he credited part of his success to early exposure in business by his father who was also an accountant and a chartered secretary. The father is said to have once owned an import and trading company that took him all over the country and across to neighbouring Zambia.
Mpinganjira, a qualified accountant and Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (FCCA), seemed to have been the best person to discuss the spiritual return on investment issue, as his group of companies is synonymous with charity.
FDH Financial Holdings Limited’s subsidiaries include FDH Bank Limited, First Discount House Limited, FDH Money Bureau Limited, FDH Financial Holdings Advisory Services Limited and MBS Limited.
The conference delegates needed not look for more testimony to this as it was FDH Bank that earlier made a K5 million donation towards the conference, to cover for all the meals.
Besides, FDH Financial Holdings Limited also recently built a house for Marietta Samuel, the Dowa woman who had both hands chopped off by her husband a decade or so ago.
Women Ministries director in the church, Emily Banda-Egolet, said they opted to learn from Mpinganjira because he could discuss with them more than entrepreneurship.
She said: “We want women to be warriors and not worriers in all aspects of life, to believe in themselves; to have that perseverance needed to make it to the top without losing their faith values. I mean, this is a man who has demonstrated that it’s possible for a local to successfully run a conglomerate of businesses that have Christian values all over them.”
One of the delegates, Grace Mazunda from Area 25 in Lilongwe, hailed the conference as an eye-opener.
She vowed to practice what she has learnt to enhance her small-scale business she operates, including touching the needy with “the little that I get through it”.
Over a thousand delegates attended the conference that ran from Wednesday through yesterday.
Among other activities, besides the conference, the women also conducted a day-long outreach programme that saw them cheer the sick at various health centres in Blantyre. n