An economy that is ordered around abundant infinite energy (eternal life), one that coheres to the phases of life, is called a Generative Economy. Participants in the Generative Economy seek to contribute to life, to maximize wellbeing, for everyone. The Generative Economy is the “household order” of the universe…of God. This is the economy portrayed in the narrative of the Kingdom of God. To be sure, the narrative conveyed by Jesus was not a religious narrative, neither was Jesus a religious figure come to establish a religion. The bible says that Jesus came to give us life and that more abundant.
— Mitch Cowart

My friend Mitch writes a lot about the abundance of God’s Kingdom versus he economy of scarcity that dictates our Western culture.  When we all generatively govern out of the time, talents, and treasures we have all been given, we become stewards instead of leaders.  We become maximizers of life for the wellbeing of all people.  This is not only the privilege, but the mandate for all Christian leaders in their context.

Last week, we assembled a collection of folks around our “Purpose Project” idea.  They consisted of a consultant from the HR field, a “retired” sage with decades of experience, our current HR and administration managers, Scott, and I.  We used personal story, quotes, passages, and some multimedia, to paint a vision of what intending God’s purposes in the lives of all we govern (employ or lead in other contexts) might look like.

We saw them invigorated around God’s vision for providing stewardship over team members (employees) at the highest level.  We saw them grab the reins, form a subcommittee, circle part of the project, and take the ball to start running.

Of course, we need to make sure that we are doing our best to address fundamental needs (Dan Pink in “Drive” talks about the necessity of meeting basic human need before we can inspire with “purpose”):

  • Pay a fair and livable wage
  • Help provide basic health care
  • Get them in the right seat on the bus
  • Coach them toward vocational success
  • Provide tools, training, and redirection as needed

But to generatively govern requires something far grander.  If we are going to lead others in a way that brings “life” to them, there is a much higher standard to reach.  He came that we might have life and have it to the full.  There is no abundant life outside of that relationship and living consistently within His intentions for our lives.

To intend purpose in the lives of those we lead, we must figure out a way to connect passion, desire, gifting, and ability, to meeting the fundamental needs of others…to advance God’s Kingdom on earth.  We must offer life and equip, empower, encourage, support, and challenge others to live the life that they were intended to live…by bringing life to others.

Dozens of books, stories, the writing of friends, deep stirring of hearts, and the collective experience/wisdom of a group of interested parties, have been aggregated.  The wheels are in motion.  I can’t wait to see what comes of this.

  • Are you helping meet the basic human needs of those you lead?
  • Are you stirred by the idea of generatively governing those you lead as opposed to just managing them?
  • What do you feel like God is calling you to do next to move toward that target?