In today’s world, we have a myriad of big problems that need to be solved, such as how to provide enough food for our growing population, produce sustainable and eco-friendly goods, find cures for terrible diseases, reduce greenhouse emissions, and find efficient ways to store energy.
God wants to place you strategically to solve a problem of this magnitude. And — at the same time — He wants to provide you with a surefire way to become successful.
In the Book of Genesis, God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness.” If God is the Creator and He made us in His likeness, this means we are creators, as well. He gave you and me the ability to conceive of an idea or do something in a new way — to be innovators.
A few years ago, when I began my writing career, I wondered if I would run out of ideas. I was afraid after writing my first book, I’d no longer have anything new to say. Instead, I find the opposite to be true. Every time I sit down at the keyboard, my mind overflows with ideas to write about because God continually provides me with new and fascinating topics to explore.
When speaking about the wealth of innovations available for us to pursue, Myles Monroe said, “The cemetery is the wealthiest place in the world,” meaning that many people die without trying to achieve their God-given mission, and their wealth of knowledge and potential innovations die with them.
Consider what innovations He challenges you to make.
You could find the cure for cancer.
Or perhaps you’ll invent a novel energy transmission system that doesn’t rely on power lines. Maybe you will write a book that changes thousands of lives.
Or you could revolutionize agriculture to provide eco-friendly cultivation techniques that still provide high yields.
Perhaps you’ll come up with a brilliant artificial intelligence capability that will make all our lives much easier.
The possibilities of innovation are endless.
The 20th century saw more innovations than ever before, and that rate keeps accelerating in the 21st century. Imagine what will be possible with the latest advances in artificial intelligence?
Because God made us in His image, He gave us the ability to create and provides us with an infinite number of new ideas to explore. In the book of Exodus we read, “[The Lord] has filled them with skill to do all kinds of work.” You have the ideas and the skills, so innovate and create. God wants you to.
Just as God made Earth a better place when He planted the mind-blowing Garden of Eden, entrepreneurs improve the world through their brilliant innovations.
God wants to use you as an innovator, too.
He did it with Joseph when He gave him the inspired idea that saved Egypt and eventually the Hebrews.
Likewise, God gave Daniel the meaning of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream that saved the lives of the enchanters and wise men of the country.
And God gave Noah the design for the ark that saved his family — and mankind — from the terrible flood.
Can other people who are not followers of Christ help others through their innovations? Absolutely. It happens every day. Since we all are made in Christ’s likeness, we all are potential creators and innovators.
Peter Drucker, an innovator of modern business corporations, once pointed out, “If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old.” This means as an innovator you need to look at things with fresh eyes.
Looking at an old problem with fresh eyes often leads to innovation. In the words of Steve Jobs, “Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things.”
As an innovator and an entrepreneur, you can spot opportunities others can’t see.
In the 1980s, the coffee market seemed saturated and new coffee business ventures didn’t look promising. Then Eric Favre came up with an idea that shook up the industry. During a trip to Rome, he noticed that a coffee bar near the Pantheon attracted far more customers because the baristas there pumped the piston many times before dispensing the coffee. As a result, the customers enjoyed a more intense flavor and better foam on top of their espressos.
So, Favre invented the Nespresso system: an easy-to-use machine that used little pods filled with excellent ground coffee beans to provide espresso-drinking pleasure to people in their own homes. In just a few years, millions of coffee aficionados adopted this fancy new way of making coffee.
Favre discovered a new way to look at coffee.
Your imagination is another key to innovation. Rick Warren, founder and senior pastor of California’s Saddleback Church, wrote, “One of the greatest gifts that God has given you is the gift of imagination. It’s the ability to see things — to think and to create with mental pictures — in your mind.”
However, most people struggle to form a mental image of something that doesn’t exist. As organizational psychologist Benjamin Hardy writes, “Because we don’t take the time to imagine the future, we assume that things will pretty much be the same in ten years as they are now.” To cause a change to happen, you must imagine it first.
Check out my previous episode in which I show you how to do that and bring your vision to life.
Arthur Guinness wanted to make his country better.
When he began brewing his tasty stout in 18th-century Dublin, he solved two big problems in Ireland: illnesses due to dirty drinking water and rampant public drunkenness. Since scientists had yet to discover the micro-organisms and underlying mechanisms of disease spread, people unwittingly drank water containing sewage and other wastes, which often caused sickness and death. As a result, many decided to avoid drinking water altogether and drank alcoholic beverages instead. Gin was the public drink of choice, with an alcoholic content of 35 to 55%. Public drunkenness became a widespread problem in Ireland.
Arthur Guinness wanted to improve life for his fellow countrymen. The brewing process of his malted drink required clean water plus its hops and alcohol impeded the growth of most microorganisms, which made his beer a safe alternative to contaminated drinking water.
Also, with an alcohol content of only 4%, Guinness Ale contained much less alcohol than gin and therefore was less likely to cause drunkenness.
By dedicating himself and his business to solving his society’s problems, Guinness like many others gained his countrymen’s respect and honor.
Pastor Rick Warren wrote, “You have no idea what God wants to do in your life. You are living such a small fraction of what you’re capable of doing. God’s dream for your life is enormous. He says, ‘I can do more than you can imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams.’”
Follow God’s lead and you can accomplish amazing things.
When Christianity was just beginning, many of the disciples thought that Jesus would have them travel locally to the nearby villages and preach the Good News. But ten days before Pentecost, He told them to dream much bigger: “You will be my messengers even to the remotest places on earth.”
And He is asking us to continue that huge mission today.
How can we use innovation to help bring the Gospel to the ends of the world?
In 2007, Bobby Gruenewald, entrepreneur, innovator, and pastor at Life. Church, dreamed big and came up with the idea to develop a Bible app.
He said, “I thought about how Gutenberg’s invention revolutionized the accessibility and distribution of Bibles hundreds of years ago, and I wondered how technology might be able to do something similar for our generation.”
YouVersion was among the first 200 free apps — and the first Bible app — the App Store launched in July 2008. It reached more than 80,000 downloads in its first weekend. And it is constantly being updated ever since to meet the needs of Christians worldwide.
As of 2021, the app had provided 2,600 Bible versions in 1,766 languages for free and without advertising to more than 500 million users. Gruenewald dreamed of providing free access to the Bible to everyone in the world and continues to work to accomplish that dream.
You can use your God-given, limitless, creativity to come up with game-changing ideas and turn them into realities that solve some of the biggest challenges facing the world today.
To become an innovative entrepreneur, use fresh eyes and your imagination to help make the world a better place. Dream big and continue to strive to make this world a better place.
You’ve got this!