A few years ago, Hobby Lobby and the Green family were dealt an ultimatum. Under Obamacare’s contraception mandate, they had to either cover abortion-inducing drugs in their employee health plans or pay fines of $1.3 million every day for following their conscience.
But they didn’t settle for those options.
Hobby Lobby, along with our client Conestoga Wood Specialties, fought back. The first chapter of David Green’s new book, Giving It All Away… and Getting It All Back Again recalls the decision they made to sue the federal government. He writes, “But there are times when the test of your conscience is greater than the test of your pocketbook.”
Thankfully, they successfully challenged the Obamacare mandate that infringed on their religious beliefs, taking the case all the way up to the Supreme Court of the United States.
While this book is not about the Supreme Court case, David explains that the case helps highlight the most important things in life. He writes: “The case only served as a magnifying glass on the issues I want to talk about in this book, like what wealth is, how you can give it away, and how you can build a legacy for your family, in light of all we face today.”
It was clear throughout the book that his parents’ legacy played an important role in who David is today and the business he founded and built, Hobby Lobby. They left a legacy of “radical generosity” in his life. While they were poor by the world standards, they gave to everyone they came across. They gave what they had because of a heavenly perspective.
His parents’ legacy was made of values that are taught through a life rooted in a relationship with Jesus Christ. Values that are taught through family stories recounted through the generations. This example fostered an attitude of generosity in David’s heart.
One of the values highlighted in the book is the wisdom to understand that God has placed us on Earth to work and to do the best with the gifts with which he has entrusted us.
In the book, David often mentions the verse Ecclesiastes 9:10: “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.” I personally love this because I am constantly reminding my children to do their best in school, sports, odd jobs around the house, and everything else in which they participate. It’s a good reminder for us all.
The way David talks about work in this book leaves me wanting more for my own life when it comes to my work – the work that God has called me to do here at ADF. I work with some amazing people who are the brightest and best at what they do, and their daily labors are an inspiration to me.
After reading David’s book, though, I realize there is so much more than just going to work every day and doing your best. Yes – that is so important! But it is even more crucial to recognize that we are working for the glory of God in the roles he has entrusted to us. I ask myself each day if I am doing what God wants me to do in obedience for that day.
I have a little phrase I use with my fundraising team here at ADF: “His will; His bill!” If we are in alignment with the Lord’s will for our life and our ministry, then we just need to be accountable for our actions and trust God for the results.
I was reminded of that again reading this book.
David’s complete trust in God in how he stewards his life, marriage, and business comes through loud and clear in this book. I know you will enjoy reading it and will be challenged by it just as I was.
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