More than 400 people gathered Saturday to pray for local, state and national leaders while listening to speakers discuss godly principals applied to the business world.
The 25th annual Greater Greenwood mayor’s prayer breakfast was Saturday at Jonathan Byrd’s Cafeteria in Greenwood. The event is organized by the Greenwood chapter of the Christian Business Men’s Connection group, which includes business owners in the community. Local politicians, officials and residents pray for the future of Greenwood, as well as individual the community, including the city government and schools.
Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers tied in the story from the Bible where Egypt had seven years of excess food, money and success, then seven lean years where people did not have enough food or money to survive.
To be prepared for the possible lean years in Greenwood’s future, Myers has been working to keep the city’s money in check in case of a disaster or emergency, he said.
When Myers took office, the first annual budget for the city government ended in a deficit of $1.9 million. If that had continued, another $4 million of the city’s reserves would have been spent, he said. But Myers said he wanted to build up a reserve for the city in case of disasters or emergency needs.
“We’ve been able to take our budget and not only balance our budget, but start building that storehouse back up with our city budget,” Myers said.
“Every year, we’re now able to finance money to actually put savings into what we call our rainy day fund, which is what we need for the time when that famine hits. When the market crashes again. When we have those major problems we don’t realize are going to come.”
The relationships inside and outside of the workplace are what give people their purpose in life, keynote speaker Lee Truax said.
Truax is the national president of the Christian Business Men’s Connection ministry but first worked in the computer industry for more than 20 years. In his first career, he navigated through the rise and fall of different computer software companies or products that would dominate the computer world and, within five to seven years, be obsolete.
His business card changed every six months to a year, as the company he worked for was bought out by a bigger corporation — from Zenith Data Systems to Compaq to Hewlett-Packard.
“I’ve known a sense of dualism, where my faith and my work became compartmentalized and disconnected. On Sunday, I would connect deeply with my faith, but on Monday morning, I would operate as a practical atheist, doing my work by the rules of the marketplace” he said.
Seeing the constant change around him, Truax felt a sense of guilt that he was chasing success, promotions and bigger paychecks when that does not serve Jesus Christ, he said.
“I yearned to connect my success, my energy and my effort to a deeper need for significance,” Truax said.
But Truax realized that the relationships he took from his years in the computer industry were what God had intended for him all along, he said.
“Our life is about relationships,” Truax said. “It’s about a relationship with God and to experience him, and it’s about others in our life. Our God is a relational God.”