The Christian Investor: Sweat Equity

I recall many times when I was working very hard on my networking business and there were days when I wanted to give up. I had no results even though I was doing everything I could; I was a top performer, drove many miles on the road to meet new customers and present new business opportunities on a daily basis. Nothing seemed to work and I couldn’t get past the glass ceiling. But now I’ve realized that I was working hard for others, but I wasn’t trusting God with my business.

Only fear the Lord and serve Him in truth with all your heart, for consider what great thing he has done for you. – 1 Samuel 12:24

As entrepreneurs, we have to constantly remind ourselves to work hard and pray like it’s up to him. There will be dry seasons (if you haven’t had them already) and you will feel like giving up. But if God gave you a clear vision of something you’re passionate about, is that worth leaving behind because you’re not seeing results? Everyone has a different path and in my situation, the dry seasoned passed and things were brighter because he had a better plan for me. But sometimes God will place us in these particular situations because he wants to see our sweat equity. With God, anything is possible, but if he gave you your dream tomorrow, would you be capable fo handling it (as we all raise our hands and say, YES!)

As investors and business owners, NEVER underestimate God and his power. He simply wants you to lean on him- not on your understanding, but his! As we enter into a new week, ask Him to lead you in strength through this time in your life and remember all of the things he has already brought you through.

You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. -Psalm 128:2 (NIV)

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Beat the Odds with Financial Statements

Many investors don’t care for reading financial statements because they are used to following trends. They will “pump and dump” into stocks to make money before the markets close. However, other investors make most of their wealth by investigating the companies first and reading their financial statements.

You can read a company’s financial statement on several websites; MSNMoney.com, Stocktwits.com, Yahoo!Finance.com, or the Security Exchange Commission (SEC).com. Some website’s information may not always be accurate, but the SEC is where businesses are required to submit their 10Q and 10K information- the 10Qs are quarterly statements and 10Ks are annual statements.

There are three major parts to the financial statement: the Income Statment, Balance Sheet, and Cash Flow Statement. Here you can find operating expenses, total revenue, company budgets, gross profit and more. Many investors use a formula to find specific calculations that may be a contributing factor to whether they want to make the initial investment or not. There are hundreds of formulas to use, but one of the most commonly used formulas is the Profit-Gross Margin formula (Gross Profit รท Revenue= % Gross Profit Margin).

Business moguls, such as Warren Buffett, understand the importance of reading financial statements. Money management can make or break any billion dollar corporation and if you’re investing in a company and you don’t know what kind revenue they are bringing home, stop what your doing now and read it! If you read the company’s shareholder reports (on their website), they are usually dressed up and sometimes have useless information. Find a website that has simple information you can read from to get what you need.

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