Many Adventist pioneers were great innovators and entrepreneurs. Uriah Smith patented a prosthetic leg. Joshua Himes was the marketing genius behind the Millerite […]
Many Adventist pioneers were great innovators and entrepreneurs. Uriah Smith patented a prosthetic leg. Joshua Himes was the marketing genius behind the Millerite movement. John Harvey Kellogg invented types of exercise equipment that is still used today. E. A. Sutherland and his team at Madison College created 30 different products derived from soy.
Starting With a Plan
A few friends and I share a dream of faith-based entrepreneurship. We dream of creating new ways of doing business that are not only powerful agents for social change but influence the world spiritually. That’s how the Hyvecamp community of faith-based innovators was born.
One of the major obstacles we faced was overcoming the stereotype that business and religion are incompatible. Medieval Christianity erroneously developed the idea that the pursuit of wealth was inherently worldly, and that true spirituality was linked to monastic poverty. The Protestant Reformation unveiled the notion that although the love of money is the root of all evil, wealth is also a powerful tool that can be used for good.
Ellen White wrote, “The desire to accumulate wealth is an original affection of our nature, implanted there by our heavenly Father for noble ends.”1
Linking Ideas and Resources
A Bentley University survey found 66 percent of millennials want to start their own businesses.2 However, more than just wanting to start something, members of the Hyvecamp community seek to be part of something meaningful, something that intertwines faith and practice. This is also true of the seasoned businesspeople and other professionals who attended the event seeking to contribute their know-how, influence, and financial means.
Hyvecamp’s desire to reshape society is best manifested through the startups that participate. For example, the winners of the 2017 pitch competition were developers of a natural tattoo removal cream. The founder of the company used to be a punk rocker. After his conversion he felt that the Lord was giving him a second chance. He developed an innovative product called “Re†hink,” sharing the message that God is able to erase our past and give everyone a second chance.
Human trafficking often involves tattooing the victims so that they can’t run away. With this product thousands are given an opportunity to be free again. The more customers they minister to, the more profitable the company becomes, and the more people benefit spiritually.
Our church pioneers were successful because of their innovative and entrepreneurial and missionary spirit, which is just an extension of the Holy Spirit.
1 Ellen G. White, Counsels on Stewardship (Washington, D.C.: Review and Herald Pub. Assn., 1940), p. 148.
2 “Millennials at Work,” Bentley University, 2014. Retrieved from https://www.bentley.edu/newsroom/latest-headlines/mind-of-millennial.
Jesse Zwiker is one of the cofounders of Hyvecamp International (Hyvecamp.com), and lives with his family in Heidelberg, Germany.