I want to be an Entrepreneur. So do a lot of people these days.
It’s been made famous by the likes of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerburg and more recently startups like AirBNB, DropBox, Instagram and Roxio (Angry Birds) have painted the vivid portrait of the glorious life of a founder: working on something you’re passionate about, creating wealth, pleasing users and making your mark on the world.
People like Paul Graham, whose startup school “Y-Combinator” has funded over 800 startups, argue strongly that startups are the best model for business and innovation, and I tend to agree. They also point out how hard it all is.
While on holiday, I was thinking about what it means to live subversively – inside one world, with it’s values (being cool, making money, making a mark on the world) while belonging to another reality (living selflessly, trying to bring justice, hope and love into the world, trusting God to help you do things you couldn’t do on your own).
For most people, startups are about one of these things:
- Making your mark on the world (“leaving a dent in the universe”, to quote Steve Jobs)
- Making a lot of money very quickly
- Getting paid to do something you love doing
- The thrill of doing something risky. Not choosing a boring life.
I have no problem with any of these motivations, other than the possible vanity and self absorption that could come with success. But I wanted to think about what the drive is to run a startup when you come at it from a Christian world-view.
I came up with this line:
“An Exploration of Grace”
(Note: this was an unpublished draft from September 2013. I had a few extra sentences and probably intended to write more, but I can’t remember where it was going. Publishing this in 2023, a decade later, I love this line and will choose to leave it there, and let the sentence speak for itself and evoke what it will).