Over the past week something that I heard Mike Breen talk about some years ago has kept coming to mind so I am grateful that I took some notes and more grateful that I managed to find them!
Capital is something we invest to seek a return or that we use in significant ways for our benefit. Capital is about investment & return or giving & rewards. This normally relates to financial things, but Mike talked about five Capitals that we all have and use.
For us, as Christians, the most valuable is Spiritual and the least valuable in financial. Spiritual capital is about our relationship with Jesus, not our understanding about God (that would probably come under intellectual capital). Nothing else in the world is more valuable than that.
The way you grow any of the capitals is to invest the ones beneath. For me that means at present that I am investing my financial capital in funding my sabbatical. One of the priorities has been to grow my physical capital because at the end of December I was utterly exhausted and living off paracetamol on a regular basis! To do that I have invested in the cost of joining a health club and I know that physically I am vastly better than a couple of months ago. I will have to decide if I need to continue to invest financially in my physical capital by continuing to be a member of a health club after my sabbatical.
The next step for me will be to invest my financial, intellectual and physical capital for spiritual return as I visit Bethel Church shortly. I was physically depleted at the end of last year but I was also spiritually empty and this investment is vital if I am to continue to lead and disciple others.
Mike suggested that each level of capital is worth ten times the level below. This would mean that Spiritual capital is 10,000 times more valuable than financial capital!
I have had this at the back of my mind ever since Mike talked about it (as an aside during a conference). I find it really helpful in thinking about what capital to save, what to spend and how to invest to grow the more important ones.
Much of our society has however reversed the priorities with financial capital being seen as the most important to acquire by investing the others. Our society has suffered spiritually and relationally as these are pushed to the bottom whilst the others are given greater priority.
Helpful questions to ask are what am I investing or drawing on at the moment, and am I investing the less important capitals for the benefit of the more important ones?
I hope this helps others as it has helped me.