FAITH + FRIEND + FOUNDATION. Our triple threat feature this month includes dual covers from our faith Issue. Our first interview is with the founders of The Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur™ community, Antonina Geer and Shae Bynes, where entrepreneurs of faith establish a firm foundation for a successful business in God’s vision.
God is behind everything we do. We are nothing without the Holy Spirit, who guides us to live spirit-filled lives so that we, in turn, can inspire those around us. We know, too, that we are nothing without the people who mold us and shape us, inspiring us to live up to our highest potential. Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur™ is blessed to have two such people as co-founders, who assist others in building profitable businesses that change people and change lives.
As co-founder of Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur™, Shae Bynes has one mission: to help entrepreneurs of faith build businesses that impact lives and advance the Kingdom of God in the marketplace. After earning her M.B.A. at the University of Florida and founding several businesses online, Shae left the corporate world in 2010 to follow her mission and share her experiences with the Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur™ community. Since then, she has authored and co-authored several books on God-centered business.
Like Shae, co-founder Antonina Greer has cultivated a lifetime of service. She is the founder and CEO of Simplistic Financials, LLC, a financial consulting company that empowers women entrepreneurs to build purpose driven businesses that allow women to make more money and more free time. As a presenter at many women’s conferences, summits, and talk radio shows, Antonina delivers a message that simple financial management yields abundant rewards.
Sharisa: What does KDE stand for and what is your mission?
Antonina: KDE stands for Kingdom Driven Entrepreneurs.
Shae: Our mission is to equip entrepreneurs of faith to build thriving businesses so they can serve their families, truly impact lives and advance the Kingdom of God.
Antonina The vision is to make Jesus Christ known globally in the marketplace.
Sharisa: How does KDE’S mission/vision come into manifestation within the community/organization?
Antonina: We manifest it through the books that we write, the people that we bring together in the community to collaborate and other things of that nature. We also manifest it through live event; practically everything that we do in Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur helps us to manifest our mission and vision.
Shae: Facilitating divine connections between entrepreneurs of faith and being charged to activate fire-starters in the marketplace, who are those people that are going to go out and demonstrate God’s presence, His power, His love, His passion and His purity in the marketplace.
We have Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur Small Groups that consist of online communities, trainings, live events, and the books that we publish. . Actually, we now have a total of five groups that just launched in January 2014 and we have a number of people in training who will be launching new groups. We even have a new group that is about to launch all the way over in Zimbabwe, which we are pretty excited about that!
Sharisa: What makes someone a Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur? Is there a difference between being a Kingdom Entrepreneur and a Christian Entrepreneur?
Anotnina: Yes, there is a difference. With the Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur, we are not just a Christian who is in business or just a Christian who has accepted Jesus Christ as our Savior. It goes beyond that. We are submitting our lives and our businesses to the Holy Spirit to lead us in our business endeavors. We don’t hide who we serve, but we don’t boast it out with words and beat people over the head with Scripture. We simply show who God is through the way we interact with people in business.
Sharisa: Is it fair to say that you cater/market only to the Christian entrepreneurs? Do you classify yourself as a Christian entrepreneur? Why or why not? If not, how do you shift to conducting business as a Kingdom-level entrepreneur?
Shae: Well, we don’t necessarily market ourselves as “Kingdom-Driven Entrepreneurs;” however, we are Kingdom Driven Entrepreneurs. Antonina and I are the business and the brand of Kingdom Driven Entrepreneurs but people who are part of our community aren’t necessarily going out and saying, “Hey I’m a Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur.” Most people don’t even know what that means. It is how you live, how you conduct business and how you’re working. It’s not about putting a label on yourself that a lot of people are not going to understand anyway. People understand I’m a Christian business owner but there is no need to put that label on you, either. You’re in business; operate with the love of Christ – period. Operate in excellence! But you don’t have to put a label on it.
Now, there is an exception to that. If the Lord has called you to serve an audience of Christians, then yes, it will probably be beneficial for you to announce that you are a Christian business because it will help you with your audience and those you have been called to serve which may be the minority of the business but not necessarily the majority.
Sharisa: Before becoming cofounders of KDI, you ladies didn’t know each other. How did you met and come to a mutual decision to start a business?
Antonina: Shae, I will let you take that. You always love to tell the story.
Shae: She always lets me tell the story. I love to tell the story. So, basically, in 2012, a friend of mine reached out to me and told me there was someone in LA that I really needed to meet that he had met through his business. He connected me with her. It wasn’t Antonina – it was someone else. We talked on the phone and she was great to talk to but I couldn’t figure out exactly why he was adamant that we had to meet. By the end of the phone call, it turned out that she was Antonina’s business coach at the time and she told me that I absolutely needed to meet one of her clients, Antonina Geer. I said, “OK, great! Why don’t you connect us?”
So we connected via Facebook in March 2012 and then we connected by telephone and talked for about two hours. Being two kindred spirits, we really hit it off. We talked about some of the things that we were doing and some things that the Lord had called us to do and when we got off the phone it was like, “OK, meeting other was great” and we decided there were some great things we could do pretty quickly to provide value to each other. So she has a business, Simplistic Financials, and had coaching clients and I did a training for them. After that, I had her as a guest for my podcast for one of my projects I was working on at the time which went great too but afterwards the reason of why we met was still unclear; there was yet another reason. I couldn’t shake it and said, “Let’s pray about it and come back in a week,” so we did that and scheduled a phone conversation the following week.
We had a nice chat but nothing we talked about was really disclosed the “it,” you know, the reason why we had met and I still couldn’t shake that sense that there is a reason why we met. So we said that we would pray again and come back again. We went three rounds of this, Sharisa, and when we came back on that next round, Antonina said something about Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur and everything in my spirit began leaping and jumping like “yes, yes, yes, yes! That is exactly what it is, that’s why we met!” On that same phone call, we were like, “This is a movement and it starts with a book.”
We outlined the entire book about the principles of Kingdom Driven Entrepreneurship and began writing the book with her being in South Carolina and I’m in Florida. We hadn’t met in person yet. We had only had a couple of phone conversations; nonetheless, we wrote this book called the Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur Doing Business God’s Way over the summer. We were exchanging chapters. It was really quite wild; it was like the same person was writing the book rather than the two of us. After we finished the book, we thought it would probably be good to meet face to face before we released the book. She came down to Fort Lauderdale. We had a great time and the Lord started speaking to us about what it was we were supposed to do next. He didn’t give us much but He gave us a little to work with, which was exactly what we needed at the time. So we launched the book. We launched our book right on Amazon and started a community over 500 people in about three days’ time from the launch and it just grew from there. That’s how we started. We knew that this was a community and a movement and we started a community on Facebook as well and it has grown quite a bit since then. That’s how it all got started.
Sharisa: That is an amazing story.
Antonina: It has been an amazing journey.
Sharisa: That is a story to tell the kids about one day.
Shae: Yeah, it is awesome. I have already shared it with my kids. It’s funny because we went into business with each other before meeting each other in person.
Antonina: We signed an operating agreement and all of that.
Shae: We hadn’t met face to face yet but that is how clear we were.
Sharisa: That line of practice is not for everybody.
Antonina: We were definitely led by the Holy Spirit:
Shae: There’s a lot to the story of how Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur came to be. Having been a business coach, these are things that I wouldn’t generally recommend but I do always recommend following the Holy Spirit. If that is where He’s leading, then that is where you go.
Sharisa: Being women and also being a minority, what would you consider to have been stumbling blocks in both your business and ministry? Also, has the diversity of KDE presented any challenges for you, i.e. men or others having issues with the leadership and vision of two women?
Shae: That is an awesome question. I have an answer but I want to give my sister the opportunity to answer first.
Antonina: I wouldn’t necessarily say that it is a huge issue for us to be concerned about it but naturally because people see two African-American women doing this, naturally it will draw people who look like us, which is our desire because it is Kingdom Driven Entrepreneurs that represents kingdom. So, yes, we wanted it diverse. Shae, you wanted to add something else?
Shae: The Lord told us very early on that what we were doing was not a black thing, not a woman thing but it was a kingdom thing and that was clear from the very beginning so we stand firm on that. No matter what it looked like when people start joining the community, where it seemed to be largely female and largely African American, like the Lord says, “This is His kingdom.” This is a diverse thing. We do everything intentionally we can, for example, like having virtual events. We had speakers. We intentionally made sure that our speakers were diverse. In instances where we could do something intentionally to represent the kingdom of God and not just one culture, one gender, or whatever, we have done those things. What has happened over time is that the Lord has placed some people in our paths who have really hopped on to the mission, really believed in it, have promoted it and have really done an awesome job of diversifying us, not just gender-wise, not just skin color-wise but all nationalities. Now we’re global and international with different people across the world that belong to one community which is important to us because it is kingdom but never was it a worry to us. When we have an opportunity to do something intentional then we do it. There was something else you said about men submitting to female leadership. That hasn’t been an issue at all.
Sharisa: That’s good. It was meant to be what it is meant to be and those that come recognize the vision you are bringing and see the bigger picture.
Antonina: Yes, exactly. I must say, it really isn’t about us. It’s a move of God, not of Shae and Antonina.
Sharisa: Does a “faith walk” sometimes require sitting and doing nothing as you wait for a divine instruction to come or is there still some sort of action that you need to take?
Antonina: Praying is key. Shae and I do a lot of praying and talking at our meetings. It is huge. As far as action, yes, we take steps based on what we believe the Holy Spirit is asking us and prompting us and we’re depending on Him to lead us in a different way if we veer off of the track.
Shae: If you sit around waiting and waiting and you never do anything, it’s like what are you waiting for? You have to take a step. You have to be bold enough to take a step. You can believe God. If you are staying in God’s face and staying in his presence, He is going to correct you if you’re going the wrong way. He will. It is important to get instructions but it also important not to over-analyze, over-think, sit forever and do nothing. I think about us with KDE, if we sat around waiting…..we went ahead and did the book because we had instructions to do the book even though we didn’t know what we were doing. It was like we have a community and a book.
Ok, so we’re going to build a business around a community and a book – that didn’t even make sense. The instruction that we had was that it was a community and a book and that’s all we knew. So we did the book. Then it’s like, “How are going to build the community?” In the beginning, we gave the book away for free and told all those folks if they liked it that they could join the community. That’s what happened and we still didn’t know what else. People were asking us “Is this a business? What is this?” We were like, “We don’t know. But it is a movement of God and He is speaking to us and as He speaks to us we’re doing these things.” What happened was, over time as we’re being faithful over the instructions He’s has given us, and then He’s uncovering and un-layering what that next thing is. I mean, we still experience this now. If he shows all of us the biggest picture, we would be too scared to move. So you got to take what you have, as little as it seems to you, go do that. Also, just trust and understand that number one, if you’re going the wrong way, he’s going to correct you and as you MOVE, He illuminates further. Ok now here’s number two, a little bit of the larger picture of what you’re doing: that is a faith walk, which is taking an action.
Sharisa: So what I am hearing is that you may not see the whole picture but move forward with what you do have and the rest will be revealed to you little by little as you go along. I think a lot of people are waiting for that A-Z experience – I know I do. I want the whole picture before I move. As you’re sitting there, people are asking, “What are you doing?” and you tell them, “I am waiting on God.” No, God is waiting on you; He didn’t tell you anything. My response is, “Yes, but I need a little or more but you have to move on what He gives you.”
Shae: Yes, that right. You will get something.
Antonina: Faith Walk!
Shae: I know I have never gotten from A-Z. Sis, have you ever got from A-Z?
Antonina: No, never.
Sharisa: I tried to get it but……
Antonina: Yeah, it never happens and really I don’t get to see B until I do A.
Sharisa: And then really it is like A.1, B.1 ½
Sharisa: Not trying to start any mess but what do you ladies think about the way that God is leading you to run KDE? Is He leading you to run it more like the church, more like a covenant, more like a community, not so religious and traditional or led by the Holy Spirit? Or is this the particular model for your God-given business?
Antonina: That is loaded! I would just say this – what we are doing, it is not our “model” but I do believe that we are the pioneers of this model and how it should be or can be done in the church. There are some churches that might be operating this way and there are others that are not; however, we are definitely not about religion. We are about doing what God said to do and following His lead.
Shae: Sharisa, you said something else that was key too, about covenant. That is an important piece to Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur. It’s important for the church as well. Why it’s important for Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur because it is not a “church,” it is not a church building, we have no demonization, or whatever it is that all of these folks that goes to all of these churches across all of these different denominations for. Nobody is talking about it. Nobody is coming into the community talking about what the Baptists do, what the Methodists do, nothing. We’ve had it for over a year and it has not happened. It’s just about…it’s about God! It’s about our Heavenly Father and what it is that we’re supposed to be doing. It’s about demonstrating His love towards each other. It’s about helping each other. It’s not politics, not religious and it’s refreshing.
Antonina: We’ve gotten one of the greatest testimonies I’ve heard since starting KDE. I don’t know the exact words but the person was saying, that “It (KDE) shows the heart of God.” That is what they’ve seen in the community. That testimony has brought us to tears. That’s it. That’s what it is!
Shae: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.
Sharisa: Do the dynamics of who you are individually change when you come together? What is it like working together and sharing in the decision-making process?
Shae: For myself, I don’t see anything really different in myself individually versus with Antonina. Obviously we make decisions together but I’m the same Shae either way. The experience for me has been amazing. Antonina has been such a blessing in my life…don’t get me to crying in this interview. Nina, can you talk now? (Shae started to cry).
Antonina-: Don’t start, Sis!!!
Shae: I am going to shut up for a second, let her talk and then I will jump back in.
Antonina: I’m like my sis, like Shae. I don’t see a difference in the Antonina that shows up or who I am when we are together and when we operate together or when I am separate and independent of her. I believe, and Shae would probably say the same thing, that is because we are such a blessing in each other lives and because God has created this covenant relationship, we are able to be our true selves in front of each other – we just are. You have some relationships where you’re really not able to be who you are. But with us, the dynamics are designed where we can just be who we are. We are truly sisters. God didn’t make a mistake when He put us together. I will say that He uses the strengths in each of us and when we come together in things and decisions concerning KDE, it makes it that much more powerful. Shae is an absolute blessings in my life and I’ve seen things in my life change because of who she is as a person and who God is in her life.
Sharisa: Can you speak now, Shae – yes or now?
Shae: She made it worse!! Um, the only thing I will add to that is that one of the really cool things about having a partnership in business that has been yielded to in God is that if there is an instance where the two of us are feeling something different or have a different thought about something, we always have the opportunity to say “let’s pray about it.” Then we will always get what we need out of it because it’s not about me, it’s not about her, me having my way or her having her way.
Every step we take, we ask, “Lord what do you want?” I believe because we have yielded this entire business to Him and for others who do this as well, it makes those things that match less complicated. I mean, we get a lot of questions about partnerships and how they are hard, etc. but I’ve got to tell you, it isn’t been hard at all; it has really been a joy, every step of the way.
Antonina: It really has!
Sharisa: It’s obvious. Even during this interview, it’s obvious that you guys mesh well together. So, there isn’t any type of competition, egos clashing or anything like that?
Shae: Oh gosh no! Ain’t nobody got time for that!
Sharisa: Was it hard to get your husbands to see the vision and support the faith walk you were on?
Antonina: We both have some awesome husbands who both are confident in who God called them to be. They lead in their home but they also give us the space to really be able to do what God has called us to do. There is no ego in my marriage and I will let Shae speak for her marriage but just witnessing Shae and her husband, there is no ego there. Our husbands love God and that is key.
Shae: We have a board, a covenant boar who serve as the advisory board for Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur and our husbands are not on the board. But in a way, they are kind of like the behind-the-scene advisors. They know what’s going on. They have godly wisdom to add to what we are doing. They have insight. So it’s been good with both of them, particularly with Antonina’s husband. It’s like they are a part of it. They’ve embraced it and that’s been awesome. It’s kind of undeniable, unless ego was an issue and it is not, so then you really can’t deny what God is doing, right? If you look at it and say, “Don’t like that,” then you are saying you don’t like what the Lord is doing, so that would have to be ego and we’re not dealing with that. Praise God. It’s worked out pretty nicely.
Antonina: They both recognize God’s hand on this. They recognize His anointing on it. So yeah, no egos at all. We are grateful to have the type of husbands we have. We’ve seen other women, Christian women, in business and they don’t necessarily have that. We’re grateful.
Sharisa: Giving consideration to the size of your organization, was it important for the two of you to be the right people that would be able to work together as well as having in place a support system to help guide you, maintain order and keep everyone on the same page?
Shae: Absolutely. And the Lord knew that ahead of time. He’s the one who orchestrated the whole thing. Again, we didn’t know each other.
Sharisa: You had your first conference in January. Share your successes and what took place there. How did it change you both personally and professionally?
Anotnina: To be honest, Sharisa, neither one of us really remembers a whole lot about the retreat. We laugh but it’s true. It’s just a testament to God’s power and His presence that showed up there and met the needs of the people. It was… I am getting choked up thinking about it. How awesome He is to already be there when we got there and everybody’s needs being met. It still had nothing to do with Shae and me. It was the whole retreat.
Shae: It was the most amazing event-planning experience ever, if you can only imagine. This was only our second event ever and our first national event for Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur. The first event was a workshop for ten people. As we are putting together an agenda, we are really seeking God: What is it that You want us to share? What is it that You want us to teach? What is it that You want us to do? And He just wouldn’t let us know what it is that He wanted us to teach. He told us, don’t worry about it. They’re coming to encounter Me. Don’t worry about it. It was a real growth experience for me personally to be able to say OK, Lord, because I am a planner-type. I want to know what the agenda is going to be. I want to know what it is that we’re doing. I want to know what preparations to make and get all of that. With Him knowing all of that about me, all He would do is speak to me about the logistics. Oh, you need logistics, honey? Here are the logistics. Here are things you didn’t think about getting done.
Don’t forget about this and don’t forget about that. But nothing that was related to the teaching. On our agenda, we knew that there was one piece that we knew was going to happen. These masterminds, where people were going to get together in groups and going to be able to assist each other in their businesses. But as far as the teaching is concern, to the day…..to the exact day of the retreat, to the morning of the retreat, Antonina and I were praying in her hotel room and we had no idea what was to be taught. Who does that? Who hosts their own event and don’t know what they are teaching? But that’s what He called for.
When we say our tagline, This is Not Business as Usual, that is for real. This is not business as usual. It was because He didn’t have us teach on a particular topic because He knew what needed to take place. It was His move there. We just fell in line with His agenda. Amazingly, Sharisa, He did it on our schedule. So we had a time slot from 9-10:30 and had no idea outside of praise and worship what was going to take place for our first session. He filled up every minute of it. When it was over and time to move on, it was 10:28 with two minutes to spare.
Antonina: Yeah, we would look at the clock and be like – what?! Really God? That’s how you’re moving, huh?
Shae: And it happened multiple times throughout the weekend. Where were the agenda slots? We did not know because He had not told us what was going to go on there or what He wanted us to do. Well, He told us what He wanted us to do, which was nothing! Don’t worry about it because I got it and He did. He did that in any spot that we were uncertain about – that’s what took place. It was the most amazing for a – it was a business retreat. It was a business retreat!! People came for a business retreat and encountered God.
We changed the name of the event for Phoenix because it was actually the Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur Retreat and we were like no, now it is the Kingdom Driver Entrepreneur Encounter because it was amazing and like Antonina said we don’t remember a lot of the details. We’re kind of foggy on those.
Sharisa: Wow!! Seems like what happened in Phoenix stayed in Phoenix. That is amazing.
Shae: It was. What it taught me was that that it was just yet another way He showed me that I can trust Him. You know? It was yet another piece of evidence, as if I needed more evidence. But it was yet another piece of evidence of how much He loved us all and how much I, Shae, can trust God. I don’t have to know all the details. I don’t have to know any of the details except for the details He wants me to know and He’s got me. That’s what I learned out of that experience – that he is going to take care of every single need and every single person there and it has nothing to do with Shae. It had nothing to do with me. That was major for me.
Sharisa: So it seems like now you would be less hesitant to make a move if He says make a move. You have no reason to doubt?
Shae: Oh yeah!!
Anotnina: Oh yes!!!
Shae: We are pretty quick to move these days. When we are teaching, we talk about this whole idea of radical obedience which means even if the Lord tells you to go and do something crazy you’re still going to do it. If He says do it now, you go do it even if you can’t make natural sense out of it. The more that you yield yourself to that and you’re willing to go boldly on the thing that He has told you to do, the easier it gets for you to do that. It’s not easier to do the thing that He told you to do but it easier to say “Yes, I will do it.”
The thing that you may be doing may be a little challenging. You may run into obstacles and that kind of thing but the decision to say “Yes, I will do it” has become pretty easy for us over time. Because of Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur, it has made it easy for me to translate that and say YES outside of KDE in my personal life as well. So that’s been a blessing for me as well as inside of this whole experience, too.
Antonina: Yeah, I have been seeing this same thing in my life in saying YES to Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur. I am quicker to say yes in other areas of my life as well.
Sharisa: What can someone gain from this community who feels like they have lost their faith?
Shae: Nina, I will let you go first in that.
Antonina: Wow, you know, I would just say they would find God in the community and would find Him in such a way that it would renew their faith. We have testimonies of people who have found their way in the community and beforehand they had lost all hope in people and lost hope in relationships. Quite frankly, I wouldn’t necessarily say they had lost hope in God but some were kind of questioning their faith but once they came to Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur and saw the people interacting and the love of God in the community, it restored their faith in God.
Shae: We’ve just seem some really amazing things in the community and it is because of the people. It’s the people and the heart of God in the people. What is so amazing to me is that one of things that is so important about the community is when somebody sees Antonina and me. For example, Antonina lost a job and then said that she was not going to look for another job because the Lord wants her here in KDE even though she just lost my job and lost her income but determined to do this. When they see Shae say, I am going to completely shut down my other business, the other one was taken away, I will still be OK and I still will keep moving forward. People see that, right? Then they look at their life and say if they can do that then I can do that. Then someone sees the other person who did it and they think if they can do that, then I can do that. I have seen so much of that in the community. It’s just the living witness of the people in the community.
Antonina and I have been pretty transparent about our journey but whether it is us or someone in the community sharing because we have an awesome engaging community, people are inspired by others. There are many cases where people say, well there is just nobody around me where I can talk about this stuff. There’s nobody around me, where they are in business but they’re not really doing business God’s way. I got people around me but if I say something like I am being led by the Holy Spirit, they’d look at me as if I had two heads. So you know, they find a home at Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur and that’s awesome. I think that is why also the Lord is so keen on us having these small groups where there is face-to-face interaction in groups across the world. As great as online is, you just cannot beat face to face.
Sharisa: You say that you are guided by the Holy Spirit when making decisions. How do you both know it is the leading of the Holy Spirit and not your own good intentions, purposes and ideas? Even speaking for myself, I cannot always distinguish between the Holy Spirit telling me something and just my good idea or hopes and desires, except for three occasions I am sure of when I was in the shower. I don’t know what it is about that hot water. When I immediately wake up and something pops in my head I know that is not my idea because I am still groggily and in a sleepy daze. Or when I am sleeping and I have dreams, all the other times I am not sure until I do what I want to do and then afterwards it’s like something told me not to do it or I see why I had to do it this way. But when I do it and it is wrong I am now praying for God to help me out of what I got myself into. So how do you really know the good thing from the God thing that is Holy Spirit-led?
Shae: Sometimes you’re not going to know for sure until you step out. I also think the answer for people is different. Just like you gave a really awesome example of how you hear God’s voice in the shower and when getting out of bed. You have seen a pattern. So you know how the Lord speaks to you because of the time you’ve spent with Him. For me personally, until I really started spending time with Him, I had no idea when something was from the Lord or not. I had no idea. No clue. But when I spent time with Him, developed a relationship with Him and made it a priority, it became clear to me. I started to understand the difference between when something was a God-inspired thing I heard versus a decent idea. I started to understand the sound of His voice to me. He speaks to me in dreams and visions quite a bit, at least for the past six to eight months or so. If I get a picture, I know it is Him. For me, for Shae Bynes. I know it’s Him when He does that.
When Nina and I have a meeting and we pray while having discussion, we would speak on an idea and immediately be like, “No.” It is an inner witness, right? And we’re both like, “No, that’s not from God.” It is inviting Him in. it is the time that you spend because you have to cultivate the relationship to even know His voice versus your own voice. That is the best response that I can give. I can also tell you for sure that I don’t always get it right and I didn’t even start to cultivate an ear to hear from Him until I spent time with Him.
Antonina: That is what is important. The time you spend with Him and the relationship you cultivate with Him is the only way to begin and to know, because He only shows you things when you know Him. You only know God when you spend time with Him.
Shae: When we talk about spending time with God, people ask, “Well, what does that mean? I got to go pray four hours in the morning?” No, that is not what we are saying. Yes, you will spend time in prayer. Yes, you will spend time in the Word. Yes, you will do all of those things but it doesn’t have to be contained with what you do when you wake up in the morning or what you do right before going to bed. Just having an awareness of His presence is awesome. You can be in the car praising God and just having a conversation with him. You could be in the shower. You could be wherever. It doesn’t have to be some religious thing where I have to do this because such and such said they spend three hours in the closet every morning with the Lord. Ok, that is them. That doesn’t mean that that has to be you and that doesn’t mean that’s what it takes for you. It’s just cultivating the relationship in whatever way that is for you. But it does take time in prayer. It does take time in His Word. It does take time just acknowledging Him and praising Him for who He is.
There is so much stuff has come out just from me praising God, just from me praising Him for who He is. Stuff that comes just from that. Just taking a second out of my day in the middle of a workday to say, “Lord, I just honor You. I just praise You for who You are. You are amazing.” Just the seemingly simple thing. I turn my heart towards Him and He delivers something. I offer a gift up to Him and just….you know what I mean?
Antonina: Yes, Sis!! Jesus! Yes, God!
Sharisa: I would say that both of you have to be spiritually connected to each other because unless you get the download simultaneously, if one says she feels the Holy Ghost is saying this, it has to resonate with the other as well to be in agreement to say, “I am not sure if that is right; let’s pray on it some more.” You have to trust each other’s relationship with God as well.
Antonina: Yes, we definitely trust the God in each other.
Shae: For sure.
Sharisa: That is so huge. Do you ever think about what would have happened if you both hadn’t taken this leap together?
Antonina: Yes, I have and it saddens me. I am just grateful we took this leap. When I say sad, I mean when I think about the “what if” this hadn’t happened. The people that God has connected with us. The people that are yet to come and experience this. It wouldn’t have happened if we hadn’t taken the leap. Or maybe it would have. God maybe would have given it to someone else.
Shae: Yes, if we’d ignored Him, His will would have been accomplished regardless.
Sharisa: Has God given you ladies the privilege yet to see where KDE is headed?
Shae: He’s given us some insight.
Sharisa: Can you share some upcoming projects based on what you can divulge at the moment?
Shae: Yes, we can share some things. The big thing now is these small groups. We know that that is a very significant piece of Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur is gathering numerous groups of people, a whole activation of fire-starters all over the world. We know that is a big piece so we are spending a bit of time developing that part of the movement with face-to-face small groups all across the world.
We also have a publishing business where we have released a number of books. Those books are the same thing that goes into the hands of the small groups. They are the tools. We are providing those tools not just for the small groups but whoever wants to get them. So we definitely have a continued focus on books published by Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur, LLC. So far, we have released nine books.
Sharisa: Is the timeline Holy Spirit-led or on your set schedule?
Shae: He gives us books all the time and not all books are for us to write, so there will be a lot of books written by others. We already have three written by others who are authors. There is no shortage of books to be written by this company. We definitely have a line of them. Another piece is our event. We also have our online community which will grow to 100,000 people. We made the transition from Facebook to our own online platform. That felt like starting over. We had a Facebook group of about 3900 people then we moved to another platform and only a small percentage followed us to our new platform.
In one sense it is like starting all over but the reality is that we are excited because that is where the Lord told us to be. So now we have our own home. We have our own space and it is going to grow. He really has positioned us to increase the community in that way. Our last conference was July 11-13, 2014 in Charlotte, North Carolina. More events to come in 2015 and beyond.
Sharisa: What words best describe the impression you hope one will get after being a part of the KDE community?
Shae: Activate. I want someone to feel activated by the KDE community. We talk about activating fire-starters. We talked about the ultimate purpose of Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur and that is advancement in the kingdom of God by drawing people towards Him. So I want people to come into this community and feel activated to what they are called to do in their assignment. Activated to be really bold about being a demonstrator of His presence, His power, His purity, His passion in the marketplace. That’s what I want someone to get when they come.
Antonina: That is similar to mine. Not being afraid to be who they were called to be. Not being afraid to step out that they believe in their hearts that God has given them and called them to do.
Shae: It’s a safe place. That’s another thing I really appreciate about the community. I think a lot of people do. They come and they feel safe and that is because the heart of God is there. There’s protection in His presence. The fact that people come and they feel they have a safe place to share, a safe place to release and a safe place make lifetime friendships. That’s really awesome too.
Sharisa: What events and traits that makes you both a Connected Woman?
Shae: I think with me, I am very relatable. It doesn’t really matter where the person is coming from. They can find love with me regardless of where they are coming from or with whatever they are going through. There’s love and the ability to relate there. I may not be able to relate to your exact situation but I can relate to you and show love towards you.
Antonina: I guess I would say that I am genuine and I am a friend.
Shae: That is what I was trying to say. I like the way you said it. I co-sign on her response.
Sharisa: How do you both balance your family, personal, and spiritual life in addition to KDE?
Antonina: I don’t really buy into the whole balance thing. I don’t know if you can always balance all of it but I do try to harmonize if you will, or integrate so that things run smoothly in my household. Of course, we all want our spiritual life to be the most important thing. So I try to ensure to get my time in with the Lord. Also, with family, you hear that family is your first ministry. So with keeping that in mind, I have to make sure I am tending to their needs. But sometimes you know, I am grateful to have a husband who pitches in. He does things around the house. I get to have my own personal time. I’m one who loves to have quiet and peace. Sometimes I like to be by myself and quiet for a bit. Sunday naps. Naps period. But Sunday naps are my favorite. I try to integrate it and harmonize it all.
Shae: I don’t have anything to add to that because Antonina’s is very similar to what I would have said.
Sharisa: Faith-based organizations tend to have a higher expectation of excellence. How do you keep centered on meeting those expectations without becoming so focused on what others think and feel but focusing on the mission you were given, especially considering that you do things a little “out of the box” than what others may be used to?
Shae: Well, it is not tough for me. The Lord has given an assignment and all we have to do is just focus on the assignment that He has given us and do our best. We want to operate in excellence because we are doing the Lord’s work. We are doing an assignment. Really it doesn’t matter what your business is, a ministry or a faith-based organization. Every kingdom-driven entrepreneur is a faith-based business because you are a faith-based person. Your business may not be doing something that is faith-based but you’re a kingdom-driven entrepreneur, so faith-based is a part of you and everything that you do.
In that case, excellence is what is expected. It is what your heart should be for. So if you have a heart for excellence and do everything in excellence, are we going to miss the mark sometimes? Yes. But is your heart and intent always to do it in excellence? Yes, it is because it is good for your customers and clients. We want to be in excellence because we represent Jesus Christ. He is excellence. Personally for me, I am not focused on what others think about what we do. That’s not my reason to be excellent.
Antonina: I will only add that our focus is not on what other people think. It is on the Lord and doing what He wants and we want Him to be pleased. We do. So excellence, that’s the standard.
Shae: You know what is so awesome about that? If you just focus on pleasing God and if you’re doing that thing that is pleasing to God, then it is going to be pleasing to who it is supposed to anyway. You’ve already taken care of that. There is nothing to be concerning yourself about because the people that are supposed to be pleased will be pleased and those who aren’t going to be pleased….ok. But it doesn’t matter because God is pleased.
Antonina: That’s right.
Sharisa: You both have had careers, your own businesses and now KDE. As fulfilling as Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur is, has it been the easiest or hardest part of your journey as far as working and in business?
Antonina: Wow, it is definitely a journey but it is an amazing one. One thing that my sis, Shae, always says is, “Work as worship.” That’s exactly what it feels like. It feels great to be able to, you know, you’re doing something that you have no doubt know that you are called to. Is it always easy? No, of course not. Nothing is easy that you have to do in life sometimes but when you know that is something that God has given you to do and you know that this is your calling, you enjoy the work. It is the journey that helps us to grow. There’s wonderful things about it. There’s joyous occasions and there are some things that may be challenging but in everything there is a joy in doing what God has called you to do.
Shae: I can’t say it’s been the easiest or the hardest part of my journey. I can say it has been the most in peaceful I have ever been in my entire life. There is peace with the work. There is a grace with it as well. That’s why I hesitate to use the word easy but there is grace here, there is peace here. Everything that we need is here because we are doing what He called us to do. I can tell you that there is other things that I’ve done in business and career-wise that I wasn’t necessarily outside of the will of God per say, some of those things were steps along the journey. But there is something about when you say for real for real, “Yes, Lord.” It is not about easy or hard but it is the most amazing and I just wouldn’t have it any other way.
Antonina: Same here. Same here. That’s good, Sis.
Shae: Sorry, I am getting goose bumps just having this conversation.
Shae: This happens to us every time we have meetings, Sharisa. There is nothing like the Love of God!
Antonia: Thank you Lord!
Sharisa: What legacy do you want KDE to pass on even after passing the reins on to someone else?
Shae: The vision for Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur is to make Jesus Christ known in the marketplace globally. So that vision, regardless of whoever the Lord has leading, Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur at that moment in time, whether it’s us, somebody else or whatever the Lord has in mind, which we don’t know what He has in mind but whatever it may be, the legacy will be making Jesus Christ known in the marketplace globally.
In our book, The Fire Starter Effect: Making Jesus Christ Known in the Marketplace, we’re talking about being a fire-starter and what that means. That meaning is being a demonstrator of God’s Presence, His power, His passion and His purity in the marketplace. When we are demonstrators of those things, lives are changed. People come to Christ. It is amazing. To me, that is the legacy. Whatever it is, people are drawn to Him. That’s it. More lives to Christ. What an awesome mission! It’s really simple. That’s the biggest one but there are some things that go underneath that.
The Kingdom Driven Entrepreneur family and community that is developing is a true understanding and embracing of covenant relationship. The fact that regardless of just the love of God amongst the people who are a part of the community even amongst each other and not just out in the world where you have a love for somebody, that is so much so that their desire become a part of your desires. The things that they need, you’ve got it covered. You’re operating in business. You’re working together. You’re partnering together. You’ve got divine collaborations. That’s also a part of this, which by the way is that thing that helps to cultivate that vision. There all connecting. They’re not separate.
Antonina: I have nothing to add to that. My sentiments exactly.
Sharisa: How can we keep in contact with you?
Shae: www.kingdomdrivenentrepreneur.com. From there, they can connect to everything we have going on.
Sharisa: What last words would you like for our readers to remember?
Antonia: I would say go forth. Just do and be all that God has called you to be without apology.
Shae: I couldn’t have said it any better than that.
Check out their their combined written works here
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