GuideStone recognizes the realities and challenges Christians face in our society today — particularly when it comes to the family. Throughout Scripture, God emphasizes the importance of the family structure; yet each day it seems we face new obstacles attempting to undermine His design.
Because we believe in holding fast to our ideals, several decades ago GuideStone implemented an investment policy to help support our biblical values through the protection of the health, safety and emotional well-being of those we serve. Therefore, GuideStone does not invest in any company that is publicly recognized as being in the liquor, tobacco, gambling, pornography or abortion industries.
For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother's womb (Ps. 139:13, NKJV).
If we are each created by God in His image, then how can over 20 percent of all pregnancies end in abortion?1 GuideStone stands for the rights of those who cannot speak for themselves, whether it be a hurting mother or newly conceived child. In fact, our employees recently volunteered to help remodel a home that will be used to minister to and house low-income pregnant teenage mothers.
GuideStone has also actively sought legislative and legal relief from being required to cover abortifacients and other abortion-causing drugs and devices in our medical plans, because we believe in the sanctity of life.
Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death (James 1:15, NKJV).
While technology has brought with it many positives to our fast-paced world, it has also led to easier access to pornography, which is in turn destroying hearts, minds and marriages. In fact, 56 percent of divorces involve one spouse having an obsessive interest in pornography.2
GuideStone cares about the relationships being torn apart by this temptation. We hurt for the thousands of innocent children who are corrupted due to human trafficking and the brokenhearted men and women struggling with their self-worth due to the pornography industry. We believe in the right to safety and respect for every person in our families because we are all precious in the eyes of our Lord.
He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity (Eccl. 5:10, NKJV).
Much of the American culture is driven by a desire for more — nicer clothes, a newer car and a bigger house. Surely then, we will find happiness and contentment; however, chasing these types of material possessions can easily lead to substantial money problems and leave many turning to what seems like a quick fix — gambling. But what they don't anticipate is the downward spiral that accompanies the pursuit of winning big.
In fact, gambling addiction carries an estimated social cost of $7 billion as a direct result of crime, bankruptcy and cross-addiction.3 Can you imagine the impact we could have on our neighbors struggling to find shelter or food with $7 billion? GuideStone believes our financial resources should be focused on making a real difference in our society, not merely thrown away.
Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's (1 Cor. 6:19–20, NKJV).
Eat healthy and exercise — that is the plea from our family, friends and doctors. We want to keep our bodies working properly so we can have long, full lives that honor our Lord. Yet, many Americans continue to destroy their bodies with the harmful toxins associated with tobacco use.
Did you know that if nobody smoked, one of every three cancer deaths in the United States would not happen?4 GuideStone believes in protecting ourselves and the ones we love by not adding an additional, unnecessary health hazard to our environment.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Pet. 5:8, NKJV).
Alcohol consumption has become a common occurrence in our society — even among Christians. And while some may be able to exercise self-control, 17.6 million other adults in America suffer from alcohol abuse or dependence.5 These destructive patterns not only lead to individual health problems and financial strain, but also put our neighbors in harm's way.
In fact, alcohol is involved in one of every three motor vehicle crash deaths in the U.S. every year.6 How can we as Christians support such an unnecessary danger? GuideStone believes we should draw a line on this issue in order to protect the safety of our brothers and sisters.
1. Guttmacher Institute, "Fact Sheet: Induced Abortion in the United States," July 2014, guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html.
2. Covenant Eyes Internet Accountability and Filtering, Pornography Statistics: Annual Report 2015 (Owosso, MI: Covenant Eyes, 2015), covenanteyes.com/pornstats/.
3. "Impacts on the Community," California Council on Problem Gambling, accessed November 17, 2015, calpg.org/impacts-on-the-community/.
4. "Health Effects of Cigarette Smoking," Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, last updated October 1, 2015, cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/health_effects/effects_cig_smoking/.
5. "Facts About Alcohol," National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc., last updated July 25, 2015, ncadd.org/about-addiction/alcohol/facts-about-alcohol.
6."Impaired Driving: Get the Facts," Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, last updated May 19, 2015, cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/impaired_driving/impaired-drv_factsheet.html.