Why I’m a Member
A famous adage teaches that if you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything. George Newfield’s parents instilled biblical principles into his life from a very young age that still influence the way he lives today. He draws inspiration and focus from Psalm 1 (ESV), which begins with the words, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord.”
George was born into a Christian home in the Republic of Georgia (under the Soviet Union). He came from many generations of believers, with some of his family members facing persecution because of their faith. In 1989, when communism was losing its grip, his family left as refugees and finally arrived in America. George was almost four, and his younger sister was just eighteen months old.
The family embarked on their new reality with only four suitcases of children’s clothes and $500 in their pockets. They did not know the language and culture and had no job waiting for them. “We had each other and God, and that was about it,” remembers George. When they settled in Rhode Island, George’s father began painting and remodeling homes. Within a couple of years, he started his own company. His mother worked odd jobs before starting a housekeeping business of her own. Amid all this, the family never lost faith. George says, “God and the Bible were always at the center of my family. We always knew what we stood for, and that God would provide all we needed.” He was beginning to learn the rewards of doing the right thing and working hard to make a living.
New Life and Purpose
Besides work, the Newfields also knew the greater importance of finding a new church congregation to call home. Being engaged in church helped George memorize Scripture, and he regularly attended Sunday school, camps, and retreats. Yet, there was still this pull from the world that Psalm 1 also describes as “chaff that the wind drives away.” “From the age of 15-19, the world had a grip on me,” he recalls.
The winds would change on March 10, 2006; George remembers it like it was yesterday. “I liked to live fast and drive fast. I crashed my car on the last day of spring break during my sophomore year. The police dropped me off at my house. God had spared me and slowed me down.” His mother lovingly reminded him things like that happen for a reason. After an intentional life evaluation, George accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior. In the following weeks and months, he traded almost all his friends for a newfound life and identity in Christ. He then joined the Christian club at his university, and in that same semester achieved straight A’s and continued to focus on faith and finance.
George graduated from college in 2008 with a degree in finance and economics. While working in Providence, Rhode Island, he and fellow believers would take the opportunity to share their faith with local college students. He didn’t realize it at the time, but he was doing the work of a Gideon before he even knew about The Gideons. Then, in 2009, a man named Bob saw George’s passion for evangelism, and he asked him if he would like to share God’s Word while witnessing to others. “Is this a trick question? Yes!” he replied. Bob was a fellow church member and a Gideon and invited George to attend a new member event. Bob was George’s first exposure to the Association, and he left a lasting impression. George felt led to join and became a Gideon that evening.
Wisdom to live and give well
Single at the time, George continued to serve God in his local church and camp. Not long after, he got reacquainted with a young lady from his childhood, Elena, who also came from a Christian family that migrated to America from Russia. The couple began courting, and George invited her to learn more about The Gideons International. They married in 2011. Today, they have two young boys, and you can find their family serving in various capacities.
George continued working in the finance and investments industry. Then, about three years ago, God placed it on his heart to start his own practice. “As I progressed in my career, I grew in confidence and wanted to help people with my core convictions in mind; but I didn’t know what that would look like,” says George.
During that time, George and a business partner, Kevin, learned about a group called the Kingdom Advisors Organization. “God worked on me, then on Kevin, and then on us together.” Between the two, their desire to provide Bible-based financial kingdom principles for the people in the greater New England area was growing amid COVID-19. So, on March 1, 2021, George and Kevin left their corporation and became partners at Cornerstone Financial Management LLC with senior business partner Ted Yoos. Their firm is headquartered outside Boston, with an office in Rhode Island. Cornerstone’s slogan is “Wisdom to Live and Give Well.” They know God’s Word delivers that wisdom.
God has used the business world to strengthen George’s faith in many ways. He knows Who he ultimately represents, even when it means making the hard decisions and practicing integrity when it’s not the popular thing to do. He knows the biblical principles he was taught as a child will play out in the end. He is also driven by principles that are core to him as a Gideon. He strives to be a Man of God, a Man of Faith, and a Man of Action in the workplace, which helps him be a better growing follower of Jesus. “You do the right thing, honor God, and He will lead and work things out for His glory,” says George.
A verse that has meant a great deal to him is 1 Corinthians 10:13 (ESV), which reads, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” As a Christian businessman, he has seen this countless times. “The opportunities to compromise are always there. You can comprise, or you can have a long-term perspective and stay on the path that glorifies God.”
Excellent relationships in The Gideons have grown him as a man, husband, and a professional. “The mentoring culture of The Gideons has meant the world to me. There is so much wisdom available for a younger professional like myself, and these relationships are one of the biggest assets in my life. I see it as a Paul-Timothy-type relationship. I need the wisdom of men who are further down the road than me—men who have led with integrity in the secular business world,” George says.
Relying on the foundation of God’s Word, honest family values, and a mission greater than himself, George finds he is still growing and maturing into the man God desires him to be. Mentors and leaders in his camp help him in this journey of faithfulness all driven by the reality that “the Lord knows the way of the righteous (Psalm 1:6a ESV).”