Stanley Tam, founder of US Plastic Corp, legally gave his entire business to God and the profits that have been generated ever since have gone to the spread of the Gospel across the world. To date, the business Stanley Tam built (which is wholly owned by a non-profit organization) has generated more than $140 Million towards the work of the Lord. In particular, much of the resources have been poured into world evangelism and just one of the ministries it supports is in over 42 counties with 1,600 men going door to door sharing the gospel. Dr. Tam considers giving his business to the Lord as simply an act of obedience, but to so many who have heard the Stanley Tam US Plastic story, it is incredibly inspirational and an extraordinary example of what one man can accomplish for the Lord when he puts God first place in his life.
Stanley Tam grew up in Lima, OH and by his teens, the country was in the grip of the great depression. In 1933, after graduating from high school, he was selling products door to door when one customer shared the Gospel with him in clear terms that he could understand. Six weeks later, he attended church and went forward at the alter call and accepted Christ. In 1936, he stumbled upon what he thought was an extraordinary business opportunity that involved reclaiming silver from film negatives with the use of a machine that would be installed at photo labs. He would share in the “silver strike” with the photo lab owners with no cost to them. It seemed like a foolproof plan.
TAMCO, as he named his first company, had begun with enthusiasm but soon, Stanley discovered a series of flaws in his otherwise brilliant business plan. Eventually, after another disappointing day, he decided to call it quits when he felt the Lord encouraging him to press on. With only $25 to his name, along with borrowing another $12 for his father, he set out once more, but this time, feeling like God was his partner. Slowly but surely, the business began to turn a profit. Soon, he felt the Lord asking him to give the ownership business over to God. It took some persistence to convince an attorney to help him with his unique request but eventually, papers were drawn up to turn over 51% of the stock to a non profit organization. God had become the majority owner of his company.
It got around that Stanley Tam has sold the majority ownership of his company to God. Interestingly enough, it improved business in a way he never expected. At the time, his competitors in the silver-from-film reclamation business had developed a reputation of cheating the photo lab operators by not giving them their agreed upon share since the silver had to be processed in order to be usable. Photo labs were in the dark as to how much silver was actually reclaimed. However, many photo lab owners felt comfortable doing business with Stanley since he was already generous enough to give the Lord his company.
In 1945, during a time of prayer, he felt the Lord calling him to the winning of souls. Others around Stanley didn’t quite understand how a business man could be an evangelist but in 1952, while on an evangelistic tour of Korea, the Evangelist suddenly had to return home and that left Stanley in charge of finishing the tour. Sharing his testimony and telling those Koreans what God had done in his life, Stanley later called it, “one of the greatest experiences of my life.”
In 1955, he felt the Lord urging him to give the entire business to Him, and Stanley Tam obeyed, turning over all 100% to his heavenly Father. Stanley also quadrupled the size of his plant in order to turn the side of his building into a billboard for Christ facing Interstate 75. In gigantic letters, he had a sign created that read, “Christ is the answer.” Now, both inside and out, the Lord was first place in the business.
To learn more about the Stanley Tam US Plastic story, read his autobiography, God Owns My Business by Stanley Tam