Wednesday, April 22, 2015

The God sized ask instead of a vision statement

In my long experience in working with churches and ministries there is inevitably confusion and disagreement over mission statements and vision statements. For me, the mission statement answers the question of why we exist and vision is a long term description of what we would love to see happen. However, the debate over which is which can take up a lot of time and conversation. In addition, many feel it presumptuous to assume that we can "deliver" on our vision as God is the source of the fruit our ministries see. 

I have a simple suggestion that makes the debate irrelevant.

Rather than a vision statement, what about a God sized ask that all are praying for in the spirit of Ephesians 3:20-21: "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."

God wants to surprise us with his power and he wants to show his glory in the church - for all generations. So why not ask Him a God sized ask and see what He does?

The mission of ReachGlobal is the same as that of our denomination. "We exist to glorify God by multiplying transformational churches among all people." Pretty straightforward.

But here is our God sized ask: We are asking God for one million disciplemakers impacting 100 million people with the Gospel and that He would give us 100 Acts 19 locations where the Gospel penetrates a whole city or region.

If that were simply our vision it could be seen as presumptuous. But instead it is a God sized ask (we cannot do it but He can). He is pleased with those who pray in faith and he loves to surprise us. We know that only He can make that happen. And it eliminates the debate between mission and vision.

We have a mission. We also have a God sized ask and He is fully capable of surprising us by doing immeasurably more than we could ever ask or imagine. Finally, vision statements can be exciting and motivating. But a God sized ask is different. It is mobilization around prayer rather than around a statement. It mobilizes our people to pray for a common and God honoring result. It places the focus on Him rather than on us. And that is a big difference. 

Posted from Oakdale, MN

All of T.J. Addington's books including his latest, Deep Influence,  are available from the author for the lowest prices and a $2.00 per book discount on orders of ten or more.

1 comment:

Arthur Ellison said...

Love it. This brings great clarity to the discussion and confusion between the two.