I'll be really honest here. I ended last year's annual meeting with "well, I'm out of ideas, if you've got some, feel free to share." To be fair, that was at the end of some brainstorming but I had nothing at all to offer in the way of vision.
FINALLY, FINALLY after almost a year of 'hanging-on' and continuing to give even though my well was dry, God has broken through that dryness and given a new vision.
Now, will I perfectly execute it? Probably not. Will I even be able to effectively manage the personal and church changes that need to happen in the next 3 years to make that vision a reality? I hope so but it's going to be difficult.
But as I promised my congregation this morning, I promise to do all I can to be faithful to God, faithful as a leader and faithful to the wonderful congregation of which I have the privilege to serve.
Changes are coming, both in my life personally and in our church. Changes that I believe, move us closer to God's misisonal heart and closer to the model of church seen in the New Testament / Pre-Constantine days.
You can listen to my vision casting here.
Below are all the notes, hopefully some of them make sense. Pay special attention to the "what-ifs."
Goals / Actions / What If’s – Dreaming about our future
1) Increased Generosity
Action – continue to simplify our budget to free us to give
What if – we gave away over 50% of our offerings?
What if - We voted or somehow decided who we were going to donate the money to?
What if – we all got to experience the joy of giving?
2) Parents Discipling their Children
Action 1 – Pastor Andy is currently emailing weekly bible activities for families
Action 2 – “How to class” – taught by Noel and Dawn – begins in late July
Action 3 – Emphasize camps Justin and Lisa Delong’s passion video later
What if – parents took primary responsibility for their children’s discipleship
What if – pastors equipped parents to do exactly that
3) Increased Community
Action 1 – Small Group Wednesdays LTG format classroom, kids small group
Action 2 – Increased congregational participation during Sunday AM worship
mixing of teaching, preaching, conversation
What if – we took Galatians 3:16 seriously
4) Decentralize our Leadership
Action 1 – Raise up new Sunday AM teachers
Action 2 – Spread out administrative part of pastoral role
Action 3 - Action 3 – I have to give up pastoral care – don’t have time Small Groups
What if – TFC was lead by 3 or 4 individuals who also had jobs in the community?
What if – we took care of each other, rather than expecting a “professional” to do it?
What if - we pastored each other?
5) Continue to Focus Beyond Ourselves
Action 1 – increased community – where we get our strength to do this
Action 2 – Pastor Andy going full time ½ time with TFC Kidz and ½ time with Love Wins
No pay increase, just increased ministry involvement Ordination Salary – outside source
Action 3 – Pastor Donnie – bi-vocational
Fed Ex now, future job later back to school
6) Everyone Participating
Action 1 – Everyone serving somewhere
Action 2 – Everyone giving something
What if – everyone was a giver?
What if – all the ministry responsibilities were spread out among everyone?
This looks way different than most churches. It's certainly way different than the model that was in my head when we moved to Gardner. But I'm pumped about the Kingdom possibilities.