We all know how important it is to use, say an electrical device, the way it was intended and the possible awful consequences when not. I still remember the tears running down the face of the Principal of my Primary School as he had the disturbing job of telling the assembly, that one of our class mates had died of electrocution because he thought that the bar heater would heat up his cold bath water. The church (the people whom Jesus has redeemed) deserves to know what they have been redeemed for. My aim with this Vision Statement is to help us know.
It is not a new church model developed in another country and being sold to the Australian churches giving them something new to do. It is not a series of new programs to keep us so busy that we succumb to spiritual exhaustion because every single space on our calendar is filled with something to “do” with church (so the church leaders can watch you like some kind of big-brother program).
Firstly, I believe that a vision statement needs to be simple. It needs to be designed around a straight forward and strategic process that moves its people through the stages of spiritual growth (“Simple Church” Rainer & Geiger, pgs 60+61). Let’s spend a minute thinking about this statement. A vision statement needs to be “designed around”. To create a vision statement one needs to know two important things: One, what the Lord of the church says about the church worldwide. And secondly, what the local church is like. We can see what the bible says about the church, but to know what our church is like needs some prayerful and careful consideration.
The next part of the statement speaks about “a straight forward and strategic process”. Naturally in the light of the spiritual darkness that we live amongst, we can’t become stagnant and dead, rather we must be living and active. Therefore we need to keep moving, ever changing. But what is it that we want to be moving towards and changing to be? Well the final part of the statement tells us that it is towards a “spiritual growth”.
Ultimately we are called to make disciples for Christ, that is, people who will learn and therefore grow spiritually. What this means is structuring everything we do to allow the Spirit of God the opportunity to speak to the people of God to purposely and consciously, change them to grow more like our rescuer Jesus and less like the world we’ve been rescued from. Therefore this vision statement presents my desire to aid every person: church member; attending Christian brother or sister; those looking for a new church; and those who still need to hear about Christ, to know what the church is.
My vision is that Dedicated Disciples of Jesus will
each Sunday to hear God speak through the preaching of His Word, have the opportunity to respond in worship through repentance and praise and to encourage one another.
Dedicated Disciples will be encouraged to actively attend Growth Groups, where individuals will
in their love and knowledge of the Lord Jesus and of each other through further study and application of the word preached at the Gathering.
Jesus commanded His Disciples to “go make disciples of all nations”. My prayer is that in our Growth Groups the Lord will give us a vision of where to go in order to make Disciples for Jesus and bring them back into the Gathering so that these new Disciples in turn will Grow and then in obedience
out and make more Disciples for Jesus.
Pastor Ian Wooley.