We need vision. A vision sees what could be. It energizes us to work together towards a better future. The Bible warns, “Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18 KJV).
As pastors and leaders, we are tasked to cast God’s vision for the future. Unfortunately, wrong attitudes and unhealthy cultures can get in the way.
A while back, Charles Stone wrote a blog entitled “Five Vision Killers.” Here are the five attitudes he believes will stifle even the best cast vision. See if you agree.
Healthy churches realize they can’t consume their way into discipleship. Following Jesus is not all about us.
Great churches rally around a unified cause centered in Jesus and move forward for the good of the whole and the glory of God even it means some people won’t get their preferred way. Good leaders will teach that flexibility and a deferential spirit are crucial ingredients for prevailing churches.
The church gathers on Sundays to scatter the rest of the week. Leaders and churches must not lose sight that we live in a troubled world desperately in need of the Gospel. Attending church was never meant to be an end in itself.
Rather we should gather to be transformed, taught, challenged, discipled, and inspired so that we then can scatter into our respective worlds as salt and light for the Gospel.
Minimizing risk and maximizing safety can become a trait for risk-averse leaders. J Oswald Chambers, who authored the devotional My Utmost for His Highest, wrote, “The frontiers of the kingdom of God were never advanced by men and women of caution.”
Great churches can’t play it safe, huddle and cuddle, strive for safety and security, nor guarantee comfort and convenience. While not throwing caution to the wind, great leaders and churches must take bold steps of faith.
Programs and processes that trump passion and people
It’s easy to assume that great plans and strategies will automatically and easily reach people. They are important, but without a driving passion for God and a love for people, they are, well, only plans.
The barrenness of busyness
Busy pastors often struggle with this one. I know I do with what seems to be a limitless to-do list. However, busyness can make us miss God. And it does not always translate into productivity. One well-known pastor admitted, “Doing the work of Christ was killing the work of Christ in me.” When that happens, our hearts become calloused and cold, we lose our leadership edge, and vision gets stifled.
What have you experienced that can stifle a God-directed vision?
Originally posted by Charles Stone
BEFORE YOU GO
Just a reminder that this Saturday, August 6th, is the election for our new Superintendent. Please be praying for this important meeting. Both pastors and lay members will be able to vote.
NOTE: I will be Superintendent until Annual Conference (November 14-16). This early election will give the “Superintendent-elect” time to make a healthy transition with his church and family. The earliest he will start is October 1st, which provides a month and a half overlap with me. If you have any questions about the election, please contact Nancy at the Conference office. Nancy@thepacificconference.com.