Casting an inspiring and faithful vision is an essential part of living out your church’s mission. Every church leader has a vision planted in them by God for their ministry, but fewer stick around to see their vision become a reality. That doesn’t have to be. Here are some common pitfalls to be avoided as you seek out God’s vision for your ministry.
- Your vision is not “God-sized”
The first mistake is settling for too little. A God sized vision is one that keeps you energized throughout the day and up at night. It’s that big.
- You’re not thinking strategically
The vision is about the destination; strategy is how we get there. Allow your strategies to continue to change and evolve as the horizon of your vision increases. A poorly conceived strategy will produce a lack of results and endless frustration. Don’t let lack of results question your vision, rather question your strategies.
- You’ve got a passionless presentation
A great vision can be hurt by passionless presentation. Vision statements on the wall don’t automatically make people want to sacrifice their time, talent and treasure but people will sacrifice a lot for a God sized vision and passion to match. Even if you’re not a charismatic personality, you can find other ways (and people) to express your vision passionately.
- Your church has competing visions
When conflict arises on a church staff, it is probably not because they lack vision, but rather because they lack shared vision. Contradicting visions is a pretty good indication that neither is really God-centered. God’s vision is not contradictory but unifying. If you’re stuck with competing visions, take a big step back and return to prayer and discernment before any more vision casting.
- You’ve got too much information
A common mistake when communicating your vision to a large group is over sharing on the details. It’s not about hiding, but focus on what’s relevant and what people really need to know. On the flip side, it is also a mistake for leaders to try to figure it all out before doing anything. Start leading based on the dreams that a God put inside of you.
- Your “why” is unclear
At Nativity, it’s a common refrain that “when you lose your why you lose your way.” Often the “why” is clear at first, but as months and years go by, people tend to forget, and that’s when things get off track. Be vigilant about keeping your why front and center.
- You’re not taking risks
A risk free environment is designed for maintenance, not mission. Risk in essential for growth. The growth of your leadership is directly connected to your willingness to take risks. Don’t allow fear of losing what you have keep you from gaining what God has for you. Develop a capacity for pain. You can’t take risks inside of your comfort zone. Your leadership capacity is in direct proportion to your pain threshold.