Making Church Matter Vision

Visioneering

June 21, 2009

Saturday our Parish Staff gathered together at Loyola College with about 40 leaders from our Church: members of the Parish Council, Financial Council, Cooperators and some of our ministry leaders. The group was truly outstanding in terms of talent and commitment. We meet to begin looking ahead. Why now? Well, this month we are finishing up a capital campaign and a series of building projects reaching back to 2004 and ending with the new ALL STARS area this summer. As these projects come to an end, the obvious question is, “what’s next?” During this same period we have continued to grow as a congregation, outgrowing all the space we’ve built. We want to continue to grow, but it is very unclear how to do that given space constraints.
We need a new plan. We gathered on Saturday to start thinking about a new plan, but not just a plan to physically accommodate more people in Church, a vision for the time ahead. We talked a lot about vision. Below are some of the thoughts I shared with our group on Saturday. Some of this material is from Andy Stanley’s excellent book “Visioneering.”
Where there is no vision, the people perish.
Proverbs 29:18
Vision is a view of something that doesn’t exist.
Vision is seeing something that isn’t there.
Vision springs from the tension between what is/could be.
Vision carries a sense of conviction, so its not just what “could be” but what “should be.” And if that “should” is important and emphatic, there is a sense of urgency.
Vision is a preferred future. And when it is the future God prefers for us, it is a divine vision.
The vision has an appointed time;
It speaks of the end and will not prove false.
Though it linger, wait for it;
It will certainly not disappoint.
Habakkuk 2:3
Divine vision is what was given to Abraham and Joseph and Moses and David and all the prophets and Marry and Joseph and Peter and Paul.
Divine vision is limited only by God’s potential and resources, which means it’s not limited.
Divine vision focus keeps us God focused. It is a reminder of our dependency on him. We remain aware that if God doesn’t do something there is no going forward, so the vision from God keeps us in a state of expectancy, watching for God to do more things.
Divine Vision gives daily faithfulness, faithfulness in the simple, ordinary time living a new significance. God is looking for dependence for exactly how he is fulfilling the vision.

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