Vision Essentials 02

Keeping It Alive!

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In January of this year, I and a number of my colleagues visited the three regions within which our congregations in the UK are based. The purpose was to get with leaders and congregation members to hear their future plans for growing the local congregation.

My colleagues and I shared the plans for the national congregation. The three weekend visits were amazing. We saw leaders sharing their ambitions and aspirations for the Kingdom, all flowing from passionate hearts; members were bursting with hope and excitement at the prospect of making a real difference to their communities. Wow! We were pretty sure of making a massive dent in the enemy’s territory, and why not when you see the backing we’ve got – all of heaven. That was four months ago. What has happened since then? How much distance have we covered? Ok, so you didn’t hit the ground running; or maybe you’ve been distracted and you’ve lost momentum.  So what now?

Whatever your situation it’s an important time for you and the team to reflect on these questions:

  • What have we done about the things we said we would do?
  • How well do our members understand and see where we’re supposed to be heading?
  • Are we taking steps which are getting us nearer to our destination?

These questions simply help us to get focussed on the vision.

What is vision?

Put simply, vision is a picture of your congregation’s future (of course, inspired by the Holy Spirit). That picture will fade and become a blur, a distant memory if it’s not regularly brought into the focus of those who need to see it. If vision isn’t projected, seen and handled it dies! And believe me, it’s easier to raise someone from the dead than it is to resurrect a dead vision. So if the vision is good we do whatever is necessary to keep it alive.

Time for Action

Here’s some advice on how to keep your vision alive.

  • Spend time doing what I call, ‘fellowshipping the vision’. This means taking time to think about, meditate on, and converse with Yahweh about it
  • Frequently get together with your leadership or shepherding team and discuss the details of the vision, developing plans from it, etc. If the leaders aren’t focussed on and fired up about the vision there’s little chance that members will ever be 
  • Schedule regular times to speak to and encourage the congregation about an element of the vision or the whole thing. This is like a football coach giving a team-talk to his players before they go out to play a game. This gets the players focussed and motivated.
  • Find ways to constantly keep the congregation’s future picture in the members’ field of view. Have ‘brainstorming’ sessions with team members to come up with ideas. Here are a few to get you started: create small cards with a variety of striking and memorable slogans or catch-phrases that will remind members of the vision,  and from time-to-time hand them out; a PowerPoint presentation that is shown at selected times during worship meetings; have a regular vision quiz time. You have to make the time and space for these things in your regular meetings – this will establish the vision in people’s minds.
  • By far the most effective way of keeping the vision alive in people’s minds and hearts is to get them involved, ensuring that everybody gets their ‘hands dirty’ in building towards their future. Members must see that they are part of the future picture and that it can only be fulfilled through their efforts. 

 A motorist was telling about the trouble he’s had driving to and from work lately. "It used to be easy,” he said. “No traffic problems, no mad rat race. But now – wow! Cars coming from all directions. And it’s been that way”, he added, “ever since I got my new glasses.”

All of the above will help to give members the ‘glasses’ they need to see clearly the picture of their future and to engage it effectively.

Now, put into action the decisions you’ve made!


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“The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision.”

 “To grasp and hold a vision, that is the very essence of successful leadership—not only on the movie set where I learned it, but everywhere.”

“Leaders establish the vision for the future and set the strategy for getting there; they cause change. They motivate and inspire others to go in the right direction and they, along with everyone else, sacrifice to get there”


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[My goal] is to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, assuming that I will somehow reach the resurrection from among the dead. Not that I have already reached [the goal] or am already fully mature, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by [Messiah Yahshua]. Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I pursue as my goal the prize promised by [Yahweh’s] heavenly call in [Messiah Yahshua]. Therefore, all who are mature should think this way.
Holman Christian Standard Bible


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Heavenly Father, I have been struck by some of the things mentioned in VISION ESSENTIALS and I humbly ask you for the wisdom and creative thinking I need in order to lead the congregation into the future you have purposed for us. I know it’s critical that the vision you’ve inspired be kept alive in the hearts of your children; give me and my fellow leaders the ability to help our members to not only see and embrace the vision, but to fully participate in it.


Read our latest thought for the week...The Price Of Pride

Click to see the whole passage:

John 1:9-11 NOG - The real light, which shines on - Bible Gateway

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As a Christian, put your faith where you know it should be... secure in the love of [Yahweh] and not preoccupied with things that are temporary. 

Joel W. Lohr

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