Friday, June 19, 2009

We are a people with a Purpose!

Last night the Steering Committee of Chain of Lakes Church passed our new church’s Purpose Statement. Our Purpose Statement is:

We are called to be an authentic, Christian community where:
strangers become friends
friends become disciples
disciples impact the world.

I am so pleased at the engagement with our Purpose Statement from our Steering Committee and from many other people in our new congregation. We all worked hard at this. There wasn’t a word in this Purpose Statement that didn’t receive careful scrutiny. I think that the Spirit helped us do good work. I believe that this Purpose Statement came from God.

Of course, having a Purpose Statement is one step among many for our new church. I shared last night that every time we walk through a door (that is when we accomplish a task) we can see many new doors through which we need to walk. We talked last night about some of the doors through which we will have to walk. We will need to communicate our Purpose Statement; we will need to structure our ministries around our Purpose Statement; we will need to learn how to measure whether our new church is living into this Purpose Statement. These are important doors through which we will have to walk.

That journey, though, will have to wait for another day. Last night we celebrated passing this Purpose Statement.

After we took the vote someone asked me if I felt “white-hot” about this Purpose Statement. That was a very good question. I had shared in an earlier blog and with the group who developed the Purpose Statement that I wanted to develop a “white-hot” Purpose Statement.

I think our congregation and I will grow into this Purpose Statement so that it becomes “white-hot.” I like our Purpose Statement, I feel passion for it, I think it shares what the world needs from a main-line church, I can’t wait to start implementing it.

In a small way developing a Purpose Statement is like birthing a child. Of course, I don’t have a personal experience of birthing a child, but I stood by my wife for nine months and then was with my wife, Amy, when our daughter, Hannah, was born. I loved her immediately, but I can’t say my love for her was “white-hot” on the first day she was born. I didn’t even know her then. My love for Hannah is “white-hot’ today. I know her so much better and I have so many experiences of being with her.

On June 19, 2009 I love this Purpose Statement. In the days ahead as our new congregation learns more about this Purpose Statement, as we implement it, and as we have some experiences with it, my love and our congregation’s love will grow to be “white-hot.”

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