What makes our work significant?

It’s always important to understand the bottom line.

It’s always important to know what matters the most.

It’s always important to be clear about the simple things that make the complex things worth doing.

I recently read a great article on leadership in Forbes online that referenced something important.  Here is one of the thoughts that caught my attention:

“I’ve often said, managing expectations is gamesmanship, but aligning them is leadership. The best leaders inspire a one company, one agenda mindset. They don’t create internal competitors, but rather they focus on creating an ethos of internal collaboration. The best leaders are those who operationalize values, vision, mission and strategy – this only happens through an understanding of alignment of a shared purpose. No purpose = no passion = no leadership.”

This leads me back to something we touched on last week in the article about being the most excited person in the room.

“It is so important to realize that all of our groups serve a vision that is greater than any single Sunday School group by itself, and one that unites us all.  Worshiping God, Strengthening Families, Changing Lives.  When we realize that the unifying vision of our church is rooted in The Great Commission and The Great Commandments, it gives us security and courage to move forward boldly.  Jesus’ vision for the whole church is the vision for each small group.  Interestingly, the whole church can’t accomplish it unless each small group embraces it.”

Our church’s vision is to build a community of disciples who both individually, and corporately, do three things very well.

Worship God, Strengthen Families, Change Lives.

I want to clearly align our mission, vision, and values in a series of simple statements.

The church is a body of individual families who come together as one big spiritual family.

One of our core purposes is to strengthen families.  This means strengthening individual families and connecting them to the larger church family.

This “connecting” happens most effectively through Sunday School small groups. (But worship and service are equally essential.)

Our mission is not to build a large Sunday School.  It is to build deep disciples.

Each of our Sunday School small groups have the same purpose: the spiritual formation of people.

We also share the same strategy as to how we go about accomplishing that purpose.  When these values are present, Sunday School W.O.R.K.S.

Wants to grow, Organized to Serve, Reaches new people, Keeps people connected, Studies God’s Word together.

We believe that healthy things grow.  When our Sunday School small groups are living out these values, we will accomplish our shared vision and will grow in a healthy way.  It’s happening all around us.

With this in mind, we set a number goal for our Better Together Weekend.  Not because that’s the measure of our success, but because it is an expression of what is possible when we work together.

The measures of success for our Better Together Weekend are things like:

*how many of our small groups actually do service projects.

*how many of the people in our small groups participate in those projects.

*how many people can we bless in the name of Jesus through our service.

*how many meaningful contacts can we make with the people on our rolls who have become disconnected.

*how many of those contacts lead to people coming to church.

*how many people can we move from disconnected, to connected.   (not something that can be measured in one weekend)

*how many new people can we connect to our small groups through this special event.

A lot of churches do a good job of keeping score.  Not all churches keep score of the things that really matter.

Who wants to work hard and fill up a scorecard that isn’t biblically significant?  Why bend over backwards trying to convince a group of people to get excited about winning at the wrong contest?

If we do the things in this article we will all be working together in one accord, and we’ll be filling up a scorecard that really matters.

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