I want to continue to share from our time at General Conference Sessions 2019: Uncharted. A couple of weeks ago I shared about the Mission Statement that was adopted at the sessions: The mission of the Churches of God, General Conference is to maximize our collective potential for Kingdom impact! Last week I shared about our four core values:
Because we seek to obey Jesus Christ and His Word, we value:
1. Vital Connection
2. Total Participation
3. Global Mobilization
4. Daring Action
This week I want to share about our strategy for carrying out the mission. Strategy answers the question: How do we do what we do?
There are five aspects of our strategy:
Partnering in God’s Mission
In order to accomplish the mission that God has for us, we will have to strengthen churches. As with each of these strategies, there are some pieces in place and much more that will have to be developed and released in the years to come. This will require both unlearning as well as new learning and skills. By strengthening churches to uncover their full missional potential and giving them resources that empower them to live fully into that potential, we all get stronger. When we strengthen local churches, those congregations are able to carry out the work that God is calling them to do locally and globally.
In order to carry out our mission, we must develop leaders. We’ve taken some steps towards this in recent years with efforts like the Missional Leadership Initiative and Uptick, but we need to continue develop and expand our efforts to identify leaders, invest in them and deploy them for ministry. This will require all of us becoming more adept and intentional in our efforts to develop leaders.
Mobilizing disciples is at the heart of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. To accomplish the work that He has called us to, we must recapture our ability to make and mobilize disciples. Jesus poured into the twelve and they went to the far reaches of the globe doing what He had taught them to do. Mobilization embodies the apostolic work of the church to carry the Gospel to every man, woman and child. New churches will be formed, fresh expressions will be launched and a new capacity for experimentation and entrepreneurship will be cultivated.
One of the beautiful realities about God’s Mission is that it can’t be accomplished alone. We need each other. It takes partnership to accomplish the work that God has called us to do. Our partnership in the CGGC has led to the establishment of The University of Findlay, Winebrenner Theological Seminary, and mission fields around the world. We will continue to partner in God’s Mission so that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is demonstrated and proclaimed. Helping create new ways in which churches can partner with one another to carry out the work of the Gospel will be an increasing focus in our work in the years to come.
The call to follow Jesus requires us to look beyond ourselves, our own families, our own communities and even our own nations and to take on a Global perspective. Jesus calls us to carry His Good News to the ends of the earth. We have a rich history of missions in the Churches of God, General Conference, but there is more work to be done. Helping every congregation identify ways to minister across the street (in their own neighborhood) and around the globe will be a chief aim as we seek to fulfill the work of the Great Commission.
There’s much here that must be developed and deployed in the years to come. I think we’ve taken some important steps in recent years, but much of the work is still before us. Change is hard. The allure of what we’ve known and done in the past is incredibly strong. We’re praying for God’s Spirit to empower us to change, to unlearn what we must unlearn, to rediscover what we must embrace and to live out the practices that will help us accomplish the work He’s called us to do for His Glory and the good of the world.
CGGC eNews—Vol. 13, No. 32