Remember all those church mission statements your congregation has painstakingly writtenover thepast years? Where are they now? I used to have a file drawer full of them, carefully formed in planning retreats, tried for a time and then filed away. But the only really great mission statement is the kind that sets our hearts on fire and gets put up on the wall for God and everybody to see. That’s the way the Church of the Resurrection does it (up on the wall, that is; www.cor.org). It takes time and effort to discover, but when the mission is right for who you are, you don’t forget it.
“When there is clarity and passion about God’s mission, strong financial stewardship follows,” says a pastor for Luther Seminary’s Center for Stewardship Leaders (http://www.luthersem.edu/stewardship/email_archive.aspx?display_date_sent=4%2F22%2F2014). The point is not to get people to give a lot of money to the church – it’s to ignite people to participate in God’s work in the world. When we’re not clear about what God is doing or where God wants us to be, we end up substituting all kinds of lesser activities for the real mission for which God has made us.
I know: easy to say, hard to do. But in the end, our purpose is not just to raise money. It’s to nurture and encourage full-throttle Jesus-followers who reflect our generous, Living, Sovereign God. Sheer grace!
Oh yes, that takes money, but it takes all that we are, as well. Beginning with our hearts.
Your partner in ministry,