by Pastor Tim
As I look back over this past year, as a pastor, I am encouraged and thankful. We at Big Woods have seen the Lord’s hand of blessing on us and this place. As His church, His body, we are growing! Praise God!
As we take our first few steps into another New Year it is the perfect time to evaluate, examine, assess, appraise and ask a couple questions. Are we taking the right steps to move closer and closer to accomplishing Vision 20/20? Or are we moving further away from accomplishing the task that we believe God has set before us?
What is Vision 20/20?
Maybe you have it memorized or maybe this is the first time you’re hearing it, but Vision 20/20 reminds us that we seek: To build relationships so that God is glorified and that lives, families and the community are transformed through the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
My continued prayer for this next year, 2016, is that we will follow the ministry model that has been set before us in scripture. It’s the model from which we get our mission “Love God and Love People”. It’s the model that inspired Vision 20/20, which is how we are focusing on accomplishing our mission. It’s a model of people pouring into people. It’s a model that prioritizes people over programs. Praying for this it has forced me to ask…how are we doing?
I am grateful that, by God’s grace, we have seen more people come to church, hear the Gospel, come to the Christ, be baptized, and commit to membership, ministry and serving. We are seeing Vision 20/20 played out by many people in many ways. It may be cooking a meal for a young mom who just had a baby. It may be picking someone up and giving them a ride to church. It may be going over to someone’s home and visiting w/ them, sitting, listening, crying, reading, praying.
Why is Vision 20/20 Important?
Praise God that all these things are happening. Keep doing it. But…we must always remember it is for a purpose…something bigger, something greater…it is motivated by a LOVE for people, which is motivated by a LOVE for God and an understanding that it is His church, not ours. I am grateful for the most encouraging Words Jesus gave to His followers “I will build my church.”
Matthew 16:18 – “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.”
How do we accomplish Vision 20/20?
So remember to show people, and share w/ people that God matters and that He loves them. Show them that God cares for them! Remind them that God has created them, has a plan for them and has a purpose for them.
That is how our Vision flows out of our Mission. That is how we “build relationships so that God is glorified and lives are transformed”.
In fact, I’m going to ask you to take two minutes and watch this short video. This story is just one example of what Vision 20/20 looks like in real life:
If you listened carefully you heard some key things in this video:
“I had conversation w/ people, w/ leaders…..God broke me.” (God used people in the process!)
“God can do anything…God can turn anyone’s heart from stone”
“Just try…you don’t have to be a theologian”
“The individuals who made the greatest difference in my life, like Cierra just came up to me and and said “I care, tell me your story!”
“Just being there and having an influence in someone’s life is a BIG deal”
Did you notice? People loved, people listened, people asked.
Therefore we need to be reminded of the importance of taking people by the hand and leading them to freedom of the Gospel. THAT is what we are as a church. We are NOT a club for our own comfort. We are NOT a team that exists to beat the other guy and win at all costs. We are a church w/ a vision and that vision is to glorify God in ALL we say and do and to see HIM transform lives. God WILL build His church, and He will use you to do it.
That is what Vision 20/20 is all about.
Grace and Peace,
Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.