Phase 3: Planning and Doing Gods Mission
Gods mission is worth doing right and doing now.
No one takes a vacation trip without some planning. At very least you need to know what roads will
get you where you want to go. To be really secure you will want to reserve your hotels,
get tickets to events in advance and call friends and family you want to visit to make sure they will
On the other hand, churches often think that they can achieve Gods mission if they just
catch a vision, and pray and work hard. Why do we give more care to vacations than to Gods
mission to rescue the world?
In order to truly honor God with our churches we will need to create and carry out an
effective mission plan. This will mean living out plans that are goaloriented, effective,
and owned by the membership of the church.
- GoalOriented Plans. Do your present and proposed ministries actually help you
reach the people God has designed you to reach? This can be a painful question. Most
churches have legacy ministries which, at some time in the past, were very, very
effective in reaching those outside the church. Now, however, those same ministries simply
serve us. They may be able to be redesigned to once again serve Gods purposes. If not,
we need to evaluate how much of Gods resources found in our
time, talent and treasure we can afford to allocate to them and still remain
faithful to Gods design and mission for us.
In addition, many programs are available that seem well designed. And many people have
ideas for new ministries. We need to always ask, Does
this program actually fit the needs of those we are seeking to bring to Jesus?
- Effective Plans. Simply stating, We will begin a childrens choir
will not help you make it happen. That is a goal, not a plan. Each step of the way will
need to be mapped out. Who will lead it? How will we fund it? How will we
draw children from the community? How will this draw them and their parents closer to
Many of our congregation members in business know about
This simple criteria allows us to make sure that the goals will be effective
- Congregationally Owned Plans. In order for your church to effectively carry out
this plan, the member of your congregation need to own it as Their plan, and
not just the plan of their leaders. People will walk through the motions of carrying
out a plan handed to them from on high. Very few will become enthusiastic about
such a plan. Therefore, wise leaders gain ownership for the plan. This, of course,
starts with discerning
Gods Design and
Gods Mission for your church. If you have not involved
the church members in significant ways all along this path you are unlikely to find
them owning the plan. Once you write the plan I would suggest input and a vote
on it at many
- Church Staff
- Lay Leadership
- Congregation Members
- Finally, start implementing the plan. If you really believe that this plan embodies the
best understanding of Gods will for your church, why would you wait. God is calling.
But, shouldnt we wait until we get a pastor?
No! There are two good reasons not to wait:
- God wants you to serve him even when you don have a pastor.
- Churches, espeically those in decline, more easily attract a good, effective pastor
when the pastor sees that this church has already begun doing what is needed. No one likes
pushing a stalled car out of the ditch. But everyone wants to climb in to a car headed
out on an adventure.
Ok, you have your plan and are starting to follow it. What now?
Phase 4: Describing and Seeking a MissionShaped