You will find the following of interest in keeping with your varying degrees of concern for today’s church. What follows are a few paragraphs of a manuscript I am proof reading for the author, with a view toward publishing at Reformation Publishers.
The writer is foreign born, a Christian and a churchman with the utmost integrity. He views life through the lenses of the bible he learned as a boy in a small village in Greece, when introduced to a more personal faith than that offered him by his Greek Orthodox connections.
Now retired in America after a successful and extensive global ministryof preaching and teaching, he continues to fill pulpits wherever invited, to write, and to just simply love people.
I don’t ask that you agree with him, or disagree, but I invite you to open your heart to the passion of one man’s life as he writes about a subject I deem of great value.
Allow me today to talk to you a little about CHURCH vision. All of us know how important vision is in all aspects of life. The Bible says so plainly, “where there is no vision, the people perish” (Proverbs 29:18). Can we imagine ourselves endeavoring to cope with the demands of life without natural vision?
Doing so would be difficult. We would never be able to see the opportunities, challenges, and possibilities before us, and as a result, we would never take advantage of them. At the same time we would not be able to sense the dangers before us and thus be unable to escape them. Vision is very essential in life.
It is also essential in the church. In fact, the church needs more than anything else, people who have a burning vision, a vision that compels and draws them, a vision that magnifies possibilities and not problems, a vision that calls for monumental efforts and not murmuring expressions, a vision that challenges the heart to commitment and does not wander in grumbling and complaining.
Quite often in the church, we have a number of people who see the church as it used to be, and as it is, but very few have a vision of the church for what it could be and what God wants it to be. In studying the prophets or the apostles, we will notice that their vision was not so much in retrospect but in prospect. They always pointed to that which could be. Moses pointed to the Promised Land. Amos pointed to righteousness and justice. Isaiah pointed to Emmanuel, God with us. The Apostle Paul pointed to Macedonia. John the Revelator pointed to the final triumph of the Church.
What kind of vision do you have for the church? How committed and involved are you for the fulfillment of such a vision? Do you have a vision for a church that is alive in the Spirit both in worship and service? Then you must be involved in both, because there cannot be worship without service and there cannot be service without worship.
Do you have a vision for a church that grows by holiness and healing? Holiness creates wholeness for the church, and healing is its divine ministry in touching the children, the young, the elderly,
the homeless, the outcasts, with the healing touch of the good
news of the gospel of Christ. What kind of vision, goals, and
dreams do you have for the church? You see, if you are part of the church, then it will never become any bigger than your vision, your dream and your goals.
God wants us to have some dreams and some visions for His church. For too long we have been sitting on the chair of apathy; we must transfer to the chair of aspiration. For too long we have seen the obstacles; we need to see the opportunities. For too long we have majored in weaknesses; we need to major in strengths. For too long we have been looking in us; we need to look in Him. For too long we have been satisfied with the mediocre in faithfulness, love, obedience, commitment, and ministry; we need to rise to the level of a visionary people who are intoxicated with the Spirit of Christ.
I invite you to get a church vision in prospect.
From Warner’s World, we are