A Vision To Make Disciples
By Elder Dennis Prothero
This is part 2 of a series on church vision.
Our church vision is intended to be a bridge between the present state of our church (with our strengths and shortcomings) and where we would like to be in 10 years. To make this happen we need to paint a compelling picture that will generate a healthy frustration with the status quo and a desire to grow in the direction God is leading us. The end result should be tangible, positive changes that glorify God's kingdom.
What if each one of us made The Great Commission our life's mission?
What if we saw The Great Commission as a dream job with infinite opportunities to serve God and love others?
Our vision points to the church's greatest Jesus-given mission of making disciples. What a joy to work alongside God, building Christ’s kingdom through lives that are transformed by the beauty of the Gospel!
In order for our vision to happen, there are three spiritual shifts which must occur in each of us.
- Christ as life planner, not just Savior.
If our greatest joy is found in submitting to Jesus’ kingdom, we need to shift our thinking from simply being a receiver of salvation to becoming a whole-hearted follower of Jesus. We need to be willing to let God change our heart so much that we hunger to walk in Jesus’ footsteps more than anything else.
- From learning to preparing,
Sermons, adult Sunday school classes and Bible studies are a strength of our church. There is tremendous benefit in this kind of learning until it becomes a replacement for pursuing our call to serve. We should view Bible study as preparation for building God's Kingdom.
- From consumer to ministry partner.
It's easy to start viewing church the way we look at a grocery store. A grocery store is a separate entity designed to make money by servicing our need for food. The church, on the other hand, is made up of Christ followers, we are a Body to glorify God's kingdom. As such, we need to make disciples because God calls us to in The Great Commandment.
Our vision includes building a strong community.
We have a great community at Calvary through our adult Sunday school classes, small groups, children's ministry and other social gatherings. We do community well, but this can be both a strength and a weakness. The best context for disciple-making is a dynamic community with intimacy, transparency and love.
When community serves as an end to itself, it turns the church into a country club.
Authentic community is hard to achieve, but once it materializes, we have only just begun! Community establishes the soil bed for the real work of making disciples in our homes, in the church, among our neighbors and throughout the world. Our vision challenges Calvary to make strong community purposeful.
We do a lot of disciple-making within the four walls of our church. We need to continue that ministry and find ways to do it better. But we can't stop there. Our vision challenges us to disciple-making a part of our daily life: To make our homes a place of discipleship. To befriend neighbors so they can see our faith lived out in action. To live (and speak) our faith in the workplace.
If Jesus wants to grow His heart in us, we need to ponder the heart revealed by the words: “God so loved the world.”
There is joy in pursuing Jesus and building His Kingdom.
Here are three quotations to ponder as you think about Calvary's core values:
“Vision begins with a holy discontent with the way things are.” John Stott
“The one indispensable requirement for producing godly, mature Christians is godly, mature Christians.” Kevin DeYoung
“Your current situation and workplace are your personal mission field. Why? Because you can reach people a church can't. You're on the front lines!” Jarrid Wilson
Calvary Bible Church: Making Disciples Together - in our homes, in the church, among our neighbors, throughout the world.