Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Where there is no vision, the people perish

Where there is a vision but no plan to make it a reality, the people will be frustrated! I am sorry for the flip-side paraphrase of Proverbs 29:18 but I am trying to make a point here.

Such is the situation many churches find themselves in today. Many pastors and church lay leaders have a definite vision for what God is calling them to be and where He is calling them to go. But there is a lack of definitive movement in the direction that the vision is focusing on. Perhaps a better understanding of what that verse is really saying will help us put into better context regarding church growth and development.

The “vision” mentioned in Proverbs 29:18 was not what we think of today. It was not some ethereal mystical experience. It was not a forward thinking and motivational experience. Instead, the vision mentioned in this passage is all about teaching and instruction. In the days of the prophets, God spoke to His people through the visions of the prophets. Those visions were immediately communicated to the people and used for educational and instructional purposes. In other words, the receipt of the vision from God was not separate from the communication and instruction of what that all meant to the people. The instruction of the vision was equal in significance to receipt of the vision.

Here may be the point where the church of today needs some help. The church leadership needs to hone their skills in communicating the vision, providing instruction on what the vision is, and providing the tactical guidance or tangible demonstration of the vision.

What about your leadership skills?

Are your leadership skills what they need to be to take the vision that God has given you and translate it into specific ministry activities?

Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Greatest Need of the Evangelical Holiness Church

ISI Consultants are primarily engaged to assist local churches in leadership development, strategic planning, tactical planning, and other similar issues related to church growth and development. But, as I sat at lunch today with my father-in-law, we had an interesting conversation around the topic of the top three needs for the evangelical holiness church today.

There are many needs that come to mind. And ISI Consultants deal with many practical needs of local churches, pastors and lay leaders. But what are the deeper needs that exist?

I think the first need of the church is to recapture the ferver and fire that the presence of the Holy Spirit brings. I wrote about this on my personal blog back in May of last year. I would invite you to check out my thoughts on the need for the presence, power and purity of the Holy Spirit that were on my heart at that time.

But what does that mean to us as church leaders? How do we "translate" what we have experienced into something that is desirable by those who are new Christians or new to our church? Is it best translated in a classroom setting? How about a small group or cell group? Is it best translated from the pulpit? How do we share what has happened in our own lives in such a way that it spreads like fire?

What are your thoughts on this issue? Please reply or comment and create a dialog. We are in this together. Let's work together to see the Holy Spirit alive and active in our midst.