Summary: This is a vision sermon i gave as we prepared for our first ministry fair. We push heavily for small groups and ministry involvement and this message was written to get people excited about both.

Ministry Fair-The Vision

Pastor Ryan Akers

“Vision is the ability to understand the history, the present condition, and the potential of the church, and to conceive a plan for action that will maximize the ministry potential. More often than not, vision is a result of having spent much time absorbing the facts about the community, knowing the resources upon which the church can call (people, funding, facilities, equipment, etc.), and devising sound but creative strategies for moving forward. Vision always entails progress: it is never satisfied with the status quo.” George Barna

Proverbs 29:18

Without God’s law there is chaos. People make their own rules, run things on their agenda. God gives us his laws to protect us from ourselves, and to help us grow closer to him and stay in His will.

A truth about life is this: people change, programs change, technology, facilities change but God’s law never changes. WWC is headed down a new direction. We have one goal in mind, life transformation. Although you will see changes, in ministry, leadership, facilities (stage change), new technologies, one thing will NEVER change. God’s Word will always be our rock, our foundation. God’s law will always be #1.

But as culture changes we must change as well, not compromise, not sacrifice God’s law for numbers, but we must adapt to an ever changing culture in order for God’s Word to remain alive and relevant today.

Plane ride- man sitting next to me learned I was a pastor and told me people just don’t read the Bible anymore-he wasn’t a Christian and felt that the bible was out of touch today.

That attitude must change- nobody will change it except the church. And it won’t be just one member to do it, it will take all of us.

Our vision is not new. What we are getting ready to take on is what God always intended but with 21st century style and resources.

Our vision for this church will be based off two key scriptures.

Matthew 22:36-39

Matthew 28: 19-20

Our Mission: To love God, love people, and follow Jesus

Our Vision: To be a healthy, growing, life-giving and multiplying church that produces Christ followers who will do the same.

“Spiritual maturity is measured by demonstrative growth in our love for God and for others. It is not a completed program or the acquisition of a skill, but a continual expression of love in our vertical relationship with God and our horizontal relationships with one another. It is a lifelong pursuit of our relationships with God and others.” Bill Willits

Our values: Life (offer life through Christ and our activities will be alive), Family(sense of family, come as you are, not just look like church be the church Gal. 3:28), Worship( keeps my focus on the giver of life, Jesus Christ, worship happens when you find a healthy sense of community, growth, and significance in Jesus), Significance(Gifts to use for Kingdom- Eph. 2:10), Growth (Be better than who you are now, anyone can reform but God wants us to transform, prayer; the teaching, study and memorizing of His Word; and small group accountability will transform me into the believer God always intended. 2 Cor. 3:18, 2 Peter 1:5-10

To grow like God desires us to grow we must pursue 3 vital relationships. Over the next weeks I am going to go in depth on these vital relationships. Without these relationships we will not grow in our relationship with Christ, our maturity as a believer, our effectiveness as a body.

Three Vital Relationships- From Creating Community by Andy Stanley

1. Intimacy with God- passionately pursue God in order to become a mature follower.

2. Community with Insiders- Christian or not people desire relationships- hardwired for it. Constant life change takes place best in the context of personal relationships (being surrounded by those who care) we must grow together as a community.

3. Influence with outsiders- God has invited us to partner with him in evangelism. Because of that we need to learn how prioritize relationships with unbelieving friends for the purpose of seeing these friends come to know Christ.

How do we succeed? Small Groups- Everything we do is designed to get people from the foyer to the kitchen- Impact Groups is where real life transformation will take place.

Barbarian Way- pg. 136-138- Be the crash- a group of rhinos is called a crash. Rhinos only see 30 feet ahead of them yet they will run full speed without know what’s at 31 feet. God ask us to trust him. We may only see 30 feet but God says trust me and I’ll take care of you.

This must be our vision. Not just Ryan’s vision or the board’s vision. For this to work we must all embrace what God desires to do with us here. If we don’t it will fail. Take possession of the vision. Don’t say, “our pastor is doing this…” or “Or board is doing this…” We need to all take ownership and say, “Come see what WE are doing. Come see what God is doing with US. Come look at OUR church. All of us must take ownership of God’s vision.

Unless a vision is owned deeply by large numbers of people it will not happen. -Bill Hybels

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