By Wayne Dinsbeer
Sure, I know it is only July, but the Hallmark channel has been playing Christmas movies for weeks. So you can get a Christmas in July flavored blog.
I remember it as if it were yesterday. My Son had given us one assignment for Christmas Eve, get the grandson’s bikes to their house in time for Santa’s delivery. No problem, we (my wife Donna and I) have this. I recall picking up the bikes and discovering the tires needed air. Santa couldn’t deliver new bikes that were not ready to ride.
In our good intended grandparent way, we stopped to fill the tires on the bikes. Things were going along ok until we heard a POP sound from a tire which got too much air. Now normally this wouldn’t be an issue. Go to Walmart and get a new tube for the tire. But remember, it is Christmas Eve and there was no place open selling bike tire tubes. This was not good and Donna and I tried to think of every possible way to correct our mistake, which would be so impactful come the next morning. We tried everything we could, but there was no solving this dilemma on this night.
It took my memories back many years to another Christmas Eve when we had purchased a Strawberry Shortcake Dollhouse for our daughter, The box was rather large and I assumed I could open it up and pull it out ready to go. About midnight I discovered the huge box was full of a million pieces to assemble with a 28 page set of instructions. Four hours later we had it together. That was a tiring evening, but our daughter enjoyed her new dollhouse the next morning.
I give these two embarrassing examples to call your attention to the differences in outcomes of the two events. In the case of the bicycle tire exploding on Christmas Eve we were without any way to change the disappointing results experienced by our Son, the Father, giving a broken bike to his Son on Christmas Day all because we, the Grands messed up. But, in the case of the Dollhouse, while not at all what we expected, there was a plan available to make this right producing a much better outcome Christmas Day.
Many churches, missionaries, ministries, and organizations are like the bike story. They operate on a day to day basis without a great deal of thought given to having a plan or strategy for their work. When things go wrong there is no way of correction and getting back on track. Tragically the works of many are not what they should be or could be with a viable strategy for ministry by which they operate. They fail to have vision, purpose, and plan. Consequently their results are mediocre at best.
How much better it would be if they were more like the Dollhouse story which included detailed instructions on what to do first as well as what goes where. The end product comes out so much better.
Fortunately, the Plan available to us all is found in the greatest book ever written – The Bible. We just need to discover how it best instructs us in accordance with the direction of the Holy Spirit in our lives and ministry.
Here2There is purposed in helping ministries discover just that – their Biblical Plan and Strategy for ministry. We believe strongly that it provides us with great details for every part of the work to which we have been called and commissioned.
Our focus in assisting ministries often leads us to Acts 1:8 where we find the mandate to have a vision and strategy for reaching our Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and Uttermost. This begins first with a ministry defining each of these areas as God has given them vision. It continues with intentional prayer and creation of a plan or strategy to accomplish the vision God has given them for each of these areas. I would love to share more with you about this aspect of our work.
Recently I was with the Pastor of one of our Here2There partner churches. We were attending a kickoff luncheon for a citywide evangelistic blitz. As they unfolded the plan to reach every home in our city with the gospel message, this Pastor and I commented that his church is already poised to do what they were instructing. This was due to the two years of casting vision and developing an effective strategy that was making a positive difference at this church. Many of the steps talked about have already been taken by this church to prepare them for an even greater result as they participate in this awesome effort.
Here2There offers Pastors, Church Leaders, Missionaries and Ministry Leaders training that equips one to discover the vision God has for them and the ministry. We provide the tools to use to develop ministry strategy and train others to engage and mobilize to accomplish that strategy. One such training program we offer is called ampd (Association of Missionary Partnership Development), an 11 month cohort in which we share detailed lessons and instruction as well as provide useful resources needed. To learn more about this go to our website at here2there.org and click on the ampd link. There you will also discover the various other aspects of this awesome ministry.