Navigating Our Future (Part 2)

Transient

The 2nd of 6 emails unveiling the 5 Guiding Principles LFA’s Governing Elders formed to discern big decisions for LFA’s future. Today, Guiding Principle #1: God’s Mission is our highest priority

Unless you live alone on a deserted island, somewhere along the line, you’ve experienced the tension of competing agendas. Competing agendas crop up when people disagree about what to do, where to go, or how much to spend. And while it’s no big deal if you can’t agree on what restaurant serves you dinner, when churches are caught in competing agendas and clashing priorities, the results are eternally disastrous. It’s no overstatement to say competing agendas are the single greatest reason why churches become...

        ...Ineffective                               Conflictive 

  Stuck               Useless      
Too safe                                            Outdated

Since the Church exists at the center of God’s redemptive plan for individuals, families, and communities, one simply unacceptable disease is a lifeless church, trapped in competing agendas.

So, if we aim to avoid competing agendas, who gets to decide what is most important at LFA? If we all can’t call the shots, whose agenda wins? In church, the answer has to be, God. God’s mission must be our highest priority. In what we do, in the decisions we make, we must humbly, sincerely, and repeatedly ask the question, will this lead us to more effectively partner with God’s mission for His Church in the world?

God’s Mission for His Church exalts Jesus as He powerfully transforms lives. And LFA is in sync with God’s mission when what we do results in an increasing number of seriously messed up, broken people who are being made whole, wonderfully changed by Jesus Christ. That must be our agenda … our first concern.

Prioritizing God’s mission is such a BIG DEAL because it is way too easy to idealize stuff that does not result in what’s really important to God. The truth is that getting people into pastorates, gathering for Sunday Celebration, giving our time and money to buildings, teaching classes, preaching sermons, counseling couples, serving neighbors and all the other good things we do only makes sense if it all results in broken people being made whole by the power of Jesus. Making God’s mission our first concern will lead us to evaluate all we do through the lens of one question: will this align us better with God’s agenda? To avoid the trap of competing agendas, we must aim to prioritize nothing over God’s mission. 

As Governing Elders, we take serious our role of keeping LFA focused on God’s mission. At this stage of our church, we are facing decisions that will influence LFA’s future. Issues like … 

… when and where to plant a new church or “site” for LFA,

… the location and type of facility we will need as our “Mission Hub” or “home base”,

… the schedule, budget, and programming of what LFA does.

We believe we will know God’s will for these things as we look through the lens of God’s mission … how can we be more effective at seeing lives, families, and communities transformed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

I’m looking forward to reading your email with your feedback and questions on all this. Next week, I’ll explain Guiding Principle #2, God’s leadership gives us hope. 

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Pastor Nate (nhoward@lfachurch.org)