We have just launched Vision Month, 2024. We gathered to remind ourselves of the heartbeat of our church. And at our heart lies a simple yet profound mission: to Worship God with passion, Reach people with Jesus, and Build people in Jesus.
It is a mission inspired by Jesus' great commandment in Matthew 22:37-39 and has served as our focusing expression of loving God and loving people for coming up to 30 years. However, we have recently recognized that this sense of mission is lacking an explicit emphasis – we cannot fulfill this unless we are living empowered by the Spirit of God.
Implicitly recognized as core expression in our church since Carlingford and Wentworthville’s inceptions is our reliance upon the Holy Spirit. We are now adding to our mission this recognition – we Worship, Reach and Build empowered by the Spirit. Our call is to live with the Spirit clearly and ongoingly at work within us, shaping our lives to reflect God's character.
We also asked and answered the question – what is our specific sense of next steps priority, as we wholeheartedly pursue the mission? Prayerfully envisioning next 3-5 years, the Senior Leadership Team of the church settled on this call from the Lord – to be a church where "more people, more like Jesus, together transform our communities."
We are now set on pursuing this visionary priority through lives that Worship God with passion, Reach people with Jesus, and Build people in Jesus. Let me unpack that a little:
Worship is more than Sundays - it is a lifestyle that honors God for who He is and what He has done. As Romans 11:36 states, everything comes from Him, and our lives should reflect His glory. In this journey of Worship, we lay the foundation for our vision – a place where more people, more like Jesus, together transform our communities.
Reaching people with Jesus is an overflow of God's transformative love being uncontainable in our lives. In 2024 we want to see fresh waves of love washing over our communities, bringing faith, hope, and salvation to everyone we encounter. Inspired by 2 Corinthians 5:14, Christ's love fuels our passion for reaching the lost. This relentless pursuit aligns with our overarching vision – more people, more like Jesus, together transforming our communities.
Building people in Jesus becomes the essential responsibility we must invest in if the more people we reach are going to become new believers. Just as Jesus builds His church, we contribute by building individuals into a local church through discipleship. In 2024, let us continue the journey of making disciples, following the wisdom of Romans 12:2 for a total reformation of our thoughts empowered by the Holy Spirit. As we build, we are sowing seeds for our collective vision – a place where more people, more like Jesus, together transform our communities.
As we embark on Vision 2024, let our rallying cry be Worship, Reach, Build – Empowered by the Spirit!
Our lives are a canvas for the Spirit's transformative work, a beacon of God's love, and a testament to His power. Together, let us embrace this call, confident that through the Spirit's empowerment, we will see extraordinary impacts and miracles unfold in our church and communities.
May the year ahead be a testament to our commitment to Love God, Love People, and live Empowered by His Spirit! And in all this, let our resounding chorus be the fulfillment of our vision – more people, more like Jesus, together transform our communities.
Next week, we will talk about the faith-filled ways we need to adopt or embed further into our lives to become those who powerfully fulfill what God has given us to become this year!