Dreaming Big in the Church

Sometimes, as we work together for God things happen.  Sure, negative, positive, neutral things will happen, and then we deal with.  However, what I want to touch on this week is what to do when we feel like we don’t know what to do.  Elders, preachers, and deacons are constantly, prayerfully seeking God’s direction for the congregation. All members in the congregation are constantly asking, seeking, and knocking to find God’s direction.  We do that for the simple fact that we don’t know what we need to be doing.  Sure, we know the end-goal; the Great Commission, but honestly, how that plays out looks different in every congregation. That’s also where we run in to most trouble.  We have short-sighted goals in the body, and often no game-plan to get there.  Again, we visualize the end, but not the means. Reaching out to people here in Clifton takes a far different approach than reaching out with the love of Jesus downtown at the Drop-Inn Center. Both of those approaches will not work in the same way as a suburban, middle to upper-class community. We have to ponder what the wise man tells us in

Proverbs 29:18: “Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained” (NASB).

What is vision?  Well, that’s been definite in more ways than I can write about. Here’s Scott’s definition:  Seeing what God can and wants to do, and making a plan on getting there.”  Now, we don’t need to have a “mission” to find because we already have that—Matthew 28:-18-20. What we need is God’s help to show us what we need to do in our particular place, with our particular strengths and weaknesses to accomplish that mission. To do that, we need dreamers—or what the modern leadership catechism calls “visionaries.” These are the folks who can see just how to make something happen long-term.  Sure, you’re going to need organizers (being a visionary, I’m horrible at organization) and your going to need people ready and willing to serve at all time.

God provides the strength we need to accomplish seemingly impossible things for Him!  George Barna puts it this way, “There is great power in dreaming big.  Such vision implies a long-term approach to ministry. Many leaders (and if you’re a Christian you’re a leader) suffer from having to constantly re-think their vision because it was so small they accomplished it quickly, or so insignificant it barley seemed worth the effort. God’s vision for your life, though is grand.  His vision is not one you are likely to accomplish in a year or two.”

Several Christian visionaries have grasped this idea and begin to articulate just how true and Scriptural this is.  When you catch God’s vision you must understand that it will outlive you.  Your role is to take hold of it, articulate it, and see that it gets acted upon accordingly. It’s not your responsibility to make sure the vision is concluded with you, because honestly, it probably won’t. Your responsibility is to work towards the conclusion but not to the point of feeling like a failure in life if it isn’t realized in your lifetime. Along the road  simply being a part of making God’s vision a reality is truly significant enough.

In the Church, dreaming big is God enabling His people to see and flaunt (in a good sense) God’s power and majesty. His desire and vision are so much better than ours—also, they have more meaning than our own goals and ideas.  People become passionate and excited when the church dreams big—look at the book of Acts!  People caught the vision and the fire of God and were transformed, then used it to dream big and accomplish the impossible!  Why?  Because of them?  No!  Because they saw the magnitude and grandeur of what God could do when they cried out to Him and He answered.  He built His church and grew it on the backs of men and women who had His vision and realized it would never be completed in their lifetimes. It’s still not completed two thousand and twelve years later.

My challenge is this week, ask God to help you dream big.  Don’t be afraid to do what we call “impossible.”  Don’t be scared to reach out with love and serve someone!  Catch the vision, dream BIG and God will do amazing things! Above all else, remember that it’s not about you, your vision, and your accomplishments—It’s all about God.  Just something to think about.   – Scott

 

4 thoughts on “Dreaming Big in the Church

  1. Here’s my story, and I am sticking to it.
    This A.M. I got up early and met the guys for bible study at the restaurant. Had an interesting time there, but my brain slipped a cog, and I left the group to get to work by 9am. Sad part was I did not have to be there until 10:15am. Oh well. I grabbed a table and did some more bible study in the break room. The managers meeting ended and there about 20 people milling about. With about 30 minutes left until I clock in, the store manager asks me if he could join me.
    We had a great conversation about the things of the Lord. Turns out he is more of a new ager, but he said something that intrigued me.
    He, in response to me telling him about God speaking to me, and the almost immediate response, in which the store manager played a part, told me that he too had seen a vision.

    In his vision, he was in Jerusalem walking up a winding path toward an unknown destination. He said there were about a million people in front of him, and at one point he looked forward and saw Jesus. Jesus looked back and made eye contact. My manager said he asked Jesus to remember him. Jesus responded by saying, turn around, and so he did. There were about a million people behind him, and Jesus said for my manager to remember them.

    It was clear to me that we were not quite on the same path, but it is obvious that God is talking to this guy. I merely said, wow, that has tremendous meaning. Our little meeting ended with that.

    This is the beginnings of a dream of mine. One in which I get bolder as time progresses. That time, for me is now, and this is becoming the most exciting time of my life.

    Glory to God for his mercies and grace.
    Ozzie

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  2. Scott, This is the second time I’m doing this “Jesus thing”. The first time was way back in 1974-1984ish. When I was save again God showed me some concepts in His word that I had never seen before. One of those concepts what the doctrine of freedom from sin.

    Jesus said in John 8, “Everyone who sins is the slave to sin… but if the Son sets you free, you are free indeed.” Paul told the Romans, “For he that is dead is freed from sin” (Rom. 6:7). And to the Galatians, “Walk by the Spirit and you will not gratify the sinful nature” (Gal. 5:16). God showed me how to live a life free from sin.

    I was very excited to learn this. So then I took this “new doctrine” to church and told my brethren about it. They told me I was wrong and that no one is actually freed from their sins – all they are is forgiven. But I showed then in 1 John 3 where it says that if you are born of God, you CANNOT sin but they chose not to believe me. A month or two later, I left that church.

    Dreaming big sounds good on paper but if you implement it, expect intense resistance. The church doesn’t want to hear it.

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