At The Well we’ve spent the last many number of months in discussion about how God is calling us to be the Church that follows Jesus and blesses the world. After much discussion and prayer together, we’ve landed on a few areas of focus for 2007 (and beyond). We realize that in our culture it is all too easy to lose focus of the mission before us. There are some many distractions we need to learn to have some intentionality if we are going to stay on mission.

What we presented yesterday in our annual meeting could be viewed as a measuring tool that will help us keep focused on the things that are necessary for us to fulfill our mission. Of course, all the things we discussed are intangible and cannot be measured quantitatively. Instead they must be measured qualitatively.

We never want to become a community that gets caught up in budgets, large buildings, numerical growth and all the worldly versions of success. These things are not bad, in fact they are quite necessary. We have a building, a budget, desire growth, etc. But, we know that these things are vehicles that allow us to do mission. Not ends in themselves. As we are still in the formative stages in our community we want to begin now measuring our success by how well we are participating in the Kingdom of God. So, below you can find a summary of those things.

We will focus our mission on Training, Empowering and Connecting disciples of Jesus for participation in God’s work in the world.

Four Directions of Focus:

A community actively becoming like Jesus
We will be an open and accessible community that continues to cultivate an organic community life that allows us to naturally and intentionally help each other become more and more like Jesus.

A community meaningfully participating in local culture
Together, we will be a community that is tangibly and practically involved in our local community (especially through the use of our space).

A community loving and serving the poor
We will show care and concern for the poor, oppressed, and disenfranchised in our local area, the surrounding suburban and urban areas, and the world. We will lead and teach others by example, encouraging our neighbors to do the same.

A community seeking to unify the body of Christ in our local area and beyond.
We will be a community that is intentionally looking for ways to cooperate, serve and minister with the Body of Christ in Feasterville, Bucks County, Greater Philadelphia and the World.

Personally, I am excited to continue to be free of the need to make decisions about ministry based on values of money, growth (numerically) and other things that are not necessarily indicators of a healthy church.

The implication of that first statement (the connecting, training, empowering one) is that it is quite possible that we could be the same size we are now in five years and still be a “successful.”

At the same time, we’ll continue to be excited when people come to follow Christ and I am convinced that if we do these things well, numerical growth can and will follow. I believe we have to remember that growth is the likely (not promised) result of faithful mission, not the goal of faithfulness.

While we will obviously do other things as a community, we’re making concerted efforts in these four key areas in 2007 and beyond. We already do a few of them pretty well and if in 5 years, we are doing all four things well, I believe God will have done a great work in and through our community.

Tomorrow, I will share some of the tangible ways we will be doing forementioned things…