As I think more about how our movement, and my local congregation, sets a course towards 2020, my first feeling is I need to start with more of a midterm perspective. We have always been so short term, I need to get in to long term planning step by step.
When we have a coherent vision for our own life and family we will be much more convincing when we present our visions for the world around us.
I am making a 3 year plan and I want to give myself 3 months (April, May and June) to paint a picture of where I would like to be in July 2016. But as a I sit down to think I realise that before I look at this as a pastor, and as a church leader, I need to be taking serious consideration firstly about where my family will be in 3 years time. Here are the beginnings of my rough notes:
So where do I see us in 3 years?
I will be 44, Chieko 46, Damon 15, Len 14, Mark 11, Eddie 10, and Amy 6. Dad 79, Mum, 73…..
(what are the implications of these changes in age ….school, health, finances, responsibilities, etc….and how will they effect our family dynamic?)
Where do we want to be in our relationships, our faith, our mission as a family?
We want to be consistently developing our culture as a family. We want to share a common language and vocabulary through which we are able to communicate with one another about our mission.
As a family we will have a deep sense of where we are hoping to reach in our lives together. We will feel we are working towards a shared destination that we have discussed. We have found practicals way in which we can be conscious of our core beliefs, and have looked at how to strengthen our values. We understand the difference between notional values and the ones we practice in our daily life.
We have listened to each other’s hopes and dreams and seen how to incorporate all of those things into our common family vision…..etc
As you can see, obviously a lot more to do, breaking all this down and turning it into actionable steps…
I would encourage all of us, who feel a sense of mission, and a sense of identity as Unificationists to not jump into unrealistic idealistic visions of what we want to happen to the world in the next 7 years, but to start with making a tangible 3 or 7 year plan for our family or extended family first, before we get caught up in the macro. As I discover the challenges in doing just that for the 7 of us in my immediate family, I might be wiser and more effective in making a plan with my congregation, which takes me from 7 up to 200+ people…..
True Father has always told us to take a good look at having a loving dominion over ourself before we look to bring God’s love to the world. This must surely encompass plans and visions too. Let’s strive to be fruitful in our own plans before we multiply them and pass them on to others.
Next stop, off to read the book of Nehemiah and look why he prayed for a LOT about what was in his heart before he started to move into making an action plan…