Alignment of Vision: Why it is critical and why it is hard.

Tuesday is for Discussion

Alignment 2Ever driven a car that was misaligned? Besides doing things like what you see to the tire on the right, it is not a pleasant thing. Misalignment of your tires is one thing but misalignment of vision in a church can be devastating.

Three principles of a philosophy of ministry that leaders need to recognize whether the church is a large traditional church, a small attractional model church, or an organic church meeting in a house:

Alignment is Hard

Getting everyone on board with the vision and direction of your church is not easy, but it is necessary. Without it (alignment) there will be disunity, turf wars, competition for resources, grumbling about direction, second-guessing of leadership, diminishment of excitement, misplaced passion, foot-dragging on initiatives, and a host of other problems.

Alignment is Never Complete

Getting “everyone on board” is never complete. Everyone will never be on board. There will be first adopters, early adopters, and late adopters and there will also be those who will never adopt. Live with it.

But at the same time, keep working at it and know, in the deepest recesses of your being that the process is never over. You will always need to underscore the vision. You will always need to explain why you do what you do and why you do it in the way you do it.   

Here’s a link that is miss-titled but helpful about how to align new ministries in a church with the vision/mission of the church.

Alignment Leaks

No matter what you do in sharing, communicating your vision and thinking through your ministries and the what and why you do everything you do, it will never be enough. It will never be enough not just because there are new people, but because alignment leaks. People forget, people never get your vision at the level of understanding and ownership that you want them to. People are pitched other visions by other great ministries that they are exposed to through books, radio, conferences and the like.

And those other ministries and visions, though great are different and can dilute the compelling nature of your church’s vision and call from God. Alignment leaks for any number of reasons and the only way to combat that leakage is to constantly keep filling the sink with new liquid that replaces what leaks away.

The payoff for working hard at constantly communicating the clarity of your church’s specific call from God, your God-intoxicated vision wrought in hours of prayer and listening to God for your community will be a church that stays on mission and makes multiplying disciples who live passionately for and like Jesus. And that’s what the world needs.

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