How are we going to get there?
What a great question! However, the answer depends on where “there” is. You see, an effective strategy, which answers the how question, must begin with a vision, a destination. If I’m going to Nashville, I’ll get on I-65 southbound, but if I’m heading to Louisville, I’m going to have to go the opposite direction and get on I-65 northbound. Our destination determines the direction we are going to go. So, we can’t know how we are going to go until we know where we are going. We must begin with the end in mind. That’s vision.
However, before we determine the where of vision, we really need to know the why of the situation, our purpose, our mission to accomplish. To continue with the Nashville and Louisville locales, if my mission is to hear some great country music, then my where would be Nashville. However, if my mission is to see some world-class horse racing, then my where is Louisville. Your mission may be a grand, long-term purpose such as what career you want to dedicate your life to, or it may be a simple short-term mission such as cleaning out your garage. Whatever the scope of our mission, our mission shapes our vision.
So, let me sum this up. Mission is the purpose for which you exist in a given situation. Vision is the result that your mission will produce. Strategy is the plan to bring about your vision, which will accomplish your mission. For you visual learners, here’s a flow chart:
We are all leaders in some capacity, whether in the home, the workplace, the school, the community, or the church. These principles work across the board, and I encourage you to put them to work, but since this is our church newsletter, I pray that we leaders at Eastwood will seriously think these things through as we now begin a new church year. It doesn’t matter if you are a snack coordinator, a preschool volunteer, a Bible Fellowship teacher, a leader of a large ministry, or something else in between, these principles will help you have a successful ministry this year.
I pray that we will be mission-focused, visionary, and strategic. May God bless us with a mission accomplished!