“Back when I was growing up”, can’t believe I just wrote that, there was a show called the A-Team. The A-Team was a group of military guys falsely accused of being traitors who used their abilities to help people who needed military type help but couldn’t get help. The A-Team would always be facing ridiculous challenges and their leader, Hannibal, would come up with a crazy
plan to do whatever needed to be done. At the end of all the shows, after the A-Team had successfully carried out their mission, Hannibal would say, “I love it when a plan comes together.” There is something wonderful about when God gives you a vision or mission and you can look back and say, “I love it when a plan comes together.” That’s very much what happened at our first meeting as an Extended Leadership Team. Our goal was to take around 7 hours over two days to hear God speak to us about a very specific topic, our values. At TBC Cayce, we are called to love, reach and grow fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ for the glory of God. Now we are in a season in our church where we are asking God what plan He wants us to employ to
accomplish this mission.
To discover His plan we have assembled a team of leaders called the Extended Leadership Team. The job of the Extended Leadership Team is to come alongside the staff and help us discern the areas God desires us to focus on over the next few years so that we can come closer to seeing the vision realized that He has given us.
During our first weekend meeting, the team developed a set of core values: Love, Reaching Out, Gospel-Centered Life, Relationships, Family, Unity and Diversity and Integrity. These will get spelled out for you in the days ahead, but for now I just want to speak to their purpose. We all know we need another list or statement, as some would say, “as much as we need another hole in our head,” so before we add a list of values we better have a good reason. It better help the plan to come together. I assure you this list of values does.
You see, when you go to accomplish a task it’s very important to know who you are and who you are striving to become. Your character will define how you do something. It gives you boundaries you won’t cross and will lead you to areas others with different passions won’t go. If we feel God is leading our church to address evangelism, then the above values will help guide
how we will address the issue. It is also important to know the kind of person or group we want to develop because you can choose to do something in a manner that purposefully develops character in certain areas.
Let’s take evangelism as an example. Let’s say God tells us this is an area He wants us to focus on for the next three years. How will we do this? Well since love is part of the core of who we are we probably won’t hand out fliers that say “turn or burn.” Since loving out is one of the characters we desire we may seek to do something off campus, or to do something on campus that might not appeal to us but would be a blessing to others. Because we value diversity, we may choose to reach out in love to an ethnic or socioeconomic group that in the past we haven’t sought out. Since we also value unity in our church we will want this part of the mission to be embraced by everyone and for it to be something everyone can enjoy doing and grow to become more fully devoted to Jesus as they do it.
So, what is all this about? Bringing God glory. We need to hear from and obey God. He has told us what He wants us to become, a church that loves, reaches and grows fully devoted followers of Jesus Christ for the glory of God. Now we are asking Him how He wants us to do that and what specific character qualities He wants us to develop as we do His will. I hope that everyone in our church will be able to say that because they are living out the plan He gives us they are more like Him and together we can look back and say, “I love it when God’s plan becomes a reality in us.”