I don’t know about you, but I struggle with keeping my focus where it should be. I love life and try to enjoy every aspect of it, but sometimes this is not good. I don’t think I have ADD or ADHD (some of you who know me are snickering right now), but I truly love to read and do all kinds of things. As I talk to pastors and leaders from all kinds of churches doing all kinds of ministry, I have begun to notice that many are drifting from what God has called us to do.
Earlier today I was reading in Romans 15 about Paul’s plans and thoughts. Paul was very focused. In v. 20 he says, “My ambition has always been to preach the Good News where the name of Christ has never been heard, rather than where a church has already been started by someone else.” Since the first time I read this verse, I have been intrigued by it. To me, it seems as though Paul was more comfortable with non-churched people than he was with his own brothers and sisters in Christ. He was laser-focused on his mission or his Kingdom assignment of telling others about Jesus Christ. What is your mission? Do you know where you are going? Or are you sidetracked by too many distractions that, while appearing to be good and important, are not really getting you where you need to go.
Over the holidays I cleaned out my email inbox and unsubscribed from a number of emails by asking one simple question. “Will this help me get to where I need to go as a leader in my quest to serve pastors?”
If I were to ask you today, “What is it that you are doing?” what would be your response? Probing further, I would ask, “Do you know if you are making more disciples?” If you said yes, then I would then ask, “How do you know?” When we cut through the verbiage about this program and that event, the question still remains, “Are we making disciples?” Pastors who are missionally focused consistently ask themselves “Are we fruitful?”
The power of focus is that it frees you up to consider what the world will look like if you achieve your mission. It also makes it easier to say no to things that will get in the way of your mission. Clarity is important- people love it- and focus brings clarity. If you are clear about where you are going, people will notice and get on board. Yesterday I was asked to acknowledge a relationship on LinkedIn. When I looked at the person’s profile, this is what it said, “Group Leader at “X” Community Church, dba as Research Consultant for a Marketing firm.” This person knew their first priority was their faith community and their job was just a “front” for where their heart was. Talk about being focused! When your people start thinking this way, watch out! Finally, having a clear focus makes the alignment of your ministries and resources to your mission much easier.
Keep asking the questions, “Do I know where I am going?” and “Do I know how to get there?” Our mission at Cornerstone Church Network is to encourage and equip pastors and leaders. Let us know how we can serve you in answering these two important questions.