Vision Team Blog

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Nation Building Seminar

Attended LifeSpring's Nation Building seminar today and came away with a lot of great ideas I wanted to bounce off of y'all. The seminar was conducted by Ross from Glocalnet, an organization developed by Northwoods Baptist Church down in Ft. Worth. Glocalnet encourages churches to focus on ministry both globally and locally.

First, one of the exercises was "envisioning the church of the future." Some of the values that were suggested were: externally focused (vs. hoarding mentality), 24/7 (not about Sunday), interconnected with other churches (one universal church, many parts serving many purposes), diversity without division (vs. clique cultures), passionate, sacrificial, inviting (being people that entice others into asking "who is this Jesus?"), participatory.

Second, they shared some interesting thoughts on the process of ministry development. They use a 4 cornerstone description: 1) if you look at your people's Gifts + Passions and their intersection with the community's Needs, it may be an avenue to connect with God's Plan (Gifts+Passions(intersect)Needs=God's Plan) 2)Laypeople accomplish ministry, pastors take care of laypeople 3)don't be a lone ranger, partner with experts to accomplish your purposes 4)aim for adopting these ministries, not just fostering them (permanent, fewer short term commitments) - long term investments, front door engagement, impact and engage infrastructures.

They had several really cool charts. One was a personality style assessment that I felt was very effective, I'll try to bring it Thurs, it might be a very useful tool for the vision team to use. Another was a bell curve flow chart that dealt with the diffusion of innovation. The graph demonstated levels of participation based on the life cycle in activities. It began with a person or two who innovated the idea. Next a few people who caught the vision (early adopters), mid and late adopters come on board once the kinks are worked out and continue the project. Objectors are those who never can get on board with this particular idea, often God has given them a passion for something else. The last chart to really catch my attention dealt with challenges and skills. Let's see if I can approximate it...
C |
H | Anxiety Arousal FLOW
A |
L |
L |
E | Worry Control
N |
E |
S | Apathy Boredom Relaxation

Well, sort of (wish I had my scanner set up). The idea is that there must be the right balance between your skill in an area and how challenging it is for you to achieve "flow." Otherwise, any of the other descriptions can occur. Theoretically.

Also I heard some great quotes: "ask small things in small ways with the resources we have and there will never be a crisis of belief and an encounter with God", "people should be in the go, not just in the know," "we say what we believe, we do what we value."

And finally, one really great story. Glocalnet is teaming up with bunch of other churches to help people in Afganistan. When this project first got started, Glocalnet was looking for a church to lead the way. Their head missions guy met with a bunch of churches. On one particular visit he met with two pastors, one pastored a church in St. Louis of 500 attendees, the other a church in Rome, GA of 37 people. He was really excited about this St. Louis church because they seemed to be big enough to really take charge. After the meeting, he never heard from the St. Louis church again. However, this church of 37 in Rome, GA was excited about Afganistan and God used them to head up this big network project. Afganistan is one of Glocalnet's biggest projects now and this not as little anymore church is still leading the way.

Don't you think this could be us??


  • Sounds like it was a great conference. I'm so glad you were able to go to represent Via Christus and bring ideas back to us.

    I think it might be valuable for us to ask "How can we apply these principles of "Nation Building" not just to an overseas location but also to the Yorkville area itself?" What might we come up with?

    By Blogger Mike Clawson, at 6:34 PM  

  • Definately! A lot of what they were talking about seemed broad principles that could be applied to any location - not necessarily overseas.

    By Blogger Charlotte Wyncoop, at 8:44 PM  

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