Friday, August 30, 2013

Moving Forward - Revisioning my role as pastor at FBCOKC - Fall 2013

This post is the text of a PowerPoint presentation I brought to our church family revisioning my next season of ministry.  In short it will allow us to better leverage the gifting of our church staff and congregational leaders; grow our leadership capacity, and better connect with our community.  It intentionally creates more space for me to spend time with God and living out my call to equip people for their God-given mission.  I think these steps will make me a better pastor and help our future live into its future with God.

Grace and Peace, Tom
I Corinthians 1:2-3 CEV

To God’s church in Oklahoma City. Christ Jesus chose you to be his very own people, and you worship in his name, as we and all others do who call him Lord. My prayer is that God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ will be kind to you and will bless you with peace!

Critical Issue

Our minds cannot deal with survival issues and creative responses simultaneously.
We have to let go of one to embrace the other.

We are ready to be creative

We are ready to move forward

 Good news abounds
·         Our reputation in the community is good
·         We are known as a great church to partner with if you want to impact the community
·         There are a number of organizations ready to partner with us to take our ministries to the next level
·         There are people that we can learn from that are ready to stand with us
·         We have the right heart, the right spirit, the right leaders and the right staff for this moment

Who we are – Macro Perspective

Seven congregations reaching a diversity of people
·         First Baptist Church of Oklahoma City
·         United Myanmar Baptist Church 
·         Oklahoma City Zo Tung Baptist Church
·         Oklahoma City Falam Baptist Church of OKC
·         All Africa Baptist Church
·         Sudanese Christian Fellowship
·         Hispanic Bible Study
Convergence meets on site on Sunday evening with its own unique ministry
Who we are - FBCOKC
·         A growing racial diversity
·         A growing social diversity
·         A growing cultural diversity
·         A growing diversity of Christian traditions
·         A growing diversity of needs
·         A growing diversity of challenges
·         A growing diversity of opportunities

 Critical Issue
Our minds cannot deal with survival issues and creative responses simultaneously.

We have to let go of one to embrace the other.

We are ready to be creative

We are ready to move forward

Redreaming my role is an essential part of this process

A conversation born on sabbatical – August 7, 2012       Scotland
·         My first task as pastor is to be in the people building/equipping/empowering role
·         I need to make more time to build real and personal relationships.
·         What role am I to play in OKC addressing the great issues impacting children each day?
·         What role am I to play in calling the church to prepare for what will be and how they can be relevant in the midst of this major cultural shift?
·         God is teaching me a new language to describe what I see ahead – how do I use these words to help people see and respond to this time and moment?
·         Who do I need to draw close and whom do I need to empower for me to fulfill what God has for me in the days ahead?

 Challenge - Our Changing Context
·         While we are located in the city, we come from a growing list of communities – Guthrie, Edmond, Yukon, Mustang, Deer Creek, Del City, Midwest City, Shawnee, Norman, Tuttle and more.
·         People are more comfortable coming to downtown
·         Residential downtown continues to experience significant change
·         Residential Midtown is experiencing dramatic change
·         More growth is anticipated
·         The age of those moving into downtown is progressively younger.

 Implications - Outreach
·         We will maximize It’s a Wonderful Life promotion in our community
·         We will host community events designed to draw new people from our community into our midst. (ex. Women in My World)
·         We will create opportunities to feature our staff members in worship and Bible study options
·         We will launch one or more non-traditional location Bible study/faith conversation options
·         We will explore launching new recreational options to connect with young adults and young families

Pastoral Implications: Sermons and Bible Studies
·         We have to continue to grow our staff proclaimers and make the way for more voices to be heard
·         We need to intentionally  engage and empower gifted teachers and preachers in our congregation
·         There are 52 sermons a year.  I will share at least 12 a year with church staff and others.
·         There are 92-96 Bible studies (Wed/SALT) a year.  I will share at least 18-24 a year with church staff and others.
Opportunity – City Connections
God has provided relational opportunities to connect with a broad spectrum of people in our community
·         The Bradley Breakfast
·         SALLT
·         Foster Care related network connections
·         “As One” Church unity ballpark event
·         Other

 Challenge - Outreach Principle

 We are most comfortable reaching people at the same or lower socio-economic setting.

There are emotional, social, and spiritual boundaries to reaching those in higher economic setting
and those with cultural influence.

If the Church is going to fulfill its task we must intentionally reach out to the full diversity of our community.

Pastoral Implications:  City Connections
·         I am going to set aside 8-10 hours a week to invest in community based relationships
·         I am going to invest in structures that will enhance the position of our congregation and its impact in the community
·         I am going to invest in leaders/people that share our heart for our Christ and our city
·         I will offer leadership/influence in setting where I believe my passion and call connect with the need and opportunity.

Challenge – Leadership
·         We have begun a generational transition in our church
·         I came to FBCOKC in my early 40s and am now 50+
·         We need to leverage the expertise of established leaders
·         We need to grow the capacity of emerging leaders
·         If we do not grow our capacity our long term future is compromised.
Opportunity – Leadership 
·         We have established leaders willing to invest
·         We have emerging leaders willing to learn and grow
·         There are some great resources available to can aid efforts to strengthen and grow Christian leaders.
·         There are key community Christian leaders willing to invest with us.
·         There are opportunities for us to develop a leadership growth strategy that will support the long term ministry of this congregation.
·         There are opportunities for us to develop the capacity of congregational leaders for greater community impact

Pastoral Implications: Leadership
·         I will do quarterly small group (10 or less participants) Christian Leadership Growth experiences.
·         I will do intentional mentoring of church staff and congregational leaders.
·         I will do intentional mentoring of pastors/community leaders for those that ask.
·         There is a need to more intentionally engage key leaders in our community.
·         I will invest intentional time to connect and partner with key community leaders that can help empower our congregation and impact our community.

 May all we say and all we do bring honor and glory to God

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