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God’s Vision for Harrowby Lane Methodist Church

Background and Process

Following several conversations at the Leadership Team (minister, staff and stewards) meetings we decided to meet at Stonesby Methodist Church 20th July 2013, in an express desire to meet together and to collectively listen to God for His vision for this church. Everybody was present with the exception of Ros Yates.

We ate together, we prayed together, we briefly discussed where we were as a church and then explored a little of the life of Jesus and how he modelled ‘kingdom life’ to those first disciples and us too. We reflected on how God was speaking to us as a church, at this time. What might be God’s vision for us? Trying to envisage HLMC through God’s eyes, what do we look like?

As we shared, it became obvious we could group our statements under three general headings and then there was silence. We simply ran out of things to say, which I can assure you is pretty unusual! We all left with a sense of well being and that wonderful notion that God had worked his purpose out.  As your leadership team we commend these thoughts and vision to everyone involved at HLMC.

What now? The ongoing process.

Any vision statement needs to be approved by the Church Council and owned by the wider church. Then that vision can begin to shape the life and purpose of this church. If endorsed by the Church Council, the vision can be rolled out to the wider church fellowship. It will form the theme of our preaching on a Sunday, and we will be asking each group to reflect on how they contribute to the vision, and how it might alter their approach to their activities. We would invite the wider church to a prayer event(s), so that everyone could spend time with God listening to how this vision looks to them; and respond through words or pictures. We ideally need a shorter strap line, but in the meantime perhaps ‘The Methodist Church’ one will fit perfectly well for now. ‘A discipleship movement shaped for mission’, but in time a better local one will emerge.

From this wider picture we begin the exciting journey of faith – that is walking with God!

For whenever God’s people make the decision to walk with Him, they discover it is an adventure that shapes them in love; challenges them in faith; and takes them to a place where there is a new horizon!

THE VISION: What does God want us to be?

A ‘Safe’ Place:-

• Birds of the air – come to rest (mustard seed parable)

• Non-judgemental attitude

• Encounter the presence of God

• To explore, ask questions

• To be real, honest

• Space appropriate to each

• Gracious culture

A ‘Transforming’ Place:-

• People are changed, as they meet Jesus

• Renewing of the mind – new world view (The Kingdom of God)

• Continual transformation – i.e.  journey

• Hunger for change

• Healing – body, mind and spirit (Acts 2:43-47)

• Transforming society

• Discipleship

A ‘Sending out’ Place:-

• Outward looking culture

• Every member ministry

• Encouragement/support

• Accountability

• Training/equipping

• Whole life discipleship

• The ministry of blessing

A Safe Place…

Hear the Word

A Transforming Place…

Hear the Word

A ‘Sending out’ Place…

Hear the Word

The Leadership Team at Harrowby Lane Methodist Church have recently spent some time together listening to God.   The results of this process are detailed below.

Also included are three ‘words’ on the three main areas that the leadership feel we should look at.

Immediately below is the first word which introduces the whole process and is a summery of our current thinking.

An Introduction to the Process.

Hear the Word

VALUES: - Giving

Recently we looked at the whole interesting subject of giving, which for any church is a fine balance.
On the one hand we don’t want people to feel that they have to give anything:
On the other - no cash = no church.

Rev Ian Worrall looks at the giving debate.

Giving in 2015

Hear the Word