“Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.”
Have you ever thought
you “saw” something, understood what was going on, but perhaps needed to “see” it differently? I bet this mom was glad her child “saw” things differently.
— I was driving with my three young children one warm summer evening when a woman in the convertible ahead of us stood up and waved. She was stark naked! As I was reeling from the shock, I heard my 5-year-old shout from the back seat, “Mom! That lady isn’t wearing a seat belt!”
(Ah, to have eyes like the child to really “see” the important things in front of us – not just the “surface” stuff)! And guess what? That is what we attempt to help people “see” in their churches – the important things, i.e. what would make a church healthier and more effective.
The picture below was taken at the annual leadership retreat of Lawndale Christian Church. We had the privilege of spending a weekend recently with the leaders of this Los Angeles urban church. This was our third year to retreat with them. It was a fun, fruitful time.
Our core values were inherent in our ministry to Lawndale’s leadership team. Three of these values are as follows:
1. WE VALUE PROCESSES
Our orientation is if we go once, we plan on going again and again. Impact is multiplied by entering into on-going processes with leaders and churches. Our calling is to walk with people over time.
2. WE VALUE FULL PARTICIPATION
Each person in the church is to be taken seriously. As this happens, the health of the church increases. The people in the church are the body of Christ; therefore, as they identify, develop and use their spiritual gifts to serve his body, the headship of Jesus is increasingly experienced. Our calling is to help Christian leaders work toward each person’s full participation in light of his spiritual gifts.
3. WE VALUE RECIPROCITY
This value is well expressed in Romans 1: 11&12. “For I (we) am (are) longing to see you so that I (we) may share with you some
spiritual gift to strengthen you – or rather so that we may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith, both yours and mine
Reciprocity is defined as mutual dependence, action, or influence. With each of our ministry relationships, we always expect and experience the blessings of reciprocity. This is a great way to live! This interdependence is biblical and should be normative in the body of Christ. Our calling is to model and teach the concept of reciprocity in the church.
We leave October 7 for a ministry trip with Living Word Church of Dayton, Ohio — another church we love to return to again and again.
That’s it for now. Let’s keep asking the Lord to help us all “truly see” what is in front of us.
With love and gratitude,
Delores – for the two of us