What team sport can actively incorporate as many as 500 people on a team, involve almost mind boggling levels of strength and endurance, include the application of literally thousands of pounds of force, and in the end produce only a few short feet of movement by everyone on the teams? The answer is tug-of-war. Tug-of-war has recorded origins dating back to the 8th century BC, has since been recognized as an official sport, and was even a formal part of the Olympics in the early 20th century. Personally, I find tug-of-war tons of fun to watch, to participate in, and if there is a deep mud trough between the teams … all the better.
On the other hand, if the objective is to take all that human power and use it to propel the team a great distance, tug-of-war is NOT a very effective model to follow. In the case where a group is trying to get somewhere, especially somewhere good, it is much more effective to have everyone involved, all pulling, or pushing, in the same direction. The trick is getting everyone pointed the same way, working together, combining heart and soul toward the same end. In other words, an established mission that is embraced by all is paramount for a successful and thriving group or community.
Turns out that we, as the community of Marble Memorial UMC, have an established statement of mission—a mission aimed at guiding our community to being a thriving church, and functioning and serving in the best likeness of Jesus Christ possible. This is admittedly a tall order, and a lifelong endeavor. Nevertheless, our church mission statement, which can be found every week printed on the cover of our worship bulletins or recited at every committee meeting, is both readily comprehendible and very actionable. But to be attained and realized, it must be both understood and embraced.
This September we will take a closer look at our church mission statement, diving into its relevance in our present and daily lives, and focusing on how it can serve to guide us into both closer community and likeness in Christ. Invite someone in your life to join you in worship as we explore the power of the Marble Memorial mission statement. Its associated success does not come with being dragged through the mud, but rather thriving as community, united by the power of God.
May you be continually transformed by the mind and love of God in Christ. Blessings … Pastor Bob