Our One Eight Strategy:
Our desire as a church is to Love God, Love People and Expand the Kingdom. This mission statement gives our Missions Ministry its role, namely to facilitate our church in expanding God’s Kingdom so that we might lead others to love Jesus Christ and people.
How It Works:
Jesus gives us some straightforward and strategic guidelines to expand His Kingdom. First, the Great Commission of Matthew 28:18-20, commands us “to go and make disciples of all nations”, and secondly, in Acts 1:8, Jesus tells us we are to be His witnesses in “Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the earth.” These two passages of scripture form the basis of what we call our Acts 1:8 Missions Ministry. For us, the mission field starts at the edge of our property and continues to the ends of the earth.
Our goal is to engage our people in impacting the mission field. By living out the priesthood of the believer and the gifts of the Spirit we understand that God equips each of us to accomplish His work. Utilizing the Acts 1:8 strategy we have created three teams responsible for the four areas mentioned in this passage. Participants in these teams do the research, evaluation, promotion and relationship building that goes into our church partnering with various missionaries, mission organizations, church planters and national pastors. The church body literally becomes the agent of expanding the Kingdom. An executive team is in place for unity, direction and financial accountability.
We also understand that we are one church and we cannot, nor or are we supposed to, do everything everywhere. Therefore we have developed a set of policies that help us filter who we partner with and why. These guidelines help us to be strategic and protect us from over committing.
To help familiarize our church with missionaries, mission organizations, church planters and national pastors we hold two mission conferences a year. One in the spring, called the 365 Conference, which highlights all our local “Jerusalem” mission partners. The second, held in the fall, known as the Go Conference, highlights our national and international partners as well as introducing new opportunities. The Go Conference also facilitates our annual financial pledge to missions.
To financially support mission efforts, in addition to those given to the Cooperative Program through the church budget, we developed the Unified Missions Fund. This financial mechanism is promoted throughout the year and allows the three teams to contribute towards the financial needs of mission partners. The Unified Mission Fund also supports Southern Baptist Mission agencies, makes possible our mission conferences and assists with pastoral mission travel.
Mission trips are planned throughout the year for the purpose of assisting our mission partners in the work of their ministry. We realize just sending a check once a month is not always a sufficient commitment to advancing God’s Kingdom. Sometimes it requires feet on the ground, sharing the Gospel, lending a helping hand or serving a “cup of cold water” in Jesus name. But, one of the greatest benefits that often takes place through participation in a mission trip is the spiritual growth that happens in participants lives. One of our primary objectives in any mission trip is to help our partners plant churches or assist in those that are already begun, because we realize the greatest asset any community can have is a local Christian church.
In May of 2008 we made a list of goals that we hoped to accomplish over the next seven years. While these goals have helped to motivate us and guide us over the past few years, they are open for re-evaluation and modification by the pastors and/or the mission’s executive team at anytime.
None of this is possible without the power of the Holy Spirit, therefore we believe prayer is the power source to success on the mission field. Before any effort is initiated, any partner committed too, any trip taken or any dollar given we seek the heart of God and His direction. We are not confident in ourselves, but in the One who has called us and equipped us to “go.” The results are for God’s glory, therefore we trust and depend on His guidance and provision.
Our Mission’s philosophy is simple: Bring glory to God by engaging the full body of the church to utilize the Acts 1:8 strategy in order that we may fulfill the Great Commission, thereby expanding God’s Kingdom.