Happy New Year!
By Rick Vance
“Where there is no vision, the people perish.”
Proverbs 29:18a (KJV)
For years, I have read and preached on this verse suggesting that having vision and mission are essential for the work of an organization to be successful. Recently, while reading other translations of this passage, I concluded there is something more important than having a vision and mission for ministry.
I believe that the most important thing necessary for ministry is being in a healthy, close relationship with God.
John Wesley’s third General Rule was to “Stay in love with God.” To do this Wesley offered the following list:
- The public worship of God.
- The ministry of the Word, either read or expounded.
- The Supper of the Lord.
- Family and private prayer.
- Searching the Scriptures.
- Fasting or abstinence.
By doing this Wesley, felt one’s ministry and life would be centered in God’s will. Once we have made a relationship with God a priority, then we are ready to look at the vision and mission God has for us as an individual and a United Methodist Man.
Eugene Peterson translates Proverbs 29:18 this way in the Message:
If people can’t see what God is doing,
they stumble all over themselves;
But when they attend to what he reveals,
they are most blessed.
May I suggest that as we begin to develop our vision and mission (programs) for our United Methodist Men’s groups, we begin with an intentional move to draw close to God through prayer, scripture small group accountability and discernment? By doing this we will be moving to see what God is doing rather than telling God what we are going to do.
The commission has resources that can help you as you begin this process. Please contact us at 615-620-7277 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You are in my prayers as we work together to “help men grow In Christ, so others may know Christ.”
The Rev. Dr. Richard Vance, director of men’s ministry
General Commission on UM Men