Suddenly, after a long winter, signs of spring are everywhere! The trees are beginning to bud, the crocuses, daffodils, and tulips are up, bringing explosions of color to our eyes after the long visual deprivation of winter. Don’t get me wrong, I like winter, and winter has its place in the rhythm of the seasons, it’s just that this winter didn’t know when to quit and make way for spring. But now, spring is finally here, and once again my walks take place to the exquisite background music of birdsong. It thrills my soul! If I could sing along with them, I would. They sing of love and territory – but also of the sheer joy of living, I am convinced.
Can you imagine what it would be like if the birds stopped singing? Could things ever be normal again? What is our song, at Kochville United Methodist Church? This was the purpose of VCI – to get us back to basics and help us discover who we are. I am currently reading a book that was given to me by some of you, that will help us structure ourselves according to our mission statement. It’s called Leadership and Organization For Fruitful Congregations, by Stephen W. Ross. You’ll be hearing more about it in the months ahead, as we’ll be having some discernment events based on the book.
VCI correctly identified our mission statement as identical with that of The United Methodist Church: To make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. In order to do this, we’re going to have to do some things we’ve always done – and we’re also going to have to do some new things. After all, what kind of spring would we have if the trees insisted on reusing last year’s leaves? What kind of spring flowers would we have if our lovely flowers insisted on putting forth last year’s leaves, stems, and blossoms?
This needn’t be scary – in fact, it will be fun, if we robe ourselves in adventure! If we want a revitalized church, we’re going to have to “go for it;” we can’t expect people to come to us anymore, just because we have a building and a sign up. That was the old model, which passed away 50 years ago. This of our situation as an opportunity for creativity to rise up from among the membership and lead the way into the future. I will be happy to facilitate, yes, and lead, but this effort has to be owned by you, or we’ll just be spinning our wheels.
Casting ourselves into the future with you,
Rev. T. Bradley Terhune (Pastor Brad)