Wisdom for the Church

A vision without a task is but a dream;
a task without a visions is drudgery;
a vision with a task is the hope of the world.

This inscription is on a church in Sussex, England, dating to 1730
From James C. Wilhoit, Spiritual Formation as if the Church Mattered: Growing in Christ through community

These quotes really challenge me

The gospel flows best through the establishing of significant relationships that are authentic and healthy. When relationships become stagnant and the community of Christ closes itself to the outside world, the result is an institution rather than a movement.

I know it sounds counterintuitive, but churches begin to decline when things are going well. We are in grave danger when we have the most people and the most money in our history. Success often blinds us to the real forces of atrophy. The risk and innovation that brought us success are often abandoned to preserve success. Many times we lose our momentum because we are afraid to lose the success we’ve achieved, and before we know it, we discover that we are running on empty.

Pastors were valued for their ability to bring and keep order rather than for their ability to bring and lead change. The reality was that pastors were being equipped to preserve the past rather than to create the future. We became know for being traditional rather than transformational. The ritual replaced the radical. The pastor/teacher replaced the apostle/evangelist.

Erwin Raphael McManus, An Unstoppable Force

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