It’s both exciting and unsettling when God shoves you out of your comfort zone. That’s the tension of where our ministry team is at as we wind down 2011 and prepare for 2012. And I wouldn’t want us to be anywhere else. If I were 100% confident that our team had a strategy mapped out for the future that would guarantee our success in helping churches reach families affected by disabilities, we wouldn’t be dependent upon God’s involvement and presence in leading us forward. That’s a general leadership principle…If you or your organization can accomplish a task by relying upon your own talents and abilities, you’re not going to experience God’s blessing and presence in pursuing the task.
Looking ahead to 2012, our team’s primary strategic initiative the systems and people and funding in place to allow us to offer training, consultation, resources and support to churches throughout the U.S. and beyond with a relational presence. Christianity is about relationships as opposed to religion…and ultimately about our relationship with our Heavenly Father through His Son, Jesus Christ. We want churches undertaking ministry to families of kids with disabilities to have a person (or people) in their area who they can turn to for help and support…someone they can build a relationship with as they connect with and build relationships with families attracted by their ministry.
In order to accomplish this goal, we’re going to need to build a very broad and diverse base of volunteers and partner organizations to support the mission and put in place the systems and structures for them to be effective in their work. We also need to put in place the funding and prayer support to sustain our people in the work.
You’ll see our team working on a number of other projects and initiatives in the year ahead…deepening and expanding our relationships with like minded Christ-followers and ministry organizations, expanding our efforts in developing free, church-based respite networks, exploring strategic relationships with institutions of higher education, piloting internships and other types of practical ministry training, building upon the foundation for online training established this year through Inclusion Fusion, and hopefully, some pilot projects for supporting churches with online campuses to minister to families currently beyond the reach of a local church prepared to welcome and include them.
We’d love for you to join us in our ministry adventures. Just this week, we received an e-mail from a new friend with a vision for a wonderful ministry through her church in Missouri. Contact us if we can help support and resource your ministry vision. I can’t promise we’ll be able to respond immediately…but we can make sure we’re digging a large enough foundation to support the movement we can all build together.
ACCESS TO INCLUSION FUSION TALKS AND DOWNLOADS NOW EXTENDED THROUGH SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31st! Chuck Swindoll and more than twenty-five ministry leaders came together on November 3rd-7th as part of a Special Needs Ministry Web Summit for church staff, volunteers, family members and caregivers everywhere. Inclusion Fusion is a Key Ministry event, presented FREE OF CHARGE with the support of Pajama Conference. Register here for access to the video archives of the Summit!