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August 28, 2008

Yesterday I didn’t get anything to eat for dinner. My Wednesdays are usually my busiest. So last night after everything was done and locked up I headed to the grocery store. Now I went to get some juice because I was craving the Minute Maid Cherry Limeade drink. I get to the store and what do you think happened? I ended up with chips and cheese dip, some sweet pickles and this one really confused me, I actually checked out with some pickled cauliflower.

Now I can’t remember the last time I ate pickled cauliflower, it was probably some distant holiday, but I know it isn’t something I ever purchase. So here I am last night eating chips and cheese followed by a sweet pickle topped with some pickled cauliflower, I did have a glass of cherry limeade.

Focus. My trip to the grocery store was a recipe for disaster. I was hungry. I should have stayed away. My hunger led to a loss of focus.

I think it isn’t much different with churches. You have to have focus. This is one of the greatest hindrances to outwardly focused ministry. People just don’t have focus. They are too hungry for too many things.

I am asked on a pretty regular basis to help people out with their outwardly focused ministries. I am invited to come and speak to leadership. People love to hear what we do and they are inspired, but guess what, they lack focus. They hear a good idea and they want it but too much stands in the way.

If you would like to get your church more involved with community ministry I want to warn you, if they don’t have that focus you may be in for an uphill climb. What I have found are many churches that appreciate the need and think it is a good idea but like me in the grocery store they have many other items pulling for their attention. Without a focus that says that this is important it will always be secondary.

Something else to be aware of, if your church has another focus like youth or children’s ministry and you really like that then you must understand that you have already made your choice about outwardly focused ministry. You have said you prefer that focus. That is your choice but don’t be surprised if that is how it is.

Any thoughts? I just don’t think a lot of people understand this about focus.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 25, 2008 6:00 pm

    Well put. I like your story-telling to make your point. We all have to choose our priorities and truly be intentional with them. This is also at the heart of what our ministry tries to do – equip churches to be outside their walls and bringing transformation in their communities.

    Tim at DNA

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