Many plans for how we see Torry develop were firmed up as Tracy and I took our strategy to the Divisional Strategy Council. It was good to have the input of the various divisional directors/officers, not only in terms of their affirming the plans, but in terms of the good positive suggestions in areas we were still working out details on. This sorta thing is good evidence of synergy between corps officers and DHQ working to a good advantage.
I’ve often discerened in ministry an approach that seeks to ‘keep the head down so as not to attract attionion’ sort of thing and maybe every now and again thats tempting, but I am a firm believer in officers being accountable in mission terms to their leaders. I’ll never forget the first time I had a visit from my DC when I was a Lieutenant in my first appointment in Glasgow.
I had made all the preparations of making sure all my books and rolls were up to date and available for inspection….only to discover that DCs didn’t do that sort of thing any more. This, you understand, was not what I’d read in Os + Rs and really from that point I’d made the decision to be open and transparent in terms of what I’m planning in mission terms. I just feel its good policy.
Much more so in our private lives. Growing up as a teenager and new to faith altogether, I craved someone to come alongside and provide a strong mentoring approach as I worked out ‘how faith works’ and how it should impact my life. In many ways that didn’t really happen, although there were a few that I could always turn to in emergencies! The concept of discipleship is best served by the Rabbi/student relationship that Jesus models with his own talmidim (disciples). They watched what he did, how he worshipped, prayed and interacted and was able to say ‘follow me.’ Paul, also, took this approach and was bold enought to say ‘follow me as I follow Jesus.’
I make no profession that I’m absolutely perfect in every way (or any way for that matter), I’ve failings for sure, but much rather than have an attidude of ‘do as I tell you’ as leaders, we much more want to be in the place of saying ‘do as I do…learn from me as I learn from Jesus, and together we’ll go further.’
Can I encourage us all to ask in what ways are we accountable in our spiritual life and our service in the Kingdom? Ask God first, and then act on what you find.