And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ…. Ephesians 4:11-13 (ESV)
“In recent years our complexity, size and scope have masked our essence. I sense God is calling us back to our roots – the simple calling that was clearly present when we were growing rapidly. When we have been winning, building and sending, God has blessed us.” – Steve Douglass, Future Direction
Repeat after me:
Movements Everywhere does not mean CCC staff everywhere.
Movements Everywhere does not mean planting CCC flags everywhere.
Movements Everywhere does not mean it’s CCC’s job to reach everyone…
[ ] on this campus
[ ] in this country
[ ] in the world. (Check all that apply.)
Now take a deep breath. Do you feel like you just committed heresy?
Relax. You’re going to be ok. Enjoy a weekly Sabbath. Take a nap.
One of the most common mistakes that I’ve frequently observed and personally committed during my 23 years on staff with this fantastic organization is that we tend to bite off more than our God-given share of the Great Commission. How many times have I sat with a team in front of a fresh white board during a strategic planning session to dream about reaching our scope of 30,000 students on a campus, or 30 million or 300 million in a country, or 6+ billion people in the world? There’s nothing wrong with dreaming about it, envisioning what it will be like when God brings it about, or praying toward these ends. In fact, I believe willingness to engage emotionally with that level of scope is embedded in the spiritual DNA of every true follower of Jesus. I have a huge world map in my study at home before which I regularly sit or kneel with Bible open, in the wee morning hours, praying country by country for God to raise up disciples among every tribe, tongue, people and nation. This nourishes my soul and brings my daily struggles into a much more realistic perspective.
So, what’s the problem? The problem, viewed through an organizational leadership lens, is that when it comes to planning, we have allowed most teams to believe that it’s their job to “reach an entire campus (or city or country)” rather than holding them accountable to fulfill CCC’s unique calling and execute our mission well within their local setting.
What has God has called CCC to do? He’s called us and historically used us to help fulfill the Great Commission by winning, building and sending in the power of the Holy Spirit and helping the body of Christ do evangelism and discipleship. We fulfill that calling when we live out our values and execute our mission over and over and over again. And what is our mission? About a year ago, the Global Leadership Team clarified that our unique mission is launching spiritual movements by winning, building and sending Christ-centered multiplying disciples. Eleven very powerful words that bring clarity and focus to what we should be doing.
If you want to see how this all fits together, you may want to review Steve Douglass’ Future Direction booklet or view it in a simple one-page Planning Pyramid that places all these concepts in perspective. The higher, broader levels of the pyramid represent overarching calling, values, mission and vision that should guide us as we seek the Lord and make decisions. These don’t change very often. The lower, narrower levels represent the specific, culturally relevant strategic action that needs to take place in any setting. These plans and actions change frequently as the situation requires and the Spirit freely leads. The desired result: movements somewhere, ultimately leading to movements everywhere.
Note that nowhere will you find a requirement, expectation, assumption or call for any CCC team to “reach the entire whatever.” Think about it: when was the last time you heard of a team leader or national director losing their job because they didn’t reach their entire scope? Or, for that matter, how many times in the past 60 years has anyone heard of a team that consistently DID reach their entire scope? Hmmm…
This brings us to the next two major shifts in CCC culture that we need to make – together – in order to move forward.
2. Increasing Local Ownership
“Movements Everywhere” implies that the greatest growth must happen at the grass roots level. The whole organization must adjust to ensure that the local level is growing and expanding. This means that…
a. We have local teams who are focused on building movements, whether through direct ministry or catalytic ministry. They are fully empowered to innovate and be creative within our mission, vision, and values.
b. Everyone is aligned to essentials and committed to multiplying.
c. Local movements become self-sustaining, i.e., they are generating local leaders and resources.
d. Organizational decisions are made in light of their impact on the field. Investment in local effectiveness is normal.
3. Developing a Broader Kingdom Perspective
Penetrating the world with true followers of Jesus will require efforts far beyond those of Campus Crusade for Christ. We must keep a Kingdom perspective. We must join forces and resources with the rest of the body of Christ to reach our goal. This means that
a. We promote God’s heart among the nations, embracing both the Great commandment and the Great Commission.
b. We focus on our role, while celebrating the roles of others with different callings. We realize that all of us are necessary and none of us is sufficient to accomplish movements everywhere.
c. We actively and unselfishly work together with other organizations and leaders with an attitude of humility, so that the synergy of the Body of Christ is unleashed.
d. While making disciples and launching movements locally, we continually entrust the ministry to others in the arenas where God has called us to work.
e. We must have the Kingdom in our sights, rather than only looking out for our own interests.
How might these two cultural shifts change your team’s next strategic planning session?
What might you need to stop doing? Start doing? Change?