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Four Ps for transition

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Let’s be up front. By now, you probably realize that we are reshaping all parts of Canadian MB ministry. Some of this is driven by financial realities. Other alterations result from a change in strategic direction. Regardless of the factors, these changes can produce uncertainty and at times anxiety.

From the crafting of a new Collaborative Model of governance for the Canadian MB family, to the establishment of CCMBC Legacy Fund Inc. out of Stewardship Ministries, to the financial struggles of MB Seminary, the diminished financial capacity of the Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches, and the restructuring of Multiply, all of our ministries are in flux.

These are humbling and challenging times. Times such as these require faith in a God who is not surprised by any of our present circumstances.

It may sound simplistic to say that God is in control, but that, in reality, is the pinnacle of our hope. That the ministry pains we suffer now have the potential to bring us back to a renewed confidence in God is most reassuring.

 

In times such as these…

In times of transition, distress, or uncertainty, I’m convinced that our behaviour and attitude contribute greatly toward a healthy resolution. So, what do we do in times such as these?

Our first necessity is prayer. As doers, our tendency is to move toward planning and action. Starting with prayer instead will centre us in God’s will.

Secondly, we must take the right posture. We can easily blame, take sides, and even withdraw from relationships. But the right postures for us to take are engagement, reflection, and humility. Putting aside passive aggressive behaviour, we speak truth in love to one another.

Next, we need preparation. Here, we apply planning informed by good listening. Here, we write things down, count the cost, empower the right people, and set goals. Here, we look at our past mistakes and make the necessary course corrections.

Further to this, we will require perseverance. Our plans, goals, and systems must accommodate a long-term view. “Keep on keeping on” even when the results are not immediately apparent.

I truly believe God is preparing us for far greater things than our imagination can conceive.

 

Growing unity

One of the ways God is doing that is through this unprecedent unity that we see taking shape across the country.
There is a strong movement toward collaboration and a willingness to build things together.

There is also a clear realization that the church is the holder of the mission, and that conferences and agencies exist in support of that mission.

 

These are humbling and challenging times. Times such as these require faith in a God who is not surprised by any of our present circumstances.

 

These shifts in thinking will generate a vastly different strategy: one that propels the church to the forefront of mission.

To that end, let’s lift one another in prayer and uphold the bond of peace and love that is Christ’s trademark in us. Through that, we will be recognized as his disciples.

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