I remember the conviction I felt approximately 20 year ago when I was asked about my personal mission statement. I had worked throughout the previous decade with college, university and seminary administrators and governing boards in crafting institutional statements of mission.
But, when asked about a statement of mission that was honed by and for me, I drew a blank…because I had not formulated one. Yes, it was in my head in broad strokes, but not made precise on paper.
During the following few months, I prayed, prepared drafts, and shared with my family what I believed should characterize me at my best and “drive” my life, thoughts and actions. I shared the following personal mission statement in May 1993 with my family and in the fall with the faculty and staff of Mount Vernon Nazarene College (now university):
“My mission is to be a Christian role model and leader to my family first, and subsequently to the Mount Vernon Nazarene College community in the context of servant and visionary leadership.
I will give attention to the financial needs of my family, including retirement, and keep myself physically and emotionally conditioned to enable me to function with maximum effectiveness.
I am a growing professional who gives priority time to strategic planning for the institution I serve. In this context, I will enable and energize my family, friends, and colleagues to give their best to their unique roles and assignments.
All of my activities initiate from and operate out of a pastoral calling as one who views himself first and foremost as a follower of Jesus who articulates, models, and is committed to His life and teachings.”
On August 1, 2009, I revised the above personal mission statement to reflect a new phase of ministry to which I had been called following my retirement form MVNU:
“I want my ‘senior’ years to be characterized by personal growth, professional development, maturing faith, mentoring leaders, nurturing family, cultivating friendships, compassion for the poor, and passing on to a new generation of Christian leaders, particularly through writing, what has been so freely passed on to me.”
I remain captive to these convictions, as I assume your “mission” drives and compels you!
Will you share your personal mission statement with me? I would like to post your “driving forces” as you seek to serve others by enabling them, through teaching and example, to live their lives under the Lordship of Christ, and to understand, accept and fulfill their ministry to each other and their mission in the world.
A meaningful statement of mission can guide you like a laser beam as you fulfill your leadership ministry. Again, please share your statement with me.
Birthday celebration with the help of my friends!