There was an old game called Values Clarification, sometimes called Lifeboat. Christian artist Steve Taylor even wrote a song
When a church already has a Mission statement and a Vision statement, it might be time to work with the congregation on Values Clarification. What are we to be about going forward from here. While the initial framework for the local church does feel an awful lot like the game Lifeboat - "Who are we going to continue to let live and who are we going to throw into the water", there is a deeper sense when a church does this that perhaps all can be saved, and that with the right focus all can be saved and that a "new thing" can happen in the life of the church.
Values Clarification provides a platform to evaluate the programs of the church, and the desires of the people, especially as those things relate to the community at large and the will of God.
As such I hope to work with St. Andrew UMC to develop our core values, and create a deeper sense of commitment and connection with what we are about at Christ's church today.
I have to admit that I always start with the people. I start with who they think they are, and what they want to be. I follow that with God and the larger community where the people are, and the wants and desires of God and the larger community. From this triumverate we can develop actual action plans that might have some deeper hold, as well as a better idea of what resources are already in place, and what attitudes will have to change for things to be effective.
It is, in essence, holding a mirror to the people, and allowing them to decide how they will act out their beliefs, with ownership and conviction.
At the end of the day, we must return to God's will, holding at least some of these values in place for the focus and force of our ministry in our location, even if we add more, or limit ourselves to only 1 or 2 of these values.
Do good to those that harm you.Turn the other cheek.Walk an extra mile.Blessed are the poor.Feed the hungry.