As you well know, we live in a day when “image is everything.” While my first impulse is to rail against that reality as an excuse for our penchant for approaching things superficially, there’s also a part of me that understands that a good number of us are visual learners and we benefit from having something displayed to us and not merely explained. After all, how does the old saying go? “I’d rather see a sermon than hear one any day.” If that’s true of a sermon, I think it also holds true for a visioning plan.
This Sunday, I’m completing my six-week series on “Making Vision Become Reality.” Each Sunday we’ve looked at a specific thumbnail proposal and how it reflects a core aspect of our church’s vision for our future. But just because the sermon series is over, we don’t want our membership to lose sight of the importance of implementing our vision through each ministry activity we’re about.
That’s why, beginning this Sunday, you’ll begin to see “icons” show up next to every ministry activity announcement. These icons will help us connect that activity to some section of our visioning plan. The idea is to show that we are serious about bringing our vision to reality and that everything we do as a church in some way serves our efforts at seizing God’s future for our church.
The word “icon” comes from the Greek word for “image” or “likeness.” For the longest time it was used for religious art that serves the purpose of spiritual devotion and for that matter still does. But in recent days it has also come to describe a “short-hand” representation of something in non-religious contexts. Our hope is that our new Vision 2020 icons will do both – represent a particular aspect of our vision plan and also encourage our devotion to its spiritual purpose.
So, help us explain these icons to others who may not read this blog. I see it as another way of committing these thumbnail proposals to heart and reflecting our enthusiasm over what we see God doing in us now and what we believe He will do even more in the days ahead.
“The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image (icon) of God” (2 Cor. 4:4).