“Clarify the Win”

“Define what is important at every level of the organization. Clarify the win.” This is the first of the “7 Practices of Effective Ministry,” which Andy Stanley, founding pastor of North Point Community Church and North Point Ministries, wrote. What’s a “win” anyway?

For a basketball team, their win is not how many of their players have commercial endorsements. Every play, every pass, every rebound, every defensive and every offensive move is a means to an end: To shoot the ball into the basket. Their win is how much points they actually scored and how much points they kept their opponents from scoring. It is the scores that would determine who won and who lost. Thus, Stanley wrote, “The church should be more determined than any other kind of organization to ‘clarify the win’ simply because the stakes are so much higher: Eternity hangs in the balance.” (Ibid) If we fail to clarify our win, no matter how busy we are in our church activities, we will end up just playing church.

We sometimes think our win is the ABCs of successful churches nowadays (ABC stands for Attendance, Building and Cash. Some also add a letter “D” or Denominations.) But our Lord Jesus Christ has already made clear our win for us. “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20, ESV) The main verb in this passage is “make disciples.” A disciple is a follower of Christ. We are to go out to lead seekers to become His followers, helping them grow in their faith until they go out to lead others to become followers who would also go out to lead others. That’s our win. Second Timothy 2:2 tells us, “and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” When we succeed in making followers, we really succeeded. When we only succeed in doing things other than that, we actually failed. This spells out the difference between working smarter and working harder.

That’s why I really praise God for our church leaders and workers who will attend the “Built to Last” Intentional Disciplemaking Conference by Rev. Edmund Chan tomorrow Friday and Saturday at Greenhills Christian Fellowship Ortigas. May God continue to unite our hearts towards His win for our church!

Brethren, making Christ-followers is our win.

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