I just finished a keynote for the NACBA (National Association of Church Business Administrators). I have never been to the conference and found they do a first class job for church leaders in the niche of business administration. (I highly recommend it.) They invited me due to the response to Church Unique. 

I spoke on the new rules of vision. Do rules change? You bet.

  • When I was in college the basic model of how to understand the atom shifted from the "orbital" Bohr model to a "cloud" model based on quantum physics. 

  • A few days ago I visited Graceland, home of Elvis Presley. Elvis became an international icon within a decade because he changed the rules with the way he sang and moved. 

  • Last fall the NCAA added three new rules,  including banning wedge blocking during kick-offs. 

Here are six of  of the "new rules" that I spoke on today. They are part of a larger list from which I nuance content depending on the audience.  

  • Vision is always discovered never created: Jesus is the original visionary for the church, and is still the master and commander of local churches today. Businesses may create vision, but church leaders must discern what God is doing and partner with him. 

  • If your vision isn't stunningly unique you probably don't have one: If you have discovered God's call it will be unique, because God does not mass produce His church. If you say you exist to glorify God and make disciples, you have not communicated a vision yet. 

  • Vision transfers through people not paper: There are many counterfeits to real vision today that cage the idea of vision as a "paper" deliverable.  We must bring vision to life. We don't need a strategic plan as much as we need a strategic thinking framework (that I call the Vision Frame). 

  • Live it and they will come: Building a bigger box is the default mode of vision in most local churches. It is entirely inadequate and we must change the game by changing the scorecard. Are we trying to be the best church in the community or for the community? 

  • Vision dripping is more important than vision casting: Great churches produce visionary teams, and visionary people that share (drip) the vision in the course of daily leadership and life. Vision ought to be a team sport and engage an army of everyday story-tellers in the community. Vision should never be relegated to special gifting of a the point leader only.