Vision without Action

Does your organization have a vision statement? How about a mission statement? You probably do.

If you do not have these two vital statements, or if you have them but are not using them to guide your organization’s work, you are missing out on the simplest and most effective movement tools available. These statements of your vision and mission define and guide your organization’s ability to advance Kingdom efforts in your community.

But what is the difference between a vision and mission statement?

You could gather a dozen consultants in a room, and would receive a dozen different definitions and philosophies. To distinguish between vision and mission in your own work, you must default back to the plain English use of those words. I believe the best way to show the difference in usage of these two words is by adding the letters “ary” to the end of each word.

VisionARY
MissionARY

We certainly know what those two words mean. A visionary is someone who sees what could be and should be. A missionary is someone who carries out that work.

The best example is Jesus. Jesus was a visionary. He saw the potential, the possibilities of a blessed life. His missionaries carried his work and his words to the world, putting his vision into practice.

Your organization’s vision is all about what is possible, all about the future potential. The mission is what it takes to make that vision come true.

Oftentimes, I find churches and for-profit organizations stop with the identification of a vision and mission statement. This is sad.  Nothing happens when a vision and mission statement goes no further than a Word document or whiteboard.  Your identified vision and mission statement must be accompanied by action and integration in order to create movement.

Movement requires missionaries.  Remember, “Vision without action is a dream.  Action without vision is a nightmare.” You need both vision and action.

How do you best cast vision in your organization?  What ways have you seen work in mobilizing and encouraging people to be missionaries?

  • http://www.andyfalconer.net Andy Falconer

    Tim, I love the way by simply adding ‘ary’ the difference between the two becomes so clear. I’d add that Jesus didn’t just stop at being visionary, he modelled what it meant to be missionary as well – getting his sleeves rolled up and praying for people, doing miracles, healing people, talking to people. Great blog piece!

    • http://www.timpeters.org Tim

      Andy -

      Great points. Jesus did a great job of modeling both roles. Thanks!