Family on mission. I feel like that counts as a “buzz phrase” these days. Everything is all about mission statements and core values and vision. From business, to ministry (including churches), to side hustles, families, and more, this idea of having a mission, a focus, is consistently pushed. And for good reason.
Craig Groeschel puts it this way, “Everyone is going somewhere. But not everyone is going somewhere on purpose.” Me, my family – we will end up somewhere, but are we going to get there on purpose? Are we going to get there together? I hope so. And if I’m hoping, then I should be doing everything in my power to make sure that we are working together for a common goal with common values.
Justin and I have often talked about having a family mission statement. In fact, way back at the beginning of our ministry voyage, we were mentored by an organization called As Family We Go started by Rend Collective (I talk more about that here). And that kind of became our motto: As family we go…whatever we do, whatever God calls us to, we are doing it together, as a family. So, we threw around some ideas, talked about some values…but that’s it. All we did was talk. We never finalized, we never implemented.
Fast forward four or five years and we move to Michigan. Here, after a series of God moments and the Holy Spirit’s leading, we found a new church. The values and mission they have established were encouraging and lit a tiny spark for us to look at that in our own lives again. So we talked….again… but didn’t do much more than that.
Meanwhile, Justin is pouring everything he has learned in the past decade or so into his new job – with a huge emphasis on company culture: mission, values, etc.
And then our church hosts a “discover your calling” event. I decided to go. It was eye opening. We walked through our past experiences, our current passions and giftings, and essentially walked away with some sort of purpose (or mission) statement. I was excited. It wasn’t exactly new information for me (I think for most people it isn’t), but it was rejuvenating. It helped me reframe the season of life that I’m in, helped me see that I AM living out my calling, even if I’m “just” a stay-at-home mom now (I don’t say the word just here lightly…but, sometimes, let’s face it, it’s how I feel…).
That excitement stirred me to sit down and go through the process with Justin. Once he had personally gone through it, we came together and walked through what that would look like for our family, together. While we never had anything officially written on paper, we realized that we were, mostly intentionally, living out a mission together as a family already.
Maybe that’s the case with you. Maybe you don’t necessarily need a mission statement or a list of values. Maybe your family already operates with a set of values and you’re working together to accomplish the goals of God’s Kingdom. But maybe not. Maybe you’re stuck in the American dream, fighting hard to earn that next promotion so you can afford that new car, or that boat, or the down payment for the lake house you’ve been dreaming of. Maybe you’re struggling with keeping up with the Jones’ next door – after all, they just re-sided their house and added a gorgeous backyard space where even you want to spend most of your day. Don’t you deserve that at your own house?
Or maybe you’re just surviving the day to day – get to work, make sure the kids are fed and that they don’t unalive themselves, pay the bills, make dinner, go to church, rinse, and repeat. So often we just go through the motions. But the reality is – you’re still going to end up somewhere. Don’t you want to get there on purpose?
Take some time today and truly evaluate what your purpose is – what is God calling you specifically to do? Because we are all called. We have all been give the great commission – to go and make disciples. But how has God equipped you, through experience, passions, giftings, etc., to do that as only you were uniquely created to do? Then, take it a step further – how does your spouse, your family fit into that? How can you become a family on mission together?
To get your gears turning, I’ve included our families mission statement and values below:
Cultivate LIFE in others by being LOVE.
- Courage – Do It Afraid
- Integrity – Do the Right Thing
- Compassion – Get in the Mess
A quick Google search will give you hundreds of other examples and Focus on the Family has put together a great how-to guide here.