Communication has to be one of the most underestimated parts of any organization, family, or church. When there is an obstacle in one of these three areas, many times, a lack of communication is to blame. I have witnessed this personally in the work here in Cusco.
I believe that the success of the mission in Cusco is not only dependent upon communicating our own ideas to one another, but it has to also involve forming those ideas together, being critical of the direction of the church, and, eventually, sharing the vision.
We have made an effort to do this throughout the short history of this missionary effort. I believe it began at Freed-Hardeman University, where we studied together and dreamed about what it would be like to work on the mission field. There was a lot of communication. Then, after several years, we picked it back up again in Dallas, Texas, where, at Continent of Great Cities (now Great Cities Missions), we specifically discussed the vision of this future work. We had six, very focused, months to be able to communicate and share our vision. When we eventually found ourselves on the mission field, it was tempting to say that we had it all figured out and to break the lines of communication. However, we began studying the same books and discussing how we could improve the vision of the work. Hours were spent looking critically at what we’re doing and asking questions. We took online courses to find more resources and to learn what else was available. Essentially what we were doing was continuing to work together to share a vision. Even today, we have regular discussions about where we’re going in the work, and what needs to change.
I believe agreeing on a vision but never coming back to it leads to eventual miscommunication and major obstacles in whatever we are involved in. For this reason, our mission work has to have something in place that continually brings us back to the vision, whether it’s formal training, a reading plan, online courses, or scheduled conversations. It has to be intentional and made a priority. Otherwise, instead of sharing vision, each team member is just involved in his or her own small projects.
This goes beyond just the mission team here in Cusco. The real challenge is, first, sharing that vision to the congregation, and, second, teaching the future leaders of the congregation to share the vision among themselves on a continual basis. Something that is presently a challenge for the missionaries, seems very daunting when we think about translating it over to the Peruvians.
Please pray for us in regards to our vision: how we form it now, how we communicate it to the Peruvians, and how we equip the future leaders to share vision as well.