Mission Fulfillment Requires Focus – John Stumbo Video Blog No. 90

January 12, 2021


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This month John shares some of his office's key priorities for 2021.


Happy New Year, Alliance family.

It’s 2021. I’m in Colorado Springs, and I have the privilege of sharing with you today some things that are on my heart for this year as your president. As 2020 launched, many leaders used the opportunity to declare a 2020 vision. Then came March, and the months that followed, and we all know that the year was full of the unexpected. 2020 was a plan-upending, ministry-recalibrating year.

We entered 2021 with a little more humility, a little less certainty, and this, in my mind, is largely good; but if we’re not careful as leaders, we’ll become overly cautious. We’re called to lead, and that leadership calls us to kneel before the father and seek to receive direction from him; and lift our eyes to the horizon and try to ascertain what it is that this next year should hold; and then stand before the people we lead to say, “Here’s where I believe God is taking us into this new year.” And so, that’s what I want to do from my chair today.

In my attempts to receive direction from the Lord as your president, here are the items that I’m putting my energy towards in 2021.

Office Relocation. That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anybody who’s been paying attention to what’s been happening from the C&MA National Office. We believe, for a long list of reasons, that it’s time for the National Office of the U.S. C&MA to relocate and recalibrate—to reposition ourselves both in location and concept. So right now, we are in property negotiations in a region of Columbus that we hope, in the very near future, we get to give you the specific location. But as the property negotiations are in process, we still need to hold that in confidence; but they’re going well, as is the attempt to acquire a temporary office location, because we know it’ll take us a long period of time to build out the dream. Meanwhile, 8595, the property in Colorado Springs, has been listed, and there’s early interest in this property. So we have a great launch to this relocation, and much work lies before us in 2021. You’ll hear more from us on that.

Streamlined Funding. We’ve heard from you. We know that giving to The Alliance has just been too complicated. So, we’re making the necessary changes—so that as you and I, as donors, want to advance the mission of The Christian and Missionary Alliance through the Great Commission Fund, we can support both work and worker without it being a real complicated process. So, we are going to great efforts to make the changes to align our processes with your heart for mission support.

I hope you’re not surprised that Council 2021 is on my priority list. Opryland is going to great lengths to make sure that we have a safe environment. Registration is open. We welcome your participation. I’m eager for us to gather again, for our mornings to be filled with storytelling of what God has done in recent days within this movement, and vision casting for what we believe that He has in the months and years to come. There are exciting things that we look forward to telling. Afternoons, we do business well, and we want to continue to do so. Issues of priority that are significant in our mission fulfillment will be discussed, debated, acted upon. Evenings, we’ll be leaving for some significant times of ministry and sweet times of worship, as Andrew Peterson, CeCe Winans, Aaron Shust, Kelvin Walker, and many others will be leading us to the throne and opening the word of God to us. These are moments you’re not going to want to miss. I’m sure you’d agree with me that the National Conversation needs to stay on my priority list. I’ve been so pleased with the Alliance family, of how we’ve been engaging in this conversation. Large numbers of participants and great spirit shown. We don’t agree on scriptural interpretation on some of the aspects for men and women in leadership. We know that we’re wrestling through that and how that applies to consecration, ordination, titling, etc. We don’t have a final solution yet. We continue to discuss—meetings coming with various leaders, the Board of Directors in February—we’ll continue to wrestle through. We do have broad agreement on most of the aspects of the Statement of Faith. And so the conversation continues, and I’m encouraged that we are doing so together as a family.

I hope that you know that all this talk of relocating and restructuring and rewriting, there’s a reason for it: Mission fulfillment. We have an assignment from God. We’re one of His end-times families that He’s raised up to complete the Great Commission, and we’re serious about that. We are a church-planning, church-strengthening, mission-sending, unreached-people-group-reaching organization, and we have to do that well. And we believe that we will do that better as we make some of these changes. So, mission fulfillment is always on my list—but I’m more excited about it than ever, because I believe that these changes will make us more effective, efficient and better equipped to do that which God has called us to do.

I’m quite aware that I need to hold all things loosely, that I can’t buy the deception that I get to control all of this. And I’m aware that I have to walk in integrity, holiness, walking in the Spirit. That’s non-negotiable in our spiritual leadership. We’ve launched 40 Days of Prayer as a means of taking all of this seriously and personalizing this. If you’ve not yet engaged, we welcome you to do so. There are resources online for your participation.

We launched the new year at the National Office with a morning of prayer that was profoundly meaningful for me. And then, lastly, but most significantly, we will love. Jesus said this is our priority and that nothing else on the list really matters if we don’t do so in a loving manner. Yes, we’ll disagree with each other; yes, we’ll disagree within our congregations on all kinds of things; but we have been taught in Scripture, and we’ve learned that love can be greater than our disagreements. Love is the hallmark of what it means to be Christ’s Church. And we will continue to love because the love of Christ is within us, and we are in Him. So together, Alliance family, we’re moving forward into 2021 with great anticipation for what God is going to do. Thanks for joining us.


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