passion on purpose
by Mark McPeak
Find out more about the ministry of Free Will International Missions at www.fwbgo.com.
If you could use only one word to describe yourself, what would it be? How would you sum up your personality, habits, experiences, talents, quirks, and relationships—everything in one word? In a creative meeting a few years ago, I was asked to do just that.
Each of us received a stack of about 50 cards with a descriptive word on each. We were asked to narrow the cards down to the five that fit us best. With no opportunity to ask questions and very little time, I chose. First five, then three, and, finally, I committed to a single card as the best one-word summation of me.
I chose the word passion.
It wasn’t careful analysis or logic. At that moment, I chose the word because it felt like the best description of me.
Ask me to describe International Missions in just one word, and I might choose passion. Maybe that’s why it’s been a good “fit” for me these past three years. From the board to the staff to the missionaries to the volunteers—there is a deep passion that runs through the Mission family. Like any other organization, we have problems and challenges in our ranks, but ask anyone on the IM team why they are here and there is no wavering. We get up in the morning and go to work because a lost world desperately needs to hear about Jesus—and we’re all passionate about that.
Many workers cannot connect their day-to-day tasks with any larger meaning. At International Missions, we know everything we do must further our purpose: facilitate church planting movements among unreached people all over the world. Since we have a clear purpose, we can channel our passion to those strategies and tactics that help us fulfill it. This allows us to say no to good things that might distract us so we can focus on what really matters. We regularly set priorities by measuring potential opportunities against our ultimate purpose.
Focus on our purpose establishes a foundation for our management disciplines. Being effective means furthering our purpose through what we do. Being efficient means accomplishing what we do with excellence. All our resources are gifts from God; we promise to be good stewards of them.
Bold Strategy and
While we seek to manage well, we want to be innovative and make needed changes to improve effectiveness. God never changes, but everything else does. With advances in travel, global communications, and advanced technologies, we must diligently use what we have to maximize our impact.
Expect International Missions to innovate the way we do our business. Already we’ve installed video conferencing capability that allows us to have face-to-face meetings with people around the world at a fraction of the time and travel cost of bringing them together physically. We have many bright minds on our team and among our supporters. We plan to use their insights and ideas to advance the cause of Christ.
A New Generation
I wish you could meet each of our newly appointed, young missionaries. If you did, you would be as excited as I am about the future. Not only are they bright, capable, and prepared, they are also passionate and committed. I believe our best years are yet to come as talented young people become increasingly involved, both on the field and on the home front. International Missions will continue to challenge our young people to involvement in proclaiming Christ to the world. Expect to see more communications, events, and opportunities aimed at young adults and students.
International Missions is blessed to employ very gifted and passionate people. Many of them are on our stateside team. It is our privilege to work with our missionaries, pastors, and laypeople to literally change the world.
Our future is bright. I believe the passion that drives our team will continue to draw like-minded people to the cause of sharing Christ with lost and dying peoples. In stateside operations, we will ask the Lord to help us focus our passion, remember our purpose, and continue to develop excellence in everything we do.
About the Writer: Initially hired in 2005 as International Missions’ director of communications, Mark McPeak became deputy director of stateside operations in April 2008. Find out more about the ministry of Free Will International Missions at www.fwbgo.com.