3 Ways to Prevent Mission Drift | Peter Greer

I’m live blogging at the Christian Leadership Alliance (CLA) Outcomes Conference in Dallas, TX.  The theme of the Outcomes Conference is “Perspectives.” Perspectives are about where we as Christian leaders and organizations have journeyed together these past 40 years, where we are today, and God’s plan for the future.

Peter Greer is President and CEO of HOPE International, a global Christ-centered microenterprise development organization serving throughout Africa, Asia, Latin America, and Eastern Europe.

I wrote my eulogy when I turned 40. So, in my talk, I want to talk about things that are in the heart and soul for us professionally and personally for the next forty years. What is it like to have that new perspective in the coming years?

Think of the gift of perspective. Many things lead to drift. Drift is ubiquitous for organizations. My guess that if organizations represented here in the next 40 years, 2/3 of them would have drifted from their mission. The question we need to ask is that what can we do not to drift away. It takes conviction, confidence, and clarity. How do we ensure that our story is a faithful commitment to Christ.

3 Things to Think About for the Next 40 Years

1. Believe the Gospel Matters. 

After researching 200 organizations, what differentiated these organizations that didn’t drift away. They have clarity. Organizations that were able to scale, they had clarity. There weren’t foggy thinking. Change doesn’t happen by a little a bit more money. Poverty starts in the heart.

“I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that’s not the answer.”~ Jim Carey

2. Believe Drift Happens. 

“To be plainly instructed and consider well that the main end of your life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ.” ~ mission statement of Harvard University

What was etched in stone and not etched in the hearts. When compounded by time, it leads to a place we don’t want to go.

“And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the river, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land ye dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” ~ Joshua 24:15

And the people served the Lord all the days of Joshua, and all the days of the elders who outlived Joshua, who had seen all the great works of the Lord that He did for Israel.” ~ Judges 2:7

And also all that generation were gathered unto their fathers, and there arose another generation after them who knew not the Lord nor yet the works which He had done for Israel. And the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the Lord, and served the Baalim. And they forsook the Lord God of their fathers, who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and followed other gods, the gods of the people who were round about them, and bowed themselves unto them, and provoked the Lord to anger. ~ Judges 2:10-12

The next generation lost their mission. They drifted away from the very core of who they are.

3. The issue of drift is not organizational, it’s personal. 

The legacy of David and Solomon. At the end of Solomon, everything is meaningless. At the end of David’s life, this is the man after God’s heart.

The journey was never meant to be alone. We desperately need each other. The average leader in the midst of growth doesn’t have any friends. This life is not meant to live alone. What are we doing to cultivate friendships?