How does a church discern its call to ministry—creating ministry space that lines up with its mission and vision? Often believers and churches seem to be waiting for God to strike them with a lightning bolt, to reveal what he wants them to do through some spectacular event. But God isn't a genie who pops out of his bottle if we rub it hard enough. A church that waits passively finds itself beset with ministry paralysis.

Then there are the churches that show a degree of life and energy and have significant percentages of the local body engaged in ministry, yet what they do is routine and ineffective. Call it "ministry calcification." Maybe what they are doing was effective five years ago or even last year, but communities can change rapidly. Many churches are ministering to people who have long ago left the community. The missional church constantly assesses what God is doing in a community and what needs are emerging—and adjusts its ministries accordingly.

Do I believe God ...

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