by Rob Appel

Executive Director


Culture — The society we must create to realize our potential.

This is the last in a series about the “Vision Map” that the General Council introduced last July at General Conference Sessions in Lancaster, PA. In December, 2015, I began a four-month series covering each side of the “Vision Map.” The “Vision Map” lays out for the reader and viewer four distinct areas the General Council believes define and move Seventh Day Baptists forward as we advance God’s Kingdom. The four sides are:

Mission — The reason for our existence

Core Values — Commitments that everybody

lives by — Our nonnegotiable

Focus — What is the most important thing we do

day in and day out

Culture — Society we must create to realize

our potential

This month we will explain the Culture.

In his book, Leading from the Sandbox, author T.J. Addington explains Preferred Culture this way:

The culture you are committed to creating that will maximize your ministry’s

impact and achieve your missional goals.

The definition of your desired culture has three major implications.

1. You have a way to measure success in your ministry.

2. It forces you to grapple with what your desired

culture really is.

3. It gives your staff the target they are working

toward and alignment around that target.

The SDB Kingdom Culture

Compassionate Biblical Living

People demonstrate compassion by ministering to

others as Jesus did. Our daily living should Biblically demonstrate the love of God.

1. Live Biblically

2. Pray First

3. Serve Compassionately

Generous Givers

People unselfishly contribute time, talent, possessions, and finances as God has blessed them.

1. Give Generously

a. Time

b. Talent

c. Resources

2. Look for Opportunities to Serve with Spiritual Gifts


We desire to invite people to join us in worshipping and serving God. We will communicate and treat each other as if we are family because we are brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ.

1. Introduce people to a personal saving relationship

with Jesus

2. Grow and mature as Christians

Wise Stewardship

Stewardship is wisely demonstrated in managing all of the resources God has entrusted to us. We actively use and invest what God has given us rather than just storing it away.

1. Equip SDB’s for ministry

2. Invest in people who are equipped with ministry tools

Volunteer Focused

Volunteers are encouraged, empowered, and mobilized to serve. Many ministries are successfully supported by passionate volunteers. (Through these opportunities, leaders are identified and developed.)

1. Serve Compassionately

2. Healthy Ministries

We believe that our ministries need to be healthy.

Only healthy people can produce truly healthy

ministry outcomes since relationships mean every-

thing in ministry.

I hope and pray that this series has helped you with the “Vision Map.” I also hope that if you didn’t read about the Mission, Core Values, and Focus in previous issues, you will go back and do so.

The General Council was blessed in many ways as they went through this process for the Conference. I would strongly urge you to undertake this process in your local church. It won’t harm your church and its current undertakings, and will most likely bring clarification to what you are currently doing.

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