For those who want to spark change toward missional incarnational ministry, discouragement is a constant battle. For change at this level to occur, we’re actually talking about DNA. That’s the toughest thing to change once it’s already taken root. Recognize that it’s a slow process. Don’t get impatient and start criticizing everybody. Building something that’s relational like this takes a very long time.
As leaders, what we need to do is begin acting differently ourselves. Model what you want people to do. Then invite people to join with you—act your way into a new way of thinking. Don’t get discouraged, but maintain focus on your goal. Having people journey along side you is critical. We all need a coach or some fellow travelers you we connect with so we can reflect on how God is working and how we can join him there. These types of relationships can go a long way toward sustaining your soul as you go through this process.
Discouragement can set in easily. When you seek to live this way, it takes at least two years before you start seeing fruit. If your response is “that’s too long,” ask yourself how committed you are to the process. What are you willing to endure to see this vision become a reality?