You ought to…

How many times have you heard someone say “you ought to…”?  You ought to lose 10 pounds, you ought to exercise more, you ought to quit smoking, work less, get more sleep, spend more time with your family, and the list could go on and on.  In each case you are being asked to consider something that needs to change, something that you are not doing, or something that you need to stop doing.  Often we are being asked to consider something that currently is not being done, or to consider what might be done if only.  More often these ought to statements ask us to do or see something that is tough to imagine.  If you ought to stop smoking after 20 years of a pack a day, a life without smoking may seem unrealistic.  If you ought to spend more time with your family, but currently work 85 hours and travel 5 days a week, then more time with them may seem impossible.

Former United States Ambassador Max Kampelman says this about the power of ought, “We must recognize the power of the ought.  It’s the power to change the world.  When we see the world in terms of how things ought to be, we can dream for the impossible, and work to see it become a reality.

So then what ought to be at our church?  What ought to be in our personal lives?  We ought to be living out our vision as a church of being, Community Focused, Caring, Growing, and Open to All People.  We ought to be the hands of feet of Jesus Christ.  But what ought to be specifically?  That is our key focus during our upcoming time of prayer.  What ought to be in our future?  What is it that God is specifically calling us to as we go forward as a church?  It is not just asking what ought to be, it is asking big.  As Kampelman says, when we can dream large enough to see what should be, that currently is not, we can see a picture of how to start working toward what once seemed impossible.

But as we pray together, I want to remind you of this quote, “If we want to reach people and see things that we have never seen before, then we are going to need to do things that we have never done before.” Pastor Craig Groeschel.  So as we pray for guidance, clarity, and wisdom from God, we have to be prepared that what God says ought to be. God may call us to something new, different, uncomfortable, or challenging. If that is what God say ought to be, then what would stop us from doing what we have been called to?

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