The members of our community have different goals right now. When we decided that we can call ourselves community since we are really more than a family, we did not have time to talk about our common vision. I believe that there is room for everyone in our existing community to join in with this vision and goals. That is, they have the giftings, talents and inclinations to participate. If this all became a reality, I have high hopes that they will join in. We all definitely want to help bring the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven.
Right now, I must say this is my vision for part of our community–and we shall see what happens. That is what is so beautiful about our community–there is room to grow and to help each other to be all God wants us to be. I know we will begin conversations about this vision, and perhaps soon we can see if we can be more united.
My vision is to have a community of people who want to work together to create a training center for followers of Jesus who want to help churches and other Christ followers become healthy, thriving Communities where everyone is equipped and inspired to live out the teachings of Jesus in such a way that positively transforms their selves, families, neighborhoods, local churches, city, and the whole world.
I am presenting this vision first to my family in hopes that they will see where they fit into this vision and so that we can all continue to work together on our land in the beautiful way that we have done up to now. I believe that we have all grown spiritually, emotionally, and even physically (my children are young adults now) so that we can work together with God to co-create this vision.
My goals include:
1. Identify the training programs and small group studies that are already existing which will become a part of a larger holistic training program. I know that there are other small group studies that might be used and I welcome other suggestions. But so far I have identified the following:
Immanuel Approach: A teaching which helps people deepen their intimacy with God, permanently resolve past pain, and discern God’s ongoing guidance
Thrive Training: Relational Skill Training including skills needed for effective parenting, marriage, and friendships
Thrive Recovery: serve the needs of men and women who are struggling with issues related to addiction, trauma, abuse, painful relationships and spiritual dryness.
Creation care and simple, sustainable living: ServIng God and Saving the planet
Care for over all health: Biblical Nutrition 101 from Hallelujah Acres
Discipleship: Transformational Life Groups (Neil Cole)
Missional living and community: Tangible Kingdom Primer
Transformation (revival): The Quickening Prayer Guide
Intentional Christian Community (residential): Intentional Christian Communities Handbook
2. Identify the individuals and organizations who are in alignment with the above stated vision and inspire them to network through the following ways:m
- One on one personal contact through creative ways of connecting with hard to reach people such as a personalized DVD with a message just for them, snail mail with brightly colored artistic envelopes that inspires them to open their mail, and making up songs that share gratitude about their work.
- On line forum
- Facebook page
- Host regular face to face conferences using Open Space Technology
- Find mentors for our community members from the various people in the different groups
- Create an artistic visual that shows how we are all connected.
- Develop an inspiring video that shares our vision in a fun, winsome, connecting way that inspires people to want to learn more.
- Go to various churches and connect with pastors–at least one in every major city so that seeds are planted.
3. Identify responsible, passionate, healthy people who are in alignment with the vision who want to be part of the community, and find ways of working together.
4. Make ways of providing right livelihood for community members through such means as:
- Members raising funds for their expenses (similar to YWAM)
- Expanding the businesses I am already working in such as organizing, gardening, cleaning so that the whole group can be involved and at the same time be a Christian witness to those we work for.
- Produce mini-festivals similar to The Flight to Light Experience that I assisted my son, Chris Mikkelson, in producing in order to share the vision in tangible ways.
- Create an aquaponics system on the land and sell food locally as well as save a ton of money on buying food. Also have green houses and regular gardens.
- Build a camp on the property and host conferences for all ages.
- Develop our own training materials to fill in the gaps for any of the skills that we want to teach in partnership with others who are experts
- Produce music recordings that help people of all generations connect through song and dance.
- Partner with the groups that we are working with and market them for international and widespread attention including getting major media attention through creative ways.
5. Create a structure for the intentional community so that we are all living the vision in harmony and strength.
- Have a screening and membership process similar to places like Reba Place Fellowship and Koinonia to ensure that people are not draining our energy.
- Learn from the oldest and most successful Christian communities that share our values such as those mentioned above.
- Find mentors from those communities who can help us be successful and accountable.
- Maintain strong relationships with wise leaders such as Jim Wilder who can help us to stay on track.
- Learn as much as I can about other communities as I visit them so I have a lot of good foundational material to use to create a successful structure that encourages freedom and creativity.
- Appeal to people of all ages so that we have an intergenerational experience including my own children Mahriyanna, 17 and Chris, 24. You can learn more about them at http://www.facebook.com/funfellowshipandservice
Your feedback and ideas are welcome. You can contact me at livablefutureproject at gmail dot com.