On Beyond Zebra

             (photo by Josué Sánchez)

Elder David Ripley, President of the Manitoba-Saskatchewan Conference, conducted a Leadership Summit for the church board February 16-18. Assisted by his wife, Pastor Lynn Ripley, they empowered attendees to earnestly seek God to be effective as leadership at Henderson Highway.

Armed with handouts, electronic presentations, and statistics, Elder Ripley also packed a few extras for this summit: M&M chocolates, measuring spoons and a children’s book. Yes! From one simple tale, we were challenged to think outside the box.

Written by well-known author Dr. Seuss, On Beyond Zebra contains some fantastic insights for leaders. Here are a couple of quotes:

“…because Z is as far as the alphabet goes…”
“…my alphabet starts where your alphabet ends…”

The English alphabet contains only 26 letters. All the words we’ve learned to spell contain letters from this alphabet. While we can combine letter and tweak their sounds, there is nothing beyond the letter Z.

However, God is able to create new beginnings from what we believe to be an ending. Where we’ve exhausted our knowledge base, God is just getting warmed up. Nothing is impossible for God!

Much of 2017 was an unexpected year of transition in our church. Through the high and low points, one thing is clear: we need a new vision and mission for Henderson Highway.

Reflecting on previous experiences as a pastor and church leader across the globe, Elder Ripley shared some of the obstacles and blessings that come with leadership. He also spoke of the confidence and authority that comes with being obedient to God’s direction.

While we all have awesome ideas, we do not want to create our own vision for God’s church. We want to follow God’s vision for His church. This is a gradual process that will take much prayer and time to plan.

Doing something new invites change. Some of us are eager for change. Some are hesitant and even outright resistant to change. As we take steps moving forward, we encourage you to partner with the Pastors and church leadership in prayer. Let’s boldly ask God where He wants us to go.

Let’s be ready to move when He answers. On beyond zebra.

“So on beyond Z! It’s high time you were shown that you really don’t know all there is to be known.”

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