Changing the temperature

“You’ve got to be a thermostat rather than a thermometer. A thermostat shapes the climate of opinion; a thermometer just reflects it.” Cornel West

“There are two different types of leader. A person can either be like a thermometer or a thermostat. A thermometer will tell you what the temperature is. A thermostat will not only tell you what the temperature is, but it’ll move you to the temperature you need to get to.” Kevin McCarthy

What’s the temperature around here? How do you accurately assess the climate in the church. No, I am not talking about how cool or hot it is in a room. I am talking about the personal and corporate perceptions about where we are.

There are clouds of uncertainty that hover over us. We know we have to arrest the decline and fuel forward momentum. We understand that doing the same things without improvement brings about unacceptable results. We grasp that church life by preference alone has not produced the growth we all want to see. We know change is inevitable. But change is uncomfortable.

Those two realities are not easy for a church in her 60’s. We look over our shoulders and think of better days, sometimes ignoring the not-so-good days that also occurred. We look around at spaces where significant events took place and remember life-change experiences. We yearn to gaze ahead and believe that good days, even better days, are before us.

You would have to be completely isolated not to realize we have important work in front of us. Our next step is this Sunday as the church meets in conference. We will be asked not simply to vote on the Mission and Vision initiatives, but to affirm and commit to them. If we are to aggressively and enthusiastically address worship opportunities, small group community formation, ministry/service activities in an Acts 1:8 model, and continue a focus on young adults and families, it will take more than a vote. Each of us must own this proposal by personal involvement and engagement.

The Structural Options ad hoc committee has been working for a year to study our current circumstances and alternatives that exist. They will present a thorough analysis of directions the church may choose to create a new and desired future for our congregation. You will be given a written report that contains their research, conclusions, and considerations.

Other items related to the 2016-7 Ministry Plan, Church Council elections, and the Nominating Committee will be presented. The conference begins immediately after worship in the Peachtree Room. Light refreshments will be served. Childcare is available.

So how do we affect the climate of our church? “The only way to permanently change the temperature in the room is to reset the thermostat” T. Harv Eker. We can choose to be optimistic, positive, and excited about God’s leadership and blessing. We can lift our heads and encourage our hearts with the conviction that He is doing a new thing among us!


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About Mark Wilbanks

Dr. Wilbanks became Wieuca’s fifth senior pastor in February of 2012. Mark’s father, Oliver Wilbanks, served as Associate Pastor here from 1966 to 1982. Wieuca had a tremendous influence in shaping Mark’s call to ministry during his teenage and young adult years. A graduate of both Southern and New Orleans Baptist Theological seminaries, Mark has served churches in Kentucky, Florida, and Georgia. He pastored Southside Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida for 17 years and Bradfordville First Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Florida for ten years. He and his wife, Kim, were married in 1979 and have two sons, Andy and Jordan. Andy is married to Lindsay and they have a son, Cade, a daughter, Ruthie, and welcomed their third child, Samuel, in October.

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