Core values are deeply held convictions that influence how we spend our time, mental energy, and finances, shaping our daily priorities. These values, whether stated or unstated, positive or negative, aspirational or operational, differ among individuals due to unique strengths, interests, and gifts bestowed by God.
Given the foundational connection between core values, belief systems, and upbringing, conflicts often arise both in the home and within institutions when one party feels as if their values are not being heard or prioritized. Healthy marriages typically go through a refining period where the husband and wife begin blending and strengthening their values into one. Similarly, organizations thrive when a set a family-unites all unite under shared common values.
When identifying shared core values within a church community, it's crucial to recognize that the right answer is most likely a little wrong for everyone. That is to say, we are looking to identify shared values that, while essential to some, may hold different levels of importance for others. This diversity doesn't diminish the importance of individual values. As Christians, we must acknowledge that our values are rooted in our desire to please God and submit to his will. Our goal is not to get every value of every individual on the list, but to discern the significant overlap and existing unity we have in our existing family values.
Over the next several weeks, I want to invite you to join me in this process of discerning the common core values that will serve as pillars for the culture we are building as a church community. This process will take some time, a decent amount of soul searching and discussion, and quite a lot of listening and submitting to one another. A bird's-eye overview of the process will include:
Discerning the story of your values
Defining your family's core values
Working towards consensus of common values through prayer and seeking the Lord.