Northgate's Vision (long version--rough draft)

A VISION is what we will become tomorrow and the reality of what we see God doing today. Here’s what "we" see God doing at Northgate. [Click this link ( to watch my presentation of the vision at Northgate's 1st Birthday Bash.]

Outwardly focused. We see an outwardly focused people whose hearts beat for those outside the church. We see a people who don’t cater to their personal preferences, but stick to God’s purpose first and foremost of reaching as many people as possible for Christ.

Evangelists. We see people who are increasingly devoted to reaching those far from God, even if it means moving out of their personal comfort zones. People who know, because Jesus Christ has changed their lives, the difference he can make in other people’s lives. People who see a lost and confused world, stranded in sin, and are willing do something about it.

Spirited. We see a church moving freely, but wisely, in the things of the Spirit. . .  Spirit-filled, culturally relative worship, first-time commitments to Christ, growth in the Word, prayer without ceasing, deliverance from the demonic, gifts of the Spirit, and signs and wonders as an every day norm.

Biblical. We see a biblically grounded church with applicable, matter-of-fact teaching. . .  line by line, verse by verse preaching, one Bible book at a time, sprinkled with seasons of topical stuff. Accessible language, but challenging concepts.

Warmth. We see a down-to-earth church. . .  an informal and welcoming environment to all people from all walks of life.

Growing. We see people who are exploring Christ becoming followers of Christ; people who are following Christ getting closer to Christ; and people who are close to Christ becoming full-blown, God-centered, fully devoted followers of Christ who are willing to risk anything and everything for the Gospel.

Community. We see dozens of midsized, fluid, relationship-based communities of 20 to 30 people developing over time throughout the region. Not traditional small groups, but midsized groups. Not closed-off, “me-centered”, social groups, but open, purposeful, mission-minded, prayerful, God-honoring Christ-follower gatherings.

Young. We see kids and youth coming out our ears. A church that is constantly improving a student’s experience at Northgate and equipping parents to teach their kids at home to be Christ-followers in the world. We dream about bridging the gap between youth and adults. . . making Sunday worship relevant to high school students and young adults.

Multigenerational. We see a multigenerational church (people of all ages) with a deliberate focus on and passion for younger people, 35 and under. We see an older generation of wisdom and warmth joyfully investing in a younger generation of passion and fire.

50/50. We see a rapidly growing church where on any given Sunday some 50% of our audience are Christ-followers and 50% are Christ-seekers. . .  a church where 50% of our church (Christ-followers) serves the other 50% (Christ-seekers). A church that is about others, not “me.”

Loving. We see a church on a mission of radical and demonstrative love.  A church that feeds the hungry, clothes the poor, volunteers in the community, fights diseases, protects the vulnerable, and lets loose compassion on those who need it the most, whether it’s across the street or over an ocean.

Families. We see a church that helps hurting families living in very complicated times. . . a church that heals broken marriages, restores the hearts of the divorced, challenges the vision of singles, and raises up a new generation of young Christ-followers.

Practical. We see a church that offers rubber-meets-the-road, practical teaching and support to our neighbors. . .  courses on spirituality, marriage, finances, and parenting.

Historic. We see an authentic, Christ-centered, Spirit-driven church with the very best of the historic Christian disciplines and traditions. . . Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, baptism for all ages, regular communion, fasting and prayer.

Attraction. We see an attracting church. . .  a church that isn’t uptight, but has fun and let’s the community know about it. . .  a church that is relevant to our community, offering playful opportunities for our neighbors from egg hunts to bounce houses to rides at the fair.

Facility. We see a church with its own building in Ramsey. A practical, useful building, contemporary in design, highly exposed to traffic on a number of acres of useable ground. A church that is positioned for the future to grow, grow, and grow.

Multiply. We see a church one day with satellite campuses with a live band, video preaching, and KIDNECTION.  We see a church who offers the unique vision and DNA of Northgate to neighboring cities like Andover, Anoka, BigLake, Champlin, Coon Rapids, Elk River, St. Francis, etc.

Core. We see a church with a flexible, but consistent, core group of people who really believe eternity is forever and that Northgate Church is the hope of our community. . . A church with high levels of ownership, huge amounts of participation, and service out of love, not duty.

Excellence. We see a church of excellence that deliberately does a few things well and nothing at 50%. . .  a church on a risky, outreach adventure that is financially stable and risk-taking at the same time

Leadership. We see a church developing generational leaders by the hundreds. . . young and old, new and not so new, raising and training up hundreds of leaders for the future.

Regional. We see Northgate Church as a large regional church making an impact for Christ in our community and even around the world. A church of passion, people, and purpose.

Church as intended. We see an Acts 2 church, a New Testament church, a Christ-following church. . .

They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved (Acts2:43-47).