In everything the focus must be the mission. you lose sight of the mission and you lose sight of everything and get into big-time trouble.
I personally get concerned when we as born-again, Spirit-filled, Bible-espousing people forget the mission. As I say in the book (coming soon to a website near you!) Why God Thinks He Can Use You, if you lose the story - God's Story, our story - you lose the mission!
Peggy Noonan in the New York times article reminds of this here.
Maybe the most worrying trend the past 10 years can be found in this phrase: "They forgot the mission." So many great American institutions—institutions that every day help hold us together—acted as if they had forgotten their mission, forgotten what they were about, what their role and purpose was, what they existed to do. You, as you read, can probably think of an institution that has forgotten its reason for being. Maybe it's the one you're part of.
We saw an example this week with the federal government, which whatever else it does has a few very essential missions to perform that only it can perform, such as maintaining the national defense. Our federal government now does 10 million things, many of them not so well. Its attention is scattered. It loses sight of the essentials, which is part of the reason underpants bombers wind up on airplanes.
Wall Street the past 10 years truly and profoundly lost sight of its mission. It exists to be the citadel of American finance. Its job is to grow and invest and enrich, thereby making the jobs possible that help family exist.
Wall Street has a civic purpose. But it must always do its job with an eye to prudence, because a big part of its job is to provide a secure and grounded economic footing for the nation. But throughout the '00s Wall Street's leaders gave themselves over to one thing, and that was looking out, always, for No. 1. And they knew how to define No. 1. It wasn't the country, and it wasn't even the company. They'd crater companies, parachute out, and brag about it later.
If there was one damning and utterly illustrative quote that captured Wall Street in the past 10 years it was that of Charles Prince, CEO of Citigroup, in July 2007. Worrying investment trends were beginning to emerge, but why slow down? He told The New York Times, "As long as the music is playing, you've got to get up and dance." This from a banker, a leader, a citizen, a man responsible for a community.
Later in the article, she talks about Congress losing the mission as well as the Catholic Church.
So, begin the new year with finding your story and consequently your place in God's Mission! It's not that hard - but if you lose it, you're lost.