I don’t know who drives this car. I paced on the sidewalk for a while, hoping he or she would return, so I could find out. I wonder whether he/she wears a shirt bearing the same message. Seeing the car parked on Main Street in Watertown Square was amazing: talk about putting it all out there. Talk about speaking your mind. The owner of this car drives his message home, literally. Then he drives his message to work. Then to Target.
Where is your message? What is your message? How do people know what your core commitments are? Do you want them preceding you into the room, or is it better to build to them in the course of conversation with someone? Every time I decide whether or not to wear a cross or a clergy collar or my college sweatshirt, I make a decision about this.
Our congregation just adapted a new mission statement. It was a great exercise in clarifying our core commitments and our “message.” In a culture where most of the time, we keep most things private, our process raised in me lots of feelings about the riskiness of making public claims.
You can read our new mission statement on our website. We’re probably not going to paint it onto a car. If not on a car, then how should we share who we are in ways that are clear but invitational?