What is a mission statement? Is there a difference between a mission statement and a vision statement? Let’s look at this together, NEIGHbor. Some time ago, I was “found” on Facebook by a couple whom I had met over a decade ago. In fact, their youngest daughter was a camper in my first horse camp! She is now married and has children. (Yes, I had a moment but I’m all better now!) Their stay with us was extended as we enjoyed “connecting.”
After they left, I remembered the mission statement I had written years ago when I developed Abba’s Lad Riding Camp for the community I lived in. What is a mission statement? It’s a statement of the purpose of a service, company, organization or individual. This statement answers the question, “Why do we(I) exist?” A mission statement focuses on the present state. My mission statement was and remains today “to provide a safe conscious environment where horse and handler can experience inspiration, education and fun; a setting where connection happens.” Was I conscious of this mission statement when I got the email? No, I wasn’t. Was it fulfilled? Yes.
What then, is a vision statement? A vision statement is sometimes called a picture of your service in the future for all your strategic planning. This statement reminds you of what you are trying to build, acting as a compass which gives direction. A vision statement is for me. A mission statement is for them. A vision statement asks the question, “Where do we(I) want to go?”
One of my grandchildren took a picture that defines the vision statement I have. “Horses are like bridges that can lead us home;” home to loving God with all your heart, soul and mind, and loving your NEIGHbor as yourself.
A bridge is a connection or a link. A wall is a barrier or a divider. When we are in relationship, whether it be with God, people, or animals, we are either building a bridge or a wall. Ask questions that will connect you with others and lead you into harmony with the relationship you desire to build. And if you find yourself building a wall, please don’t require your horse to pay for it. Just sayin’.
So, here we are on a “mission” with a “vision,” remembering that our mission statement is about the people we are serving and the service we are providing. The vision is the picture of your service, what it looks like. Vision is like a blueprint; your strategy.
I want to talk briefly about HOME. I’m not talking about the physical address but the place INSIDE, where YOU dwell and abide. This is the energy our horse connects with. Seriously. What happens when you are not at home (address) and someone knocks on your door? No one answers. Why? Because no one is home. Our horse knocks on our door (our inside abiding/dwelling place) and we need to be HOME/PRESENT.
Let me give you an example. A farrier was putting horseshoes on a stallion at a barn I worked at. The stallion wasn’t standing for him, and he asked me if I would help. When I took the lead rope, the stallion let out a sigh and stood like a gentleman. When I went to pay my bill for hoof care, I noticed a discount. On the bill he wrote “Your presence made the difference”
YES! It does! Please always remember this. In the flow of simplicity, “being home” simply means to know you in the truest form where you are at rest inside. From your relationship of knowing God (free from condemnation, shame, guilt, and accusations because of Jesus’ finished work on the cross), flows knowing you, and from knowing you flows your connection with your horse.
Knock, knock… Anyone home?