There was once a young man who asked a young woman to marry
him. She said “Yes,” and in the course
of time they got married. He was committed
to being a good husband. So much so, that he decided to stay at home all
the time to take care of his wife’s every need. It helped that he had
rich in-laws, but this was still a novel approach to marriage. Soon, God opened her womb, and along came
baby number one. The man knew that now he
needed to be a good father. With that in mind, he went out and got a job
to earn money, but every waking hour that he was not at work, he spent at home
with his child and his wife, because he was committed to being a good father
and a good husband.
Babies two, three, four, five, six, and seven came along in
regular succession, expanding the quiver.
“I need to be a good husband, and a good father,” the man said.
Aside from the 45-60 hours a week he spent at work to earn an income to support
his family, EVERY other thing he did was with either his wife or his children.
The children grew up, but the man did not release them into the
world. It’s a tough world out there anyway. The years came and
went, and in due time there were seven adult children living at home, ranging
in age from 25 to 37 years old. They did not go anywhere outside the home;
they did not do anything with anyone else. The man and his wife were
convinced that it was best for their children not to have to deal with the
anxieties of separation. They knew that some year, maybe next year or the
next, the oldest in the family may be ready and they could possibly think about
allowing one of the adult children to get a part-time job near the home.
It would not work now for any of the adult children to move away! If that
happened, the father would not be able to father these children. What if
something happened to them!
Church leaders sometimes act this way towards members. Within our network of churches, pastors and
leadership teams are committed to care for the churches that they lead. We
know that there are issues in our churches. We see the needs of the
people. “We need to build each other up and encourage one another,”
is well-stated and true. “Perhaps in a year or two, once we weather our current
storm, we will be ready for a church plant,” is another reasonable
thought. “This couple could potentially
be a part of a church plant, but first they have a boat-load of personal issues
they need to address,” is a reasonable concern that comes up. “I would
even consider being a part of a church plant, but what would happen to the
church that I am currently leading if I go?” is another question that should
not be flippantly discarded.
Please remember. The call
of Christ to his disciples is as clear to the church today as it was when He
gave these instructions: “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come
upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and
Samaria, and to the end of the earth." (Acts 1:8). Submit your life to
Christ. Receive power from the Holy
Spirit. Dig deep in the Word of God.
Fellowship with the saints. But
do not neglect the call to be witnesses for Christ!
Please, brothers and sisters, in whichever church you fellowship
and wherever you live, be witnesses for Christ.
Nothing should stop you from that call.
One positive by-product of involving yourself in an intentional,
Kingdom-focused, gospel-oriented church plant is that this call to “be
witnesses” becomes more front and center.
Church planters have to preach the gospel, because they know that is their
calling. They also know that the church
will not grow if people are not born again.
Bench warmers sometimes forget that they are not called to warm the
bench. Think about it. If all you do is warm the bench at your
church you are creating more heat than light. What good is that? Jesus said “You
are the light of the world.” There are
plenty of hot seats to be found, but the Lord of the Harvest is calling out
reapers into his harvest. The workers
are few. Getting involved in church planting may not be the most comfortable
choice, but it is an exhilarating and painful way to serve the Lord of the
Harvest. In case that scares you, true
joy and suffering run along parallel tracks—you won’t experience one without
the other. Will you pray for church
plants? Will you support church planters? Will you consider becoming a church
Steps for Planting a Church
Planting a church is an adventure, a journey, a process, a series of steps one after another. Read this article to get you started on the journey.
Map of BMA Churches
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Chairman of church planting sub-committee of DNI
Phone: (347) 413-0330