Thursday, October 4, 2012

You Are What You Do

Recently I have been having a conversation with a young man thinking about planting a church.  I am thankful that the Lord is still sending laborers into the harvest field, but they are still too few -- keep praying.  That said, I do not believe that everyone with an interest in church planting should plant, and some with a calling to plant should not plant yet. 

One thing that every potential planter must wrestle with is this: what is he doing and not doing now, and why that will change when he plants?  Many would-be planters have a vision or idea of what ministry would look like under their leadership.  Often it is a picture of their current church with its strengths, and of course strengths that their current church does not possess.  For instance, a would-be planter sees a church that lacks leadership development in the laity.  So their vision includes models of how they will build leaders.  Or another example might be a current church that is not winning the lost.  So their vision includes an urgent call to win the lost. 

The question that is important for the potential planter to ask is, "Am I doing now what I want to do then?" 

Look at the previous examples.  If the potential planter wants to plant a church that builds leaders, then he should be able to show how he currently builds leaders - leaders that he recruited, delegated, coached, developed and they have reproduced leadership in others.  If he is not doing it, then he is likely to face a learning curve of years to develop that skill.  This setback may stunt the health of his plant.   He may believe in leadership development, but is he currently doing it?

In the other example, a potential planter that wants to plant a church that reaches the unchurched must be a person now that reaches the unchurched.  It is very common for pastors to get stuck in the routine of their ministry duties and not practice the behaviors that they believe are important.  You are not what you believe alone, you are what you do.  If you want to plant a church to reach the unchurched, begin now to reach the unchurched.  Build the church you are connected with now in preparation for when you and your church plant will be dependent on that behavior. 

You are what you do.

--Ben

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