I frequently tell young men that church planting is the scariest, riskiest, most challenging, yet rewarding thing you could ever do with your life. There’s never been a greater time to see a new movement of church planting. The U.S. Census Bureau is projecting a net gain of 30 million new people in the United States by 2020. With 3,500 churches closing their doors each year and only 4,000 churches starting annually, there is still a huge gap in meeting the evangelistic need of our country. But while the need is great, the church-planting pathway is not for everyone. So what questions should a young church planter candidate ask to process this potential call?
- Am I experiencing a strong internal draw to plant a new church? No one should plant a church simply because they have a good opportunity or a good idea. Church planting is always a God anointed calling. Make sure it’s not just an infatuation with church planting but an authentic call to church planting.
- Am I driven to reach the lost people of my community with the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Am I currently active in sharing my faith with the lost people in my community? Don’t wait until you are a church planter to become evangelistic. Remember, you don’t have to plant a church to live out God’s call to reach the lost.
- Are mature believers and significant leaders around me confirming my calling to plant a church? In my experience, God brings others into the life of the potential planter to confirm his calling. In an almost mysterious way, others will begin affirming the call. Pay close attention when spiritually mature believers and leaders who have observed your gifts in action speak words of affirmation to you regarding planting a new church.
- Do I have a well-rounded leadership experience that has naturally prepared me for the next step of leading at a senior level in a church? Very often, young men want to skip levels of the leadership pipeline to quickly get to the top. In doing so, they miss key developmental opportunities to grow their leadership. Church planters must learn to lead before leading others.
- Is a church willing to stand behind and beside me through my church planting? Ultimately, healthy churches are not produced by individuals but reproduced by churches. Many church planters have ventured out as orphans and fallen to loneliness, isolation and lack of support. Having a good church and a good leader behind you makes all the difference in the world.
Give us a call if your church is interested in becoming a reproducing church. LAUNCH’s mission is to partner with churches to inspire and equip next generation planters to lead strong. Check out the list of our upcoming Assessment Retreats at www.launchstrong.com.