New churches can become the thing very things that people don’t like about church pretty quickly. If you want a recipe for a church plant disaster, fill it up by attracting church people who already know Jesus and are shopping for a new church for any of these reasons:
1) YOU don’t like the music at your church
2) YOU don’t like the format at your church
3) YOU don’t like the decor of your church
4) YOU don’t like the preaching at your church
5) YOU don’t like the children’s space at your church
6) YOU don’t like the people at your church
7) YOU don’t like format of your church
8.) YOU don’t like where your church meets
9) YOU don’t like it that your church “isn’t meeting your needs.”
10) YOU aren’t getting fed at your church
As a planter, the key reason I would like to hear from Christians interested in a new church is, “I want to do all I can to see people come to Jesus and have a place to learn how to follow Him.”
Do you see the difference? Reasons 1-10 are built on selfish motivations while an evangelistic heart is selfless and kingdom focused.
Please, please, please, I’m begging you not to get involved with a new work if reasons 1-10 are your primary motivation. Please don’t come. If you do, it will only be an instant before you will be able to start a brand new list of all the ways the new work isn’t giving YOU want YOU want. If reasons 1-10 are the reasons you are church shopping, please stay where you are and pray that God makes you an agent of His grace in that church body.
But, if you are primarily pumped about taking risks, penetrating culture and putting all the sacred cows to death because you want to build something new and different to reach OTHERS for Christ, don’t let anything stand in your way. Church planting cannot be about YOU.
1 Cor. 9:19-22 Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, nonreligious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralized – whoever. I didn’t take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ – but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I’ve become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-saved life. (MSG)
Ha! We planted a church out here in Seattle area about 5 years ago, and when we moved to town and met people, if they were already part of a church, we pretty much turned and walked away. Okay, not THAT harse, but we didn’t want to start a church of people who are disgruntled from their church. We didn’t want to come to town and take people away from church bodies. We wanted, as it sounds like you do too, to find people who don’t already go to a church and connect them to Jesus and a community. We have two tag lines and one is ‘No Perfect People Allowed!’. The other is ,’It’s a get your hands dirty kind of church.’ We really focus on service projects within our community at least monthy, and the church is not a building, but a group of people that don’t pretend or ‘play’ church, but ARE the church. Our website is not our gifting, but you can check us out at http://www.kitsapalive.com We only meet once a month as a large group gathering, and the other three Sundays are in house church models focusing on scripture and food one week, local service project the next, and a fun/fellowship time the last week. Good luck in your endeavors and to your wife, as we walk in similar shoes!
I want to come because I want to be with my brother