Reaching Louisiana and North America for Christ is too big a task for one church to handle. New Church Multiplication is one of the best ways for us to work the fields to the edges. And EVERY CHURCH can get involved. How? The sky is the limit. There is no right or wrong way to support church planting. The question is, How big of a commitment are you willing to make?
Over the next few weeks we’ll share three levels of commitment that excludes no church from involvement. Every Church can Encourage, Partner, and/or Parent a new church. Under each commitment there are some simple ideas and scenarios to help you get started.
Part 1: Every Church can ENCOURAGE Church Planting
Church Planting is a difficult, lonely task, filled with uncertainty and vulnerability. You and your church can strengthen and encourage a church plant, as well as demonstrate a kingdom mindset, by reaching out a hand of friendship.
This can be done with little or no expense to you and your church.
Here are a few ideas:
- Put a church planter on your weekly prayer list. The real battle against the kingdom of darkness is free through Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. As your church prays for the lost to be saved, take the new church and planter to the throne of God as they reach out to the unchurched in your community.
- Buy a church planter a cup of coffee and ask him how it’s going and offer him your insights about the community. Ask him about his family. Demonstrate a desire to see the church succeed. If you don’t have a desire to see him succeed, then repent and get over the idea that your church can reach everybody in the community. Also, encourage the women’s ministry to remember the church planter’s spouse and support her when possible. Just simply treat them as you would want to be treated. Seems like I saw that principle written in red somewhere.
- Invite a church planter to share during your Wednesday night prayer meeting, to Sunday School classes, or to promote special missions offerings. Exposing your church to the story of God’s work in your community will benefit the church by opening their eyes to needs in their Jerusalem and Judea. You could also do Skype interviews with Church Planters in different parts of Louisiana or North America as part of Mission Moments or special missions services. These opportunities are a win-win, giving your church a heart for the world and encouraging church planters along their journey.
- Support the Cooperative Program, Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering, Annie Armstrong Offering for North American Missions. As a cooperating Southern Baptist Church, you are a valuable church planting partner and gifts to CP and state and national mission offerings allow us to be a part of one of the greatest missionary sending and church planting forces worldwide. And as a Church Planter one of the things that kept me encouraged was knowing that I was backed by a nationwide fellowship of believers that were giving sacrificially so that people could hear the gospel in my community.
Contact the LBC Church Planting Team for more information on church planting, for assistance devising your church planting strategy, or to make connections with church planters and church planting training across Louisiana.
A few books that will help you get started with church planting and sponsoring:
- Spin-Off Churches: How One Church Successfully Plants Another by Rodney Harrison and Tom Cheyney
- Viral Churches: Helping Church Planters Become Movement Makers and Warren Bird by Ed Stetzer
- How to Multiply Your Church: The Most Effective Way to Grow God’s Kingdom by Ralph Moore
- The Multiplying Church by Bob Roberts