It has been said that "churches make disciples and disciples make churches." But how does a church or a disciple know when it is time to plant or multiply? Dave Harvey answers this question in the video below.
How does a church planter know when he's call to plant or a church is called to multiply?
- You have a qualified leader/champion.
- God has stirred others to join or has prepared others to receive.
- You find faith to release and replace the man.
- You can identify a specific location that seems ripe for a church.
- The impact of the team’s departure will impose sacrifice, not slaughter.
Reflection: I have many distinct memories of standing on stage sending out church planters & teams thinking, ‘How will we ever replace men, fruitfulness or resources?” only to find there is an Acts 13 principle of sending out your best.
Qualification: We don't want to undermine the effectiveness of church by sowing out all strong leaders. There is a balance between building & expansion comes through perceptive leadership & prayer!
Well, I think one of the things that's so encouraging is first, there's going to be a grace in his life to manifest the qualities needed for a successful church plant, the qualities needed for the godliness required to be an elder. So when I think of 1 Timothy 3, or Titus 1, the way those qualities form, are you godly with the people around you? Would your wife be able to commend you, that you're sober-minded and respectable and all those things that are talked about in the pastoral epistles? Do you love the lost? Can you preach? That's an important one. Can you preach the Word, and do you have a desire to do so? And are there people around you that would commend your preaching and feel inspired by the way you exposit the Word of God?
Can you shepherd? In other words, is there a component of care in the way that you relate to people? And is there a leadership that is evident when you're standing in front of a small group or among your friends that kind of galvanize people and point them in a direction? How's your home? How's your marriage? How about your kids? These are the kind of things that come into view in Scripture when we talk about calling, and in order to go to church plant, we have to have these things in view.
Here's another one: who agrees? Who agrees with the reality that you feel called? In other words, it's not enough that you feel an internal call to church plant or an internal call to ministry. But that internal call has to be confirmed by an external source. It's gotta be confirmed and corroborated by the church, by pastors, by other people, so it's the combination of the internal, the external, that launches a man. Look, look for these things. It'll make a difference.
This video was produced by Desiring God and can be found here.