Walking with God – Part 2 – Church Planters
Most church planters tend to be fairly motivated people. Well, that is a little bit of an understatement – driven would be a better word. Like Nehemiah, you get on the wall and you don’t come down for anything! You have to if you want to succeed, it is that intense. As a result, it’s easy to get imbalanced. It’s easy to work around the clock when you are a church planter, especially in the beginning when you are developing a team. Some plant near their home community so they already have a web of relationships, friends, and a pool of people who may be interested in joining their team. Others move to a brand new town or city without knowing anyone to plant a church. This is called a “Parachute Church Plant.” In a parachute church plant, you learn to do everything. You are the administrator, the preacher, the treasurer, the leader, the web developer, and sometimes the worship leader. Responsibilities begin to mount up and you lose track of what’s important. You forget that one hour with Jesus can do more than 5 hours of administrative work.
When I began working as the director of BASIC College Ministries in 2004, I felt overwhelmed. 30 Campus Groups spread across 4 states? How was I ever going to minister to all these people? Where do I begin? I felt the Lord impress upon my heart to take the first hour of each day in the office to spend with Him. Now I was already getting up early to spend time with Jesus on my own, but this was in addition to that. So I did it. At first it was hard. I was very distracted by looking around at all I needed to do. But after a while it became easy, and I began to see fruit! People I had been trying to get a hold of for weeks or months suddenly started calling me. There was a grace on my life to work that wasn’t there before. Things started getting done. Why?
John 15:4 NKJV Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
Shortly after that I had a revelation about myself. All through high school I struggled with being mediocre at things. I was an athlete who played multiple sports, but I was never the star. I was in chorus and band, but never the best. I was a decent student but far from valedictorian. Then, when I entered the church world I felt the same way. I could lead worship but felt average. I could preach, but there were people who really excelled at preaching. Well, that day in my office during prayer and worship it hit me: This is what I’m good at, this is where I excel. I excel at being with God!
My perspective shifted. I decided, if there was anything that I wanted to master, I wanted to become a master at knowing, relating, and being with God! The great part about this calling is that its open to anyone who wants it! In fact, as a follower of Jesus, I think it’s our highest calling.
Church planters – in all your busyness, are you relating to Jesus? Are you getting to know Him? I guarantee if you make your relationship with Him priority, there will be a grace on your life for all the rest. I know it’s hard. There are more tasks on your list than hours in the day. Nonetheless, the calling remains the same – to know Jesus.
Philippians 3:10 NKJV that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,