I occasionally have opportunity to train church planters in North America. Based on my experiences with them, I believe every church ought to adopt and prayerfully support a church planter. Here’s why:
- We can always do more together than we can alone. Even if your church is older and smaller, you have something you can give to a church planter. Your support can prove invaluable.
- Planters are often young. They often have young families, and they’re learning ministry on the go. Just knowing they have churches supporting them can give them hope.
- They’re often serving in unchurched or under-churched areas. That’s the point – to plant churches where few gospel-preaching centers exist. The work is hard, at times not unlike the work of international missionaries trying to root the gospel in a region for the first time.
- They face loneliness. Frankly, I didn’t realize how lonely it can be when planting a church, even when you’re planting among people who speak your language. In an unchurched area, planters are frequently some of the few believers there.
- The soil is often hard. That’s one of the reasons there are already few churches in a given area. Some church planters are investing their lives in place where the receptivity to the gospel is low – where planting is first about plowing up rocks.
- Planting can quickly become a faith struggle. The hardships of relocation and the reality of an unresponsive culture can quickly rob a church planter of his original passion and vision. Believing God becomes a battle.
- Planters are building teams and raising support. They need laborers, and they often need funding. Every church can provide something to assist, even if it’s just a few dollars. You church might even challenge members to move to a new location to help a church plant.
- Even planters can lose their evangelistic zeal. Especially if the planters are serving in a tough area, just a few gospel rejections can begin to quench their evangelistic fire.
- North America needs healthy churches. Numerically, the United States is one of the top five lost nations in the world. We need more healthy, evangelistic congregations to reach our nation. That won’t happen without churches walking alongside planters.
Church planters, give us other reasons to adopt you and your work. Pastors who lead church planting churches, tell us how you support these young congregations.