So…you are one of the crazies trying to start SOMETHING out of NOTHING? There are a MILLION things you are thinking that you need to do…but here are my top 7 focuses when starting with a blank slate, that I believe if you pursue, with the help of the Holy Spirit, you will win.
1. God/Spiritual Warfare/Spiritual Matters.
**If you are not prepared to deal with this…you will be gravely sorry. It is an all-out battle. Don’t sluff this off in the business of planting. A prayer team is as important as a launch team.
2. Your Family.
**OK you are saying…I know these 1st 2. Well, most people know them, but they still don’t practice them. Or they might even take #2 too far or their spouse might not have realistic expectations and not understand that planting has “seasons”. I have had staff make excuses for not working hard or while we are in a season using their family as an example. Seasons are seasons and they should COME and GO! Date night, family time, truly disciplining your family is easy to say, hard to do. SCHEDULE THIS!
My Wife went back to work for the 1st time in 12 years. We need to be wise in our dealings and we had to make BIG changes. Big changes if you are not focused and in tune with your family rhythm, cycle and style will lead to your plant not even launching more than likely.
3. Your Place.
**Read Ben Arment’s book: Church in the Making. Many of you should read it, pray about it, them probably move. If you are radically rebelling against this advise, then I pray you truly had a Macedonian Vision. God uses us best in the places he has already ordained for us that we know. Not always, but generally. We were called to Utah by God, but this book helped us greatly realize where our next calling was and where we need to focus for the long-haul as church planters.
4. Your Team. If you do this alone, you are STUPID. Not just crazy. You are STUPID. [I say this in LOVE and with EXPERIENCE]
**Build a team. Don’t settle for 2nd best. Cast a HUGE vision and recruit the best you can. If you do this alone, well, you are stupid if you didn’t catch me the first time in love, and if you hire or settle on 2nd best in hopes that they will pan out…you are double well, let’s soften it…crazy. Really.
5. Fund Raising.
**This is your #1 job. Making connections are key…yes. But you will not have a prevailing plant outside of an Acts 2 moment [which is rare, hence the world miracle]…You need to raise $250-$500,000. Yes, you do. Stop focusing on building a service, finding a worship space, and networking alone. Build a strong financial base on top of #1 and #2 on this list, your spiritual base.
6. Networking with People, Pastors, Leaders and Seekers.
**How you enter your town is as important as what you do when you are there. We host a pastor’s luncheon that we pay for and send a letter to every pastor/church in our area letting them know who we are, what we are, what our vision is, and that we want to PARTNER WITH THEM to reach the city. They were there 1st. They are your best source of support! Join the Chamber of Commerce. Connect with city and school officials. And don’t forget…your church plant begins on your back deck. Do you really know your neighbors and are you teaching your launch team that this plant starts on their decks?
**Setting clear vision on paper, in print, on the web, etc. is KEY. What you will become begins in the DNA of how you start. If you aren’t doing it now, you will have a much harder time later. We desire to be multi-ethnic [30%+]…well, our launch team better reflect that! We desire to focus on outsiders, so our team better figure out how to get to know some! We desire to launch with a permanent facility, that is strategy, so we better have a clearly defined plan. We desire to have a clear strategy for growth [numerically and spiritually] so we better have staff at each level to make that happen! Do you truly have a SIMPLE, well-defined plan, vision and strategy for your plant? If you don’t…well…you better hope for that miracle!
**WHAT WOULD YOU ADD TO THIS LIST???**
**Do you need help with your plant? Contact me [email@example.com]. We have church planting and established church coaches in every area. [Planting, Executive Pastor, Worship, Youth/Kids, Etc.] We want to help you become everything you need through Christ! Need some strategy coaching? We are partnered with the best group in the country, Church Solutions Group, we can connect you.