In my years of assessing and coaching Church Planters I’ve learned a lot about what makes people tick; the things that make a person get up and at it every day. Being self-aware of who we are and why we behave the way we do can be a tremendous help before planting a church.
The International Church Planting Center has a church leadership inventory for Church Planters. They’ve discovered these 4 reasons why a Church Planter might stall in achieving planting objectives:
1. Self-Centered: Church leaders find their identity in Christ’s forgiveness and acceptance. When they are overly preoccupied with themselves they show signs of insecurity, pride, love of attention, and acclaim and (at times) irritation and anger. Being eager for quick success, they may cut corners and betray trust. Specifically, this may look like: Arrogant, Betrays Trust, & Unethical.
2. Doesn’t Relate Well to Context or Others: Church leaders gather and build the church primarily through helpful relationships with people. They are interested in others and go out of their way to serve them. When church leaders are stiff and uneasy in their interpersonal contacts, strangers and new acquaintances may feel they are unapproachable and withdraw. Specifically, this may look like: Un-adaptable and Blocked Learner.
3. Doesn’t Inspire or Build Talent: Church leaders are “talent scouts”- they know how to spot leadership in others, enhance a leader’s abilities, and empower and place leaders. However, when they are confused or distrustful about delegation they may refuse to build a team or attempt to micro-manage. Specifically, this may look like: Fails to Build Trust and Fails to Staff Effectively.
4. Trouble with Results: Church leaders are intrigued and challenged by the complexity of the future. They are able to bring several unrelated streams of information together to form a compelling vision. Consequently, they are good at clarifying concepts and developing effective strategies. Those church leaders who find it difficult to set concrete goals and effective strategies often see their churches stagnate or fail to grow. Specifically, this may look like: Non-Strategic.
(Ref. Church Leader Inventory, International Church Planting Center. Used by Permission. All rights reserved.)
Remember, you don’t have to plant a church alone. At CMM, we believe every pastor, church planter, ministry leader, and missionary is created to thrive in ministry. We suggest getting a C.R.O.S.S. Gospel Coach to help walk with you through the challenges you’ve never faced before. A C.R.O.S.S. Coach will help encourage and equip you every step along the way.
Learn more about C.R.O.S.S. Coaching today!
Church Planters are entrusted with many resources, but the greatest resource you have is the hard-earned wisdom of fathers and brothers who have already made mistakes that have real consequences. Learn from them.
You are granted the freedom to fail. But try not to fail because you were impatient. If you are going to risk so much on Church Planting, go make bold, new mistakes! Don’t make the mistakes we made a decade ago. That’s just plain dumb. When you make mistakes, make sure they are ones that bring more glory to Jesus!
As we think about building a Launch Team for your Church Plant, we’ll consider 3 basic ways to gather people. Generally, we discourage the term “Core Groups” and encourage “Launch Teams” because we want to see God forming Gospel-centered teams committed to the proclamation and practice of the Word, living out mission and living in community.
Download your free eBook about “Building a Launch Team” today!
Looking to learn more about the entire Church Planting experience? Order your copy of the Church Planter Field Manual: Exploring and the Church Planter Field Manual: Climbing today. Order Today!
Now available! You can also download individual chapters from Church Planter Field Manual: Exploring or the Church Planter Field Manual: Climbing as eBooks for only $5 a piece. Order Today!
At CMM, we believe every pastor, church planter, ministry leader, and missionary is created to thrive in ministry. We suggest getting a Gospel Coach to help walk with you through the challenges you’ve never faced before. A Gospel Coach will help encourage and equip you every step along the way.
Learn more about C.R.O.S.S. Gospel Coaching for Church Planters today!
When you’re planting a church, there are four key questions people are sub-consciously asking as you interact with them:
1. Do I like him? Is he someone I can hang out with? Do I like his family? Is he trustworthy?
2. Does he know where he is going? We used to say that you lead with vision. But not any longer. The first question is the personable one. But that doesn’t mean people don't care about where you are going. They do. What is your vision for the future?
3. Does he have what it takes to get us there? This is an ability question. You may have great vision, but if they lack confidence in your leadership ability you will not have many followers.
4. What does he want from me? What is my role? After figuring out that they really like you, that you have a compelling vision for the future, and you probably have a good idea of how to pull it off, they will want to know what you want from them.
Networking can be hard work, especially when you’re in an area that is filled with skeptical and wounded people. Here are some ideas on gathering your first 50 people(referenced from Coaching Church Planters by Steve Nicholson & Jeff Bailey):
o Seek a “Fishing License” from the mother church or sponsoring churches in the region to ask members of their churches to become ‘missionaries’ to your community. A Fishing license allows you to drop a line into their membership and take new mission minded Christians on your journey.
o Ask the Spirit to go out before you and open doors of opportunity with people. Ask Him to send you to people he has been preparing.
o You have to go out and get people. This is the most important thing. You can’t wait for them to come to you—they won’t. Your preaching, as good as it might be, is not going to be the gathering tool you think it might be.
o Do everything as humanly possible to make connections, re-connections with people you have networked, and build relationships with them. Be creative.
o Put all your time and energy into gathering people you have “Networked.”
o To get to your first 50 people, you must prioritize your time almost exclusively on gathering. Plan for those meetings, large or small.
o Write down how many people you can meet in a week. Pray for contacts and for favor with them.
Once you have your first 50, you can cut your time in half. Use half of your time to care, teach, train some of them to gather and manage whom you have and the other half to go out and gather the next 50.
Remember, you are personally responsible to gather the first 50 people. When you get them, you are responsible for the next 50 people too!
The primary goal is building relationships with people—spending time together, laughing, enjoying life together, answering questions they may have, eating, playing games, going places together, etc. Do NOT use people to accomplish your goals!
Need to know who to talk to in your community? Download your FREE Community Networking Guide today!
Interested to know more about Networking? Download the Chapter 1 eBook--Networking & People Gathering—from the Church Planter Field Manual: Exploring for just $5 today!
Looking to learn more about the entire Church Planting experience? Order your copy of the Church Planter Field Manual: Exploring and the Church Planter Field Manual: Climbing from Amazon today.
Remember, you don’t have to plant a church alone!!
At CMM, we believe every pastor, church planter, ministry leader, and missionary is created to thrive in ministry. We suggest getting a C.R.O.S.S. Gospel Coach to help walk with you through the challenges you’ve never faced before. A C.R.O.S.S. Coach will help encourage and equip you every step along the way.
Learn more about C.R.O.S.S. Gospel Coaching for Church Planters today!
Dr. Tom Wood
I've been in the Church Planting business my entire career. I want you to know, you don't have to plant a church alone!