Worship Times: Sundays at 8:00, 9:30, and 11:00am (9:35 simulcast @ The Point)

May 2, 2018

 [Jesus] said to the disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly
to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. (Matthew 9:37-38 ESV)

When the PCA (Presbyterian Church in America) began in the early 1970s, it was determined to grow and become a national movement. It seemed obvious at the time that all we needed to do was attract pastors of large, “successful” churches to go into new areas and plant new churches. Unfortunately, things did not go so well. It turns out that the gifts and talents required for leading and caring for a large organization were very different from the gifts required to launch something new and entirely from scratch. The PCA’s strategy gradually shifted to finding pastors with a different “profile” that suited church planting. That is how I ended up launching a new church in Austin, TX.

It was exciting, to say the least. In all honesty, it was a good fit for me. I flourished in a setting where things were new and innovative and had to be invented from the ground up. That is, it was exciting until … we hit a ceiling.

Success was its own undoing. The more people who came, the more difficult it was to maintain momentum, because I was doing it all by myself. The very gifts that helped me catalyze new things were not helpful in maintaining and developing an already-established organization. The larger it grew, the more gifts and oversight it required. One day it occurred to me that not even the Apostle Paul planted churches the way I was doing it. Paul was never a one-man show. He had Barnabas and Silas and Mark and Aristarchus and Lydia and Junias … the list goes on and on. The more effective church plants today send entire teams to get them going in much shorter time than I did, and with far greater results.

And results matter. Jesus is the “Lord of the harvest,” not the Lord of the Search, or the Lord of Good Intentions. We are stewards of the opportunities God has given us and we should make every effort to be faithful and fruitful. We are already seeing God lead and bless what we are doing. The expansion space at The Point looks “made to order” for what we need to do next. Elders and ministry leaders have looked at it and discerned that this is a logical “next step” for us to take. Books and articles on multisite all say that makes things more complicated and is loaded with “problems,” but that is what always accompanies growth. The real problem is when the church stops growing. What a privilege we have to be a part of something God is doing through our church that is bigger than us.

I do not believe God wants our ministry to just be a “holding operation,” and I do not think traditional church planting will reach this county or the surrounding area. But the multisite holds great promise for being able to penetrate this region in an effective way.

Of all the observations about multisite I have read, one of my favorites is that this is simply a container for something God is doing. This Sunday the (unfinished) expansion area will be OPEN for you to visit after services. I hope you will take the time to look … and see for yourself.

Frank

Frankly Speaking ©2018, Frank Boswell | office@huntvalleychurch.org | (410)-771-0690 
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