CCPN Roundtable Session #1
On Thursday March 12th I had the chance to take my team down to the CCPN roundtable at Calvary Nexus in Camarillo, Ca. Bruce Zachary did a great job hosting the event and there were about forty of us there. I really enjoyed meeting a bunch of new planters as well as seeing some old friends, especially excited to see what God has in store for Conor Berry who just got home from Bristol, England.
I thought it would be good to recap the the two sessions that were held because the information on both of them were so beneficial. What Bruce Zachary and Lance Ralston shared was essential if you are planning to either plant or send out planters.
In session one Bruce hit on three important topics. First he asked the question “Why Plant Churches?” Then he addressed some of the obstacles to planting churches. Finally he shared some resources that church planters need to use to help with their church plant.
Why should we plant churches? With eighty-five percent of churches in the USA either in decline or dying why would you start something new? Why don’t you just plug those people and pour those resources into those churches? Those are all good churches and the revitalization of churches is an issue that needs to be addressed and something that I believe that CCPN will have a key role in the future, but to be honest most of those churches are open to the ideas and changes that will reverse their fortunes. Hence the reason to plant new churches and the numbers back it up. Most churches are most effective in evangelism in their first few years. They have a heart to reach the lost because it is necessary. Planting churches also are an effective use of resources. A little money can go a long ways with a church plant.
What are some of the obstacles to planting churches? This was the most lively of the three areas Bruce touched on in his session. He hit on four myths that churches often believe when rejecting the idea of sending out a church plant. The first one was that church planting was too complex, The second one was that it is too time consuming, The third was that it was too expensive, and finally sending out a church plant will hurt the sending church. Bruce dispelled perfectly each of these myths. If a pastor will raise up a few men in his church by committing ninety minutes a week to train them it will actually benefit the church more than if he doesn’t. Not all these men become planters but in fact become leaders within the church. The fact is that we can make all kinds of excuses why not to plant churches but when we do we hinder what God can do through the people of our church.
Resources can be a life saver for church planters and for someone who planted a church eight years ago I wish the CCPN planter manual would’ve been around. It would’ve saved me a ton of time and headache. This resource is free on the CCPN website. It actually has been downloaded over twelve thousand times. If you are a pastor spend some time raising up men by using this manual. It covers almost every area needed.
Church planting is hard. Eighty-five percent of all church plants close their doors within two years. Some of the most well known pastors have a failed church plant in their past. There is no guarantee but if you do your homework and rely on the power of the Holy Spirit it will increase your odds of making it.