What If Every Church Became a Church Planting Church?


There are approximately 350,000 churches in the US.  This number has stabilized in recent years, with estimates that even though 3500 churches die each year, 4000 are born.  We’re going forwards, but that means it takes almost 100 churches to give birth to one new one.  What if every church became a church planting church?


I spent a few days in Wichita recently at West E Free Church where they are showing the way for churches planting churches.  Here are a few insights:

  • Start with Prayer – It sounds so obvious, but I wonder how many churches really do it?  You don’t wonder at West.  Their passion for planting started with prayer and continues to grow as they pray in audacious ways for God to reach their city.
  • Focus on Your City – The question isn’t “how can we grow our church?”  The question is “how can we reach our city? Or county?” Or whatever circle of influence God has given you.  When you start with growth, your focus turns inward.  When you start with reach, your focus turns outward.
  • Commit your Resources – Planting churches will take time and money.  At West they assigned Chris Rollman to lead the charge and put a significant portion of their budget in play.   If you’re thinking, “they can afford it” the answer is yes, because they choose to.  West is larger than most churches, but not a mega church.  There is a shopping list of good stuff they could use their resources for; they’ve chosen to put church planting at the top of the list.
  • Build Partnerships – A focus on their city has led West to reach out to other local churches and church planters.  This isn’t “their” thing, it’s “God’s” thing and other leaders and churches our beginning to share the vision.  A desire to do more than they are able has led West to partner with others who can help, like ELI.  They are using both Church Planter Profiles and Cultivate  to discover and develop church planting leaders.
  • Have a Long View – When you talk with Ken Cooper about church planting he doesn’t fire up your passion with how many churches they are going to plant this year.  He tells you about how many people he is praying they will reach before he dies.  Church planting isn’t their strategy du jour.  Church planting is their mission and their passion.

What if, like West, your church became a church planting church?

To learn more about West E Free church planting visit http://www.westefc.org/church-planting/.


One thought on “What If Every Church Became a Church Planting Church?

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