Sending church: Why send?
    October 23 2015 by Matt Rogers, Send Network

    Anyone who has ever led a church to plant another church knows that sending is costly. It requires immense effort and intentionality to send well and will likely leave the sending church with a void in leadership and less money with which to operate. Not to mention the fact that local churches will send some of their best people – those who are deeply connected to the life of the church and who are loved by many. So, why send? Why should local churches (established churches and young church plants) work to strategically send teams to plant churches around the US and the world?
     

    Sending is at the heart of the Good News

    God sent Jesus to invade a sin-saturated and proclaim the availability of the kingdom through his work. This sending provides a paradigm for the sending of all of God’s people (John 20:21). The church enables and mobilizes its people to give their lives away in the pattern God envisioned.
     

    Sending Bolsters the Faith of the Church

    There is no denying the cost of church planting. The human mind may be prone to do a quick cost-benefit analysis and conclude that it is unwise to plant a church due to the cost of resources and manpower. Fear often exceeds our faith that God can, and will, provide for our needs. By sending, we release our death-grip of control on the local church and trust God to meet its needs and, when he does, our faith grows.
     

    Sending Releases God’s People into Areas of Great Need

    The darkness in our day is vast and there are pockets of lostness that are virtually untouched by the evangelical church. Two weeks ago, I spent a few days in Salt Lake City with the North American Mission Board. That city is comprised of roughly two percent evangelical Christians. This means that in a short plane ride, you and I can be in one of the greatest mission fields in the world. Sending releases a surplus of leaders in one location to serve and plant the gospel in another.
     

    Sending Motivates the Church to Live on Mission

    Sending protects the local church from complacency. It doesn’t take long for people in the church to simply go through the motions, even within a young church plant. The loss of leaders can compel some to engage in the ministry of the church in ways they were not before. It can also remind many in the church of the evangelical passion that should define the lives of all people. As believers see their friends go to plant a church, they are often empowered to share the gospel with their neighbor, coworkers, and friends as well.
     
    The passion of the North American Mission Board is the mobilize the Southern Baptist churches through the United States to actively engage in this sending work. Certainly, as all churches give to the Cooperative Program and annual missions offerings the work of church planting is aided. However, we want to do more. We want more and more churches to be able to say, “That is our church plant.” We want churches to train leaders, send them to a strategic location, support their work through finances and short-term mission work, and reap the harvest of blessings that come from being a sending church. Yes, it will cost you but you’ll never make a better investment.
     
    (EDITOR’S NOTE – Matt is the pastor of The Church at Cherrydale in Greenville, SC (tccherrydale.com). He is a graduate of Furman University (BA in psychology), Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (MA in Counseling), and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (MDiv in pastoral ministry) and is currently completing his PhD from SEBTS in Applied Theology. Matt is the author of Aspire, Seven Arrows, and Mergers.)

    10/23/2015 12:51:55 PM by Matt Rogers, Send Network | with 1 comments
    Filed under: church planting, missions, sending




Comments
Todd
Matt, thank you for living out these convictions and supporting our church planting efforts. God is working through your gifts and passions to advance the gospel through the local church. The impact of your willingness to trust God has led to a new church reaching different people on the other side of town. Glad to know you as a friend and a partner in the gospel!
11/3/2015 3:33:21 PM