May 26, 2006

We Need More Failed Church Plants

I know that is a rather provocative title. I am not desiring more of our church plants to fail, what I think we need are more people attempting. If we attempt 10 "quality" plants and five succeed, that is 50% success rate; which looks good to those around us. But if we attempt 100 prepared church plants and 20 suceed that is 20%. Percentage-wise it doesn't look so good, though I know you can spin it, but it is 15 more churches.

I am all for well educated, thoughtful church planters and church plants. I am supportive of entering the church plant arena well-prepared and well-planned. I think that church planters must have a call to do what they are doing.


As church planting builds momentum, many people, out of a desire to develop quality church plants that succeed, actually regulate the life out of church planting. By needing more failed church plants, I mean that we need more people attempting big things for God. Yes, there are going to be church plants that "fail." But no amount of administrating is going to eliminate some church plants from "failing." Besides, in the process of failing many church planters are developed and strengthened for what God plans to use them for in the future.

Steve Sjogren once said, "Excellence and competancy are choking the life out of the church." He was not saying do things in a shabby manner or without being prepared, but don't let planning take the place of practice. Steve gave one of his Servant Evangelism conferences the theme, "Ready, Fire, Aim!" His point was that sometimes churches get stuck in a "Ready...Aim...Ready...Aim...Ready...Aim" waiting game.

We certainly don't want just anyone going to plant a church. We want the best, the brightest, and, certainly, the called. We want them to have the best training. But we must send out more and more planters knowing that some will "fail" as self-sustaining, self-governing, self-propagating communities. We must send out more church planters without "regulating" them to death!

1 comment:

  1. Hey bro,
    I agree, good thoughts. God does a lot cool stuff with failed plants. I was was apart of a church (lead guy) that had to close down the doors.

    We need to allow space for some on the frontlines to fail. And I guess we need to re-define what failure. Anyhow, good post.