Influence

 the shape of leadership

Growing the Kingdom through Church Planting

Every congregation can play a part in multiplication

Chris Railey on August 7, 2017

chrisrailey

Church planters are the reason the future of the Assemblies of God remains so bright. These “Influence 10” are just a few examples of courageous men and women throughout the AG who are taking radical steps of faith to reach people with the gospel through the life-giving ministry of the local church. Countless other stories of successful church planters can be told who believe, as we do, that the Church and gospel of Jesus Christ is still the hope of the world.

During the past 103 years, God has used the AG in amazing ways to expand His kingdom through the local church. The page is now turned on the next 100 years, and we are encouraged by many things. The AG USA is now more than 42 percent ethnic minority, 40 percent of adherents are under the age of 25, and nearly 3,000 new churches have been planted in the last 9 years.

As tremendous as these statistics are, we are also facing unprecedented challenges. Our country continues its rapid moral decline, 43 percent of Americans are unchurched, and 80 percent of all churches are plateaued or declining. Furthermore, with nearly 30,000 communities in America, only 13,000 of them have an AG church, and only 4,000 of those churches are growing. Thousands of communities still need a Spirit-empowered church.

Our job in America is far from done. This is our defining moment. In the face of these challenges, we need to remember who called us, what He called us to do, and most importantly why He called us to do it. We’re believing God for a healthy, Spirit-filled church in every community in America and healthy, faith-filled, courageous leaders willing to lay it all on the line to start new churches.

To that end, the Church Multiplication Network exists to equip, fund, and network church planters and leaders, to partner with districts and networks and local churches to develop leaders, plant churches, and build on the culture of multiplication that has defined the Assemblies God.

Our job in America is far from done.

As a Fellowship, we also need to be more strategic in church planting. How can we work together to make sure we reach every urban, suburban, and rural community that needs a healthy, vibrant gospel expression?

CMN believes every church can play a part in multiplication, whether through multiplying disciples, leaders, churches, or impact. CMN stands ready to serve those who feel stirred to plant a new church, leaders who dream of multiplying their ministries, and existing churches wanting to play a part in expanding the Kingdom through church multiplication. If that’s you, here are some next steps to get involved:

  • Go to iwanttoplantachurch.com and learn some basic information about church planting.
  • Connect with a CMN rep in your region. For a listing, go to iwanttoplantachurch.com.
  • Register to attend a CMN Launch event for coaching, training, and the practical tools, resources, and relationships every church planters needs.

The task ahead is overwhelming, but the One who hung the stars is faithful and will show us the way. God wants to continue growing His family by multiplying His church. We must pray, believe, and work like never before as we embark on the next 100 years. More souls saved! More lives changed! More people coming to Jesus! The vision is big, but we’re thankful Jesus can do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine!

This article, which was adapted for online use, originally appeared in the August/September 2017 edition of Influence magazine.

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