why plant a church planting

Why Plant a Church – Part 2

A Theological Response

If theology is the study of God, then church planting should be a reflection of who God is in His essence. Since God is, by nature, pervasive, we would anticipate that His church would be as well—continually stretching into new arenas and bearing new fruit (Col. 1:6).

But more to the point, God Himself is a God of pursuit—He is missional. He pursues His people—He saves, redeems, restores and renews them. He is at the center of that salvific activity. From Abraham to the new covenant God has always revealed Himself and pursued His own (Lk. 15:1-10, Matt. 11:27). And so, when His people go they bear the heart of their Father (Mt. 28:19, Acts 1:8, 2 Cor. 5:20, Gen. 12:3).

More to the point, God has always had design to fill His earth with His image bearers (Gen. 1:28). When His image was tainted in His people by sin, He made them righteous again (2 Cor. 5:21) and appointed them ambassadors to engage His world (2 Cor. 5:20). From the beginning God has had a design to fill His world with His image-bearers.

New churches reflect this design of God as yet another square inch of God’s world is reflecting His glory back to Him. Not only are these new churches typically more effective at making converts who bear God’s restorative work, but the churches themselves, faithfully proclaiming God’s truth, image the progress of the gospel in new areas and to new generations.

A Pastoral Response

“Engaging” has always been the hardest of the five core values that we hold to. As a church, our history of growth has been marked by waves of transfer growth from other churches—first from Faith Baptist, then Bible Fellowship, then from the various German Baptist fellowships. This was God’s design for Greenville Grace, and we’re thankful for what He has wrought in our midst.

There have also been a steady stream of conversions, but these have not been the majority of our growth throughout the years. Partially, this is a reflection of our area—everyone goes to church in Darke County, so they had to transfer from somewhere, right? But we are trending more toward the “established church” model mentioned above.

Consider also that our building doesn’t suit us as comfortably as it once did. While Sunday morning service attendance remains manageable, consider that the perception may be that our services are “too full” and keep new comers from attending. Furthermore, our children’s wing is consistently filled to near capacity or slightly above capacity. Remember, if a visitor doesn’t see space to attend and participate, the likelihood of their staying is slim. All of these show us that we either need to build or plant—inaction is a missional problem, a fundamental rejection of our own stated values.

While we might tend to think that church planting is really about another group of people in another community it is truthfully about us too. We will be stretched and developed as a sending community. In sending out those whom we love, we bear the cost of mission–financially, emotionally, and numerically. Make no mistake: Planting a church will require sacrifice for both the sender and the sent.

Jesus tells us that where our treasure is, there our heart will be also (Mt. 6:21). In sending out a church plant, we anticipate that God changes our desire as we sacrifice to that end. As we sacrifice, we might also treasure something new, and thereby gain in our giving. This is how Jesus tells us its better to give than receive (Acts 20:35).

On a very practical level, imagine a good friend at Grace leaving with the church plant—every mention of their name, every picture you have of them will become a reminder of God’s heart for the lost. It’s been said that you don’t step into the same stream twice. I pray that this church plant will change Greenville Grace and inject a revived sense of mission into our veins.

Conclusion

When all of these reasons accumulate in our mind, they should drip down into our chests as well, producing in us a desire to see many churches—imaging His glory, proclaiming good news to those who need to hear it. When our thoughts reflect the heart of God, our hands should go to work. This is what we want to see in Troy, Ohio: not just another functioning body with a budget, and leadership, and a band. Rather, we want to see Jesus clearly proclaimed from another pulpit and imaged in its people because, in so doing, we will see God honored and glorified.

why plant a church planting

Why Plant a Church – Part 1

The natural question to ask when we mention the topic of planting a church is “why?”. Why plant a church? After all, there seem to be plenty of churches (especially in Darke County). So, why do we need more church bodies?

There are many answers to this question and I think its worth our time to investigate more of the “why” aspects of church planting before we really dig into the “how” of a church planting plan. And so, I’ve broken down my response to the “why’s” of church planting into the following categories: a scriptural response, a pragmatic response, a theological response, and a pastoral response. Read more

New Church Campus Plans

Sunday night at our church family meeting Jodi and I announced (with the support of our elder team) that we would like to plant a church campus in a surrounding area. For reasons, which I intend to explain in this post, we want to extend Greenville Grace to another community within a 20-30 minute radius of Grace within the next 1-5 years.

I know that this likely leaves many of us with a great deal of questions; where? When? How? Unfortunately, we don’t know the answers to those questions yet. In fact, we want to get word out about this plan because we’re inviting feedback. We want to start the discussion concerning sending people and resources to another community with a view to starting another church there. We thought you might be able to help us find a few of those answers. Read more

Greetings from Greensboro Grace

Greetings from Greensboro!

We are so excited and thankful to be able to report that we – Greensboro Grace – have received “official” documentation from the state and are now considered a viable church in the Piedmont Triad area of North Carolina!! So what??????  Well this is the first of many steps toward establishing ourselves in this community.  This also allows those of you who are supporting us financially to be able to send your gifts directly to Greensboro Grace and mail it to our home address: 5490 Hwy. 65   Reidsville, NC 27320.

Many thanks to Greenville Grace in Ohio and Calvary Chapel Mountainside in Murphy, NC for allowing our gifts to come through them while we waited on the state for this recognition.

WHEW!!  This has been a very full/busy/settling in/entertaining/energizing 8 weeks since we moved.  During these first 2 months of life here we have joyfully opened our home to 7 different families as they prayerfully consider being part of our CORE TEAM at Greensboro Grace.  Our first 3 gifts will come to us in 2 weeks! We are thrilled to welcome Dan, Laura and Rachel Schnelker as they move here from Murphy, NC. They will be living and working in Madison about 10 miles from us.

Prayers answered:

*Incorporation complete

*Elizabeth’s melanomas removed

*Core Team developing

*Establishing good contacts with local people

Prayer requests:

*Date for boot camp

*Commitments of Core Team members

*Continued contact making

*Calendar for the year

*Date for 2011 launch

*Week of meetings in Radford, VA

*Raising remainder of support needed

Serving Him together,

Daniel and Teressa Pierce

Greetings from Greensboro

Thank you all for your continued prayers.  God is answering – it is so obvious to us.  Everything went exceptionally well with our move here on July 5.  Most of our boxes are now empty!!  Many thanks to those in Murphy and Greensboro for your time and labor in helping us accomplish this MAJOR task.

We’re so very encouraged and thankful for the responses of many of you who are considering (relocating here or joining with us locally) being part of our Core Team.  Three families have already visited us here and others are scheduled to come for a visit before September.  We would LOVE to have a Core Team in place before Thanksgiving.  Our desire is for the entire Core Team to attend a “boot camp” together in preparation for the plant.  Boot camp is so valuable.  It’s not only a great strategizing and planning time; but it encourages cohesion and unity among the Core Team.

Prayers Answered

  • Great response from May letter for prayer partners for our ministry.
  • Many hands and servant hearts July 1-5 helped pack and load in Murphy, caravan across the state and unload in Reidsville.
  • House is wonderfully suited for all types of ministry events – especially overnight out-of-towners!
  • Pressure washer sold in Murphy.
  • We were able to purchase a 2nd car (much nicer than we hoped for!) – 2000 Buick-great condition.
  • House is being shown in Murphy
  • We have 50% of our monthly financial support

Church Plant Prayer Request

  • We are projecting an early September 2011 launch date.  This will come QUICKLY…
  • Proactive commitments from brothers and sisters to join Core Team.
  • We need to raise the final 50% of our financial support.

Pierce Personal Prayer Requests

  • Adjustments to living away from family in Murphy.
  • Both our mothers are having health problems
  • Elizabeth will be at Duke having a melanoma removed from her back in the next two weeks (consultation 7/23)

Thanks for loving us and caring about what God is doing here in the Greensboro area.  We are delighted that you are partnering with us.  We love hearing from you all.  Our cell service is terrible in the house and we have gotten a landline.  Our internet should be working here on 7/26 and we will be closing our office Oak Ridge McDonalds Café!  🙂  Please not our new info:

Home Address:

5490 Hwy. 65
Reidsville, NC 27320

Home Phone:  (336) 951-3579

Emails:

Daniel:   danpierce@mac.com    Cell: (828) 361-7153

Teressa: teressabp@gmail.com  Cell: (828) 361-5381

Joyfully Serving Him,

Daniel and Teressa

Letter from Grace of Greensboro

To our Greenville Grace family:

We are so excited to share what God is doing in our lives.  Since our letter last month much has happened as we prepare to begin ministry in Greensboro, N.C.  Here are just a few of the highlights:

  1. We had our first “official gathering” on June 11 (which just happened to be our 32nd wedding anniversary!) at the city park in Oak Ridge, NC.  It was a wonderful time of getting acquainted for some of the people praying about being part of our CORE TEAM.
  2. God has directed us to the house we are going to be living in!  This is a GREAT STORY and we’ll share it with you when you come visit us.  Better than we dreamed – we are very thankful.
  3. We have a MOVING DATE: MONDAY, JULY 5.  Any help will be greatly appreciated on either end – Murphy or Greensboro!
  4. We are in the process of “incorporating” our new church and we have received our tax ID #.
  5. We have presently received pledges totaling 30% of the support needed.  The prayer commitments for us have been overwhelming and we are humbled at the outpouring of love and concern that many of you have shown us.
  6. We have made several contacts with people living and working in the area.  Future brothers and sisters!

We need your prayers so much as we seek the Lord’s perfect plan for His new church in Greensboro.

Serving Him together,

Daniel and Teressa Pierce

New Address:
5490 Highway 65
Reidsville, NC 27320

Email: danpierce@mac.com

Cell: 828.361.7153