Happy New Year!

2020 was a difficult year for everyone … especially church planters!

COVID-19 brought great challenges that forced church planters to creatively determine how they would stay connected and on mission in spite of overwhelming restrictions against meeting together for most of the year. Worship gatherings were forced to happen virtually, in smaller groups, outdoors, or not at all.

But even harder for church planters than figuring out how their people could “go” to church was helping lead their communities of faith to discover how they could creatively “be” the church in spite of these dangerous COVID-19 conditions.

We are so happy that it is a new year and although we look forward to a brighter future in 2021, some of you may find yourselves feeling like January seems more like the thirteenth month of 2020 than the beginning of a bright new year.

But the reality is that no matter how you feel, Christ is the Lord, and He remains faithful and powerful through your difficult years as well as your bountiful years.

The great news is that Christ is the Lord of church planting and He has a vision for your new church.

Our Church Planting Essentials training reminds us that in Acts 16, the Apostle Paul is trying to plant a church. He wanted to go to Asia, but the Lord kept him from traveling in that direction. Then he decided to go to Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow the missionary team to go there. Christ envisioned Paul’s planting a Macedonian church. During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them (Acts 16:9-10).

Like the Lord called Paul to Macedonia, He is calling you to boldly follow Him into this new year. He has plans to prosper you; to give you hope and a future. He will work through you to expand His kingdom in the lives of men, women and children in your community.

We have gladly turned the page on 2020 and look forward to this new year of 2021, but our God remains the One who brought us through 2020 and has great plans for the new year as well.

As a church planter, your job is not to invent a vision. Your work is not to appropriate a successful vision from another church planter and church. Your job is to prayerfully discern the vision that Christ has for your church.

Christ is the Lord of church planting and He has a vision for your new church.

What will you do today to discover His vision for you and your church?

Know that we love you and we are praying for you as we enter this new year.

Until the Whole World Knows Him,

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Equipping leaders to plant five million dynamic churches to reach the world for Christ.