Is God calling you to plant a church?
This is a question I believe many pastors, both young and old, are wrestling with right now, and perhaps you are one of them.
I, myself, have planted a church and I have also helped thousands of pastors plant churches all across the country throughout the years.
I also want to help you start the church that God is calling you to plant. But before that happens, there are five questions you should prayerfully consider before moving forward.
Please note that these questions are not intended to make you question or doubt what you have heard from God. Rather, these questions are intended to help ground you so you can walk more confidently in your calling to plant a church.
If you’re ready to go on this journey then keep reading.
5 questions to ask before planting a church
Question 1: Are you really called to plant a church?
This is perhaps the most difficult question to answer because it requires honest self-reflection with oneself.
The truth of the matter is that planting and starting a church is not for the faint of heart. Planting a church requires a lot of time, effort and energy on your part, and this is really just the tip of the iceberg.
Furthermore, if we’re honest with one another, the chances of your church lasting more than two years are not in your favor.
For instance, a recent study indicated that in the United States from 2006 to 2012, an estimated 30,000 congregations shut their doors. Couple this with other statistics that estimate a whopping 4,000 churches close every year, and it’s almost a wonder anyone would attempt to plant a church.
However, you know as well as I know that we serve a big and mighty God who is not confined to statistics and trends.
In short, it’s not enough to just “think” you want to plant a church. Rather, you need to KNOW that you have been called by God and prepared by the Holy Spirit to plant a church.
Question 2: Is your spouse on board?
While God may have called you to plant a church, I cannot stress enough the importance of your spouse being on board with your calling.
I would even venture to say that your marriage should always come before your calling to plant a church.
In reality, your spouse should also have a sense of the calling to plant a church. This is a journey that you both must be willing and ready to go on.
If your spouse is not totally on board with planting a church—it is best to just wait.
Question 3: Who will help you plant a church?
The simple truth of the matter is that you cannot plant a church by yourself. In addition to your spouse’s support, you will need help from a team of people.
This team of people, often referred to as a launch team, is not just a “regular” group of individuals.
Rather, your launch team should consist of individuals who believe in the vision that God has given you for your church plant. These individuals will be people who you do life with in order to expand the kingdom of God.
Furthermore, these individuals will play a vital role in the launch and success of your new church.
For more information on building a launch team, download our free e-book How to Build a Great Launch Team by clicking on the link below.
Question 4: How will you raise finances for your church?
As a church planter, the reality is that you need money to plant a church.
To plant a church in today’s day in age, you will need money for:
- marketing and advertising the launch of your church,
- purchasing furniture and sound equipment,
- renting a facility for worship services,
- legal start-up fees,
- food and beverages for various events, gatherings, or celebrations,
- supplies for the children’s ministry, nursery, and so much more.
While many church planters realize that finances are needed in order to start their church, they struggle in knowing how to adequately raise finances.
For this reason, we have created an e-book called How to Raise Finances for Your Church Plant.
Question 5: Who will help you with the legal responsibilities of starting a church?
When church planters begin planning for their church launch, they often begin with thinking about the typical logistics such as:
- where they are going to hold services,
- who they are going to ask help them to start the church, and
- how they are going to market and announce the church to the community.
These are questions and thoughts that definitely need to be answered when starting a church. However, what most pastors and church planters do not initially think about at the outset is establishing a solid legal foundation.
When planting a church, it is imperative that one of the first things you begin working on is establishing a solid legal foundation for your church.
Through our StartRIGHT® Program, we have helped thousands of church plants across the country with:
- getting incorporated,
- creating strategic bylaws,
- establishing policies,
- applying for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, and more.
What is God calling you to do?
God’s calling on your life is all about timing.
The questions I presented to you in the blog are intended to help you know when to take that next step of faith.
The call to plant a church is a rewarding and honorable call, but it’s important to remember that you are not called to do this alone.
Perhaps the most useful advice I received when planting my church was, “Don’t be afraid to ask for help!”
Our purpose here at StartCHURCH is to partner with you as you fulfill your calling by helping you to protect the dreams and vision that God has placed in your heart.
This article originally appeared here.