Church Planting: Stewardship of the Few

Sometimes wise stewardship leads to Samaria Results and other times to Desert Road Results.

stewardship

Our Lord’s commission came with the expectation to “make disciples” (Matt 28:19). He desires that we “bear fruit” (John 15:5). He is pragmatic; and we should be too. Given the great needs of the world and the limited resources we have received, stewardship is a must. How do we leverage what we have for the most Kingdom impact? 

While we should desire to see (and work toward) a great kingdom harvest of large numbers of people coming to faith in Jesus, we must be careful such desire does not get ahead of the Spirit’s work. Our zeal must be coupled with knowledge of the Lord, or we may miss the way (Prov 19:2).

Was Philip a wise steward when he left the great awakening in Samaria to go to the Gaza road (Acts 8:5-8; 26)?

How do we know? The quantitative results were very different.

Walking in the Spirit and obedience to the Lord’s will proved a good and faithful servant (Acts 8:26-27; 29-30).

Sometimes wise stewardship leads to Samaria Results and other times to Desert Road Results.

We desire the former, but are we satisfied with the latter–when such is God’s desire in the moment?

Philip did not know the outcome of either setting. Maybe if he had received knowledge of the Desert Road Results beforehand he would have made excuses to stay put:  “Lord, this is not a wise use of time, money, energy, and people. Only one man will be reached. Samaria is where the Kingdom resources are needed!”

Sometimes Kingdom stewardship is the stewardship of the few.

 

This article originally appeared here, and is used by permission.

JD Payne
J. D. serves as the pastor of church multiplication with The Church at Brook Hills in Birmingham, Alabama. He has pastored churches in Kentucky and Indiana, and served for a decade with the North American Mission Board and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. He is the author of several books on the topics of evangelism and missions.