Why Planting is Worth the Pain

Brandon Doss and Brandon Matthews share six things every church planter will experience in the first year of a new church.

Dear Church Planter,

Congratulations! All the planning, fundraising, team building, sweat poured and tears cried have come to this. You’re planting a church! With that in mind, we wanted to share with you six things we’ve learned in the past nine months of planting Cultivate Church.

1. It’s a Lot of Work?

We know exactly what you’re thinking. And yes, we knew it was going to be a lot of work. However, there is still no way to fully prepare. For more than a year, we worked on building systems and structures, building teams, raising funds, equipping each environment with supplies and equipment, training leaders, outreach efforts, marketing, advertising, securing a facility, etc. The list goes on and on. Now we have added the weekly Sunday morning experience beginning at 5:30 a.m. unloading trailers, setting up equipment, creating exciting kids’ environments, etc. Don’t underestimate the work involved. Jesus said it best: Count the costs (Luke 14:28-34).

2. You’re Only as Good as Your Team

Invest, invest, invest into the people around you. You need them more than you can imagine. Pour into their passions, gifts and strengths, instead of using them for what you need. The right people in the right place will change everything.

3. It’s Different Than You Think?

You’ve played it through your mind many times. You’ve studied the pros and cons. You’ve read the books. You’ve even attended the conferences. Trust us: It’s different than you think. Both in the positive sense and the negative sense, be prepared for unexpected emotions, feelings, thoughts and outcomes.

4. People Will Surprise You

Sometimes, as soon as you can thank God for sending you that couple, they are gone. Sometimes, as soon as you think, “We’ll never see them again,” they amaze you at how passionate they are about the vision.

5. People Are Hungry

“Are people going to come?” “Will we resonate with people?” If you are in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing, the answer is yes. People are in that city/community praying for you as much as you are praying for them. You won’t have to look very hard for the people who are the perfect fit for what God is doing through you. God didn’t make a mistake placing you where you are, and people will respond (no matter how nervous you may feel).

6. It’s Worth It

At the end of the day, it’s 100 percent worth it! The bumps and bruises, scrapes and scars, are all worth it. When that person, even if it’s just one, says yes to Jesus, it’s worth it. Knowing that if you hadn’t said yes and obeyed God, that those people would not have heard the Gospel today, makes it all worth it!

We can’t begin to tell you how excited we are for you and your team! Pray hard, love people and celebrate every victory like crazy. You’re planting a church!

Christine Yount Jones
Christine Yount Jones is Content Director for Outreach Media Group. She has published several books and hundreds of articles about ministry in the last three decades. Before his death in 2003, Michael Yount and Christine had three children. Now, she and her husband, Ray Jones, together have five grown kids.