Think the US isn’t a missions field? Think again. According to the North American Mission Board (NAMB), more than 246 million people in North America do not have a relationship with Jesus. Missionary church planters in Arkansas are working tirelessly to see the statistic lowered.
Church planters are dedicated, visionary men and women with hearts burdened to see people come to know Christ. They do not bury themselves in the ease of working in an evangelized area but live to reach out to a lost world waiting for hope. Most of the time they work with few financial or personnel resources.
Consider what it might look like to partner with a church planter in Arkansas. Picture yourself, your missions group, or your church providing a church planter with the tools necessary to help win people to Christ, disciple them, and begin a new church. Could this be your response to the Great Commission?
10 WAYS TO ASSIST A CHURCH PLANTER
- Prayer Pray in meaningful ways on your own, with your family, in existing small groups, in prayer gatherings, and in worship celebrations for a church plant.
Financial Contributions Assist with significant start-up costs and ongoing expenses. New congregations are usually small and often include young Christians who are still learning the value of giving.
Facilities Churches can offer space for a new church in their facility. Businesses can provide space for meetings and offices.
Missions Teams Assist church plants on a mission trip for a day, weekend, or week. Teams of youth, college students, or adults must come prepared to serve and be flexible to meet the needs of the church plant. Planters often serve in unchurched areas, and traditional ministries may not be effective.
Training and Conferences Provide scholarships and travel for church planters and their teams to attend conferences and training events designed just for them. Or consider whether your church could host such an event.
Networks of Sponsors Influential churches and missions groups can develop a network within their state or association to help church plants. Organizations and groups cooperating together and utilizing their various expertise can have an exponential impact.
Retreat for the Church-Planting Family Church planting takes its toll on the entire family. Spouses and children are often forgotten heroes. Bless a church-planting family by offering a vacation home free of charge or for a nominal fee.
Speaking Opportunities Church planters want to share their vision and heart. Invite them to your church and give them an opportunity to enlist new sponsors. Be an advocate for new churches. Don’t view them as competition.
Coaches and Mentors Church planters and teams need pastors and staff to help them grow to pastoral leadership and need program leaders to share insights with members of the church-planting team.
- People SWAT (servants willing, able, and temporary) members are needed for a fixed period of time. Provide new churches with experienced leadership for children, youth, collegiate, and music programs while the new church develops.
ADOPT A CHURCH PLANTER
For names of church planters near you or to partner with a church planter in Arkansas, contact the Arkansas Baptist State Convention church planting team at 501.376.4791 ext. 5149 or email email@example.com.
Adapted from the February 22 issue of Missions Mosaic, Woman’s Missionary Union, Birmingham, Alabama. Used by permission. To receive this issue, or subscribe to Missions Mosaic, call 1-800-968-7301.