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Exponential 08 May 10, 2008

Posted by clintcarter in Church Planting.
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A couple of weeks ago Carey and I went to the Exponential Conference.  The whole week is about reproducing churches.  A couple of people have likened the week to drinking from a fire hose.  So much information, almost all of it good.

Lots of people have posted thorough notes of the conference – I’m just going to give you the things that stuck out to me.  I’ll break it up into bite size bits.

Main Session #1 with Ed Stetzer

“Church planting is the mission of every church.”  This is going to be an enormous tide to turn.  The church is unique in that it is an institution that exists for those that aren’t apart of it yet.  For too long our churches have become their own little kingdoms that are wrapped up in keeping their own.  Now sure, we’ll give lip service to the importance of reaching new people with the gospel, but when it comes down to decisions made, the vast majority of our efforts and resources go to bettering ourselves.  We need to see and accept the broader picture of the kingdom of God, and that the call of the kingdom is to give yourself away.  My church received $1.3 million in gifts last year.  While I don’t know the exact figure, I’m fairly confident that less than $300,000 went outside the walls.  We spent $1 million on ourselves and what do we have to show for it.  Now I understand the costs of building maintenance and personnel – and believe me, I’m grateful for the personnel part.  But it just seems like our focus is in the wrong place.  Learned of one church at the conference who has actually capped their membership to make themselves plant new congregations.  How awesome is that!  I want to be apart of a community like that!

“Every church at the end of the day is evaluated by the quality of its disciples.  Not by the music, preaching, kids ministry, etc.  It’s about the disciples you’re producing rather than the church your building.”  This flies in the face of the way we do things at my church.  We measure our success by the Sunday morning experience – “great time of worship this week” or “the message was incredible”.  We’re giving people the impression that our Sunday morning time is the most important thing we do each week.  It’s not.  Walking with people down the road of becoming fully devoted followers of Christ is the most important thing we do.  Too much of my personal ministry is Sunday morning prep; instead I need to focus on the main thing.

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Comments»

1. Kenny - May 11, 2008

Hey Clint, my brother, The third sentence in this paragragh dosen`t sit well with me. The rest sound good. The Church is unique thats right, it is an institution that exists, but it exists for the children of God, not those that aren`t apart of it yet. What do you think about that?


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