Commitment and Sacrifice

I had lunch today with a church planter, someone who is interested in beginning a new work in the Upstate.  It was great to hear his vision and passion, his desire to be obedient with his life and to be willing to go wherever God calls.  I am learning to value these times and it doesn’t seem like too long ago, I was sitting on his side of the table with the same hopes and dreams.
At one point in the conversation he asked me what I would do if I were in his position right now.  That is always a loaded question and I try to be careful in responding.  In a moment like that, an answer can build a bridge or burn one down.
I ended up responding with two ideas, two pieces of advice from my experience at ALIVE.
First, vision is the easy part of the process.
But vision is just a statement until it is supported by commitment and sacrifice.  Commitment and sacrifice are where you find out if your vision sticks, if people believe in the vision God has given to you.  Commitment and Sacrifice are what cause a vision to move from statement to significance.  Commitment and Sacrifice are where the risk is, where obedience is required.

The second advice I gave him was to stop thinking about this as a church plant. 
What if this is one tiny piece of the grand movement God has in mind for the region?  You are trying to plant a church, but God has invited you to join the movement, his movement, the kingdom of God forcefully advancing.  Don’t try to create an organization that worships and does small groups.  Be part of something designed by God to shape culture, to bring the message of salvation to the world.  This is so much more than church planting—this is movement making.
I am thankful to be part of a body that lives these two ideas out in so many ways and on so many fronts.  God has places us around the communities we are a part of to shape those communities and to change the culture we are part of.  God has invited us to be part of his grand story as he writes His Story!  He continues to be the main character of all of our stories and we see this at ALIVE.
So have a great weekend.  I hope summer is treating you well.  As you gather for worship, don’t come to church, come to a movement; God’s Kingdom forcefully advancing!
Bless you!