In October of 2016, there were three couples who joined Beth and I in a dream to plant a new church. We invited 29 people to join us in a vision cast of this new thing God was doing. So, on October 16, 2016, 35 people gathered together in our basement to discuss the possibility of a new church.
To our surprise everyone at that first meeting joined us on this adventure. We continued to meet to develop, plan and train. Our group grew to 53, by the time we had our first public worship gathering on February 19, 2017.
Discover Point is a faith venture. We have prayed like everything depends on God (because it does). Let me share two little stories:
From the beginning we have enjoyed the blessing of a great relationship with our host site. Our lease agreement is incredibly easy on our budget. However, we have to pay for snow removal for Sunday mornings if necessary. One large snow would almost double our monthly rent. God has faithfully answered our prayers, not only have we not had snow on Sunday mornings, we have never had to deal with inclement weather while we were unloading or loading our trailer for Sunday morning set up/tear down.
Since Father’s Day of this year, we have been praying God would bring an average of one new family to Discover Point every week. Again, God’s faithfulness is amazing. Not only have we seen an average of one new family every week, but the sticky rate is incredible. We five new families calling Discover Point home!
Discover Point is also an obedience venture. We have worked as if it depends on us. We have been in “GIT ER DONE!” mode. Everyone has just done what is needed sacrificing time, money and energy to see Discover Point come into existence out of nothing. While “GIT ER DONE!” mode, is necessary in the early days, it is not sustainable.
We have instituted a NEXT 50, mentality. That is we believe that we have to always be in a “PREPARE FOR THE NEXT 50” mode rather than a “GIT ER DONE” one. One of the first steps we have taken is to implement a Buddy System. This is based on the simple idea that “Two are better than one” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).
In 1 Kings 16-19, the prophet Elijah was at the top of his ministry. He won a significant spiritual battle on Mt. Carmel. He literally had a mountaintop experience. The next moment, the queen threatened his life and he fell into a deep depression. Elijah felt alone and wanted God to take his life. As God brought him out of his valley of the shadow of death, He told him to choose Elisha as his successor. Elisha trained under Elijah until Elijah was transported miraculously to heaven on a chariot of fire! Then Elisha did even greater things than Elijah.
We learned two things from Elijah’s story:
- Isolation Leads to Disillusion. The enemy uses anything he can to isolate us from the community God has created us for. He wants to isolate us from our family. He wants to isolate us from our church family. You get the picture. In community we get our encouragement. In community we get help to do the work. In community we get equipped to accomplish what God sets before us.
- Buddies Multiply Ministry. Two are better than one. The whole idea of synergy is that a team produces exponentially more than the sum of the two working independently. We see at least three ways buddies multiply ministry:
- Team – sharing the work
- Relief – when one is gone, the ministry is covered
- New Ministry – one of the two can be released to a new ministry, and both get new buddy…
Our mission is to Follow Jesus and invite others to come along. The Buddy System is our mission in action as it helps us prepare for the NEXT 50!
In up coming posts, I will connect the Buddy System to our core values, strategy and vision as I share how to choose, train a buddy as well as be a good buddy.