Bob Roberts Jr. writes
Let’s just dream for a minute! Pretend we have an unlimited supply of money and 1,000 of the most gifted preachers, organizational guru’s, and team builder’s all built into one. Let’s start 1,000 churches over the next ten years where each one will grow to at least 2,000!!!!! Those churches would change America overnight! WRONG – WE JUST DID THAT!!!!! In the past ten years, that very thing has happened and yet there are numerically less people in church than ten years ago.
I pastor a “mega-church” and I believe in “church-multiplication” so it may sound wrong to you that I would say that shouldn’t be our primary strategy – but it shouldn’t. We’re building a new 2,000 seat auditorium, have a large staff, and do a lot of the things that come with a mega-church. But, we must be clear, there has never been a church planting movement begun and sustained and replicated by mega-churches! I still believe in mega-churches – I believe in all churches and each one has a critical role. I believe mega-churches can produce mega-churches AND smaller churches that give scale, leverage, and resources to movements – not that it happens often here in the West as much as in the East. ..
If the focus on church planting is only planting mega-churches then we dramatically limit who can be involved and who can plant. We wind up with a pool of 1200 churches to start a movement. HOWEVER, if we focus on units of 100 or less, we wind up with 350,000 potential players! Let the other 348,800 play! The answer to a movement is not looking for a handful of guys to start relatively speaking a handful of churches – but looking for a mass of guys to start a mass of churches at the smallest reproducible unit available!...
We will have a movement when we focus the strategy not on a handful of rising stars who get media, marketing, etc. but when average people are planting churches of a few dozen. This is why I believe so much in house churches and smaller churches. This is why I am so passionate that the motives be based on reaching the lost versus being anti whatever.