Friday, November 11, 2011

Why Missionaries Fail Part 6

James 4:13-14 Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit"; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow.

About three years ago, our church decided to open a children's outreach, for local kids only, to be held on Saturday, and I felt led to help. The plan was a success, even though it didn't work. Last Sunday we brought 32 Mexican children to church in the church's 18-passenger van. And our pastor, who took the church from 12 to over 100 in five years, came to Mexico as an evangelist, not a pastor.

In the book of Acts we read that various missionaries, including the Apostle Paul, didn't go where they planned to, but they were still successful. Careful, long-term planning sounds good, and it is often necessary in order for a missinary to raise support. But it isn't always the way God works.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Why Missinaries Fail Part 5

John 15:5 "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing."

Most missionaries present the same goal to their mission board: church planting. They will either start or serve in new churches. And church planting is an effective long-term means of establishing Christianity in an area. The problem is, it rarely works. Almost all new churches fail. In fact, the most successful means of starting new churches, by far, is to have a church split.

Starting a new church is extremely difficult, and the failure rate is extremely high. Different groups use different methods, and most of them don't work. In other words, God doesn't often call Christians to plant churches, but that's what missionaries try to do.