I appreciated this post from Toby Kurth on the nature of church planting- something all of us here at Redemption care about and are a part of.

Church planting is not a spectator sport! Or is it?

Anyone involved with a church plant will undoubtedly feel the pleasure and the burden of their full participation in getting a new church going. It is easy to list off the many things that need to be done to keep things rolling. There is so much to do. So many people to meet, relationships to build, meaningful labor, and seemingly menial labor.  It is non-stop action. And yet, in the midst of it all, you cannot help but feel that you are little more than a spectator—someone with the privilege of witnessing the power of God build His church, of seeing lives transformed in ways that only God can do.

We are 19 months into our church plant. When people ask me what church planting is like, the most common description I give is that I feel like I am equal parts spectator and participant.

Church planting is not just about getting out of the stands and into the game. You cannot afford to get so wrapped up in what you are doing that you lose sight of what God is doing. A church cannot be built without the supernatural power of God.

You need to be a committed spectator. You need to be committed to praying for God’s activity in your church plant and celebrating all that He is doing. Only God, in the power of His Spirit and through the redemptive work of Christ, can truly build a church. In that sense, any participant in a church plant—from the church planter to the new children’s ministry volunteer—is nothing more than a spectator witnessing God’s amazing work.

At the same time, God delights to use His people to advance His Kingdom. God builds His church through us and our labors. We do have to get out of the stands and into the game. He calls us to work, and to work hard. But, as we work, we must never forget that we are simultaneously spectators, watching in awe as God builds his church.

(HT: Justin Buzzard)