This is a question we are often asked, so I thought it worth taking a moment to look at what we expect to be doing on the ground once we land in Vancouver.
Church planting really is about engaging with people and beginning to build a new Christ centred community. What that means in day to day life is that our focus will be in three directions: gathering to pray and worship together, reaching out to as many people as we possibly can, and spending time together putting in the building blocks of our community.
Prayer and worship keep us close to God, hearing His voice, and engaging with His priorities. Spending time in His presence makes us alive to God and to one another. Prayer will be key to achieving what God is calling us to build, and so we will give time and focus to praying together regularly.
“Reaching out to people” is a deliberately vague phrase. It means spending time developing relationships with anyone and everyone in whatever contexts work for us. For most of us one of those key contexts will be our work place, where we will spend lots of time with others. There might be sports clubs we want to join, or cultural activities which we can engage in where we can meet people. As a team we’ll do lots of open socials, whether going for a day walk, or volley ball on the beach, a picnic in Stanley Park… One of the great things about Vancouver is the abundance of opportunity to hang out with each other.
Team members will also give themselves to being hospitable. There’s nothing like having people in your home over a meal to really get to know them.
Some of the people we reach out to will engage with God and with our community, and some won’t. That’s fine. We seek to love and serve everyone.
Finally, we’ll gather regularly to spend time as a team. Getting the right foundation blocks into place is so important, and so we’ll start as we mean to go on. We’ll be spending time in scripture looking at God’s building blocks for family, church and society. We’ll seek to apply God’s words to our hearts and lives, so we become more like Jesus and and better equipped to invest in His mission.
Some have asked me whether you need to be full time for the church when you are involved in a church plant. The short answer is yes and no! Yes, you are the church, so all of your life is lived in the context of loving God, building community and reaching out to people. No, most of the team will be involved in the market place ‘full time’ – and that’s one of the most important parts of our mission. To be salt and light in the work place is to be salt and light in the community. To be a great employee, a real contributer in your work place will make society a better place and, in time, draw attention to God’s goodness.
Church planting isn’t for the faint hearted. It’s not an easy ride. It’s not a comfortable life. It’s not the coolest thing in town. It’s not for those who like to consume church. It’s not for those who can’t get on in their current church. It is demanding in so many ways. It takes you out of your comfort zone. It’s about living as a disciple of Jesus every day, taking on His mission as your mission, and investing in others. If you’re up for an adventure that will cost you everything come and join us!