If you have Spotify (don't worry, I won't tell any musicians) then pull up Will Smith's 'Miami' and hit play.
I promise I'll be done before the song finishes in three minutes.
I'm in Miami this week as part of the Acts 29 Network's annual pastor's retreat.
I love Acts 29's mission to help churches plant churches.
I am convinced that any church and every church should help start new churches.
Your church can - and should be - a church-planting church.
Not sure what that looks like for you?
Then take a look at these five ways you can help start new churches.
1. Plant Yourself
Before a church helps another church get started, it needs to make sure it has deep roots itself.
Church-planting churches are healthy churches.
Healthy churches make disciples.
Healthy churches develop leaders.
Healthy churches are financially viable.
Whether you're a new church, or you've been around the block a time or three, get yourself healthy before you invest in starting new churches.
2. Invest Financially
Take ten percent of your church's income and invest it in new churches.
You said you wanted to plant a church, right?
Well, put your money where your mouth is, chief.
3. Build Partnerships
One of the best ways to help your church care deeply about church planting is to focus your efforts in a few strategic places.
What do 'strategic partnerships' look like?
It could mean that you partner with new churches with similar demographics to your church.
Or you could partner with churches that are nothing like your church.
Think suburban churches in the States partnering with global churches around the world.
Partnerships are a great next step for churches who are already financially in church planting.
4. Start Residencies
Internships provide space for people to make your church better.
Residencies provide space for people to make their church better.
Some residencies serve as preparation for seminary.
Some residencies serve as an alternative to seminary.
Some residencies serve as a finishing school after seminary.
What is consistent about all of those approaches is a commitment to walking someone through a developmental process that results in a clear outcome.
Church-planting residencies are a great step for churches that have demonstrated a financial commitment to church planting.
And if you have never run a residency before, consider developing a city-wide or regional-based residency with several other churches.
5. Send People
'Have you planted a church?'
When most people ask that question, they are not thinking about line-items in a budget or partnerships or residencies.
They're asking if you have intentionally sent out people from your church to start a new church.
Sending might mean you launch out one man to plant a church far away from your city.
Or it might mean sending out a group of people from your church to help start a new church in your city or surrounding area.
And while I think this should be the goal of every church - and can be part of your strategy from day one - I would encourage most churches to deeply commit to the other ways of starting new churches first.
Consider the cost, right?
Do The Next Right Thing
If your church is committed to starting new churches, include one of these strategies for church planting in your overall plan.
If your church is interested in church planting but not committed yet, drop me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org). I would love to help you walk you through that decision.