Monday, October 4, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Sunday, August 22, 2010
12 Audacious Faith Confessions: Sun Stand Still, Steven Furtick
1. I am fully forgiven and free from all shame and condemnation (Romans 8:1-2, Ephesians 1:7-8, 1 John 1:9).
2. I act in audacious faith to change the world in my generation (Joshua 10:12-14, John 14:12).
3. I overcome my fear and anxiety; I trust in the Lord with all my heart. God is with me (Proverbs 3:5-6, Philippians 4:6-7, 1 Peter 5:7, Isaiah 41:10)
4. I am able to fulfill the calling God has placed on my life (Exodus 3:9-12; Psalm 57:2, Colossians 1:24-29).
5. I am fully resourced to do everything God has called me to do (Deuteronomy 8:18, Luke 6:38, Philippians 4:13).
6. I have no insecurity, because I see myself the way God sees me (Genesis 1:26-27, Psalm 139:13-16, Ephesians 5:25-27).
7. I am a faithful spouse and a godly father- our family is blessed (Deuteronomy 6:6-9, Ephesians 5:25-27, Colossians 3:18-19; 1 Peter 3:1-7).
8. I am completely whole- physically, mentally, and emotionally (Psalm 103:1-5; Matthew 8:16-17, 2 Corinthians 5:17; 1 Peter 2:24).
9. I am increasing in influence and favor for the kingdom of God (Genesis 45:4-8, 1 Samuel 2:26; Acts 2:37-47).
10. I am enabled to walk in the sacrificial love of Christ (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17, 1 John 3:16, 4:9-12).
11. I have the wisdom of the Lord concerning every decision I make (2 Chronicles 1:7-12; Proverbs 2:6, Ecclesiastes 2:26; James 1:5).
12. I am protected from all hard and evil in Jesus’ name (Genesis 50:20; Psalm 3:1-3; 2 Thessalonians 3:2-3).
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
“Paint The Town”
When starting your Monthly Services, it should be your goal that everyone in the immediate area knows about your church and has the opportunity to respond. Don’t be the biggest secret in town!
So let’s be creative and think about how to make this happen!
1) Start Brainstorming…
Ask your team to help you come up with 50 ways you can let every person in your target area know about your Monthly Services.
Call church planters and local businesses that’ve been successful, ask them what worked and how they reached their local community. Then prioritize and pick some of the best ideas that fit within your budget.
Warning: be careful that you don’t stake your future on some grandiose idea that is only working in a textbook!
2) Utilize Direct Marketing Tools…
For each of our Monthly Services we sent 33,000 mail pieces to our community, and then for our grand opening we ended up sending 60,000 mail pieces.
I often talk to church planters who send 5,000 pieces one time and they tell me that direct marketing didn’t work for them. You’ve got to “GO BIG” with consistency. Some people won’t respond until they receive 8-10 mailers.
I went back one year after we launched and looked at the giving of everyone who we reached through mailers – we more than doubled the cost of our investment!
3) Promote Through The Web…
At South Bay Church we’ve seen a great response from Google Adwords. In addition, we created a Yelp page that gives info about South Bay. We have also utilized advertising on Facebook as just another way to get the word out.
Several cost free options include: creating a Facebook fan page for your church and creating a twitter account. As people get your mailers and door hangers they will check you out on the web. Make sure that your site that looks sharp and is easy to explore.
Link your website to Twitter and Facebook so that people can get involved in your online community.
4) Serve at Community Events…
Close to 1/3 of the people who came to our first Monthly Service we first connected with at a local Art and Wine Festival.
Identify local community events throughout the year and contact the city or the person in charge of the event. Ask them if you can serve by picking up trash, and helping with set-up and tear down of the event.
Most cities will also let you sponsor a booth where you can publicize your church. This is a great way to establish a positive relationship with your community and spread the word about your Monthly Services.
You’ve got the Holy Spirit in you. God has a big vision for your church. He wants to use you to make a huge difference.
Rely on Him to give a strategy to let the whole community know about your Launch!
Next week we’ll take a look at what I believe to be the most important part of getting a strong launch and that is PRAYER!
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
“Mobilizing Your Launch Team To Invite Their Friends”
Church Planter, As you are planning your Monthly Services and your Launch Team is growing your next goal is to spread the word about your services through word of mouth marketing and personal evangelism.
If you are going to attract a crowd to your Monthly Services you must get the troops moving in the right direction.
Here are several keys to making this happen:
1) Constantly teach on the importance of personal evangelism…
Every time your Launch Team gathers, you should be putting heat under the value of personal evangelism.
You can do this through sharing stories of people you are meeting (pretty important!!), teaching key passages that focus on God’s heart for the lost, and casting the vision of what it will look like when the whole group is focused on people who are far from God.
2) Give the team tools and train them…
We created what we called, “Impact Cards.” They were the size of a bookmark and each card had 10 empty slots for the names of people who individual Launch Team members would invest in and invite to the Monthly Services.
We asked our Launch Team to write these names down on two different cards, one to remind them to pray and one for our staff to pray. It was amazing to eventually meet some of the people I prayed for at our Monthly Services.
We also gave our Launch Team 10-4×6 invite cards with all the info about our services, a list of 10 creative ways to spread the message and invite their friends, and a “life saver” candy to remind them that God was using them to impact eternity.
3) Refuse to cater to inwardly-focused Christians…
It seems like this is a no brainer, but every church planter I know faces this temptation.
You will have people who want to be a part of your Launch Team that have previous church experience. Some will have selfish expectations that you will acquiesce your vision to meet their needs.
Don’t do it! Stay focused on reaching those who are far from God. Move with the movers. Spend your time on those who want to make an impact and those who are far from God. Your launch will be much healthier. I promise!
Remember, during these earlier days your job is that of a team leader. You are a quarterback trying to get the ball in the end zone.
You get a touchdown when you successfully launch the church.
You’ve got to get your team moving in the right direction.
Show them the end zone and get everybody focused on the goal: LAUNCH!
Tune in next week, when I’ll be sharing about how to get the word out in your community about your brand new church!
Monday, July 12, 2010
Attracting a Crowd To Monthly Services- Part 1
“Building a Launch Team”
by Andy Wood
My wife Stacie and I, and two other couples moved from Dallas and South Carolina to the Silicon Valley in August of 2008. Our goal was to successfully launch South Bay Church by February of 2009. The Silicon Valley has seen many failed church plants, so we knew a healthy launch would require a miracle from God and a lot of hard work! Our daily prayer was, “God please give us at least 150 people at our Grand Opening Service.”
Given the fact that we had 10 on our team (including dogs and kids) we were just 140 shy of that goal. We quickly discovered that the development of a healthy externally focused Launch Team would be one of the keys to reaching our prayer goal. Many days I would prayer walk through our community with such a heavy heart as I realized that 95% of these people were heading towards eternity apart from Christ.
As we sought God for a healthy launch, I was challenged to pray, “Father just give us 50 people from this community for our Launch Team, you raised Jesus from the dead in three days and this is nothing for you!”
Over the next 6 months we coupled our prayers with hard work and execution. We got moving… serving at local city events, going door to door in our apartments, and hosting neighborhood cookouts (just about every weekend).
Everyone on our original team had a note card with names of people we were praying for and intentionally inviting to be a part of our Launch Team. We eventually ended up with unchurched, de-churched, and churched from all various walks of life and each had a common thread: a desire to serve and make an impact in our community.
Many planters underestimate the significance of a healthy Launch Team and its correlation to having successful Monthly Services. I thought many times, “If I can’t build a team of 50 people that believe in our vision, how can I lead a church that reaches thousands?”
As our Launch Team grew from 8 people to close to 50 by our Grand Opening, our sphere of relationships increased exponentially. Each Sunday night we gathered for one hour, I cast vision and encouraged people to begin thinking about what friends they would invite to our Monthly Services.
This Launch Team proved to be building block #1 of attracting a crowd to our Monthly Services.
Here are Some Action Steps:
- Come up with 3 creative ways to meet people in your community.
- Challenge everyone on your team to build a list of 10 people they are investing in and inviting to be a part of your Launch Team.
- Pray that God would give you 50 people to be a part of your Launch Team.
In next week’s post I’ll write about how to mobilize your Launch Team to bring their friends to your Monthly Services.
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
Friday, June 4, 2010
An American businessman took a vacation to a small coastal Mexican village on doctor’s orders. Unable to sleep after an urgent phone call from the office the first morning, he walked out to the pier to clear his head. A small boat with just one fisherman had docked, and inside the boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish.
“How long did it take you to catch them?” the American asked.
“Only a little while,” the Mexican replied in surprisingly good English.
“Why don’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?” the American then asked.
“I have enough to support my family and give a few to friends,” the Mexican said as he unloaded them into a basket.
“But… What do you do with the rest of your time?”
The Mexican looked up and smiled. “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Julia, and stroll into the village each evening, where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos. I have a full and busy life, senor.”
The American laughed and stood tall. “Sir, I’m a Harvard M.B.A. and can help you. You should spend more time fishing, and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. In no time, you could buy several boats with the increased haul. Eventually, you would have a fleet of fishing boats.”
He continued, “Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the consumers, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing, and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village, of course, and move to Mexico City, then to Los Angeles, and eventually to New York City, where you could run your expanded enterprise with proper management.
The Mexican fisherman asked, “But, senor, how long will all this take?”
To which the American replied, “15-20 years, 25 tops.”
“But what then, senor?”
The American laughed and said, “That’s the best part. When the time is right, you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.”
“Millions senor? Then what?”
“Then you would retire and move to a small coastal fishing village, where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, and stroll in to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”
Questions to consider:
* Why do we have such a hard time enjoying the blessings God has placed in our lives?
* What would it look like for you to enjoy your family and job now instead of in the future? How would you think, act, or live differently?
* Spend a couple minutes thanking God for His blessings in your life and ask Him for wisdom to enjoy them more!
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Monday, May 24, 2010
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Thursday, May 20, 2010
Monday, May 3, 2010
Thursday, April 29, 2010
What a challenging statement. So often we as leaders can be found guilty for wanting to talk a subject to death. We think that by talking, talking, and talking we will eventually make progress. Is it possible that part of the reason you have "poverty" in your ministry when it comes to fruitfulness can be traced back to the principle found in this verse? So many in my generation are guilty of spending large chunks of time arguing over theological nuances and philosophical differences. There are so many things in scripture that are clear... love your neighbor as yourself, be wise in the way that you act towards outsiders, don't let the sun go down when you are angry, speak the truth in love, and the list goes on. I am challenged when I read scripture by how often my life falls short of these commands. I find that I am tempted to drown myself in the nuances that are unclear so that I don't have to obey the things that are unquestionable in the scriptures. I think that at times our concern for protecting theology and philosophy actually leads to the greatest heresy of all, which is a failure to obey the truth. I am troubled at times with the verbage used by many of the young leaders in my generation. I hear many conversations about the future of ministry patterns without much clarity on how to implement an effective vision in the now. What about this week? What about the 95% of my community apart from relationship with God... TODAY. Hard work and diligence leads to fruitfulness, talking leads to poverty and a lack of progress. Let's stop talking and start doing!
PS, Am I the only one who has found this to be the case? Is there anyone else out there who is sick of talk with no action?
Monday, April 5, 2010
Thursday, April 1, 2010
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
The solution to your problems can often be found in one idea or one strategic step. South Bay Church is moving from one to two services on January 31. Which means that we needed to double our volunteer base in less than one month. We got in our "war room" a few weeks back and started asking God to give us a solution to this problem. We felt like he gave us what is now known as the "t-shirt idea" from God through Renan! :-) We had over 100 t-shirts made with four different colors. Each t-shirt had the South Bay logo on the front and each color represented one of our ministry teams. I taught out of the book of Esther about making your one life count. At the end of the message I challenged every person to make their life count. "God's kingdom is moving forward with our without us" I said. "but if we say 'yes' to His call to serve than we get to be a part of something so much bigger than just our lives." At the end of the message each person had a small commitment form in hand and the colored t-shirts lined the pipe and drape surrounding those in their seats. During the challenge time each person was given the invitation to fill out the card and go grab a t-shirt signifying their desire to be a part of the South Bay vision to change the world! Standing by each group of shirts were the different team leaders. I had everyone in the church count to 3 with me and then we clapped and hollered like crazy for all of those who were taking the step to get in the game. Initially only one person stood up. I was about to pee in my pants. Then another 50 stood up all at once. Wow! It was one of the best moments in the history of our church. Watching people struggle and then say, "I am not going to live for me anymore, I'm going to start making a difference." God used one idea that came from a brainstorming meeting as a staff. When Renan said it in our meeting we all said, "That's it!" We all agreed! It took us close to 45 minutes of brainstorming to get that one idea, and that was actually relatively short. I feel like in the past I've often stopped short of the one idea or been to lazy to mine for it. I think God uses our brains and infuses creativity for the purpose of extending his kingdom. I just think we've got to be willing to get in a room with our teams and do the dirty work of brainstorming until it comes! The vision and impact is worth it.
What problem are you facing today, both personally and organizationally? Get a whiteboard, get your team, ask God to move and start brainstorming. Watch and see if He doesn't give it to you!