ONElife Church was born out of an Acts 13 vision of being a sending church, "Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers,Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a lifelong friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off" (Acts 13:1-3 ESV). A "megachurch" pastor, J.D. Greear, shares the same vision and has recently published a book called, Gaining by Losing. I would encourage everyone to read it and here is an excerpt from his first chapter.
We Need a New Metric for Success
"We need a new metric for success beyond size. To evaluate something's success, we first need to understand its function.
If you light a stick of dynamite and launch it 500 feet in the air and it explodes, was it successful? Well, in one sense, yes. The dynamite did exactly what it was designed to do. And it got a lot of people's attention. People for five miles around looked up into the sky to see what happened. Three minutes after it detonates, however, there is hardly any evidence that the explosion ever even occurred, other than a whiff of gunpowder and a few confused bystanders still staring blankly into the sky.
Take that same piece of dynamite, however, burrow it into the side of a rock face and light it, and you will have a different kind of "success." The bang will not be nearly as loud, but now you will have an opening where previously you had only a mountain.
Churches that want to penetrate their world with the gospel think less about the Sunday morning bang and more about equipping their members to blast a hole in the mountain of lostness."
Why the Future Belongs to Churches That Send
I want to suggest four reasons why the future of Christianity belongs to churches that send, and why those of us who want to see the world reached will be more committed to raising up and sending out than we are to gathering and counting. Those four reasons are:
Contributor / Eric Stewart
Eric Stewart is the Lead Pastor of ONElife Church in Flint, MI.