There are many things to lose in church planting.
Church planting is dependent on factors out of our control–benefactors, organizations who rely on funding from others, fallible plans and projections, human errors and conflicts. That being said, God is in control. Never doubt He is sovereign and beautiful in all His ways.
At the current moment, the church planter wives I know stand to lose buildings, friends, funding…everything. This is a painful, if not devastating, place to be. Questions follow these times we fear loss.
Where will our church meet? In whom will I confide? How will we pay our bills?
Several years ago, in the dusty city of Menifee, John and I lost our church and our house. At that time, I had this impending sense God was about to take everything away, and I didn’t want Him to take it. “Please, don’t do it, Lord,” I pleaded.
But the thing I feared would happen, happened.
On another occasion at another church, the same thing happened. Before the loss occurred, I had this sense God was raising up another couple to take our place at the church I loved. And He did. And He was right. They were meant to take over.
Every time major shifts and changes in our lives happened, I felt sick about it. I cried out to God. Every time, He brought us through. I wish I would’ve felt more at peace when these things were happening. He provided food, a place to live, family and friends to encourage us, new jobs and schools, and literally everything we needed.
What are you going through today? Do you feel as if you won’t make it through?
You will make it through. God has got you. He’s carrying you in his strong hands, even though I know you are scared and you feel you are not enough and you may even be angry with God.
When you stand to lose something, or everything, consider the following…
God sees you and He loves you…
God sees you and He loves you. There is only one person like you, and God intended it that way. Sure, you may have a doppelgänger out there, somewhere, walking around with your appearance, but her heart is not like yours. Her talents are not your talents. Her mind is not a duplicate of yours. God made you uniquely you, and He loves you!
God has a greater plan…
God has a greater plan. It’s not that your plans were bad. Any plan to do God’s work and bring the gospel to the world is a good plan. But God sees from an entirely different perspective. He knows where the knots are, where the stitching needs to be re-sewn, and where there are rips only He can mend. He may use you to go undo the knot. He may use your needle and thread. He may work in you to do the mending in others. If we are His hands and His feet, then we have no choice but to go when we are called to a different plan. It’s okay your plan didn’t work out the way you envisioned it would. I’m pretty sure our plans never work out the way we expected they would. If our first vision for our first church plant had worked out, we would be pastoring a large church in Bellingham, Washington in a building styled after an REI store. I’m glad that didn’t happen. But at the time, it’s the vision that got us started. Maybe our plans are just the ignition to get us rolling so God can achieve His plans through us.
God will bless you…
God will bless you. Blessings to you, dear planter’s wife. I wish I was there with you to cry (it doesn’t take much to bring me to tears) and to have coffee with you, or maybe to help you wrap your dishes in bubble wrap.
Remember…through it all, His eyes are on you, so keep your eyes on Him and know it is well, and it will be well.
Listen to this song by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music. This song says it all. Blessings to you, my dear, sweet friend. I will be praying for you.