I’m writing this post in a coffee shop near downtown Nashville as I prepare to fly home after the SBC annual meeting. As I’m writing, I’m reflecting on all I saw this week. My heart is full because of all the interactions I had and all the stories I heard from replanting pastors all across the country. I saw a number of International Harvester hats throughout the week (by the way, you can get yours here).
I had the opportunity to pray for and encourage pastors walking through seasons of difficulty. I was encouraged by pastors who are seeing their churches come back to life after COVID-19. I was blessed as pastors shared how God is moving in churches. People are being saved and baptized. Men, women and children are being baptized. Communities are being reached with the gospel. Hundreds of churches that were, at one time, in danger of closing their doors in three to five years are now strengthened to continue ministering in their communities for decades to come! It’s working!
While these stories are, indeed, encouraging, none of this takes away from the reality that ministry in general, and replanting specifically, is very hard work. It does not take away from the fact that discouragement in ministry is real.
But I hope you are encouraged as you come to learn that you are not alone. There are hundreds of pastors just like you all over the country, laboring for the sake of the gospel in hard places. The replant team is here to support and encourage you as you work in the trenches. You can always reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org for encouragement, prayer and any other resources we can provide to help.
I would encourage you to make plans to join us at the Replant Summit in Alpharetta, Georgia, on Aug. 26-27. Our theme this year is “Surviving and Thriving in Hard Places,” and we’ll hear from replant pastors in some of the hardest places in the country – from big cities to the middle of nowhere. You’ll hear about what God is doing to reclaim His glory in these places and how, we believe, He wants to do the same in your community. You can find more information on the Summit here.
Finally, we love telling stories about what God is doing in churches. Be encouraged today by this story of a church in San Diego, California, where God has worked powerfully. You can see their story here.
Published June 22, 2021