Church Planting Essentials pt. 3

Essential 3: You need money.

It takes money to plant a church. There is no way around it. One cannot underestimate how a vision must be funded.

When we first started City Church, where I pastor, we had great, productive meetings with our launch team. We had lots of prayer. We had creative ideas with potential.

The elephant in the room, however, was “…And how are we going to fund this?”

It takes money to plant a church. There is no way around it. One cannot underestimate how a vision must be funded.

We had no supporting church, and no wealthy people by our city’s standards in that initial launch group. If we were ever to get going, we had to be able to afford equipment, insurance, facility rental, and the list went on and on.

It is uncomfortable, but you need a money plan in order to plant and fund a church. Here are some principles I’ve learned from going through this process:

1. “God will provide,” cannot be a crutch to do nothing.

Rather it should be a proactive belief that creates urgency to fund what He has called you to do. God has certainly provided unexpected financial gifts when we needed it most, but you can’t bank (no pun intended) on that happening. You must be able to raise money.

2. Preach on money.

Just get over it and do it. If Jesus spent so much time addressing money, you are not being a faithful preacher if you avoid the topic. Jesus said our treasures and hearts are linked together. In other words, if you don’t preach on generosity, you don’t care about people’s hearts.

3. Being bi-vocational might be reality.

Your expectation as a planter should not be to be compensated full time by the church. There might be a season of bi-vocational life and that is okay. I know a planter who is a teacher, and it allows him to maintain a salary and health insurance for his family while the church is being planted. The more those early funds are spent for your own personal livelihood, the more stressful fundraising will be. Bi-vocational life could be a blessing and allow your church to get launched.

4. You are going to have to ask for money.

If this is too hard, church planting is not for you.

5. A church with vision will always need money.

Life costs a lot more than death. People are going to give to vision, before they’ll give to basic maintenance needs. The Great Commission in your city is at stake and must be funded.

Published April 22, 2015