Today, is the final post in a series based on a conversation I had with a new church planter (and an old friend) named Charlie over in Orlando. Here is where our conversation finally got to:
"The church will become a visible expression of your personal journey with God. That is also why it hurts so bad when things don't go as planned and why the highs are so high."
I was talking about the ups and downs of church planting. No one could have prepared me for the roller coaster of emotions. It is like birthing a child in some ways I have been told. I told Charlie about our first 6-months where we successfully grew the church all the way down to just 30 people and the thoughts of throwing in the towel were very real. But we pushed on after a lot of painful moments even though you feel like God let you down. Here you are doing this thing called the church, the thing He sent His Son Jesus for, and all you want is a little help you know! But then we had our grand opening at a new facility and had 150+ people and the highs were more than we hoped or prayed for. But then we grew that down to the 70's and then a few weeks ago we had 210 people and then on Jan 3rd we were down in the low 100's after 3 years of this and on and on the roller coaster goes.
My point was you have to come to terms with the ups and downs. You can't let them wreck you. You have to make peace with the times you feel like God lets you down and give Him all the credit when things go really right.