In all my travels and speaking about organic church movements there are certain questions that are asked all the time. Two questions in particular are predictable when addressing a room full of pastors or missionaries. In this blog post and the next I want to briefly address them both.
Question One: The most frequently asked question of organic
church movements by pastor-types is: "How am I
going to make a living and support my family?" It doesn't take long for
pastors hearing me talk about organic church movements to start doing
the math silently in their head. They quickly realize that their way of making a
living may soon come to an end. Truthfully, this is not much different than most the people sitting in the pews every Sunday.
answer is always the same: "Your Father in heaven loves your family more
than you do and will care for them. He cares for the sparrows, how much more for you." I usually say, "It doesn't matter
what logo is on the upper left hand corner of your pay check, your support
is coming from your heavenly Father and He is not going out of business anytime soon."
I let them know that this is
something I have to believe every day myself. If you thought that
writing books makes someone wealthy and secure you do not know much about the Christian
leadership book market. Just like most of you there are many times when there is still more month at the end of my paycheck. God always provides. I often will say in a sly manner, "You know, I've
been walking with Jesus for 33 years now–you would think that by now I
wouldn't have to live by faith anymore!" Usually people laugh with a
sigh of realization that we are to always live by faith. In fact, that is true security, isn't it? When all is said and done, knowing that I lived every day in faith is what will really matter.
can tell you story after story of how pastor types have made a living
following Christ in rather creative ways–post church employment. Usually
their "real job" ends up being more fruitful for the kingdom than when
they used to get paid by a church.
One friend used to be (and still is) a pastor and a missionary but has incredible stories of
how he has found ways to make a living. When I first met John he was a
church planter. John has been a carpenter (like Jesus) and a cage fighter (not so much like Jesus). This pacifist once opened up a Jiu Jitsu Studio. He's also an artist. He went overseas as a missionary. Lately he has been leading a construction team that is
revitalizing a historic home in Long Beach–but John is always looking
for the next thing. Now he wants to blend his wood working skills and
his artistic talent in a way that can bless many others. He wants to
make pipes (yes, tobacco smoking pipes). John is one of a kind. In fact, he is planning on doing an apprenticeship with a
master craftsman to better his skills at this trade (and you can help him
do so if you like). Here is his website that explains what he wants to do and offers a variety of ways to help him (and also get something nice in return).