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we are not getting the job done

by David Crowe, Director of Church Growth, Home Missions Department

Over the last 30 years I have watched our denomination fluctuate between 2,600 and 2,700 churches. It seems that for each new church planted, another church closes or changes affiliation. Somehow we must break this cycle. I believe this is possible if we accomplish two goals.

Start More New Churches

To grow numerically and financially support missions, Christian education, benevolent organizations, national departments, and lay organizations within our denominational structure, we must start new churches at every level. At the national level we must develop new areas and regions for Free Will Baptist expansion. We must partner with state associations, district associations, and local, established churches to plant churches in their states, cities, and communities. The only way to insure growth is to start new, exciting, soul-winning, Great Commission churches.

Strengthen Our Established Churches

Our denomination will not grow by starting new churches alone. We must strengthen and encourage pastors and congregations. In my 27 years of ministry, I have watched many churches close or break their affiliation with Free Will Baptists. We must provide resources for struggling churches and give encouragement and counseling to discouraged Christian workers. We must do a better job of providing programs of restoration for fallen Christian workers. Millions of dollars in property and facilities have been lost as we have watched one church after another close its doors.

Cooperation Is Vital

Cooperation is vital. When we learn to work together for growth in our denomination, unconcerned with who gets the credit, then I believe we can begin to grow. Credit and honor go to God and not to us! When we learn we are building for the Kingdom, we will have more students than our colleges can hold, more people who want to serve as missionaries than we can train, and more money for ministry than we can possibly spend. Let us work together to get the job done for God and His glory.


©2005 ONE Magazine, National Association of Free Will Baptists