Mobilizing the Church. Transforming the World.

Church Planting Does Not Guarantee Missional Focus

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New churches can become trapped in a routine of aimlessness and irrelevance just as easily as an existing church. 

This dynamic happens because every Christian leader has a mental model of church.  These mental models govern our behaviors, often on an unconscious level.  So while we talk the language of a new paradigm, we typically behave according to our old mental models which have been constructed over years in established churches. 

The power of these mental models cannot be over emphasized!

Quite frequently new ideas never get put into practice, or if they do, they do not sustain because they conflict with deeply held internal assumptions and images of how the world works.  These mental models determine not only how we make sense of the world, but how we take action (or fail to take action.)  They affect what we see.  Two people with different mental models can observe the same event and describe it differently, because they’ve looked at it through different “lenses” or different mental models.

Because of the influence of our mental models, every pastor and church leader (whether in a new or existing church) must be willing to prayerfully reflect on their governing assumptions and common practices.  The problems with mental models lie not in whether they are right or wrong.  The problems with mental models arise when they reside below the level of awareness.

The aim of Renovation is to help pastors and Christian leaders begin a dialogue about themselves, their churches, and their city.  It is to help them affirm one another around their mutual commitment to the purposes of God.  And it is to help them begin to explore existing mental models that might be limiting their impact in the world. 

We encourage you to reflect on assumption you may have held about:
  • Your church and your church’s role in the city
  • Other churches and other pastors in your city
  • The power of the gospel and its impact in the city and the world
  • Your responsibility and accountability to the purposes of God
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About Angelo Gonzalez

Angelo is the Associate Pastor of Creekside Community Church, a multi-ethnic church plant in the Houston, TX area. He also is the Marketing Director for The Growth Coach Houston, a business coaching firm and New Church Initiatives, a missional church planting organization.

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