The other day my colleague Ed Love told me there was a “classic multiplication book” about “Church Planting Landmines” by Tom Nebel and Gary Rohrmayer. Sounded like something I should have read before I entered the turbulent planting waters myself.

Turns out the book was published 7 years after I planted so I guess I’m getting kinda old! Ed loaned me the book and I’ve been engaging it the last month.

Let me confess to you which of these landmines I stepped on:

The first church planting landmine is “Ignoring Personal Health and Growth.” The authors say “finishing well as a leader is determined in the middle game” like a chess match and that things like mentoring, accountability, discipliners, coaches spiritual guides are critical for a church planter.

I confess that I stepped on this landmine for sure. I don’t know that I totally ignored my personal health and growth as a planter, but I didn’t seek out the mentoring and accountability I needed. I don’t think I GREW a lot spiritually in those years. I think part of my barrier here was arrogance. I was too full of myself to seek out those who had more experience. I sometimes viewed their experience as actually the problem and they didn’t have the fresh eyes I had (how silly).

I was a young minister and had the flock to tend, and people to reach, so I think I positioned myself as the discipler not the one in need of ongoing discipleship. So I eased into passive coaching relationships and surface accountability and mentoring—times where I would swap stories and “pick someone’s brain” not really get into the grit of why I was so stuck as a church planter.

As I reflect on it, I think this is also the season where I neglected core spiritual practices which were so important to me in most other seasons of life–like a consistent and meaningful day alone with God–and truly restorative vacations with my family.

This is one I wish I had seen coming.

How about you, are you in danger of stepping on this landmine? What are you doing to avoid it?


I no longer open comments on my articles. Interact about this with me on Twitter or Facebook or share yourself below…

It is better to share than to receive...
Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookPin on PinterestEmail this to someoneBuffer this pageShare on RedditShare on LinkedInDigg thisShare on Google+Print this page