OUR FIRST MOVEMENT CHURCH PLANTING RESIDENTS: JOEL AND MORGAN TRAINER

Today at Movement Church we made a big announcement that I am personally very excited about…

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Movement Church started in 2012 with a vision to be a movement of people finding their way back to God. In our short history we have seen that vision happen in the lives of individuals and families as God has built a new church in Hilliard, Ohio.

One consistent, foundational prayer among our leadership team has been to create a wake of church plants; not a one time event, but rather a continuous rhythm of planting churches that in turn plant others..

From the advent of Movement Church, we have commissioned 5% of our collected funds along with additional, privately raised money for church planting initiatives. We do this not knowing the time, location, or individual but because we feel called to multiply in the pattern shown in the New Testament.

We are not ready to pull the trigger and plant a church this week, but it is time to take steps and prepare our people and our leadership pipeline. We recently extended an offer to Joel and Morgan Trainer to come on pastoral staff in a one-year, self-supporting church planting resident role.

The Trainers are currently on staff at Kanakuk Kamps in Branson, Missouri, one of the largest and most influential Christian camps in America with 13 campuses and over 20,000 visitors each year. They are both graduates of Indiana Wesleyan University and have ties to Ohio. Morgan grew up on the north side of Columbus and Joel’s parents live in Vermilion.

The Trainers have watched Movement Church from a distance and are close friends with many members of our original launch team. We are confident in their abilities and calling and trust that God is going to use them in great ways to plant a reproducing church in central Ohio.

The vision of this residency is to provide experience in church planting, portable church, local church ministry, teaching, administration, leading teams, casting vision and fund-raising. No program can perfectly equip and prepare an individual for planting a church but our desire is to impart to them everything we have and know.

The goal of this residency is that we (in partnership with Encounter Church) will be able to confidently commission The Trainers and a launch team of church planters on a three-year plan in the greater Columbus area. The Trainers are currently raising funds for their residency with the goal of joining our team September 1st, 2016.

If you have questions or would like to give toward the Church planting resident fund please contact our office or visit movementcolumbus.com.

Trainers-1

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MORE ON THE TRAINERS

That was the official press release that we wrote so that we could use common language in many venues, but I want you to hear from me in a way that is not canned. From my heart I want you to know that I believe in the Trainers so much and I am ecstatic to have them in our network and on our team. Joel is a great leader who I think has the perfect mix of leadership, humility, fun, and an entrepreneurial spirit to plant a church. Morgan is the perfect compliment and has a heart for people and the local church that I look up to. I have known them for years and have watched them in many different stages of life and ministry. I think they are the perfect candidates to help us truly become a church planting movement.

I have seen them step in faith toward this calling with wisdom and humility that confirmed they are the ones God has for us. Please be in prayer for them as they transition from their jobs after a busy summer camp season, sell a house, have a baby, and move to Ohio. They are now family and we want to serve and honor them from day one. At a later date I will ask who wants to drive to Missouri and help them move, but for now just pray for the sale of their house and the fundraising process.

 

MOVEMENT CHURCH(ES)?

When planting a church was just a dream in my heart, I strategically chose the word movement because I wanted to start something that would not just be a one time local event, but something that would multiply exponentially. Movement Church is the first wave of that dream, and this is the second wave. My prayer is that Movement Church will be able to plant 25 churches in my lifetime and that the churches we plant will plant another 25. At the end of my life and ministry career I want to be able to look back and say that God used us to plant 50 life giving churches in Columbus, Ohio and all over America.

I told someone this dream recently and they said “so you don’t want Movement Church to get any bigger?” and I laughed. Growth and multiplication are not mutually exclusive; in fact I think that continually tuning our church’s heart for multiplication will help us be a thriving church with a vacuum for discipleship and mobilization.

I remember years ago having an interest in church planting and not knowing what the avenue was for that call. If you or someone you know has an interest in church planting I want a residency with Movement Church to be on their radar. We are a certain kind of church and I am a certain kind of leader with a certain vision so I don’t want to pretend to be perfect for everyone or that we have unlimited resources, but we are one option that will be a fit for some in God’s timing. We were planted out of Encounter Church and alongside them want to see a network of like-minded reproducing churches emerge so the prayer is that long-term there will be multiple venues to host residents and church personalities to emulate.

If you want to talk about church planting or think you may have an interest in doing a residency at Movement Church lets talk…. today…. or in 5 years.

CELEBRATING THE NEXT PHASE FOR MOVEMENT CHURCH

Three years ago in 2012, my family moved to Hilliard to plant Movement church. Our launch team started with 16 adults and 5 kids. Some were already situated on the west side and others sold their homes or moved to new apartments to that we could make our homes and have an impact around Hilliard.

Our vision was the same in those early days to be “A movement of people finding their way back to God”, but it started small as we talked about the church we wanted to be and how we would accomplish that. I remember many steps along the way and the excitement that came when the first person gave their life to Jesus, the first person was baptized, and the launch of our first worship experience.

Yesterday came and went without much fanfare, because it’s the middle of the week and the 4th of July is coming up, but I wanted to take a moment and talk about the significance of July 1st, 2015. Movement Church was planted with a 3-year startup plan so we have had many churches and individuals who have supported us through prayer, finances, and volunteer hours to get started and be self-sufficient.

We have seen God add to our numbers, our influence and our body as a church. We have gone from a small group with a big vision to developed group able to stand on our own. It’s time for us to leave the official title of church plant behind. We want to always have the heart and feel of a church plant and be involved in the multiplication of churches, but we are shifting gears.

July 1st, 2015 Movement Church became a self-supporting church. This means that our budget is now entirely dependent on the giving and investment of the people who make up our body. Our direction, the care of our staff, and our future ministry will all be written by those who believe in and are involved in seeing our vision happen.

Movement Church isn’t perfect and we are still a very young group of people. We will grow in size, maturity, and our ability to lead and navigate where our vision takes us, but I am excited for this next phase. We are doing a series as a church this summer in the book of Exodus and I have always loved the parallels to us of watching Israel trust God to provide for them and guide them. No matter our size or the look and feel of our church, we can never lose site of our need to follow God as he builds us into the church He wants.

This fall we are kicking off the school year with a series called ownership. This will be a vision series, but will take us deeper than we have gone as we explore some key areas to our vision like owning our personal faith, Sunday mornings, groups, serving, and outreach. As part of this series we will begin the process to name elders from our group. We will be doing this under the guidance of the elders at Encounter church our sending church. This will be one final step, as we become a self-sufficient, self-leading church.

This step is just a chance to pause and thank God for the way he has provided for us and kept his promises as we stepped out on faith. Our vision doesn’t stop or have en expiration date, so we will continue to work hard to be intentional and contagious to help people find their way back to God.

In the coming month, we will be rolling out some videos and a final prayer letter to celebrate, but I wanted to take a moment and just say a personal thank you on behalf of my family and myself. Thank you to each person and church who has prayed for us, invested in us, given time, donated money and been apart of the startup of Movement Church. I pray that you see the exponential value in you young kingdom minded investment and that the example of Movement Church gives you an enthusiasm for a role in starting more new churches.

Movement Church, I love you! I am grateful for each one of you from the first people on the launch team to those who have recently found their church home. The best is yet to come and I am excited to see God do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine.

MOVEMENT CHURCH LAUNCH TEAM WORLD TOUR: GRACE FELLOWSHIP PICKERINGTON

Movement Church is a new church plant, so we are under no impression that we have mastered this portable church thing.  In our formative launch team meeting phase we have dedicated one weekend a month to visiting churches and learn from them.  Some of them are financial partner churches, while others are area church plants that we respect.  I thought I would take the time to re-cap our times with these churches and share some highlights and things that blessed our team.

On Sunday September 30th we visited Grace Fellowship in Pickerington.  They are a thriving church that recently sold there building after maximizing it with 4 services and is in process of building a new one. In the meantime they became portable and meet at Pickerington Central High School.  They were already a church that we respected and were a financial partner of ours so the fact that they went portable is only an extra blessing as they can help us even more.

Our team had the chance to be there early for setup before first service and see things get put in their places and get to know the building.  We sat through first service as a team so we could see what a worship experience looked like and than walked the halls and watched first impressions, children’s ministry, and tech in action during second service.

There have been many ways they have blessed us but here is the one I will camp on – As a staff team they have been 100% accessible to our entire launch team on Sundays, by email, by phone, and by personal appt.

Examples…

1)    I reached out to Keith Minier last year and basically said I respect you, I would love if Movement could end up like your church and I intend to start bothering you with a lot of questions and he hasn’t flinched once. He has been gracious, humble, wise, transparent and a great guy to lean on.

2)    Their children’s director Erica was telling me last spring that she wanted to be a resource and blessing to our children’s director when and if we even found one.  When Mindy took the job and contacted her Erica was not just up for meeting but was an encyclopedia and really put wind in Mindy’s sail and gave her confidence, encouragement, and a ton of ideas and troubleshooting help. That is priceless.

3)    Grace Fellowship has a dude named Charlie who does their tech. I don’t know what his title is but it might be Super Master of all things. He is the perfect marriage of tech, media, and ministry. He has been so gracious in offering advice and even taking the time to cut down everything he does for their services into snippets so it can also bless us in fundraising and promotion. He also gave our team super in-depth tours and explanations of what they do, why they do it, how we can adapt it, and other ideas that could also save money.  At one point he had roughly 10 guys on our team around him in a semi-circle drooling as he explained his use of Apple TV’s all over the video that were connected to various TV’s and ipads.  Here are a couple videos that Charlie has made available to us. A video of Pastor Keith Minier praying for us in second service.

http://vimeo.com/50560602

and a video interview they did of us last spring

http://vimeo.com/42519478

4)    Drew Waggoner has helped our team out with first impressions and all the connection stuff that bridges the gap from Sunday morning to groups, serving, and follow up. We picked the brains of their first impressions team for a solid hour because what they do is solid.

One of the biggest blessings to me already in this journey has been seeing our family of churches surround us and take care of us. They have given us everything from money, to advice, to accountability, to resources, and love. We are a blessed church because of the churches investing in us.

ACTS 2-4…COULD IT HAPPEN TODAY?

My pastor recently did a staff devotion in prep for teaching on Acts 2-4 and the early church. I was challenged to say the least and thought I would just echo some of the things he said and bullet point them.  I am stealing, but giving him credit because Jesus will be back before Rick Nuzum has a blog.

It all starts in Acts 2 when the Holy Spirit comes moves and Peter stands up and explains it and shares the gospel.

Acts 2:41 – Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.

The next verses are the famous ones that people always use to talk about small groups and what the church should look like day to day…

42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.

Other great things were happening too.

Peter and John were boldly proclaiming the gospel and people were astonished with the way they talked. They could tell they were talking about something bigger than themselves and their own strength, they could tell they had been with Jesus.

Verse  31 – After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.

The believers being the church wasn’t just a one time occurrence in the previous mentioned verses, it gets says again..

32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all 34 that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.

36 Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means “son of encouragement”), 37 sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles’ feet.

Here are the questions that Rick asked that started to mess with me and have had my mind swirling about “church”.

  • Was this an anomaly? Was it a one-time occurrence that God made happen to jump start the spread of the gospel?
  • Could God do this sort of thing today?
  • Do I believe, act, and lead as if I believe God could do this sort of thing today?
  • It is plain to see the Spirit was moving through people, in people, and in their town. Is it possible that the Spirit was moving because people acted boldly in faith with an expectation that God would surround their very literal obedience?
  • Is it possible that the Spirit moves in relation to the level of sacrifice, commitment, and faith that a church shows?

Two weeks later and I am still chewing on this. Some simple questions and I am sure the application doesn’t take much reading between the lines for any believer in their context. Happy thinking…

INNOVATE 09 RECAP

Me and the Mrs. Were able to travel Granger, IN last week and attend the Innovate Conference. Just like most conferences it felt like we were drinking from a fire hose.  There was so much great stuff to process so I am gong to do a little mind dump here for myself and for those who care to read…

  • In my mind I have been to the Mecca of all conferences (Catalyst). I assume that smaller more local conferences will not be as great or as big of a deal.  That was the first thing that caught me off guard about Granger. There were under 1,000 people there but the production level and excellence was so great that you could put it in an arena with 10,000 people and nothing would need to change. Not even the amount of screens:)
  • Most conferences to a fault are talking head conferences.  You are taught and you take notes and that is awesome but by the end no matter who someone is or how good they are you can tune out.  Sometimes at these events they will bring in a fire truck or elephant to wake you up and change things up but it can be gimmicky stuff that doesn’t teach you.  Innovate used creative ways other than talking head speakers (video, worship, creative planning, drama, etc. to teach and stay on point and still inspire me the attendee.
  • SESSIONS 1-Mark Beeson shared in the opening session about the importance of leading a team.  He shared that they have the gifts and your only job is not to keep work from them but to champion the vison and values.  He shared a bio of one specific team he leads.  This really resonated with me as I thought about my team. I lead a team with a police officer, a dog trainer, a corporate bank employee, some stay at home moms, college students, A food company executive, a nutritionist, a property manager, A church asst., and a project manager.  I missed a few jobs, but you get the point…teams have various personalities, gifting, experiences, and passions.  Everyone who comes to you has some sort of momentum but you have to make sure it is moving with the team where you are going and not another direction even if it is only slightly difference. We have to put our energy into unifying them and keeping a ministry on target.
  • SESSION 2-Tim Stevens talked through worship experiences and planning that are original or recycled. He said that sometimes we see churches copying another or we see others that are so original and we get jealous, proud, or caught up in the whole thing.  The only question should be ”IS THIS EFFECTIVE IN THE CONTEXT OF OUR CHURCH?”  You don’t have to ask what are the new cool sermon series’ being named. You don’t have to ask did Lifechurch.tv do this song yet. IT IS SIMPLY A QUESTION OF EFFECTIVENESS.
  • Sidebar: I think I mentioned this on here before but man is staying with Jeremy and Ginger Byng great. I got to see the Wednesday night ministry at their church as well as take in the middle school and high school evening. PS-Ginger is an awesome cook.
  • Something else that was awesome at Innovate was that the schedule allowed for breakout sessions and Q and A times with staff members. The first session Kristin and I chose to attend the student ministry one. It was great because they had like 5 staff members there. I could ask someone who is doing planning on a larger scale than us how they dream up a series, and I could talk to their small groups girl and ask about shepherding a group that is big.  You can always find someone doing something bigger and better than you but to be able to have their attention around a table with 1 2-1 staff ration is price less. I also left feeling pretty good at where we are as a high school ministry.
  • Something that was awesome for a session was the Creative Arts Mash-up. They gave 4 churches who are knows for being creative one verse (Phil 3:2) and just told them to fill 15 minutes creatively communicating that. There were funny videos and cover songs from a suburban church, there was dancing, and rapping from a hip-hop church, there was rock and comedy from a 20-something church, and a take home for everyone there from a new church.  This idea was great because I learned and was inspired by other creativity. I could work for the next year to steal and work off of the ideas I saw in this one session from 4 churches.  Not talking head teaching, but I learned and furiously took notes.
  • For my breakout session I went to Leading Change with Tim Stevens.

Here are his steps for Leading Change

  1. Make the case for change
  2. Make the decisions for change
  3. Create an urgency for change
  4. Implement the change
  5. Communicate the church (25% of the process is the change, 75% is the communication)
  6. Manage the change
  7. He also mentioned that change is good and can creative momentum, you must always have the meeting before the meeting with the influencers, you have to remember you always have a bucket of gas or water to throw on every sitatuion, and with big change you must have all hands on deck.
  • Shannon O’Dell shared his story of working in rural America. He took a church of 31 people and than lost 12 of them in a town of 88. That church is not 5 campuses and over 2,000 people in a county of only 19,000 . It connected with me since I am from the metropolis of Sterling, OH.  He talked about calling, your marriage, the waves a church makes in the community being more important than the size, and structures being important.
  • The conference was closed with communion in a very creative way that I think is tradition at Granger but was new and refreshing to me. I can’t say enough about the worship and media used.  They do this every week, but it was great to see.  There band was top notch and in some sets had as many as 4 worship leaders on stage.
  • SESSION 8- Mark Beeson closed the conference by first praying for everyone there in a very personal humble way for such a great crowd.  This church realy knows how to host and care for people.  Later Beeson shared the 5 stages of innovation.
  1. People deny that innovation is required.
  2. People deny that the innovation is effective
  3. People deny that the innovation is important
  4. People deny that the innovation will justify the effect required to adopt it
  5. People accept and adopt the innovation, adopt its benefits, attribute its success to anyone but the innovator, and pretend steps 1-4 don’t exist.
  • The programming was great at this conference there are some other ideas I am not mentioning and including humor which I think is often lost in Christian circles.
  • The price was great, the drive was short, and experience was awesome and I would wholeheartedly recommend that anyone attend this conference.  Obviously it has a specialty of sorts. It is no Piper conference, but if you are looking to be innovative and creatively present your message at your church I don’t think you will find a better conference.

PASTORS STILL GO TO CHURCH ON VACATION

Anyone who has been immersed in week to ministry whether paid or not can tell you that sometimes it is nice to take a breath and go to church without any pressure or responsibilities.  Today I had that privilege. Our friend Rachel who we are staying with has attended Christ Fellowship for a couple years.  A little over a year ago she helped them launch their 5th campus in West Kendall.  This campus meets in a movie theatre.  I have studied churches that do this, read the blogs of their pastors, and seen the pictures and videos, but until today had never attended one.  Here are my thoughts..

  • I was blown away by how easy this whole process was.  This church has a couple different places that they store things and it didn’t seem to inconvenience the theatre in anyway. 
  • Not everyone has it as easy as this church, but it actually made me wonder why some churches ever build buildings.
  • As an American I feel like I am programmed to like church in a theatre more.  Some people pay to try and make their sanctuary a theatre, but here it was already done and worked pretty seamlessly.
  • I learned that they pay their worship leader but the two campus pastors are volunteers with full time jobs during the week.
  • Their children’s area was well put together.  Obviously portable, but secure and creative.
  • Again, there student service naturally had much of the atmosphere that we had to pay to create in our room.
  • The worship was good, from band to sound, to lights.
  • Guest services got me everything I needed and more.
  • The X-factor was that I had so many nice people introduce themselves to me and go out of their way to shake our hands and say “hi”.  They could have had great signs, a cool logo, and awesome lights and graphics, but stopped at that. It was good to see a ministry mindset from the people and be personally greeted by the two campus pastors even though the church is fairly large.

I CARE WHAT YOU THINK…

In April I have been asked to lead a seminar for some youth pastors/workers in Northeast Ohio. I have some ideas and some direction but I was hoping you who read this could help me.  What topic would you want discussed? What problems are you having? What would a youth pastor want/need to know when my 2 hours is done? Please leave feedback…..