It’s funny. Every time I hear about another city I ponder its need for new churches. I hear percentages about the lost, the de-churched and the un-churched. In every case, there needs to be more churches planted everywhere to see that we are obedient to our commission to make disciples. Yes, even the Bible-Blet.
In the town where I served as a pastor of a very traditional church in rural Arkansas, there was a church on ever corner. Literally. If ever there was a town that didn’t need an additional church it was this one. Yet, when a new church was planted, it became very successful at reaching the lost, the un-churched and the de-churched. People complained because there was some migration from other churches. It happens. It happens whether there is a new church or not. The truth of the matter is that even this small town was only effectively reaching about 55% of its residents.
Contrast that with the town I heard about earlier this week. 400,000 in its Metro. 95% not in any type of church. Very little church planting activity. Nobody (I hope) would argue its need for churches to be started and disciples to be made.
Here’s the deal though: both towns need Gospel-Centric churches to be planted. Whether it’s 95% or 45%, there are a ton of people to reach and it will be by disciples making disciples which is done through the expression of the local church. So then, where is the greatest need? That’s the right question if you are a missiologist. However, the right question for a church planter is ‘Which need has God called me to address?’ Find that and go and don’t look back!