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Outsourcing the Mission of God


Lots of churches do it. PLI does it. We outsource certain functions to people or companies with greater expertise or specialization that can do a specific task in a better and usually more cost effective way. Bookkeeping, payroll, maintenance, branding, custodial services, printing, etc.

Here’s an alarming reality:

Most churches—most Christians—have outsourced the mission of God! “We ‘do church’. Someone else can do ‘The Mission.’” The way we “do church,” or even the way we understand the Gospel itself, has allowed us to be quite comfortable with outsourcing the mission of God to the experts.

Gail and I had after-church brunch with a church leader couple. He said: “XYZ parachurch ministry is the best mission enterprise in our church body.” Absolutely no concern that his congregation or the congregations of his church body could be, should be, the best mission enterprise of the body. It never entered his imagination!

It takes leadership to reclaim the mission of God in a congregation and it takes leadership to align the baptized people of God in living out the mission of God. Our children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren are counting on us figuring this out!

PLI trains and invests in leaders so that congregations can effectively play a vibrant role in the mission of God. It’s a brand new “playing field” for every congregation these days. Somehow, we decided along the way that only the…

  • Brand new churches or
  • Shiny suburban churches or
  • “Bigger than us” churches or
  • “Any church but us” churches

…can engage in the mission of God. So we became content with “XYZ parachurch ministry can be the best…and not us.”

Actually, PLI believes there’s nobody better positioned and better equipped by God to represent Him to certain people in your community at this time than YOU, and your congregation, and more specifically, the people of God in your congregation.

Ain’t nobody better! Seriously.

Jesus was short on programs and pipe organs; He lacked buildings and budgets. He had no Sunday school or superintendents. (Not knocking any of those…unless we use the lack of them as our excuse!)

  • Jesus used His life!  
  • Jesus used relationships with the people He touched.   
  • Jesus used the guys He discipled and then sent.

I once recommended that you outsource the gift planning in your congregation so members can make gifts through their wills and estates to build future financial muscle for the Mission of God. (You’ll discover that folks want to do it, get joy doing it, didn’t know they could do it.) I’d still recommend outsourcing it! Large return/small investment. Sarah can give you information. 

But today I’m recommend that you send this to your board or your team or your congregation and add this note:

Agenda for next meeting:

Decision to STOP outsourcing the mission of God.

It’s time that we reclaim our knowledge that the Spirit of God can use lots of ordinary people with rather average skills and average biblical understanding and average good looks and average age and average etc….and stop being content with outsourcing to the experts. The Spirit of God is equipped for this!

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