CBF of Oklahoma desires to encourage new church starts through partnering with two or three gathered in God’s name. God is on mission and God’s action in the world invites our participation through starting new work, new outreach, new Bible study classes, and new churches.
More often than not, mission simply grows itself up because a small number of people – three to five – discover similar longings to help with a specific human hurt and hope.
In many local churches, the most effective way to develop mission is to ‘grow it up from within.’ By inviting members of a congregation to look within themselves at their own longings and strengths to help, it becomes possible to grow the church’s mission forward from within.The Theological perspective out of which this approach of growing a mission up from within develops is based upon these convictions. First, I am convinced that God places specific longings to help in each human heart. That is, within each person are specific affinities to share help toward given human hurts and hopes to which they are attracted because of their deep longings toward them.Secondly, God shares concrete strengths and resources to enable the helper to be reasonably effective in mission. That is, God is the provider of the competencies and capacities that enable a person to share help with those individuals who have a human hurt and hope commensurate with the helper’s own specific longings.Thirdly, God helps us discover persons with similar longings and strengths.Fourthly, God’s action in the world helps us to see that a specific missional outreach is timely and important.Lastly, God calls us to invest our longings and strengths in this life’s pilgrimage in competent, compassionate, committed, and courageous ways.1
1 Kennon L. Callahan. Twelve Keys to an Effective Church. (Harper & Row: San Francisco, 1983), 5.