Last Sunday, FCBC celebrated the 5 year anniversary of our church-plant Harvest Bible. Pastor Nate organized three addresses to encourage the church with what God is doing in New England (Sam Huggard), what God did at FCBC to launch Harvest (Josh Owens), and how to grow a church (Nate Pickowicz).
I had the privilege to share how FCBC became a channel of God’s power just like the little boy who had 5 loaves and 2 fish (John 6).
- To be a channel of God’s power starts with worship. I hope that during this 5 year celebration that our eyes are not on the human channels of power, but on the source of power–the Risen Jesus Christ. We are not ashamed of the gospel for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes (Rom. 1:16). We have no other Savior to proclaim! Jesus came to bring life through his death. We have no other Savior to praise! Because of Christ, every blood bought church can be a channel of God’s power. The gospel has been the greatest tool in developing people to go plant a church.
- To be a channel of God’s power we must be gripped by our own powerlessness. For many days, weeks, months, it felt like every effort was just a drop in the bucket! Church planting makes you feel more like an underdog than the Philadelphia Eagles. But Christ promises, “I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18). In the hands of Jesus the insignificant becomes significant; the insufficient becomes sufficient. FCBC was not sufficient to plant a church. The people we sent were not sufficient. And that is the posture we must keep to be a channel of God’s power. Neither were we significant in the eyes of the world. But our greatest liability was Christ’s greatest asset. Christ told Paul, “My strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Cor. 12:8-10).
- To be a channel of God’s power we must put everything in his hands. The boy with 5 loaves and 2 fish lost control over his lunch. FCBC lost control of its greatest asset: people. But God spared himself no expense in our salvation, so we spare ourselves no expense in our sanctification. But just like the 5 loaves and 2 fish: the more we give away the more it is multiplied. The boy ended up eating far more than he had brought to lunch, and not only him, but everyone around him. By God’s power, we have more people worshiping Christ in 2 churches than could ever have fit in 1 church.
- Will you be a channel of God’s power? Have you ever considered why Jesus used the little boy’s lunch when he could have fed everyone out of nothing? Christ was us to get involved. He wants us to get involved in disciple-making (Matt. 28:18-20). Every believer is commissioned to go to their office nook, neighborhood, or nation. We’re excited about planting churches because we’re excited about making disciples. To God be the glory. It is more blessed to give than to receive.