Posts Tagged ‘church planting incubator’

Growing Together in the Gospel
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Dave leading a Session on the Gospel, the Cycle of Renewal

God’s deep love for us is beyond comprehension. His grace is indescribable. The more we ponder what Jesus did for us on the cross through his death and resurrection, we find ourselves marveling at such an amazing and sacrificial love. These are all aspects of the gospel.

I’m sure it’s not too hard to believe that even ministers need the gospel. Actually, that’s a key point, the more the pastor understands the work of Jesus on the cross. The more he meditates on the depth of such love, and what it means for us. As he applies it to his own life, he is more effectively able to share it with others.

This was one of the key themes we covered last week during our incubator training. It fell to me to cover explaining how each of us is renewed by the gospel. We talked about the cycle of renewal – the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sin, we respond in repentance, which leads us to faith, which leads us to worship, and in response in faith and adoration we obey.

Some of the simplest points of the gospel are also the hardest to apply. I’m not sure why, but I think one reason is that there’s something in us that thinks we can earn God’s favor. We quickly forget, it’s through grace. That’s why Luther said, “we have to beat the gospel into ourselves,” and that “all of life is repentance.” A number of people have also said that we need to preach the gospel to ourselves.

How Do We Reach Our Neighbor with God’s Love?
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Jorge Aleman leading the group through a discussion on philosophy of ministry

Another theme that we covered was how to develop a philosophy of ministry. Related to that is the importance of considering the seeker, the not yet Christian in all our activities. In other words, when you are planting a church it’s good to keep in mind as you design your activities that there will be seekers there. There will be those who are interested, but don’t yet have faith.

The world is changing and it’s more apparent now than ever that we live in a hostile deeply divided world. The church planter has to keep all these things in mind as he reaches out to the community that the Lord has called him to minister in.

God has given us a wonderful group of guys that are going through the incubator church planting training. It’s always enjoyable to be around this group. I come away enriched from all the interaction.

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Some of our pastors who are going through the incubator training

Prayer and Opposition

Thanks for praying! We experienced our share of attacks, set-backs as we prepared for the training. My phone died for two days. It’s not easy to live without a phone, especially in the middle of a training event. One of our colleagues forgot his passport, which meant we had to change some of our plans for our prep work. I got sick the week of the training event. The Lord led me to a doctor in Mexico that prescribed some medication, and by the second day I was feeling much better.

The latest setback is our van is not running well, and since it has 208,000 miles on it I’m working with our mechanic to see whether it’s worth it fix it. We will see! Still waiting on that. Dawn and I appreciate your ongoing prayer for that need.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Growth in Grace, Skills, Knowledge and Abilities
Our group of pastors that are going through the Incubator church planing training

Our group of pastors that are going through the Incubator church planing training

I love to see people grow! It excites me when those I work with learn more, especially when it is something that will help them in their ministry. The men and women that Dawn and I work with on the border are wonderfully gifted. They love Jesus, and they have a heart to serve the people in their churches and the communities they minister in.

One of the main ways our team is helping the pastors be more equipped is through training. We just completed our second of eight training sessions on church planting. We also are working with our friends at Ministerios Transformación to help them multiply coaches.

God Brings about Growth & Change
We seeking to keep them active and involved in the learning process

We seek to keep them active and involved in the learning process

It’s encouraging to see the hunger that these friends bring to the learning process. Sometimes I wonder if we are getting through? Are we making a difference? Those going through the training have assured me that they are learning, and it’s changing the way they minister.

In the area of coaching we are seeking to create a network of coaches within Ministerios Transformación. Pastor Daniel Nuñez would like for all of his pastors to have a mentor, so we are working towards that goal.

Good food is always an important part of our time together

Good food is always an important part of our time together

In the incubator church planting training we studied contextualizing the gospel for the areas the pastor are serving in. We gave them an assignment to go into the community and observe the types of buildings, houses and businesses that are near the church. Also to ask questions that will help them learn more about the people in the community. What are the perceived and felt needs? Then they are better informed about the neighborhoods surrounding the church. They can prayerfully come up with a plan to build bridges for the gospel with their neighbors.

We have three guys in the group who either have just launched their church, or they are getting ready to begin. This info helps them to think through how they can best reach the people who live in the area where the church is located. We pray and work for more churches, but we also want pastors who are better equipped. Pastors who have a good support system in place.

Prayer is the Key

Of course prayer is a big and an important component to everything we do. You can be involved in seeing the kingdom grow through prayer. Your prayers are invaluable, and we give thanks for the part you play.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Second Incubator for Church Planters
Learning in Community

Learning in Community

We are in the middle of our second incubator church planters training. I love the energy that the pastors bring. What an outstanding group! Men who love the Lord, and desire to learn and grow. The Lord has blessed us with a wonderful group of trainers as well.

There are so many pastors and leaders that have little or no training for their work. I give thanks to the Lord for this opportunity.

A Mixed Group
Who says learning can't be fun?!?

Who says learning can’t be fun?!?

This group consists of four pastors from the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico, and seven from Ministerios Transformación. It’s a good thing to have different ministries working and learning together. Both groups are enriched through the process.

Thrilled About God’s Work Among Us!
Hard at work in small groups

Hard at work in small groups

I’m exhausted from a long day, but at the same time I’m thrilled about what God is doing, so I wanted to send out this brief note before I head off to bed.

I realize there are some dangers in posting when I’m tired. In my last post I had numerous typos and formatting errors, because I was literally falling asleep as I wrote the post. Thanks for following along, and I hope in God’s grace that I do much better this time!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

 

Training Off to a Great Start!
Our group of pastors and trainers for the incubator church planting training

Our group of pastors and trainers for the incubator church planting training

How would you feel if you had to start a new job, and you received little if any training? Or if you were starting up a new business and you just had to wing it? Believe it or not, many church planters receive almost no training. Sadly, it’s a sink or swim scenario.

We are trying to stop that trend, and help church planters to be better prepared for the ministry the Lord has called them to. Last week we held our first incubator training for church planters in the Tijuana region.

God Gave Us a Great Group
Dave leading one of the sessions

Dave leading one of the sessions

Ten pastors attended the training, and began the process. The incubator is a year and a half of preparation for starting a new church.

Our Baja team partnered with MTW’s team from Monterrey to provide the training in Rosarito/Tijuana Mexico. The church planters came from the two groups we are working with, Ministerios Transformación and the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico.

The Lord gave a great group of guys, who love the Lord and desire to see his named proclaimed in the communities they are serving in and beyond! Three of the men are starting up new church planting projects this Fall.

I’ve dreamed about providing church planting training for the pastors we work with since Dawn and I arrived on the border almost four years ago. I feel like it’s so important that we see men and women equipped to serve the Lord in the church. There are too many pastors who are struggling to survive and they don’t know where to turn.

A Network of Support
Pastor Jorge Aleman sharing with the group

Pastor Jorge Aleman sharing with the group

I am thankful that we can train our friends so that they are better equipped to plant churches. My hope is that these pastors develop strong and enduring friendships so that they can encourage and support one another. Some of the pastors that came said they felt all alone. They don’t feel like they are receiving any support from the outside, or even within their own camp.

One of the challenges to providing the training and encouragement is manpower. We could use more workers. Yet, we are doing all we can to train and multiply coaches and mentors who can support leaders in ministry.

Pray with us for the Lord’s continued and ongoing encouragement for these pastors. That the Lord will raise up a mighty army of equipped leaders, who will be effective in ministry.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Church planting incubator

Church planting incubator

Last week I was in Monterrey, Mexico with pastor Ivan Casados from Tijuana and MTW colleague, Jim DeWitt among others. It was an exciting time going through the church planting incubator.

I felt like it was the beginning of the realization of a dream that I’ve had for the Border and the Baja. I desire to work with our team to see church planters trained and equipped so that they are better prepared to plant a church.

What a thrill to have the most recent church planter that we’ve partnered with Ivan Casados going through the training. We hope to be able to bring this training to other church planters we are working with in Tijuana, but this was a wonderful first step!

I’m so thankful for our partners with Lo Mejor del Trigo. God is blessing their efforts and our partnership as they work towards planting 50 churches.

While we were in Monterrey Jim DeWitt put together a video with the help of one of our other colleagues Jarett Hall. Here it is for your enjoyment.

God is doing wonderful things on the Border, the Baja and Beyond! Rejoice with us!

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Church Planter Training
Dave & Ivan in Monterrey, Mexico

Dave & Ivan in Monterrey, Mexico

Today we are finishing up our church planter’s incubator training in Monterrey, Mexico. It’s been a wonderful experience!

This morning pastor Ivan Casados who’s going through the training told me that it’s not only met, but exceeded his expectations. That is good news. Ivan is the first pastor from Tijuana that we’ve had go through this training. Our hope is that one day soon we will hold the training in Tijuana, which will help us tremendously in building a stronger church planting movement.

We are seeing a number of churches planted in Tijuana, but there is still a need for more and better preparation and training for our church planters.

One of the things that I’ve enjoyed about the church planting incubator is the variety of the types of men that are here. There are guys from different denominational backgrounds. Some are full-time pastors, some are bi-vocational pastors, some are not yet pastoring.

The Lord is using this to better prepare these men, but also to lift up their vision for the great need for church planting in Mexico.

Praying for La Paz
Church planting incubator

Church planting incubator

We’ve prayed for a church planter for La Paz, Baja California. La Paz is the capital of Baja California Sur. There aren’t any Reformed churches presently in this city. We do have a candidate here that is considering working with us and leading the church plant in La Paz.

He’s still in the beginning process of praying with his wife about where the Lord is calling them, so I won’t mention his name. Please join us in prayer for him and his wife. Pray that the Lord will raise up the right person for the job.

Hope for New Church Planting Projects
Praying for the cities we represent for new churches and renewed cities

Praying for the cities we represent for new churches and renewed cities

While I’ve been here I’ve also been able to work on developing new church planting projects for Tijuana and Ensenada. It starts with the vision and prayer. As I get ready to fly back home later today, I leave with more hope for the future. The Lord is giving me greater hope and a renewed vision for reaching people through starting churches on the border and in the Baja.

Thanks so much for praying with us! I know the Lord hears our prayers. There’s so many things that have to come together for these projects to get off the ground that I am continually reminded if the Lord doesn’t build the house our labor is in vain.

O Lord, we don’t want our labor to be in vain. Build your church!

In HIs Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org