Posts Tagged ‘Tim Keller’

Discovery Center Assessment
The church planting candidates working through an exercise during the Discovery Center

The church planting candidates working through an exercise during the Discovery Center

Eleven candidates experienced two and a half days of adventure, learning and a level of stress. Hopefully, it was worth it. I think it was.

The reason they put themselves through an evaluation process where they are grilled by those of us assessing is because they are interested in planting a church. Even the assessors go through long days during the assessment process.

This evaluation process that we call the Discovery Center isn’t something easy to endure, but it is worth it. The goal is to do the best job we can as an assessment team to determine if the candidates have the skills, knowledge, attitudes and gifts necessary to plant a church. If we do a good job it can save those who don’t have the necessary gifts a lot of heartache, and it can also be a great source of encouragement and confirmation for those that are called to plant a church.

On the last day when we let the candidates know whether they received a green light or not I find it gratifying to see all the smiles. There are some who receive some news they weren’t hoping for, and of course in those cases there is disappointment. In this particular assessment there were a lot of smiles and even some tears of joy!

There is a huge need for new churches to be started. In fact, it’s the best way to reach nonbelievers.

Tim Keller says, “The vigorous, continual planting of new congregations is the single most crucial strategy for 1) the numerical growth of the Body of Christ in any city, and 2) the continual corporate renewal and revival of the existing churches in a city. (“Why Plant Churches” article by Tim Keller, 2002)

Pray for a New Church Planting Project
Obed & Cesiah Lares

Obed & Cesiah Lares

One of the couples that came to the Discover Center Obed and Cesiah Lares are going to plant the next church that we are partnering with Pastor Daniel Nuñez and Ministerios Transformación to plant. What a wonderful opportunity to get to know them, and to see how the Lord is leading and guiding them.

We hope to be able to launch the new church plant with Obed and Cesiah in the next 6 months! Join us in prayer as the Lord brings all the loose ends together.

God is on the move in our midst. I love seeing God working in the hearts of men and women.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Renuevo – A Church Plant to Renew Center City Ensenada
Ensenada

Ensenada

We are super excited about the new church planting project in Ensenada that we are launching this year! The city of Ensenada, México has a population of about 500,000.  It lies 78 miles south of San Diego. It is known locally as the Cinderella of the Pacific, because of its raw beauty and emerging potential.

Ensenada consists of 65.7% professing Roman Catholics although by experience we can say that they are nominal Catholics, not practicing by conviction. There is only one Presbyterian church in the city.  There is a huge need for gospel-centered churches to be planted in this city.

Mexico proportion of NPCM churches in the north & south of the country

Mexico proportion of NPCM churches in the north & south of the country

In fact, the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico considers this part of Mexico a mission field, since only 2% of all the churches in the country are in the north. The NPC is seeking to start churches in 10 cities in 10 years, with Ensenada being one of these cities due to its importance (size, modernity, and urgent need).  Ensenada is a port city with commercial routes that link it to other cities such as San Diego, Los Angeles, Honolulu, Panama, Lima, Yokohama and Hong Kong.

Ensenada is also an important port for fishing, tourism and military bases. Currently, Ensenada is the city with the most scientists per capita in Mexico and was recently declared a City of Knowledge. Ensenada has a variety of cultural, scientific and artistic institutions.

image (4)The city of Ensenada is a city with many large neighborhoods and there is a need to plant a church and start a regional movement of church planting in the city and in the state of Baja California.  Thus, the work in Ensenada is intended to start a movement of urban reformed churches, and of leaders for the transformation of cities.

The target area for the church plant is in a neighborhood called Zona Centro in the center of the city, near where many professional people live and work.  The church planter and his wife already have connections in this area, as this is where they work.

With these characteristics and with this population, it is urgent that Ensenada be reached by the gospel.  As Tim Keller says, “The vigorous, continual planting of new congregations is the single most crucial strategy for 1) the numerical growth of the Body of Christ in any city, and 2) the continual corporate renewal and revival of the existing churches in a city. (“Why Plant Churches” article by Tim Keller, 2002)

Through the planting of a new church, we want to bring the gospel to the non-Christian professional populace, most of whom distrust religions and established churches.  They need a place where friendship, preaching the gospel and the worship of God is promoted.  The people of Ensenada consider it important to be cultured and educated in art, music, and the sciences, but they need to know the gospel in order to teach their spirits and to worship the God of all creation.  It is our dream that we can take the first steps toward this goal in 2016.

Church Planter
Petri & Yudy

Petri & Yudy

The church planter is Jesús (Petri) A. Petrikowsky along with his wife, Yudy Bernal de Petrikowski. Petri and Yudy were invited to the Church Planting Assessment Workshop in Tijuana in 2015 sponsored by the Church Planting Center of the National Presbyterian Church.  Petri was unanimously identified as the best candidate to plant this new church.  Since he and his wife are both working professionals in Zona Central, they are uniquely gifted to minister to this population. Also, because they will be working bivocationally, the needed funds are significantly lower than most projects.

They currently work in the ministry of the New Jerusalem Presbyterian Church in Ensenada, Mexico.  Petri is a church elder, and together with Yudy, they are responsible for the area of education, and also community service. Petri is a professor of secondary education in the government and in a private school.  He studied Mathematics at the Faculty of Sciences of the Autonomous University of Baja California; Spanish Language in the Benemérita State Normal School and Theology at Miami International Seminary.

Join Us In Prayer!

We’d love to have your prayer support. We are looking for churches and individuals to partner together with us in prayer and financially towards seeing a new city center church plant in Ensenada, Baja California.

Paraphrasing the words of the Macedonian man in Acts 16:9b, we say “Come to Mexico and help us!”

In His Grip, Dave

IMG_1651DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org

Church

Kingston Road Church

Are denominations biblical? Recently I told a friend of mine that I didn’t think denominations were biblical, and I haven’t heard from him since I made that statement. Now it’s possible that there is some other reason our contact has diminished, but I have a hunch that I may have offended him.

My intention was not to offend, and I don’t mean to offend anyone else that reads this. The point I was trying to make is that God is interested in building his kingdom, and seeing his kingdom expanded on the earth. One of the ways that happens is as his people come together, and serve together in unity.

Lessons in Our Lord, Jesus Christ’s Prayers

Jesus taught us to pray,

“Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”

—Matthew 6:10

In John 17 Jesus prayed in his high priestly prayer, right before he was delivered over to be crucified, that the church would be unified.

“I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you , that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.”

—John 17:20-23

Christ prayed that the church would be unified so that the world would know, in essence that we are representatives of Christ on earth, and that we are loved by the Father. We are to be witnesses, so that the world will believe in Christ.

The Importance of Unity in Kingdom Work

My point isn’t that we are in sin if we are in a denomination. My wife and I serve for a denominational mission. I’m more concerned that we strive for unity within the church, and seek to partner with other ministries to see the kingdom expanded on earth as it is in heaven.

I do think that denominations serve a purpose, and God does use them for kingdom work. Just as we have people with different personalities, each church has a personality and it appeals to some people more than others. They do a better job of reaching a particular segment of society.

Tim Keller – Movement Dynamics

Dr. Tim Keller, pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City has a helpful short video. He speaks of the importance of catholicity of spirit (largeness of spirit). “No church is perfectly balanced and no denomination is perfectly balanced … we all need each other that’s the beginning of catholicity of spirit.” Understanding that we all need each other and working together for that end is kingdom work. It makes the Father’s heart glad.

What is your Opinion?

Maybe the question of whether denominations are biblical or not isn’t the best question. What do you think? Maybe a better question is how can the church put aside her differences for the sake of the kingdom? How can we demonstrate true catholicity of spirit? I’d love to hear from you – let me know what you think.

In His Grip, Dave

DiasoLifeOnTheBorder.org