One of the questions I get asked a lot is, “Why would you move from South Carolina to Indianapolis to start a church? Aren’t there enough churches already here?” It’s a great question, and frankly some mornings during the Indianapolis winter I was asking myself that same question. So, to answer the question, I have 4 reasons:
- God told us to. No seriously. He really did. I’ve always been skeptical when people say, “God told me to ___________.” I wondered what that sounded like. Did they hear some booming voice from the sky while walking down the road one day? Did He speak to them through a dream? I never really understood until I heard God’s voice call us to Indianapolis.
It wasn’t one instant. It was a series of instances that culminated to about 8 months of His directing us here. We prayed, listened, read the Bible and sought counsel from Godly people. That’s how we heard. I can’t tell you why He called us, but I can tell you that He definitely called us. I’m so sure I would stake my life on it. In fact, I did.
Oh, and we didn’t do some kind of demographic study to see where the church planting “hot spots” would be, or spin the globe and land our finger randomly on Indianapolis. Don’t get me wrong, AFTER I knew God was calling us to Indy, we began studying everything we could get our hands on about the city, but frankly the reason we’re in Indy is because Jesus told us to.
- The number of churches in the U.S. is decreasing every year. 80% of churches in the U.S. have plateaued or declined. There are 6500 churches that close their doors every year and only 4000 churches started. That’s a net loss of 2500 churches EVERY YEAR! Statisticians say that we need to start 15,000 churches every year just to keep up with population growth in America. There is still plenty of need for new churches!
- There are still lost people in Indianapolis. In fact there are a lot! The Indy metro area has about 2 million people living in it. If we were to fill up every church in the city 3 times on a Sunday (which would be incredible for most churches!) we would still only be reaching a small fraction of the city! We’re not starting a church to “steal” people away from other churches. We’re starting a church to reach unchurched people - people far from God! And until the last lost person is reached, we will make it our mission to do whatever it takes to reach them!
- Jesus is already moving in Indianapolis. I heard TD Jakes say that you can tell the size of the project God is getting ready to do by the type of machinery he brings to the work site. Jesus has already assembled some incredible people leading some incredible churches that are doing some incredible things for the Jesus in Indy. We just want to jump on board with what Jesus is doing and getting ready to do!