apoLuo WORKSHOP CONTENT #004: GOT THE BADGE–WHERE’S THE HORSE?
#4 in a series devoted to sending churches. The content of this post is adapted from BMW’s 6-hour apoLuo workshop. Numbered articles are intended to be read sequentially for maximum benefit. (This article originally posted in 2012 and is being republished for new readers that may have missed it–Editor).
Imagine a sheriff in the Old West pinning a badge on the chest of a deputy, but not providing him with a salary, a horse or a six-gun. Sending a man into the sagebrush without equipment or training—not to mention the means to live—would be senseless.
In our churches we sometimes do the same thing. We deputize missionaries to go “to the end of the earth” to enable us to fulfill the Great Commission, but we stop there. Adequate training, partnership with a good mission agency, and support raising become the missionaries’ responsibilities.
When BMW’s Deputation tactical team researched the deputation crisis, two significant issues emerged from the data. The first was that at its core, the problem is not an economic one. The second is this:
Apart from the missionaries themselves, the most significant person in the support raising process is the sending church pastor.
The data from the missionaries we polled indicated there is a direct correlation between the level of involvement of a sending church pastor and the amount of time required for appointees to raise their full support.
This being the case, we asked ourselves two questions:
- How can we help pastors to understand the critical role they play in the support raising process?
- How can we help pastors to be effective in this role?
apoLuo is part of the answer to those questions. Our desire is to convince sending church pastors that they are a vital part of the deputation process and to provide tools to enable them and their churches to become outstanding senders—to be able to authorize, prepare, equip and provide for those they deputize to serve on their behalf. As BMW’s General Director Paul Seger likes to say, “The test of a healthy, effective church is not its seating capacity, but its sending capacity.”
It’s not just about pinning on the badge.
Rob Heijermans, Biblical Ministries Worldwide
Image courtesy of Salvatore Vuono / FreeDigitalPhotos.net