I had the opportunity to have lunch with a strategic baptist leader up in my neck of the woods. Tom Nebel is Great Lakes Baptist Conference (Baptist General Conference) Associate Executive Minister for Church Multiplication, Associate Director of TeAMerica, and is the big cheese at WePlantChurches.com (Great Lakes Church Planting). I got connected to Tom through some pastors at the Acts29 boot camp a couple of weeks ago. Tom also brought a church planter named Gene in North Madison to meet with me.
We ate Mediterranean food on State Street in downtown Madison, WI and talked about churches, church health, church planting movements. He wrote out a diagram explaining how churches and church leaders clash and/or mesh on the issues of pastor and vision and how momentum changes things dramatically. Very helpful, and if my explanation doesn't make sense, I'm told it can be found in Tom's book Church Planting Landmines. Tom gave me a copy of another book he wrote, Big Dreams in Small Places: Church Planting in Smaller Communities, obviously understanding my context in a smaller but rapidly growing suburb of Chicago.
The more networking I do with other visionary leaders, the more pumped I get about what God is doing all around us and through us. Being a part of a church is so different than being a part of a movement of churches planting churches (I've written about this before). I want to learn from them and encourage more movements and fewer monuments.