HAIR CLIPS AND SHARE EVANGELISM

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Funding Church Planting, funding church planting, Methods, missions, Uncategorized

Our co-worker, Mercy Magbanua, traveled from her home in the Philippines to Kisii, Kenya, to teach SHARE Evangelism.  You may have “met” Mercy in other blogs on this site.  Mercy taught the conference delegates how to use livelihood skills training for evangelism.  In this case she taught them how to make hair clips–including a special trick using a candle.  Even the men got involved in this project.  Men won’t wear the hair clips, but they could make them for sale, thereby increasing their family income.  If you want more information, please contact me.

 

 

BEGIN AT THE END

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Fun(ding) Solutions, Funding Church Planting, Methods, Publications, SHARE

Is it possible for something to begin at the end? Is it true that something small, is really huge? Can good times be bad? Can bad times be good? Can poverty be riches? Can an uneducated person become an entrepreneur? The answer to all these questions is, yes.

For me, the ending of a long journey is probably only just the beginning. It has been a journey of inspiration and frustration, vision and blank stares, physical weakness and supernatural strength; scary episodes followed by sweet relief, spiritual mountain tops and deep valleys, and through it all, God’s guidance and assurance.

What is all this “crazy talk” about? It describes my three-year writing project which is finally being published. My book, Church Planters Have All the Fun(ding)! has finally gone to production. For many years since the beginning of my husband’s and my life on the mission field, there were two questions that jumped out at us over and over. They were: “How do I plant (start) a New Testament church?” and “How do I find the best way to finance church planting?”

Before I go any further, let me explain. Although I have finished writing the book, I am finding an almost overwhelming need to respond in writing to so many church planters who have the same two questions. My writing continues in blogs and on social media, but in a different, more personal and individual focus. My book is relatively small in size (a little over 200 pages); but it contains a unique, practical way to finance church planting, that is already having an impact, physically and spiritually. Although unique, it is absolutely compatible with scripture. If you find it useful, then a small thing has become huge.

Can bad times be good, or the reverse? We can easily find examples of seemingly good times being truly bad or sinful; but what happens in the bad times? In my experience, every time I start a project or ministry that has the potential for great outreach, I suffer frightening medical events that seem to be demonic efforts to stop and discourage me. I don’t want to go into a long list of complaints, so let me briefly share that I have lived with constant severe pain for more than 25 years. In the last three years, I have been writing without being able to see clearly. Now, after six surgeries on my eyes (I know, I only have two eyes!), and a unique kind of contact lens, I can see much better. Then, as I was putting the finishing touches on the book, I was diagnosed with a serious heart condition. Praise God, that heart condition “disappeared” a few weeks later.

I am not asking for sympathy—a little compassion is good, though—but I share all this so you will know that God can give a person a vision, and then the devil responds by slinging his poison arrows. With God’s help and the Christian’s determination and commitment to follow Him, anything is possible. Since childhood, whenever I faced a problem that demanded a solution, I was known to say, “There’s always a way.” In a way, it became my life’s motto. It was some time later that I realized I was just restating the biblical concept of Philippians 4:13 which says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

God has put me in unusual circumstances throughout my life to prepare me for a unique approach to sharing the Gospel. My husband and I live simply, on a limited budget, but we count our riches in the people we have helped, and in our service to God. It is not for fame or riches that I write. I wrote Church Planters Have All the Fun(ding)! because I saw a need. The book will be accessible to anyone in soft cover or eBook format.

Church Planters Have All the Fun(ding)! is divided into two parts. Part One of this book seeks to address two aspects of church planting: the fun(damentals) of establishing a new church from the beginning based on New Testament principles, and the fun(ding) the church will experience as it finds ways to combine evangelism with possibilities for personal income. The fun(ding) for the church planter, as well as the church plant, comes from an outreach method called SHARE Evangelism.

GIVING SACRIFICIALLY TO MISSIONS

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When our daughter, Emily, was a preschooler she wanted to give something for missions. All she had was a dime and a penny. She gave it all. In the following 35 years, she has found 11 cents (always as a dime and a penny) in many places including on the floor in the house, in the car, on the street or sidewalk, in change after a purchase, etc. Maybe she is just focused on that amount, but she finds it everywhere. That original 11 cents gained significance to her in her life. When she was nine years old we went to the Philippines as missionaries. We talked with her about how far her 11 cents went when it was combined with the gifts of others. Her 11 cents paid for our plane tickets, it provided a house and car, it paid for furloughs and return trips, and continues to provide for missions in many new and exciting forms. Never underestimate the power of sacrificial giving to missions.

FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR CHURCH PLANTING

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Fun(ding) Solutions, Funding Church Planting, Methods

When God called you to be a church planter, He didn’t joke around and say, “Let’s see you do this without any financial resources!” God owns it all. His provision is sufficient. Our task as church planters is to establish the church on the correct foundation for growth, strength, and longevity. There is an article from a major mission sending organization that gives insight on this issue based on a long history of experience. They have done it the wrong way in the past, and they have found a more successful approach as a result. READ MORE.

SHARE EVANGELISM INTRODUCTION

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Fun(ding) Solutions, Funding Church Planting, Humor, Methods, Project Ideas, Publications, SHARE, Stories

Have you tried door-to-door or house-to-house witnessing and had doors slammed in your face so many times that your nose is all bent out of shape? Have you tried street preaching, only to get chased off by police, or even put in prison? Do you face severe restrictions on spreading Christianity? Do you face apathy and indifference from those who need Christ but don’t know it yet? Are there too many questions? Then let’s look for answers.

It is apparent that the devil is the ruler of this earth (Revelation 12:7-12) and his influence seems to be getting stronger. As Christians we know that Jesus said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 1:33) A great majority of the people we see on the street, or in every crowd, is lost and without Christ. We must find ways to present the truths of the Gospel and the truth of the Resurrection. We must find ways to overcome the complacency of the self-satisfied person. We must find ways to bridge the gap between love and hate to reach those who are stubbornly and dogmatically against the teachings of Jesus and the salvation He brings. We must be “wise as serpents, and harmless as doves.” (Matthew 10:16) We must be fearless, not foolish. We must be brave, not resigned to defeat. We must tread gently as we boldly go.

As Christians, we have the King of Kings, the Ruler of the Universe, fighting for us. “If God be for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31) No one enjoys or wants persecution, but there are times when God allows it. Persecution does not come as punishment, but as a way of glorifying God. Even physical pain and disease may be used by God for his glory. We can’t know the ways of God, nor can we know the reasons; but we can know the blessings of serving Him, regardless of what happens to us. Let’s march forward as Christian soldiers, battle-ready and fully clothed in the whole armor of God. (Ephesians 6:10-18)

I have two resources for you. The first is SHARE Evangelism, which is a very practical training course that encourages the Christian to use the “stuff” of everyday modern life to inspire parables. This is a way of imitating Christ in an easy “as you go” style that makes witnessing a part of who you are. This method is most compatible with evangelical Christian theology and philosophy. Best of all, it is free! Just email me at MitchellBarbara711@gmail.com. Tell me you name, address, cell, your church name, your involvement in the church (pastor, Sunday school teacher, member, etc.) web site if any, your plans to plant a church, and any other information you care to share. I will send you the link and the pass code so you will have access any time.

The second resource is my new book on planting churches that can be self-funded and autonomous from the beginning. The title is, CHURCH PLANTERS HAVE ALL THE FUN(DING)! It follows an agricultural theme and shows how SHARE Evangelism and church planting go hand-in-hand. The manuscript is in the editor’s hands for final editing. I expect the book to be released by the end of summer, 2017. Let me know if you are interested and I will be sure to notify you when it is available.

Meanwhile, please visit other blogs on my web site. You may find them especially helpful and encouraging. I appreciate any comments on the blogs that you care to make. I’ll see you there. https://shareinstitute.org/blog/

SHOUT FOR JOY

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Humor, Stories

 

This account comes from my husband Rick. We enjoy it over and over; as Christians everywhere will understand it’s significance.

After a few weeks of language study in the Philippines, my assignment was to learn the plan of salvation in Cebuano (the local dialect) and practice presenting it with several people.  Because of the unrest and insurgency during that time, Lito, a night security officer, was assigned to the subdivision where we lived.  Lito and I became friends so I decided to try my testimony on him.  I struggled through it and probably murdered the pronunciation, but God spoke to Lito in spite of my feeble efforts.  Before I could finish, Lito said, “I want that.”  My language skill was not adequate to help him pray, so I quickly called for help from a nearby Christian friend.  Lito immediately prayed to receive Christ as his Savior.  He was so happy he ran out and told everyone he could find.  I gave him a Bible so he could read more in his own language.  The next day he brought it back and, in tears, threw it down and said, “They killed Jesus! He was such a good man. Why did He have to die?”  I told him to read the next chapter to find out more.

Ten minutes later Lito came back shouting, “He’s alive, He’s alive!” He stopped, looked at me, and said, “You knew this all along, didn’t you, Bro. Rick?” Oh, the joy when he discovered that Jesus arose from the dead. During the following couple of weeks, Lito sat under our bedroom window near the street light and read the Bible all night at the top of his lungs so everyone could hear the Good News!  We didn’t get much sleep for a while but we rejoiced in his joy and exuberance.

Shortly after Lito was saved he went to his childhood home on a distant island. He told his mother about his Salvation.  His mother said, “Son, I have been praying for your Salvation for ten years!” During Lito’s brief stay on the island, he told others how to find Jesus.  He planted a church with 20 new Christians and one Bible. From time to time, Lito would return to be sure they stayed on the right track.

DISCERNMENT

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement

Is the Bible the true and complete Word of God? We only need to go to Revelation 22:18-19 in which the Apostle, John, testifies that God warned us not to add or subtract anything to or from the Holy Bible. That means we are to take teachings and commands in the whole context of the Bible.  As Christians we are given the ability of discernment that was not available to us before salvation.  For example, Scriptures that once were confusing or seemed so wrong, suddenly make sense to us.

What does that mean for us today? How can we be discerning? The answer is both simple and difficult.  Obviously, we need to examine the Scriptures to be sure that our beliefs and practices conform to the examples that Jesus set forth for us. The hard part is separating the truth of the Scripture from the intrusion of tradition and cultural practices.

In this study I would like for us to look at a number of practices in the churches around the world. Please understand, this is not a criticism of any church or any practice. We will look at what is happening and see if it comports with what we find in Scripture.  Whether you agree with me or not, I welcome your feedback. A lively discussion among discerning Christians will enlighten us all.

Some of the topics that we may discuss here are:

  1. What does Salvation mean?
  2. Is Christ the only way to God?
  3. Sources of influence
  4. Cultural expression in worship
  5. Misperceptions of Western Christianity
  6. Forms or styles of worship
  7. Forms of baptism
  8. Prophecy and Word of Knowledge
  9. Glossolalia (speaking/praying in unknown tongues)
  10. Signs and wonders (healings, promises of wealth, and other miraculous acts)
  11. Manifestations of visits by the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary
  12. Commanding the Holy Spirit, the devil, and evil spirits
  13. Expressions of emotion, slaying in the Spirit, appearance of demon possession
  14. Can you exorcise an evil spirit from a Christian?
  15. Return to life after death with memories of heaven or hell

FUN(DING) CHURCH PLANTING

Posted 1 CommentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Fun(ding) Solutions, Funding Church Planting, funding church planting, Humor, Methods, missions, SHARE

The journey through life–especially if you unquestioningly follow God’s leading–can take many twists and turns. Although I have written many instruction manuals, articles and letters, I never had any ambition to write a book. I didn’t even enjoy creative writing classes in school, and never thought of myself as an author. But, how things can change! I am now nearing completion of a church planting book that comes from a lifetime of experience–from first hand knowledge and from first hand reporting from other sources.

Those of you who know me, know how much I like to see the humorous side to almost every situation. My working title of the book is CHURCH PLANTERS HAVE ALL THE FUN(DING)!  Not only do we have all the fun, we have amazing resources for funding. There are many books on the market that talk about church planting. They tell you all about why you should plant churches and how to do it. That is not the primary purpose of my book. I am attempting to help church planters find the funding that is needed to plant their churches without getting grants and large donations from outside sources. There is strong evidence that large donations to the church from outside the congregation create a sense of church welfare and dependency. The young congregation doesn’t see the need to give when the provision is already in place. Consciously, or subconsciously, they don’t understand the sudden need when the donations dry up. In their minds, either the pastor just wants more money for himself, or surely the pastor will find another source of funds. Many churches have disbanded due to lack of funds.

Whether your church plant is reaching the wealthy, or it is located in a tribal Third World situation, there are creative ways to solve the church’s financial needs. Best of all, you can have fun doing it. God doesn’t call us to be sad in service to Him, even if he places us in situations of hardship, grief, and despair.

If you want to learn more about these exciting possibilities, watch my blog for excerpts from my book and the big announcement of its publication date, expected by the end of summer, 2017.

INTRODUCTIONS

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Church Planting, Encouragement, Funding Church Planting, SHARE

Greetings to all of you (or one or two!) who have found their way to my website. Although I have written many forms of manuscripts, this is my first experience at maintaining a website. My intention is to share ideas, experiences, humor, methods, and anything else that will encourage evangelical church planters. I believe the leading edge of evangelism is through the formation of new churches led by strong evangelical pastors who consistently preach the Word.

My husband, Rick, and I are former IMB missionaries in the Philippines. We were there for about 8 1/2 years during which time we worked along side national church planters. There was no way we had enough money to finance all the work that needed to be done, so we sought the national pastors’ advice on meeting their perceived needs; and then worked with them to develop methods to meet those needs. Those methods, developed jointly at that time, are still being used effectively by many churches throughout the country from 1990 until now. The training (discipleship training and livelihood skills training) happens though SHARE Institute, International. Teachers are trained and then they pass their training on to others who will learn under them. The training is all included in a manuscript called, SHARE Evangelism. SHARE Evangelism is available on line, protected by a passcode.  If you would like access to this important evangelism tool, please let me know in the comment space below, or email me at mitchellbarbara711@gmail.com. Please include your name, address, phone/cell, website if you have one, denomination affiliation, and any other information you might like to share. Also, please tell me a little about your church plant or your plans to plant a church.

SHARE Evangelism promotes outreach using a simple approach that a new Christian can do, even if he can only quote John 3:16! You don’t have to be a seminary graduate or a Bible scholar to do this. All you need is your testimony, love for people, and a desire to see others find Christ and make Him Lord of their lives. Maybe you are wondering if this can even be effective. In the 26+ years since its inception, SHARE Institute, International and its training method found in SHARE Evangelism has spread to 28 countries and growing. SHARE Institute, International is headquartered in my computer, with additional creative spaces in my sewing/craft room. At the same time, SHARE Institute, International has many locations–even more than I know. I occasionally get messages from people I never met, saying they learned it from someone else who learned it from someone who learned it from me. SHARE  can take place under a tree in Africa, or in a bamboo hut with a thatched room in Asia, or in an apartment community room in America, or in a church building in Europe, or anywhere. It does not require sophisticated accommodations for it to be successful.

Thank you for stopping by to read my posts. I hope you will come back. I am available on line or by phone (please be aware that I am in Eastern Time Zone) to mentor and encourage those who contact me. I am glad to help you find more creative ways for outreach. And, I learn so much from each person who reaches out.