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From the Coordinator: Creating a Healthy Church-Planting Ecosystem

By Lloyd Kim, Nov 7, 2017

Since moving to Georgia, I’ve been learning a lot about Bermuda grass and how to make it thrive. I didn’t realize that having earthworms is good for breaking up hard, compacted clay soil; it’s better to water deep and less frequently for strong roots; a lot of sunlight is needed; and too much fertilizer will burn the grass.

My big takeaway is that it’s not just one thing that makes a lawn healthy and green, but a whole healthy ecosystem is necessary for grass to flourish.

I can’t help but see this as an analogy for church planting on the mission field. Because we are on the front lines and our focus is on conversion growth, creating an ecosystem for church planting is vital. What would be those things that make a healthy church-planting ecosystem?

  • We need natural, regular evangelistic points of contact with the people we are trying to reach. It is for this reason we rejoice when evangelistic laypeople join our church-planting teams to care for the sick, minister to the poor, teach English, and disciple medical students, artists, musicians, entrepreneurs, etc. Through these discipleship relationships and acts of mercy, we are breaking up hard, compacted soil. 
  • We also need well-trained and seasoned pastors who can not only lead church plants, but also train and mentor others to plant churches. They need the skills and experience to go deep with this training, not only theologically, but missiologically and pastorally so that these new churches can have deep roots. 
  • All those who serve as missionaries need the attractive, winsome light of Christ that shows itself in repentance, graciousness, humility, teachability, and love. It is the light of the gospel shining in and through us that draws people to Jesus. 
  • And of course, too much fertilizer will also burn the Church. Pride and pretense have no place in church planting.  Open, honest, and authentic servants are needed to create a beautiful environment for healthy, thriving, flourishing church planting on the mission field.


Though we trust that God alone is the One who gives growth, we also recognize that He chooses to use the whole body of Christ in all its diversity to work in harmony in creating healthy church-planting ecosystems. Could God be calling you to join one of these teams for kingdom growth and advancement?  

Lloyd Kim

Lloyd Kim is coordinator of Mission to the World. He is a former PCA pastor and a former missionary with MTW in the Philippines and Cambodia. He holds an M.Div. from Westminster Seminary in California and a Ph.D. in New Testament studies from Fuller Theological Seminary. Lloyd and his wife, Eda, are the parents of Kaelyn, Christian, and Katy.

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