ago, when Jan and I ventured out to start our first church, those who sent us
described church planters like us as people who would “pioneer a new church”. That phrase is not used very much in church
planting circles today, but remains accurate in describing our assignment. We packed up all our belongings, along with
our two young children and a cat, and drove into an unknown future filled only
with a promise from God. This is the nature of a pioneer.
the settling of the American West those who rode in wagons and walked alongside
them towards the hope of a new beginning in a new land were called pioneers. The dictionary definition of a pioneer is,
“one who ventures into unknown or unclaimed territory”. This definition has a
larger application than just historic pioneers or present day church
planters. This is a reality for each
life that steps away from what is known to travel into the unknown expanse of
an unexplored future.
may find yourself at the end of a known season. What lies before you is an
unexplored landscape that only contains a promise from God of something that is
not yet seen. A pioneer can see this
invisible place with the eyes of faith.
can stay where you are, but you will always live with the lingering question,
“What would have happened if we had made the journey?” If this is where you find yourself, ask God
to give you the heart of a pioneer. You
will know when this happens because the hope of the promise will have overshadowed
the doubt of your departure and you will find yourself packing with expectancy
for a new adventure experienced only by those who have the heart of a pioneer.