Saturday, September 21, 2019

Book Review: The Church Planting Journey by Robert E. Logan

The Church Planting Journey by Robert E. Logan
Book Review

Bob Logan has spent his ministry planting churches, coaching church planters, and helping church leaders disciple Christians and multiply churches. In his new book, The Church Planting Journey, Logan draws on his experience and wisdom to describe a successful approach to church planting in our current environment. He concentrates on preparing the planter and creating disciples, since, as he says, “Church planting is a byproduct of making disciples” (p.11).

The Church Planting Journey is broken into four parts, each with multiple chapters. Every focused chapter contains scriptural support, important concepts, practical examples, and concrete steps, all of which are relevant to a broad range of plant styles in any denomination. A Journey Guide closes each chapter. The Journey Guide contains a “Checklist for the road ahead”, a focus for the planter’s own personal discipleship, questions for the planter and the planter’s coach, discussion questions for the planting team, and prayer focuses for the planter and the team.

The first part, Get Ready: Personal Commitment and Readiness, focuses on the church planter. Chapters in this part focus on development of the planter’s vision and values, confirming a call to planting, learning and understanding of the planting process, and persevering through inevitable challenges and discouragements.  Part two, Get Set: Preparing and Planning, looks at the organizational foundations underpinning a plant, including building the core team, identifying the target audience, designing the ministry, securing financial support, and developing a proposal. Part three, Get Going: Living Out the Mission, discusses the plant’s ministry while getting started. Themes include vision casting, engaging culture, making disciples, multiplying disciplemaking communities, and preparing for the launch of public worship services. Part four, Keep Going: Ongoing Development and Multiplication, helps continue a plant’s development while it prepares for multiplication. Chapters in this section cover leadership development, ongoing evaluation and development, planning strategically, and dealing with growth and change. The final chapter in this part focuses on one of Logan’s key themes, which is creating a multiplication movement of churches.

While The Church Planting Journey focuses on church planters, almost everything in the book is helpful for any pastor who wants their church to make disciples and bear fruit. Depending on the pastor’s particular situation, different chapters will be more relevant at different times. The Journey Guides, especially, ask questions that established churches leaders need to ask themselves and their congregations for ongoing growth and development.

If I had to pick only one book to sit on my desk next to my Bible to guide me in leading a church that lived out its calling and multiplied disciples effectively, The Church Planting Journey would be that book. This volume is a true gift to the church, and the fruit of a lifetime of faithful ministry by one of the contemporary church’s most effective leaders.

This book may be purchased from Amazon or other booksellers.
(Disclaimer: I have worked with Bob Logan for more than a decade and received a review copy of The Church Planting Journey.)

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