A core value at Thrive Church in Eaton Rapids, Michigan, is intentional multiplication. We envision having a transforming presence in 10 area ZIP codes in 10 years’ time. We see value in multiplication locally and globally, in various modes: church plant, revitalization, campus, or missional communities. We want to support planters and revitalizers who are outside of our church, network and even beyond The Wesleyan Church. Presently, we are supporting four church multiplication movements, relationally, financially, spiritually, through prayer and coaching. We also open our pulpit allowing new church plant pastors to gain preaching experience before launching and share their unique vision with our body. It’s good for our congregation to get a larger view of church multiplication.
It was exciting to join The Wesleyan Church in celebrating Church Multiplication Sunday on May 20, 2018. We chose to give a financial gift to two local church plants we support wholeheartedly: The Mix Church in Old Town Lansing, Michigan, with Pastor Luis Torres, and Transformation Church in Lansing, Michigan, with Pastor Andrea Abrahamson.
God laid on our hearts to give our entire offering amount collected on Church Multiplication Sunday to these two churches. It was a giant step of faith to do this as Thrive is a one-year-old church revitalization relaunch. That day, we challenged those in our church not to give less, but to give even more than normal. Through a team effort, we raised $2,800 and split the amount between the two church plants.
We (Randy and Katie Lance, co-lead pastors) and our Thrive body leaned deeply into God, trusting that he would provide the 25 percent of our monthly budget that we gave away that day. When we say we believe in church multiplication, it comes with putting our money where our mouth is. Are we willing to support it to a point that it is literally costing us?
It has been encouraging for us to know that we are not alone in this kingdom movement, and that we can be greater together than apart. It excites us at Thrive Church to see other planters and revitalization pastors being raised up, supported and empowered.
“I am so thankful for Pastors Katie and Randy Lance and others who are leading with generosity and great sacrifice for the sake of closing the gospel gap,” said Anita Eastlack, executive director of Church Multiplication and Discipleship. “This is what God will honor!”
“Thrive Church is a remarkable example of a generous group of Christ-followers that see the kingdom investment connected to supporting new churches,” said Ed Love, director of church multiplication for The Wesleyan Church. “Thrive Church reminds me of what the Apostle Paul said about the Macedonian churches, ‘For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people’” (2 Corinthians 8:2-4).
Pictured: Katie Lance and Andrea Abrahamson, pictured left, and Randy Lance and Luis Torres, pictured right.