Distrustful of Religion — but Not of Coffee [October Prayer Focus]

global church plants
Discipleship is made possible through global church plants. Discover how you can be praying for missionaries planting these churches around the world!

Raphael* had never felt so empty. He’d walked away from his Jehovah Witness faith. And now, he didn’t know how to find God.

When Raphael noticed a new church in his French hometown, he felt drawn to it, but he wasn’t sure why. He passed by it several times, afraid to go in. He didn’t want to get sucked back into another false religion.

Finally, he worked up the courage to step inside.

TEAM missionaries Paul and Karan Davis were there to offer him a warm cup of coffee. As the three chatted, Raphael found himself opening up to them about all he’d been through.

Several coffee visits later, Raphael felt safe enough to attend a worship service — where he discovered the truth about God’s love.

Now, Raphael is growing in his new faith and eager to share his testimony.

All thanks to two church planters and a cup of coffee.

This month, will you join us in prayer for church planters around the world? Pray that many like Raphael will come to know the Lord through their service.

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1. Pray that church planters will develop solid, location-based strategies.

global church plants

Cities around the world will require different church planting methods — which is why there is a great need for prayer and preparation.

Most church planters establish several churches throughout their careers. They constantly have to develop new approaches because each location has its own culture and group of people.

“Every church plant presents its own challenges,” said Paul Davis. “What worked in one city may or may not have an effect in the next city.”

Pray that church planters will be creative in developing strategies suited to the people they serve. Ask God to help them truly understand the communities they’re working in.

2. Pray for constant rejuvenation for workers.

global church plants

TEAM missionaries David and Kathy North have faced discouragement through church planting, but they have also witnessed the Lord’s faithfulness through it all.

Church planting is a process — often, a long process. And being so deeply invested in other people for extended periods of time can be emotionally and spiritually taxing.

Sometimes the Enemy will use relational conflicts in a new church to discourage missionaries — which is exactly what happened to David and Kathy North at one of their church plants in the Philippines.

“I said to Kathy, ‘If it’s going to be like this, I can’t do it,’” David said. “But then God just really impressed on our hearts … we’re going to have a great church here one day.”

So the Norths stayed, despite the obstacles. And now, over eight years later, there is a growing church in the place that almost broke them.

Pray for missionaries who feel overwhelmed by the difficulties of church planting. Ask God to give them strength to press on, even in the face of opposition.

3. Ask God to provide church leadership training for local believers.

global church plants

Will you ask God to provide the resources church plants need to reproduce new churches and disciples of Jesus?

The ultimate goal of church planting is to produce functioning churches, again and again.

And in order to create a church that’s sustainable, locals must learn to lead the congregation once the missionaries are gone.

“When we left our last church plant, it was a really hard go. I remember sitting in church one Sunday where we weren’t doing anything, and I looked at Kathy and said, ‘We’re finished. They don’t need us anymore,’” David said. “But this is what we’re here to do, is to get it started and then move on.”

Ask God to raise up nationals who are willing to learn and lead local congregations so that church planters can move on to new communities in need. Pray that missionaries will have the discernment to know when it’s time to move on.

Thank you for partnering with us in prayer! Click here to get a print-out of this month’s Prayer Focus requests and praise reports.

*Name changed. 


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About the author

TEAM - The Evangelical Alliance Mission
TEAM - The Evangelical Alliance Mission

TEAM partners with the Global Church in sending disciples who make disciples and establish missional reproducing churches to the glory of God.

11 Comments

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  • I would like to know how I could become a church planter on a full time basis. I’ve been blessed fo go on short term missions and love helping and sharing the good news of Christ.

    • Hello, Doug!

      I am so grateful to hear that God has placed a desire in your heart to serve Him through missions work! The best place to start would be to check out TEAM’s current open opportunities at https://opportunities.team.org/. There, you can specifically search for church planting opportunities. To learn more about TEAM’s various church ministries, please visit http://learn.team.org/church-ministries-download to download a free guide for more info!

      If you are ready to talk more about next steps, I would highly suggest contacting a missions coach at https://team.org/missionscoach. They are there to answer any questions you have about missions and help you discern your calling.

      On behalf of TEAM, may God bless you as you seek guidance for your future ministry!

  • I’m going to be praying for all Ministers. Hopefully, my dream of being in the Mission field will also be answered!

    • Hi Ed!

      Unfortunately, we don’t currently have any missionaries in Togo. The closest opportunities we have are in Chad.

  • Yep, open hearts for the truth begins with the Holy Spirit and is often helped along with coffee or food. I prefer coffee since it’s widely acceptable to discuss just about anything over coffee.

    • Yes, food and drink just has a special way of bringing people together and opening them up to deeper conversation!

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