I’m writing this post from the beautiful country of Uganda. I’m here with six fellow church members including my daughter who is a high school senior. We are leading a cell church seminar and Encounter retreat for a network of churches led by Morris and Aida Ogenga. Since 1993, God has used this delightful couple to begin 47 churches in Uganda and Kenya. They will be planting an additional eight churches in 2007. Indeed, Morris and Aida are leading a church planting movement. My church family partners with this network of churches in planting one church every year.
Morris and Aida are transitioning all their churches to cell churches. Today, I asked Morris, “Why are you pursuing such a transition?” He stated, “We are transitioning to the cell church model for the following three reasons: 1. We want to provide our members an opportunity to serve placing them on the front lines of ministry, 2. Our pastors want to empower people for the work of ministry, 3. I believe the cell church model is the best way to reach and equip the harvest.”
Although this network of churches is just now transitioning to the cell model, it was amazing to me to discover that people are already receiving Christ during cell gatherings. I met a woman today who received Christ at a cell gathering. The entire church family received her during Sunday’s Celebration service.
May I encourage you to take your cell members on mission? Serving together at your city’s food bank or homeless shelter, sprucing up a local school campus, or traveling overseas and participating in cross-cultural ministry endeavors allows your cell members to see outside of themselves. In other words, take your cell on wheels and participate in equipping and expanding the kingdom of God. This can be accomplished in your city, your country, and world. This should not be an annual experience for your cell, but go on mission on a monthly basis.
Let me close with three thoughts which you may choose to adopt. First, have each cell in your church partner with another local or international ministry that needs support, assistance, and/or equipping. Second, as you gather for your cell time– pray each week for this ministry. Finally, have your cell members visit this ministry on a consistent basis. Be ready for God to bring life to your cell! Rest assured you will receive much more than you give away!