Jesus and the Cell Church

As I said in my newsletter this month, Jesus, not structure is the key to cell church success. And the key way to commune with Jesus is through prayer. Prayer is the power behind the cell church. Prayer should never be categorized as a program. It’s beyond that. I believe prayer and missions provide the air that the church breathes. All of the growing cell churches I studied made prayer their priority. They emphasized prayer both in the cell and in the celebration. These churches organized morning prayer meetings, half-night prayer meetings, all night prayer meetings, or other types of organized prayer.

A few weeks ago, I ate lunch with David and Ty King, the pastors at York Alliance Church in York, PA. Ty King is passionate about prayer and has done an excellent job of promoting prayer at York Alliance. She asked me if I could give her advice about prayer in the cell church. My answer was to check out the prayer ministry at Cypress Creek Church (pastor Rob Campbell, also a board member at JCG).

I’ve taken two groups of pastors to Cypress Creek Church. Both times, I came away energized by the power of God through prayer. When this church was first started in 1994, the very first person they hired was Cecilia Belvin, the pastor of prayer. Cecilia has developed likeminded prayer warriors at CCC. Today, Cypress Creek Church has one of the most vital prayer ministries I have ever encountered. God has blessed this church abundantly because they’ve placed Him first.

Here at Wellspring we have a weekly Wedneday evening prayer meeting and a once per month half-night prayer meeting. Of course, the cells engage in regular prayer as well.

Why do you believe that the power behind the cell church is Jesus and His work through prayer? 
Joel Comiskey

12 thoughts on “Jesus and the Cell Church

  • Gracias por toda su informacion.

    Esta semana implementare principios del libro RECOGED LA COSECHA, al liderazgo de celulas.
    Solo tengo 3 celulas ya empesadas, solo una es la mas sobresaliente
    No se si me podrias enviar informacion en espanol


    Leo Campos
    Pastor: Iglesia de Dios Torre Fuerte
    Anaheim Ca

  • Joel, In the cell seminars I have led, I have tried to emphasize that it is NOT the cell structure that causes growth but the Spirit of God. What the cell structure contributes is small groups of people who can focus on prayer. Much prayer is unleashed and the church grows. You know that too and I was happy to see you mention it in your last letter. The great sociologist, E. Northcut Parkinson (Parkinson’s laws fame). said that the death inherent in one structure can be transferred to another. If there is a church that is “dead” and it divides itself into several small groups you will end up with several dead small groups.

    Blessings, Mikel Neumann

  • Good word, Joel, that it is Jesus and His Spirit that makes the difference! All structures, strategies and paradigms are powerless, like dry bones in the valley until the Spirit breathes life into them. Blessings, Frank Hankins

  • I like what Ben Wong said a few years ago, which went kinda like this.
    If you have a dead church, and you just transition to a cell based structure, you will then have a dead cell based church. He kinda has a gift for making the obvious obvious!

  • Thanks, Joel, for this emphasis on prayer and Jesus being the key to growth over structure. This is refreshing and encouraging. It seems that so many church growth seminars are focused on structure, strategy, and technique. This encouraged me to look harder at Jesus.

  • Ez 37 without the breath of God any structure is still dead. No matter how good it looks or how attracted people are to the structure. Ask anyone who is attracted to someone because of their looks but after they get to know them they realize the life in them is not what they saw on the outside. Or they just did not look deep enough! Help us Lord to look deeper!

    Thanks again Joel.

  • Hi Joel,

    It is 3:30 am in the morning. I usually don’t ever get up this early. I believe
    I found your Web site so you can come to our church to lead our Cell Conference. I have been to your seminars in the past many years ago. I have recently trained 30 senior pastors to do cells. Now, I feel it is time to follow up with them with your expertise. I am one of the associate pastors at Bethel Deliverence International Church. We are not a cell church, but a church with a cell ministry. Our goal is to reach people for Christ. We want every man, every woman, boy and girl to have repeated opportunittes to be touched by the Gospel of Jesus Christ and touched by the love of God. We are looking around end of July, middle of August. Thanks Joel.
    Norman Bishop

  • I say a BIG AMEN to that sir Joey. Jesus is truly the key for cell / church growth; not just system and structure. Apart from Him we can truly do nothing. But whosoever abides in Him will naturally become fruitful, whether he/she likes it or not (John 15).

  • I say a BIG AMEN to that sir Joel. Jesus is truly the key for cell / church growth; not just system and structure. Apart from Him we can truly do nothing. But whosoever abides in Him will naturally become fruitful, whether he/she likes it or not (John 15).

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