Watch the Motivation for Cell Church Ministry

joelby Joel Comiskey

I often like to go through books with the pastors I coach. With Big Bear Christian Center (BBCC), we go through one cell church book every three weeks. We review one of the books when we meet at my house every sixth week and the other one via SKYPE in the middle of the six week period. Last week we were reviewing the Apostolic Cell Church by Laurence Khong. I highly recommend this book because it’s chalked full of cell ministry insight. My only criticism of the book is that it should have been three books–one on cell church, one on spiritual gifts, and another on leadership.

Jeff Tunnell, the lead pastor at BBCC is wisely mentoring a younger leader (Rob Hasting) to take his place as lead pastor. As we talked on SKPE, I reminded Rob to watch his motivation. I warned him about the disease called “Yonggi Cho envy,” that fatal attraction to numerical success for the wrong motivation [please check out Mario Vega’s excellent blog on this topic]. We wrestled with the context of Laurence Khong’s church in Singapore which has 10,000 people as opposed to the 150 people at Big Christian Center.

I warned Rob that sometimes people leave cell churches to attend churches that only emphasize Sunday morning attendance because there are far less requirements. I reminded Rob that the chief motivation for doing cell church is theological. We do cell church because we believe we can make better disciples who make other disciples. We practice cell church because we want to live out the priesthood of all believers and fulfill the one-anothers of Scripture. Because Rob is fairly new to cell church ministry, I wanted him to make sure he understood the values and biblical principles for doing cell church ministry.

Often pastors who begin cell church practice without believing in cell church values fade away over time when confronted with obstacles. Cell church ministry has deep theological foundations that need to guide our practices.



p.s.: My next book will cover those key theological foundations for cell ministry.

6 thoughts on “Watch the Motivation for Cell Church Ministry

  • one very important theological principle that I didn’t add here is EVANGELISM. Our God is a missionary God who came to seek and save those who are lost and cell churches do this in both cell and celebration. . .

  • Joel,

    This hit me where it needed to right now. We struggle so much with motivating factors in every part of leadership. Are we doing leadership because we want the “look at me” factor, or because we want to win souls for Christ.

    Doing cell church is vitally important in discipling, but there are times in the “church” I am involved where I wonder if we really understand that. I just began reading your 8 habits, and I have finally started realizing that no dream means no growth. Thanks!

  • Actually, I have been reading so many books in the past 90 days that I forgot the 8 habits of effective…was not written by Joel!

  • funny! I wish I would have written that book! it’s a great book. one group I was coaching felt that book was the best they’ve read on practical cell principles. Keep reading!

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