How Ernie Peacock Got Started as a Church Planter

How Ernie Peacock Got Started as a Church Planter

Name + Contact Info

Where and what people do you primarily serve?
We are missionaries, but our calling is church planting. We've planted 12 national (Mexican) churches, and have helped train and mentor dozens of church planters is Spain. In January 2018, we're returning to Guadalajara, Mexico, to plant the International Church of Guadalajara.

When did you begin to realize that you had a heart for missions or ministry?
Just a couple of months after my salvation experience, on a missions trip to southern Mexico

How and when did God lead you to this? How did you recognize His call?
The Lord deeply impressed upon my heart two months after my salvation experience, and during a missions trip to southern Mexico, that He had a ministry call upon my life. The ministry and missions call was almost simultaneous.

Did you have a clear and measurable goal for ministry?
Yes, to obey!

What would you do differently if you were starting today?
I would work smarter, not necessarily harder.

How do you connect with new partners or supporters and stay connected with your existing partners?
Multi-media and social media platforms. We itinerate every 5th year and visit supporting and new churches to give updates and cast fresh vision.

What books, tools, or resources that are important to doing what you do?
LDR Church Development Process, by Dr. J. Melvyn & Martha Ming, & Steven Mills; Off-Road Disciplines, Earl Creps; The Gospel of the Kingdom, George Eldon Ladd; Mission of God, John York. Multiplication Network Resources provide several great books of planting healthy churches, Mentoring, Diagnostics for healthy churches and leadership.

How do you get ongoing training and coaching?
Listen to podcasts, sit in on live training sessions (Church Marketing University-Ryan Wakefield), Leaders.Church (Dick Hardy-The Hardy Group), Growing Leaders (Tim Elmore). I have a seat at the table with World International Church Network.

What first steps or training would you recommend that others just starting out?
Theological, Cultural, linguistic, and missiological training

What is a critical mindset or perspective regarding listening, teachability, flexibility, grace, etc?
Be led by the Spirit of God, be submissive, be open to different perspectives,

Knowing what you know now, would you do it all again?
100%.

Ernie Peacock

Ernie Peacock

Missionary, Church Planter

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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We're raising funds to help Global Initiative equip the Church to share God's love with Muslims. Visit our fundraiser page for more information about Global Initiative and how YOU can be involved.

How Mark McGoldrick Got Started as an Evangelizer and Discipler

How Mark McGoldrick Got Started as an Evangelizer and Discipler

Name + Contact Info

Where and what people do you primarily serve?
The people of Atlanta that I either lead to a complete Lordship of their lives over to Christ….or Christians we meet while we are serving churches who let us know they have a heart to reach Atlanta.

How do you serve those people?
First go over the essentials of what it means to have Christ as your Lord, Master, Boss, Ruler of your life. Then make sure that they have a vital relationship with Christ by a plan of both getting into the Word on a daily basis AND coming free of repetitive sin that hinders the work of the Holy Spirit. THEN make sure they have an understanding of the Holy Spirit's work in their lives. Then we begin the process of training them to train others through the use of the 10 Commands of Christ. We first use a simple training tool called the 411 that enables them to know how to share their faith and lead someone into a relationship with Christ. The long term discipleship comes if they see a need to be encouraged and disciples over the long haul knowing it will be hard to stay concerned for the lost and prayed over and encouraged to continue to reach out and disciple and train others to do the same.

When did you begin to realize that you had a heart for missions or ministry?
In the Sophomore year of my High School days….I was challenged to lead a youth outreach to my school. The challenge from this evangelist was that he believed that I had enough influence to fill the church up every night with students who he would then unfold the gospel to them on a nightly basis. Many students came to Christ and he came up to me afterwards and said “Quit fighting it Mark – You are meant to be in vocational Christian work!”

How and when did God lead you to this? How did you recognize His call?
After receiving some training from Campus Crusade for Christ on how to share my faith and be filled with God's Spirit – I came back to my school so fired up to see my friends come into a relationship with Christ. A group of us would go out in the halls before school started and just ask other students if we could share the four spiritual laws with them….and I saw many of my friends come to Christ. I didn't know what to do with them then but as a result of going to UGA and getting involved with Cru (as it is called today) I learned firsthand out to reach out in my dorm, apt complex, fraternity house and everywhere I went I started groups of men that wanted to come to Christ and grow in their faith and then reach out in their sphere of influence as well.

Did you have a clear and measurable goal for ministry?
Fast forward to today and now I help adults to find out how to reach out to THEIR spheres of influence. Whether that is at their work, or gym, or neighborhood…..my wife and I have tools now that can help anyone gather a group of people to start studying God's Word and disciple those that respond.

What would you do differently if you were starting today?
For many years I tried to use programs to reach people rather than relationally just helping people reach out where they live, work, and play. The programs so burnt people out from the constant inviting people to hear the gospel rather than them taking the initiative themselves. They can do that through people they already know or by also “going into the harvest” and going door to door or in parks or anywhere people just hang out. I prefer to do it as a way of life and invite people to sit down and answer some questions and transition into My Story God's Story BUT …..I am about 1% of the Body of Christ who is naturally gifted in doing something like that. So we must teach people to go out to their “oikos” and be willing to gather with people that they don't even know. That will be the only way we eventually give everyone the opportunity till there is “No Place Left” in Atlanta that has not been given the opportunity to come into a relationship with Jesus Christ.

How do you connect with new partners or supporters and stay connected with your existing partners?
We have developed a No Place Left mindset of finding “practitioners” and keeping in touch with those people through Social Media like GroupMe and Facebook. We are connected nationally as well as locally. Then we do a Zoom call (lot like Skype) quarterly and encourage each other with where we are at in sharing, and discipling, and multiplying. We also help each other with training, and going to national and local events where we can sharpen each other with a tool called Iron on Iron…..which is feedback from others so that we can get a “360” of sorts on ways that could help each of us get past a “snag or slump” we see ourselves or the ministry being in.

What books, tools, or resources that are important to doing what you do?
There are what is called “Stories of Hope” that are about 7 Biblical stories of those people that were far from God that came near to God and changed either personally and/or their “oikos”. Using the three thirds process is so helpful in knowing a flow that covers all the bases and gives a new Christian a way to run a meeting where it is not only reproducible but produces a mindset of going and telling others AND applying truth from God's Word to your lives every week. Then there are the Commands of Christ – these tools are all on www.noplaceleft.net and are easy to download and use anywhere anytime. These are the discipleship tools that help a person to fulfill the part of the great commission to “teach them to obey all that I commanded you…..”. These are all a part of a training called “Four Fields” and gives an overall picture of what you can do to lead others to Christ AND then disciple them.

How do you get ongoing training and coaching?
There are trainings going on all over America. If a person wants to find out what is going on in their city they simply can go onto www.noplaceleft.net and see. in almost 150 cities there are people that have adhered to this training and application of truths. Each city now has a training schedule posted – such as Atlanta's www.noplaceleft.net/Atlanta Zoom training is great as well and I currently have a group that wants to reach out to their gym. These guys are from three different cities. So whatever the place….if someone has a need and desire I and others are available to fold them into the training and application – there is a great assurance that we can help them get to the fourth generation of multiplication eventually.

What first steps or training would you recommend that others just starting out?
Write out your names on a sheet of paper that you don't know where they stand spiritually. If it is a geographical area begin prayer walking (for instance – around your neighborhood or if your gym – go ahead and warm up and pretend you are going out to get some fresh air and pray up and down the sidewalk or around the building). Look at Luke 9 and 10 and believe God for bring you to the person or house of peace – because that is what you are looking for. Then as you either have an outreach group to give people a chance to check out the 7 Stories of Hope OR start discipling one to a few people…..begin to see a house church or Life Group get started (whatever you want to call it doesn't matter BUT what God is doing around the world is reproducing churches that multiply to many generations and I truly believe that we are going to see that here in America especially within the Millennials generation!)

What is a critical mindset or perspective regarding listening, teachability, flexibility, grace, etc?
Keep sharing and keep discipling looking for the Fourth Soil person that gathers like crazy and produces 30, 60 and 100 fold. BUT BE AWARE in America…. sad to say…..that person is about 1 in 100 people that you go through ……Untill God brings revival – we are so asleep and satiated with our societies lies of what TRUE LIFE is……we will not be willing to sacrifice. But they are out there……keep going brother or sister! DON'T GIVE UP TILL YOU FIND THEM! 😉

Knowing what you know now, would you do it all again?
Without a shadow of a doubt! I could tell you the story of David G. and Connor P. and others around Atlanta that are baptizing many and discipling many – starting group after group……and yes …..it is all worth it. Especially if you are faithful and not scared to reach the very lost and be willing to wade through their sin, and recovery, and hard knocks of them really believing that you love them no matter what…….because they will test you and you will wonder if it is all worth it! BUT IT DEFINITELY IS!

Mark McGoldrick

Mark McGoldrick

Evangelist, Discipler

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Our Fundraiser!

We're raising funds to help Global Initiative equip the Church to share God's love with Muslims. Visit our fundraiser page for more information about Global Initiative and how YOU can be involved.

How Podcasting has Changed Me

I recently had the opportunity to share some of my story with Alexander Laurin on his podcast – The Podcaster's Life.

Here's a little of what he wrote up about it.

Bryan Entzminger serves people who desperately want to see the Kingdom of God active on earth as it is in heaven. By sharing stories and resources from missionaries, ministry leaders, and church planters he highlights what God is doing on the Earth, encourage the body of Christ at large, and provide valuable resources.

It's great to get to talk with more people about what's going on and my hope is that it was valuable for his audience and helped him connect with people.

I'd love it if you could take a minute to check it out and share it as well.

How Scott Stripling Got Started as a Biblical Archaeologist and Educator

How Scott Stripling Got Started as a Biblical Archaeologist and Educator

Name + Contact Info

Where and what people do you primarily serve?
I serve simultaneously as the Provost and Professor of Biblical Archaeology and Church History at The Bible Seminary in Katy (Houston), Texas and as the Director of Excavations for the Associates for Biblical Research in Israel. My roles primarily reach into the Evangelical faith community.

How do you serve those people?
I empower Christian scholars and students to succeed in ministry by offering a rigorous curriculum which includes first-hand scholarship at the Shiloh, Israel Excavation.

When did you begin to realize that you had a heart for missions or ministry?
At age 16 I embraced a strong desire to communicate the gospel cross-culturally.

How and when did God lead you to this? How did you recognize His call?
God delivered me from several life-controlling addictions. He put a desire in me to help others find the same freedom that I had found.

Did you have a clear and measurable goal for ministry?
In the early years my goals were clear – to win the lost for Christ. Only much later did I develop the discipline of articulating measurable goals.

What would you do differently if you were starting today?
I would have attempted to be more self-aware and less arrogant about my doctrinal beliefs. Along with this, I would have sought mentoring from older believers.

How do you connect with new partners or supporters and stay connected with your existing partners?
I stay connected in three principal ways: 1.) personal website and organizational websites, 2.) Facebook, and 3.) E-mail distribution list. I speak regularly at churches and conferences where I am always meeting new people. Media interviews help too.

What books, tools, or resources that are important to doing what you do?
In the last two years, I have released two new books: Somebody Call 9:11 and The Trowel and the Truth (Second Edition). I highly recommend the NIV Study Bible and How to Read the Bible for All It's Worth by Fee and Stuart.

How do you get ongoing training and coaching?
I read professional journals and attend professional conferences. I welcome people in my “inner-circle” to speak into my life.

What first steps or training would you recommend that others just starting out?
Get connected to a mentor, read your Bible, pray, serve, and study. I like to see people study broadly (literature, philosophy, history) and narrowly in the Bible.

What is a critical mindset or perspective regarding listening, teachability, flexibility, grace, etc?
Leaders can influence 100 times more than they can control. Great leaders know when to influence and when to control.

Knowing what you know now, would you do it all again?
Absolutely! I do have some specific regrets regarding things that I have said and done, but I have no regrets in the path that I chose.

Scott Stripling

Scott Stripling

Biblical Archaeologist, Educator

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Our Fundraiser!

We're raising funds to help Global Initiative equip the Church to share God's love with Muslims. Visit our fundraiser page for more information about Global Initiative and how YOU can be involved.

How Stephen Hamilton Got Started as an Outreach Pastor

Stephen Hamilton is the outreach pastor at Bow Down Church in Florida. He leads various ministries within the community and also hosts groups who are partnering in the local community. Yet, even with all he has going on, he is also pursuing a graduate degree to continue growing.

Name + Contact Info

Where and what people do you primarily serve?
I serve in the inner city of West Palm Beach Fl. as an outreach pastor.

How do you serve those people?
I serve through a wide range of different ministries in the community I live in. We hold recreational outreaches, homeless feedings, bible studies, prayer walks, and other quarterly outreaches.

When did you begin to realize that you had a heart for missions or ministry?
I began desiring to want to enter youth ministry in high school.

How and when did God lead you to this? How did you recognize His call?
After graduation from Liberty University God brought me here through a friend that had already graduated and started ministering in West Palm. He has given me extra favor here and has really opened the way for the ministry here to take root relationally.

Did you have a clear and measurable goal for ministry?
Yes but they have changed throughout the years.

What would you do differently if you were starting today?
I would have definitely become more educated. I also would have emphasized prayer more.

How do you connect with new partners or supporters and stay connected with your existing partners?
I'm not really great at this one. lol I still need work on this one. However, a monthly newsletter goes out or it is suppose to. 🙂

What books, tools, or resources that are important to doing what you do?
I use anything I can get my hands on that comes from an experienced, educated and fruitful life.

How do you get ongoing training and coaching?
The staff I'm apart of prioritizes it and I'm pursuing a graduate degree at the moment as well.

What first steps or training would you recommend that others just starting out?
Make sure you are being discipled by a mature believer that is miles ahead of you in your spiritual walk.

What is a critical mindset or perspective regarding listening, teachability, flexibility, grace, etc?
Stay humble so that you can continue to learn and listen to rebukes and instructions, they are valuable.

Knowing what you know now, would you do it all again?
Yes, without hesitation!

Stephen Hamilton

Stephen Hamilton

Outreach Pastor, Bow Down Church

Let's Do This Together!

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Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Our Fundraiser!

We're raising funds to help Global Initiative equip the Church to share God's love with Muslims. Visit our fundraiser page for more information about Global Initiative and how YOU can be involved.

How Rebecca Jefferson got Started as a Missionary

Rebecca Jefferson grew up in Church and was saved in her “tween” years. Then God called her to be a domestic missionary in the Northeastern United States. Here's how she got started.

Name + Contact Info

Where and what people do you primarily serve?
The people of the Baltimore-Washington area.

How do you serve those people?
Sharing the Gospel through visual sketch-board Gospel presentations in public forums and after school clubs and partnering with churches and like-minded believers to reach their communities for Christ.

When did you begin to realize that you had a heart for missions or ministry?
Probably when I was around 13 or 14 years old.

How and when did God lead you to this? How did you recognize His call?
By twelve years old, I was saved, but struggled with condemnation a lot over my salvation. Because of uncertainty over my salvation and fear, I didn't witness to people. But God convicted me of this and changed my heart. He made me want to do this all the time. I couldn't go anywhere without telling people about Jesus or giving them a Gospel tract. Soon, I realized I could do this for the rest of my life. I was fourteen years old when I told my parents I wanted to be a missionary for the rest of my life.

Did you have a clear and measurable goal for ministry?
Some of my goals I've laid out at https://midcitymissions.edifyhub.com/five-part-approach/. I am open to wherever God may lead me in the future. I can say that in order to share the Gospel in a larger capacity, I need to raise nearly $4800 a month. I work part-time, but would love to use most or all of the time that I work to share the Gospel. I would love to partner with fellow believers to make that happen.

What would you do differently if you were starting today?
There are several things I would do differently.

  1. Rely solely on the grace of God. Sometimes, when a dream is realized, it's easy to define yourself by the achievement of that goal more than what God has said about you in his Word. So when things went wrong, I defined myself by what the outcome of situations might be rather than Christ's own sacrifice for me on the Cross.
  2. Realize God has chosen you to do this. I didn't think I could do anything, so when the opportunity finally opened up to be a missionary-evangelist, let's just say I was in disbelief. But one mistake I made was that I got stuck there. I stayed in disbelief and doubt, and it really hindered me in the first year or so of being a part-time evangelist. I was constantly afraid of making a mistake instead of seeing what a gift God had given me in this opportunity and embracing it. I was also unsure of God's direction despite what he had clearly shown to me.
  3. Own it. This is similar to #2. Before doors began to open for me, I aspired to be an evangelist. After doors opened for me, I felt like an evange-failure. My fears held me back from truly taking advantage of this opportunity. I was frozen because I was too afraid of what others thought about me and what Satan said about me. If I had another chance to do things differently, I would have contacted churches asking them point-blank if I could speak for their groups or in front of their congregation. But I thought I might sound too forceful about it, and I was hesitant to speak in front of a church.
  4. Check yourself out, spiritually and mentally. The Bible says to examine yourself to see if you are in the faith and if God's Spirit is in you. Just because God may open a door for you to do a certain task doesn't mean you have it all together. In fact, in ministry, you will be in need of Christ even more than before. Satan will be sure to attack you. I think I underestimated the amount of spiritual assault that would come upon me and my family within the first year of joining Open Air Campaigners. The hardest times in my life thus far that I can remember have happened after I chose to be an evangelist with the organization. I don't regret my decision, but I wish I had taken more time to fortify myself with God's Word so I could have fought the Enemy back more effectively.

    I also wish I would have checked myself for my now-diagnosed Attention Deficit/Hyperactive Disorder. I believe I had it since I was young. It has affected every single area of my life. Because I have a hard time following people in conversation and miss signals to properly understand context, I sometimes misinterpret what people are saying, which has caused confusion, frustration, and anger on my part. This problem showed itself soon after I joined OAC. By the grace of God, my condition is managed through medication, counseling, and prayer. I would encourage anyone, especially anyone considering joining the mission field, to seriously consider their mental health. You owe it to yourself, your family, and your colleagues whom you will affect through your emotions and actions.

How do you connect with new partners or supporters and stay connected with your existing partners?
I have a few ways of doing this. The Internet has made it so easy to stay connected with people interested in my work. I tend to email churches to ask if they would be interested in my newsletter. I also reach out to Bible studies and kid-friendly groups if they would be interested in a sketch-board Gospel presentation. One thing I love to do is to go witnessing with people whom I have met via social media or otherwise. This is a great way to build relationships and form evangelistic partnerships to reach the lost. Being part of a missions board like Open Air Campaigners has also been key to partner with churches to reach their communities. There are churches and people whom I may have never associated with had it not been for my branch director Tom Fox paving the way for those relationships.

What books, tools, or resources that are important to doing what you do?
The Bible, but I guess that's cheating 🙂 For books, The Way of the Master is a great model to follow in evangelism. I get many of my tools from Open Air Campaigners' online store (i.e., paints). The mission board itself supports me by helping to process donations I receive. Staff conferences truly reveal the heart of the organization, as well as what is being newly utilized by the ministry. See the below answer for more on this question.

How do you get ongoing training and coaching?
My branch director shows me sketch-board-related techniques and dos and don'ts of outreach and engagement and takes time with me to show me communication skills. He encourages me to reach out to others to gain support for my work and to become an evangelist who represents the Lord and the organization well.

What first steps or training would you recommend that others just starting out?

  1. Know your Bible well. It is a double-edged sword, and is to be used for teaching and instruction in righteousness. This is your #1 tool for evangelism.
  2. Preach the Gospel to yourself daily. This is something my pastor-father always says. You must know and have confidence in the Gospel in order to proclaim it and teach it to others.
  3. Expose yourself to sound Bible teaching. Don't listen to teaching that tickles your ears, but sermons that convicts you and inspires you to reach higher for Christ in your spiritual walk with Him.
  4. Surround yourself with compassionate believers who will tell you the truth. There is wisdom in an abundance of counselors, Proverbs says. It is easy to walk in pride, self-righteousness, and disobedience, and yet not know it. Having accountability is crucial.
  5. Don't forget the unsaved nearest you. The people in your life are your mission field. Reach out to them in word and deed. May your every action echo of Christ.
  6. Pray for the unsaved. You can't save the lost, but you can pray for them. This is how God operates in his universe. He responds to prayer.
  7. Get some great gospel tracts. There are good, as well as bad, gospel tracts out there. Websites like onemilliontracts.com and tractplanet.com have very sound gospel tracts for a reasonable price. There are some places where you can order tracts for free; the publishers may just ask you for an optional donation.
  8. Keep your options open. There are people all around the world who have never heard of Jesus, but ultimately, let God lead you. He knows how to use you and direct you to where you need to be.
  9. Immerse yourself in the lives of missionaries. Read missionary biographies, learn about current missionaries, support missionaries, pray for them, volunteer with them, send them letters. If they are coming back to the States on furlough, reach out to help them. One great place to volunteer to help missionaries is Siloam Missionary Homes in North Carolina; they help missionaries coming back from overseas. Also, there are organizations like OAC who love volunteers because it helps us to further the Gospel. Check for OAC branches in your area who you can help volunteer with. I wrote an article on how important it is to help missionaries in https://www.mnnonline.org/2015/03/10/the-mission-in-missionaries/
  10. Take evangelism courses and seminars. Open Air Campaigners offers a weeklong Sketchboard Evangelism Training every year which is half evangelism seminar, half missions trip. This will be an unbelievable opportunity to stretch your faith to reach the lost around you. Living Waters offers a course you can take online called the School of Biblical Evangelism. This course contains 101 online lessons about how to reach the lost using the Law and the Gospel.

What is a critical mindset or perspective regarding listening, teachability, flexibility, grace, etc?
This has everything to do with humility. If you are not willing to listen or be corrected, there is no sense in going into missions. Something I had to learn and continue to learn is that not every criticism is meant to tear me down. The same God who wounds also heals. Brothers and sisters in Christ are not perfect, but for the majority of the time, criticism is given in and through love. A key to extending love to others is realizing the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge. If you fail to realize the love that Christ has for you personally, this makes it much harder to love and forgive others. I would encourage you, before going on the mission field and as you are going, be secure in the love that God has for you.

Knowing what you know now, would you do it all again?
I would do it again, but I would do things with hopefully more courage and more security in my identity in Christ.

Rebecca Jefferson

Rebecca Jefferson

Missionary, Open Air Campaigners

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Our Fundraiser!

We're raising funds to help Global Initiative equip the Church to share God's love with Muslims. Visit our fundraiser page for more information about Global Initiative and how YOU can be involved.

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