Confessions: “La, la, la … I can’t hear you”

“For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.”
Romans 12:3

When we moved back to Las Vegas, the plan was to plant a church in 2-3 years. I’m not even sure if the pastor I was under thought this was a reality for me, or if he thought I had potential, and would be a good guy to have around irregardless.  There were, however, many voices of concern that were made.

A good pastor friend of mine stood out. He said that he didn’t believe a guy should plant a church until he was 35 years old. His main point centered around the missional concept that a church planter will attract people on a ten year age radius. This being the case, 35 is the ideal planting age for a pastor becuase he will attract young professionals and young families, and those two groups will attract others. Not only do I agree with this radius, but it was what I used as a reason for a 26 year old to plant a church in Las Vegas. This would allow us to hit a radius that we are barely hitting, a young/hip church that could reach an unreached group in Vegas: the young/hip 18-35 year old demographic.

While I do not think I should have been questioning whether the concept was right, I do think it would have behooved me to ask whether I had the capacity and character to swim against the grain and be the man that reaches that demographic. Or to say it differently, instead of questioning the validity of the concepty, I should have questioned whether it applied to me or not. The reason I couldn’t do that:

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

(note: the picture is the answer. other note: the bear is holding its hands over its ears.)

I would even clarify that our hearts are broken for Las Vegas. Especially for the young adults. It kills me that most churches are geared towards young families almost exclusively. Not that these are bad, or that we even have enough churches geared that way (especially with only 5-8% of our city going to an evangelical church on Sundays). It just that there are hardly any venues for young adults in Las Vegas to hear about Jesus in a context that is relevant to them. This was my heart for wanting to be the 26 year-old pastor who planted a church to reach that demographic.

But the question arises when a young guy is unwilling to ask himself the hard questions about his ability or preparedness to accomplish the task: who’s vision is he carrying out; his, or God’s?

May we all, always be willing to ask this. That God may get his glory, and we might be empowered by the Holy Spirit to do the impossible: build His Kingdom.



Now playing: Derek Webb – I Hate Everything (But You)
via FoxyTunes


4 Responses

  1. good stuff, i just got your email. I”ll be praying your sabbath goes well. When you get back into town maybe we could meet up on that tuesday….

  2. Matt,

    I know we have never met and have never even talked, but I have heard a lot about you through Ryan during breaks in classes at Denver Seminary. I have been a closet blog pirate (reading your blog musings w/o leaving a trace) for sometime mostly out of interest for the insightful and amusing posts on beer, theology and sport. However your last few posts have been encouraging both in your honesty and raw vulnerability. Thanks for sharing your pain and your growing process, I look forward to meeting you when you are in Denver this coming weekend. Grace and peace.

  3. Brad,

    I am not sure what a “closet blog pirate” is. I just hope it is heterosexual in meaning. Just kidding, that was too easy to pass up.

    I look forwards to seeing you this week as well. Should be at the Seminary by Thursday afternoon.


  4. Hey,

    I stumbled across your profile while doing research for part of Invisible Children’s tour that will go through Las Vegas. We are trying to find some new venues in your area…and didn’t know if you could help us out with that. Let me know if you can. Thanks a lot bud…

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