W. Austin Gardner
Training Leaders of Leaders 2
Now consider something far more within the realm of reason. What if a missionary could start a church doing all of the above-mentioned and leave it with a national pastor every four years just before going on furlough. That would mean that he could start eight churches in the same time period. In a short period of investigation, you will find that few men have been able to carry forth this ministry either consistently.
Finally, consider the missionary who approaches the ministry with the mentality of training leaders, as mentioned in the article above. He, too, will begin to plant a church, but instead of getting bogged down in the day-to-day operation of pastoring a church, he will search out and prayerfully train leaders. What he can accomplish will be unlimited because the problematic part of planting churches is not getting people together etc. but leaving a trained leader that can carry the ministry forward. It only makes sense to train leaders. II Timothy 2:2.
Before leaving this subject, consider the greatest missionary who ever lived. Most consider Paul the greatest missionary, and without a doubt, he was the second greatest, but Jesus Christ has to be rated as the greatest. He spent 3.5 years preaching, healing, teaching, ministering, and doing the work, and yet when he left his ministry, there were only 120 members in His church, and that was the first time they had to count the women to get a good attendance. He failed in the big church planting ministry if numbers are your goal, but he certainly won out when you consider that he gave his time to the training of 11 men who would shake the entire world in their lifetime. What was his goal--to rapidly plant churches or to train men who could train others to plant churches.
You decide 32 churches, eight churches, one church, or train 11 men or as many as you can to reach the greatest unlimited number of churches and souls possible.
To reach the world with the gospel and change the current problem we face in the mission field, we must change our opinions. So many Christian leaders feel without saying that "no one else can do it as well as I can!" Or maybe they will think that it takes longer to train someone than it does to just do it yourself. Our pride leads us to believe that they will never be able to do it as well as we can.
Another perhaps more alarming opinion that must change is that there are no good nationals or I can't find any! That will come across as a tough statement but is often heard in some form or the other. Even in America, the pastor will be heard to say that the young people of today just aren't like they used to be. It is so difficult to find any young people that love God or desire to serve Him today.
Opinions must change. God still has thousands who have not bowed the knee to Baal. You are not the only one, the last one, or even one of a few. God has hundreds and thousands of people who desire to do His work. What they need is someone to desire to train them to be a leader of leaders. This process is very costly. It will mean you are investing your life in the life of another. We call it life-on-life discipleship.