"The kind of thinking that will solve the world's problems will be of a different order to the kind of thinking that created those problems in the ﬁrst place." -Albert Einstein
In December of 1987 at the Urbana missions conference the big news was the fact that the world's population was about to pass the ﬁve billion mark. That seemed like such an historic moment.
Today we are past the six billion mark and pushing quickly toward seven billion (2013 estimated). This is historically unprecedented growth, but simply reading the numbers does not have the impact that it should. To have a better perspective, realize that all of the world's population from the beginning of time until the last century added together would not equal the number of people living on the planet right now.
The church in the Western world, however, has not advanced but declined since that conference in 1987! The world is multiplying, and the church isn't even adding! Things must change if we are to be an inﬂuence in this lost and dying world.
It has become increasingly evident that there is a void in leadership for the Western church, a void in quantity and in quality. Jesus identiﬁed what is needed to reap a greater harvest in Matthew 9:37. He said, "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few." Current means of leadership development are not sufﬁcient to keep pace with population growth and the great need presented to the church today. More of the same isn't going to make a difference.
It is time to stop and re-evaluate the current system of training leaders in America, even if the conclusions are difﬁcult to embrace. Our institutions have become sacred in the church world and are seemingly untouchable. It's not always easy to step outside and view our current institutions with an objective eye, but I believe we are in desperate days when this evaluation is necessary. It has been said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
-- Neil Cole
from the introduction to TruthQuest
We hope the trainings, resources and the article on Are There Church Planting Movements in North America below encourage & challenge you as you are living it out in your part of God's World.