This past Sunday, we wrapped up the sermon series “Our House” by looking at the third component of our mission statement, “Live For Restoration.” I had been looking forward to this talk for a long time and love being part of a church that seeks the welfare of our city (Jeremiah 29:7). At Restoration City, seeking the welfare of our city is something we do in partnership with other local organizations. We’re not trying to build our own outreach ministries. We’re trying to connect people from Restoration City with existing organizations. Put simply: we build partners, not ministries.
That’s a pretty big paradigm shift for many who come to us from a churched background so I wanted to lay out the rationale for why we build partnerships instead of ministries. The argument boils down to five essential benefits.
- Leverage The Expertise Of Our Partners. The decision to partner is rooted in humbly admitting that we don’t always know what’s best and there are others who do. I’m trained to preach, develop leaders and make disciples. I don’t know the best practices for serving a teenage mom or immigrant family. Partnership is about putting the needs of our community ahead of our need for control.
- Focus On Our Mission. This is closely related to #1. If we spent all of our time trying to replicate what others are already doing well, we wouldn’t have enough time to focus on the things God has called us to do. Partnership is about creating margin for a healthy discipleship culture.
- Keep A Leaner Staff. Churches can tie up a lot of money paying people to reinvent wheels. I would rather free up resources to invest in our mission and in our partner organizations. Partnership is about good stewardship.
- Stay Kingdom Focused. Working with others is the most tangible way to remind ourselves that the Kingdom is more important than any one local church. Restoration City isn’t the hope of Washington; Jesus is and He’s building His church in wonderfully diverse and interconnected ways. Partnership is about leveraging our church for the benefit of the Church.
- Double The Impact. By serving through partnerships, we’re able to minister to both the people served by a ministry and our co-laborers. The relationships we build with co-laborers are as significant as the relationships we build in the communities we serve. Partnership is about exponential impact.
Every church needs to follow the leading of God in how they love and serve their communities. For us at Restoration City, that means a deep commitment to building partnerships instead of ministries. You can learn more about our partner organizations on our website: http://restorationcitydc.com/dosomethingdc/.