Archives For Plumblines

Recent Posts


This guest post is brought to you by Jason Gaston, our Family Ministries Pastor. Hardly anyone embodies the passion of “seeking the 1” more than Jason. Be sure to listen to the rest of Jason’s message here.

For most of us, we don’t realize the value of something until we lose it. I take my TV remote control for granted…until it goes missing. Then suddenly we have an issue. (How did people change the channel before remotes? What kind of magic was that?) Or think about wedding bands. Most of the time, you don’t even realize you’re wearing it. But I remember going to Defy Gravity—a “trampoline park”—with some buddies, and one of them realized he had lost his ring in the foam pit. Most disgusting hour of searching we had ever done. Trust me: you don’t want to know what’s at the bottom of those foam pits.

Lost. In Jesus’ parable of the lost sheep, “lost” is the only thing that separates the 1 from the 99. The shepherd goes after the one, not because he’s the VP of the sheep club or quarterback for the Durham Lamb Chops. He goes after the one sheep because that sheep is lost.

Continue Reading…


Our God is a sending God. He sent his best into the world to save us. Jesus is referred to as “sent” forty-four times in the New Testament. After his resurrection, Jesus passed his identity on to his disciples: “As the Father has sent me, I am sending you” (John 20:21).

To follow Jesus is to be sent.

Jesus’ command to every disciple is to “go” (Matt. 28:19). We may not all go overseas, but we are all to be going. This means that if you are not going, you are not a disciple; and, church leader, if the people in our churches are not “going,” we are not doing our jobs. A church leader can have a large church with thousands of people attending, but if people are not going from it “outside the camp” (Heb 13:13), to pursue the mission and call of Christ, those leaders are delinquent in their duty.

Everyone who has received the gospel of reconciliation is sent to carry that gospel to others. Every believer is sent. You are either mission field or missionary.

Planting, investing, sending, and sacrificing are costly. It hurts. But the trajectory of discipleship is toward giving away, not taking in. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer famously said, “When Christ bids a man to follow, he bids him come and die.” Jesus did not say come and grow, but come and die. And he showed us what that means by his own example.

Why would it surprise us that God wants to use the same process in our ministries? It is not through our success that God saves the world, but through our sacrifice. He calls us first to an altar, not a platform.

Continue Reading…


Plumb Line #4: People Are the Mission

Posted by guest on September 21, 2016

This guest post is brought to you by Danny Franks, our Connections Pastor. Danny oversees guest services at the Summit, and his ministry at our church embodies the plumb line, “People are the mission.”

He heard the music as he crested the hill.

It had been an exhausting day in the field, just like every day since the incident. His workload had doubled and the weight of the family’s farm fell squarely on his shoulders. His father was not much help; he spent most days staring at the horizon, more intent on replaying the past than seeing what was right in front of him.

So at the end of this particular day, the faint strains of instruments were more than curious. They were a bit annoying. “There’s a party while I’m working? Who has time to plan parties? What reason do we have to celebrate?”

The firstborn saw a servant exiting the house. “What’s going on?” he snapped. “Why are all of these people here?”

The servant broke into a wide smile. “You haven’t heard? He’s returned! Your father has invited the village to celebrate!”

The firstborn’s face fell as the bile rose in his throat. He could feel his neck burning and he wasn’t sure if he spoke the words or simply thought them:

“You’ve got to be kidding me. He’s back.”

Continue Reading…