Is it necessary for church planters to actually live in the communities they’re hoping to impact or can something viable happen through itinerate evangelism strategies?
I would say for the most part, I’d say you have to live in it. You have to. I don’t know how you would. I’m not saying you can’t. I’ll be politically correct and say, “Yeah maybe it could happen from a distance,” but that’s like trying to say, “I’m going to make my marriage work from a distance. He’s going to live over there and I’m going to live over here and we’re going to somehow make this marriage work when we get together every couple of weeks or something.” There’s no way. There’s no way you’re communication is going to be there. It’s not going to be a healthy relationship. I think too, it’s the same with living here. You have to be in the thick of it. I don’t see a way around that and I think any more, we’re looking for easy ways and this is hard. It’s really hard. There’s people walking by my window all the time. There’s people … It’s 24/7. I don’t see it as being any other way to really get in with the people and to earn that right to speak. To enter into their world and understand what makes them tick and what really is on their hearts. If you don’t know that stuff, you’re going to have a really hard time creating Bible lessons and really hitting at the themes of their culture. Yeah, that means that you’ve got to be in with them. I don’t know how you would really learn language if you weren’t. People are like, “Well you could get somebody out and they could teach you.” Let me just tell you that everybody speaks a little bit differently and you’re going to learn such … I think if you learn from one person, you’ll sound like that person. You want to have a little bit of everything in there. Yeah, I don’t really see it as being necessarily … Sometimes because of political issues or maybe some things that are going on like wars or something that happens and people have to pull out and you can do it from a distance, but it’s not the ideal. It definitely probably shouldn’t be what we’re shooting for. If you really want to get frontline, then you have to go to the frontline. You’re not going to fight that battle back several hundred kilometres inland. You got to get right up there and be effective with that.