Our family doesn't have cable TV but we tend to spend a lot of our free time surfing the net. I enjoy reading various of the SBC web logs and news sites. In the midst of all the issues currently under discussion, one topic that seems to come up is the ongoing debate about the IMB's emphasis on CPMs as their principal methodology for fulfilling the Great Commission.
For example, on Marty Duren's blog in an issue related to the IMB and MLC orientation, there are more than 50 responses (comments) from SBC constituency and M around the world, most of them questioning the IMBs emphasis and teaching CPM methodology at the Missionary Learning Center.
It seems there is a lot of misunderstanding about CPM and I am not hearing many voices seeking to clarify the issues.
In summary, the concern seems to be that CPM methodology is about "babies teaching babies that teach other babies" and that house churches aren't real churches. Of course these are issues we face on the mission field as well, so it shouldn't surprise me that S. Baptists are now beginning to question the same things as well back in the States.
Is it time to revisit our reasons for using CPM methodology in our church planting?
For me, CPM methodology is about using the CPM principals and hammering out their applications in each of our local contexts. There is no one universal way of getting the job done. Each missionary team has to prayerfully seek the H.S. guidance as to how to reach their assigned people group.
CPM methodology is a tool chest of proven principles and great ideas that encourage a church planting movement. No one can MAKE a CPM happen. It is like the sails on a ship. If you set them correctly, when the winds of the Spirit begin to blow, you will move in the direction of a CPM.
I realize some of us may be frustrated with the level of results we are seeing, but is CPM to blame, or other factors? It seems CPM gets the bad name when in reality there are numerous other issues that need to be addressed first before throwing in the CPM towel. SHOW me something better that is being blessed by the Lord and bearing an abundant harvest!
If there is a question for discussion in all this, it would probably be to identify what some of those factors are that are hindering a CPM in our context?
Anybody out there is welcome to voice your opinion on the matter. Is there a better way to fulfilling the GC in our generation? What ideas are working for you in your local context that might help the rest of us?