There's lots of church planting stuff around the blogs at the moment.
I'm all for church planting. There are people out their who need to hear the gospel, so let's start more churches. Great.
But I'm frustrated (you may have already picked that up...) with alot of the current church planting talk.
It all seems so glorified. A big conference in a big city in America with big super-star christians. Getting to hang with the big names. Associate yourself with them. Video them. Quote them. And make plans for how we can save the world like them. It's hard to be at a conference like that and not want and imagine yourself to be the next Mark Driscoll. (But would Mark Driscoll have ever attended such a conference? Actually, all the succesful church planters I know don't go to those kinds of conferences. They have their heads down!)
Christian ministry is not about glory. It rarely looks impressive. I'm sure the trainee church planters are being told (fairly constantly) that it's hard work, but I think the glitz of the big names undoes what is said. Your congregation is not going to sit and adoringly listen to you. Many will be Sunday-only Christians. Often they just won't show up. Sometimes your best people will be jump into big-time sin. Each day your little sins (which may actually turn out to be biggies) will nag at you and at those around you. You are not going to be nailing your message every week. Often you will be dull. Your church may never look big or exciting - it may look like the church in Corinth. Will you feel like a failure if it does?
I remember our principal telling us at college that most of us would not lead Philip Jensen type ministries. Most of us would just faithfully teach the bible week by week in average churches. That's just how it is and such ministry is valuable and good.
There are other reasons why I find the current church planting noise frustrating. But that's probably the main one.
Am I being petty and ungenerous? It's likely. Tell me to pull my head in.
UPDATE: Andrew just read this post and told me to pull my head in. He reminded me of some of the fantastic Australians with significant ministry experience who are over there... He's right, of course. Still interested in what you have to say.