Planting A Church

On December 29, 2013 by Bobby Blakey

Project 2014 This weekend at Compass Bible Church we made a major announcement:

All seven pastors from our church were on stage together as Pastor Mike cast a vision for the new year called PROJECT 2014!  It is a plan for “laying down roots” and “branching out.” Along with purchasing our current church property, Lord willing, we are planting a church in Huntington Beach in September 2014!  My family along with a ministry team will be moving into north Orange County to evangelize the city and establish a new congregation!


Being a pastor at Compass Bible Church for the last seven and a half years has been an answer to prayer.  Christa and I were developing a passion for high school ministry, but were no longer confident about where we were serving.  This brought us to our knees before the Lord.  I remember saying to my wife one night, “Wouldn’t it be awesome to do high school ministry in Orange County where there are so many students?”  God answered us.  I received an email from an old family friend, Rick Talcott, who put me in touch with Pastor Pete Lasutschinkow.  And so it began.

Coming to Compass, Pastor Mike Fabarez and Pastor Pete Lasutschinkow expected me to write up a strategic plan.  These two new leaders in my life were so inspiring to work with. Pastor Mike had already cast a clear vision for the entire church from Matthew 28:19-20.  The doctrine and distinctives he had laid out gave such a clear sense of direction. Pastor Pete and I were immediately on the same page for high school ministry about starting multiple small groups that would be broken down based on which school the student went to and a plan to get on campus through “free food” evangelism.  I wrote five or six pages up including handwritten charts and maps about how the leaders would disciple students and what high schools we would pray for.  At that time the high school ministry was only about 20 students on a weekend and maybe 5 showing up at small groups during the week.  Pastor Pete kept saying we would have a ministry of 200 students and I thought he was crazy.  It is amazing to see how God has done everything in our plan and even above and beyond all that I originally asked or thought.  True North has become a ministry of as many as 300, with 5 small groups and outreach on 15 local campuses.  Mind. Blown.  To God be the glory for the great things he has done!  I began to have confidence in what God can do through the work of the ministry.

Along the way, Pastor Mike asked me to meet a need in the college ministry.  I already cared so much about this ministry because it included so many of our high school graduates. We began working with a new team of leaders, establishing new small groups and a campus outreach ministry at Saddleback Community College.  Two and a half years later it is so clear how God has not only accomplished these goals, but once again exceeded our expectations.  As Christa and I doubled up our ministry responsibilities, our confidence in what the Lord can do doubled up too!

The most exciting thing is how we have seen God save!  We believe we have a God who is mighty to save in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord!  Not only can he save people who have grown up in the church hearing the truth of his word, but he can use the church to get out into the community with the gospel and save those who are outside the church.  We have seen this among our students ministries at Compass Bible Church.  We have baptized so many young people over the years from ministries like our Revival camps, our campus lunches or even street evangelism.  It is not the number alone that gives me confidence, it is the radical nature of how God has changed young lives so they are completely new creations in Christ.

Compass HBI am now confident of this.  If we take what Compass Bible Church is doing in south OC into north OC, we will see God save!  The name of Jesus will be lifted higher! Maybe some will join us who have grown up in the church, but I am so excited to get into the city of Huntington Beach and saturate the area north of here with the preaching of God’s word, the proclamation of a biblical gospel and a new congregation of highly committed participants.  It will be his same saving work in a new location.  It will be a reduplication of the same doctrine and distinctives.  Christa and I have been inspired by the leadership and people at Compass Bible Church, and now the opportunity for us all to see Jesus build a second Compass is something we hope will inspire many to the praise of his glory!

At some point Christa and I have moved from a passion for student ministry to a passion for church ministry in general.  We began working with adult leaders in these ministries.  We began counseling parents.  We started to think “What if instead of working with the children, we were working with the real decision makers in the home?  What if we started ministering to families from the top down rather than the bottom up?” As we were praying, God began to give us a new passion for ministry, to plant another Compass Bible Church.

In all of our excitement, this is bittersweet.  Christa and I love the students and families we have come to know.  We will be sad to leave them.  For the college ministry this will happen right away after our winter retreat.  For the high school ministry we will continue serving through the end of the year.  Although we are sad to see this blessed chapter of our lives come to an end, we are confident God has answered our prayers to plant Compass #2.

Ever since I came to Compass I have heard the ATAPAT attitude preached. Anything. Anyplace. Anytime. I heard Pastor Mike say, “We are here to be pilgrims, not settlers.”  I don’t want to keep doing something because others say it is a success or because I am comfortable doing it.

Our mission is not to maintain the status quo, our mission is to go.

So please pray for me as I write up a new strategic plan which I am looking forward to sharing with all of you. Please pray for my family as we will move.  Please pray for the ministry team God is going to unite together for the purpose of planting this new church. And please pray for all of those who will stay at Compass Bible Church to also step up in their service of our Lord.

Let none of us who claim the name of Jesus stay where we are today.

If we are going to claim his salvation for ourselves, then let us also claim his mission for ourselves.

Let us all be seeking to reduplicate ourselves in someone else.

And if our mission is to make disciples then nothing should be more exciting than a new disciple-making center, the planting of a church.

Thanks for your prayers and support.  Our God will answer us.

6 Responses to “Planting A Church”

  • kyle johnson

    This is huge, Bobby! This definitely needs to be prayed for, I was overwhelmed when I heard all of these new changes.

  • TaylorThompson

    I am so excited and praise God for what he is doing! Praying for you and the hearts of those in Huntington Beach! I can’t wait to see those he has chosen to save and see the name of Jesus Christ lifted higher!

  • Lisa H

    Anxiously awaiting how God will answer all of our prayers!! He is SO good!

  • john k

    I agree, the thought of a new disciple making center is exciting. God is glorified everytime a sinner repents. We only have one life to fulfill the Great Commision and it’s awesome to be a part of a church that is fully committed to making disciples. Praying that God would use the HB plant to change lives and take some names for the Lord!!

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