Missional Man Podcast
Tools for the modern Christian man.

Ep#008: Mark Tanner, Identity & Church Planting

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Summary & Intro

mark tanner pic

Mark Tanner – Christ-follower, husband of 9 years, dad of 2 kids (boy, girl), worship leader/guitar player at Fletcher Memorial Baptist Church in Statesboro, Georgia, previous church planter, audio sound tech extraordinaire for Georgia Southern University IT Services, lover of football, Spotify, Xbox, Apple products, goofball and all around silly guy!

Recap & Synopsis

How does church planting affect and shape your identity? In this interview, I interview my good buddy Mark Tanner on his experience with two church plants and the beautiful mess it involves. I’ve been leading worship with Mark for almost a year now, serving the church with him, in a small group each week and have enjoyed growing in grace with him and his sweet family. Prepare yourself for a real, honest chat about the good, bad and ugly of church planting. How it affects your identity, ministry, security, marriage, parenting and the mission.

*The following are my favorite top quotes from Mark and I. Use them freely and widely, but please offer credit where credit is due. Thanks.

Galatians 2:20 “I’ve been crucified with Christ, it’s no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me. The life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me.” That’s my identity, it’s Christ. That’s the biggest thing God taught me in Savannah, Georgia (church plant).

My identity has jack squat to do with my calling, my job, my wife and kids.

You get your identity in being a church planter and then you’re no longer a church planter and your identity now is hosed.

You have to be careful in thinking you’re the big deal in planting a church and remember you’re just an instrument. 1) You must be submissive to God and 2) there’s more to this church plant then growing it.

If someone would have laid out the story of how church planting would go, we would’ve said “no way”.

This (church planting) is an expression of the mission God has called us to. It’s a beautiful calling that a man would step up and say I’m taking my family and going to walk into the unknown with risks, fear, pain and suffering and massive amounts of promises, presence, grace and joy. (Jonathan)

You realize it’s not about you and it’s okay for you to fail. When we begin to think it is about us or so dependent on us that we can’t fail or make a mistake, how little is that for us to think about God like that?

We never realized there was enough grace to give us permission to fail. There’s enough room to fall down in Jesus and get back up again. (Jonathan)

I was so missional that I forgot about my wife.


Action Round (1 Take-away & 1 Action-Item)

1 TA (One take-away for YOU to think about)

Galatians 2:20 “I’ve been crucified with Christ, it’s no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me. The life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me.” You want to talk about identity, it’s wrapped up in that one person.

1 AI (One action-item for YOU to go do.)

It’s an everyday, every morning, every hour reminding yourself of why you exist.

Being in the Word and constantly putting the image of Christ in front of your face.


Mark on Twitter: @themarktanner


Favorite Resource on this Topic

Crazy Love, Francis Chan

Audio book


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