First, I should state that I believe every church body should be independent and should have their own global vision for the work of Christ. When we read the words in Acts 1:8,
"But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth,"
even thought that was given to a physical group of believers that existed during that time, I believe we should take that same command personally. The command was given by Christ to "Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel to every creature."
Working with other churches is wonderful, and I'm not against that in any way. I am happy to join up with other churches for special events or to help them knock doors, etc. In fact, when our church goes to different towns to preach the Gospel, we try to find a like-minded church that is closer to them that we can recommend. We use their Gospel tracts or invites if possible. I believe all God's children are in this together. However, I believe our goal should be to go into all the world, just like the first church did.
It actually took the first church, however, a little while to start going into all the world. We don't see it until Acts chapter 8. After Stephen in martyred and the church in Jerusalem begins to be under heavy persecution, they begin going into other regions. Specifically in this chapter, they go to Samaria (remember, "...both in Jerusalem, all in all Judea, and in SAMARIA...").
Well, looking at a map, you can see that Iola is surrounded by a lot of small towns. We are committed to knocking doors in both Iola and in all our "Judea" which I have seen as a radius around us of about 30 miles. My vision for years has been to focus on areas where members of our church live and working on evangelizing those areas, also inviting them to come to our services and providing rides if necessary.
Ultimately, we have to use the resources God gives us. Having a small congregation, and not a lot of people able to evangelize their areas with us and provide rides, etc. for those who want to follow Christ with us; we continue to work those areas slowly and wait for Christ to build His church as He sees fit.
Then, after spending a year praying for laborers that would help us accomplish more in spreading the Gospel in our Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, etc., a door opened with some like- minded friends in the KC area (more like 90 miles away). Though there are tons of good churches in the area with which they could have continued, they shared in the vision of our church and in many of our methods and practices of which they wanted to be a part. We began working together and ultimately came up with a plan for them to join our church and stay planted where they were.
If you consider what happened in Acts 8, what we are doing isn't much different. Phillip and others went and planted themselves in Samaria, while the apostles stayed in Jerusalem continuing the work. As the believers send from Jerusalem reached souls in Samaria, which was about about 45 mile from Jerusalem (considering modes of transportation, that was considerably further away than the 90 miles we travel to KC), they would get word back to Jerusalem (considering their modes of communication, that was not an easy task like it is for us today with phones and cellphones and computers and internet...), and then some of the apostles would go to Samaria and work with the converts, equipping them to be part of the work.
Below is the story from Acts 8. I would love to see every church have a "project Samaria."
Acts 8:4-8, 14-17
4 ¶ Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.
5 Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and preached Christ unto them.
6 And the people with one accord gave heed unto those things which Philip spake, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did.
7 For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed [with them]: and many taken with palsies, and that were lame, were healed.
8 And there was great joy in that city.
14 ¶ Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John:
15 Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost:
16 (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.)
17 Then laid they [their] hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.