The Church is God’s Plan A (and there’s not a plan B)

A look into the Colson Fellows program and how it helps churches in this cultural moment.  


John Stonestreet

Each year, the Colson Fellows program equips Christians from various places, callings, and ages, to think and live with the clarity, confidence, and courage of a Christian worldview. The goal of the program, as Chuck Colson imagined it, was to see Christians embrace the full implications of the Gospel, beyond personal salvation to becoming agents of reconciliation. 

Colson Fellows participate in the program via online and regional cohorts, studying together with a group of likeminded believers connected by geography. However, many Fellows participate with other members of their churches through the Church Affiliate option. Currently, there are at least 88 churches around the country that offer the Colson Fellows program. (I say, “at least,” because new churches are signing up all the time.) This past year, over 600 people were mentored through the Colson Fellows program by leaders in their local churches. 

One of these churches is Walnut Street Baptist Church in Jonesboro, Arkansas. Back in 2023, Pastor Grey Falanga found himself searching for a way to articulate the hope of the Gospel in light of specific issues his congregation was grappling with, from racial tensions to the post-pandemic challenges, Critical Theory, sexual brokenness, and more.   

As a young pastor, I had all these people looking at me, asking, “How do I deal with this?” I found myself searching for something to offer answers because I knew this thinking wasn’t biblical. Rome isn’t burning. Everything isn’t a catastrophe. 

First, Pastor Falanga found Breakpoint. The daily commentaries became a source of clarity and offered a helpful lens through which to view the upheaval around him. Later that same year, Walnut Street leaders wrestled with how best to equip their congregations to live faithfully in an election year. So, Pastor Falanga and four others on staff joined the Colson Fellows program and, Lord willing, will launch the inaugural Colson Fellows Church Affiliate at Walnut Street Baptist Church this fall. Their objective aligns perfectly with the Colson Center: 

How do we pass hope to our people to not buy into what the culture and the media say and to live out the biblical hope that Christ has determined our cultural moment? God has determined for us to live in this day and this time, which means that He gives us a purpose for this time. There’s a lot of hope that comes with that truth. 

Already, Pastor Falanga is equipping his congregation in Christian worldview, helping them understand that there is a worldview behind everything “they listen to, who they watch on TV, who they listen to on the radio, what they read.” The Fellows program is shaping his preaching and, as a result, he is constantly challenging his congregation to think deeper and maintain hope.   

The Colson Center offers up to four free seats in the Colson Fellows program for pastors and leaders who hope to start a Church Affiliate. This is our investment into local churches, which are, as a former colleague liked to say, “God’s plan A, and there’s not a plan B.” Learn more about how your church can become an affiliate with the Colson Fellows program at  

As Pastor Falanga of Walnut Street Baptist Church said, 

This is not the time for us to freak out and lose our minds. This is time for us to dig in, stand on the foundation that Christ is risen indeed, that He is Lord of all reigning supreme, and that He’s determined for us to live in these days. 

For more resources to live like a Christian in this cultural moment, go to 


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