This article from Bob Hyatt articulates some thoughts I’ve wondered about with regard to church planting. There are "street smarts" to church planting that are often looked at as inerrant and infallible, but what with culture shifting so much, I wonder if those assumptions need to be dismantled and looked at again. For example, we need to examine our notions of what constitutes "failure" and "success" in church planting; we need to scrutinize our assumption that church planting takes tons of money; we need to re-think what is necessary to call something "church", etc.
I think much of what we call church planting is really insititution starting and niche-marketing. I’d like to see a philosophy that puts the "plant" back in church planting: putting a seed in the ground, patiently caring for it, removing hindrances and providing a healthy atmosphere, watching in wonder as something emerges from the dirt, pruning and continuing to patiently allow for natural growth and fruit to develop (no hormone-injected super-tomatoes, please). You get the picture: church planting as gardening, where patience is more important than charisma, where long-term health is more important than short-term results.