Creating a disciple-making culture
    April 8 2013 by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer

    Mission and vision clarification are essential in organizations of every size. Unless North Carolina Baptists understand and embrace the mission and vision of this Convention there is little motivation for them to support the future direction of this Convention’s ministry and missionary endeavors.

    Our purpose, as stated in the Convention’s bylaws, is, “to assist the churches in their divinely appointed mission.” While there is great breadth in how we may assist the churches, the focus of the Convention’s efforts must be upon churches. This Convention does not exist to be served by the churches, but rather the Convention exists to serve the churches. It has been my goal as I have served as your executive director-treasurer to focus the efforts of the Convention upon the churches comprising this Convention. I greatly value the institutions and agencies of this convention; however, these organizations are to function as an extension of our churches. Throughout our history, member churches have pooled their resources and funded missions through the Cooperative Program and special offerings in part to support these organizations because individual churches could not do alone what has been accomplished through our institutions and agencies.

    The vision of the Convention, as endorsed by our board of directors, is a vision that I believe God placed upon my heart for this time period in our history. Simply stated, the vision is, “By God’s grace we will become the strongest force in the history of this Convention for reaching people with the message of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.” The operative term in the vision is “reaching people.” There is a great need for the Convention to refine its focus in its service to its churches; therefore, the focus is upon assisting churches in reaching people. This is, without apology, evangelism, discipleship and mobilization for missions. Your convention staff is now using a term that I hope you are becoming familiar with to describe this three-fold emphasis in assisting churches: disciple-making. Please do not confuse disciple-making with discipleship. Disciple-making is the overarching effort while discipleship is one part of the larger effort. Disciple-making involves leading individuals to Christ, helping new converts grow in their faith, and engaging converts in missionary activities where they, too, begin sharing their faith. 

    Disciple-making is not a program that the church can begin and complete in a specific number of weeks. Disciple-making is a process that is ongoing, ever growing, and continually changing in an effort to reach and disciple individuals through an Acts 1:8 methodology. More simply stated, our goal is to assist churches in making disciples that make disciples. If the churches of this Convention become filled with disciples, who in turn are making disciples, we will see a new culture established in the churches of this Convention; what we refer to as a disciple-making culture.

    Most importantly, if the churches of this Convention develop a disciple-making culture, we will indeed become, “the strongest force in the history of this Convention for reaching people with the message of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
    4/8/2013 3:03:14 PM by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer | with 0 comments
    Filed under: disciple-making, mission, vision

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