November 2017

Lottie Moon support makes eternal difference

November 28 2017 by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer

For more than a century, the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering has served as a vehicle through which Southern Baptists have supported international missions.
I’m proud that North Carolina Baptists have historically ranked at or near the top in support of this special offering year after year. At our annual meeting last month in Greensboro, we reported and celebrated the fact that North Carolina led all state conventions in support of the Lottie Moon offering last year, contributing more than $13.6 million to international missions through this special offering. To God be the glory!
I am both grateful and thankful for your continued generosity. Your financial gifts help support more than 4,000 Southern Baptist missionaries who are serving around the world by sharing the gospel, making disciples and planting churches among unreached people groups in hard-to-reach places.
Your prayers and financial support are making an eternal difference. In 2015, which is the most recent year of data reported on by the International Mission Board (IMB), more than 1.9 million people outside of North America heard the gospel, and more than 175,000 of them trusted Christ as Savior. Additionally, more than 15,000 individuals were trained as pastors, and more than 6,100 new churches were started.
Despite these positive numbers, we still have much work to do in order to get the gospel to every tribe, tongue, people and nation. As we celebrate the birth of Jesus at Christmas, remember that there are millions of people around the world who have not even heard His name.
That’s why I urge you once again to pray and support this year’s Lottie Moon Christmas Offering.
The national goal for this year’s offering is $160 million, and 100 percent of everything that’s given goes directly to support the missionaries who are sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ all around the world. I hope North Carolina Baptists will rise to the occasion once again this year and be among the top contributors to Lottie Moon.
The International Mission Board has a number of resources and videos available for your church to use in promoting the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering. You may find these resources and learn more online by visiting The website also includes several missionary spotlights and daily prayer points for the week of prayer for the offering, which runs from Sunday to Sunday (Dec. 3-10).  
You can also pray for the missionaries that you and your church support through the Cooperative Program and other means by using the 52 Sundays resource, available for free at
The 52 Sundays resource includes PowerPoint slides, bulletin inserts and more that spotlight a different missionary each week of year. I encourage you to download and use this resource in your church, Sunday School class or small group to pray for a different missionary every week of 2018.
Once again, thank you North Carolina Baptists for your continual prayers, generosity and support of missions and ministries through the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering, the Cooperative Program, the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering and more. You are making an eternal difference that will only be measured when we get to heaven.
And how shall they preach unless they are sent?” – Romans 10:15a.

11/28/2017 8:22:39 AM by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer | with 0 comments

Holidays provide opportunities for gospel conversations

November 13 2017 by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer

Thanksgiving is upon us, and Christmas is right around the corner. The holiday season provides excellent opportunities for Christ-followers to pause and reflect upon God’s goodness, kindness, mercy and grace that He lavishes upon us. The holidays give us occasions to spend time with family and friends we do not see often. During these times, we are reminded just how much these individuals have enriched our lives.
As you gather with your family and friends around the Thanksgiving table or by the Christmas tree, there is a strong chance there will be someone at your gathering who does not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Let me encourage you to be intentional about looking for opportunities you may have during this time to have gospel conversations with particular family and friends who may not know Christ as Savior. You can begin by telling them what Christ has done for you, and then ask if they would like to know with certainty that He has forgiven their sin and given them the gift of eternal life.
The North American Mission Board is promoting a new emphasis among Southern Baptists called the “GC Challenge.” “GC” is short for “Gospel Conversations,” and the challenge is for churches and their members from all across the country to pledge to have a total of 1 million gospel conversations by June 2018. You can learn more about the initiative by visiting the GC Challenge website at
Utilizing this website, your church can make a pledge toward the goal of 1 million gospel conversations. The site also includes several free resources related to prayer and evangelism. You can watch brief testimonial videos from pastors, church members and denominational leaders who shared their most recent opportunity to engage someone in a gospel conversation. You can even upload your own 60-second video of your most recent gospel conversation to the “GC:60” section of the site as a way to encourage others.
When you have a gospel conversation with someone, you may discover that the individual you are speaking with already knows Christ, while there are many others who have not yet accepted Him as their Savior. I find that when I have gospel conversations, some individuals are ready to place their trust in Christ at that moment, while many others are not.
While we are responsible for sharing the message and calling for a decision, remember that God is responsible for the outcome. When we share the gospel with an individual in the power of the Holy Spirit – even if they refuse to trust in Christ at that time – we have had a successful witnessing encounter because we have obeyed Christ. It may be that another Christ-follower will get to lead that same individual to accept Christ later because of the seed you sowed. I encourage North Carolina Baptists to participate in the GC Challenge. I hope many churches in our state will use the designated website to make a pledge toward the GC Challenge goal. Sharing the gospel is the first step in the disciple-making process, and the holidays represent a wonderful opportunity to turn everyday conversations into gospel conversations with individuals we want to spend eternity with in heaven.
I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase” – 1 Corinthians 3:6.

11/13/2017 6:09:31 PM by Milton A. Hollifield Jr., BSC executive director-treasurer | with 0 comments