December 2011

We do ‘get it!’

December 21 2011 by Anonymous

In response to the editorial, “Pastors, do we get it?” (BR, Nov. 26) as a pastor in North Carolina, at first I was angered and frustrated by this question. Every pastor I personally know does “get it!” We emphasize missions and encourage participation in missions, and we lead by example toward fulfilling the Great Commission. As far as being “ensnared by routine church life” as a root of the problem addressed in the editorial, that is far from the case. Yes, it is easy to become almost overburdened with caring for the needs of a congregation, especially when there is a tendency for “inward” thinking among the congregation. But, to think that this is why some pastors “don’t get it” is not fair.
 
Some congregants reply to mission pleas with, “Why should I be concerned about people ‘over there’ when there are so many needs here?” It is as if the peoples “over there” are a plague upon the earth. I recall what David Platt mentioned in Radical, and realize that I have faced those kinds of remarks. I know more than one pastor whose job security has been threatened because of his emphasis of “missions.”
 
What is the problem? It comes down to a change of heart through Jesus. Without that, it does not matter how much emphasis a pastor places upon fulfilling the Great Commission, it will not happen. I have led the church I pastor to increase its Cooperative Program giving significantly, but motivating them to increase the giving to specific missions offerings has been like pulling teeth at times. It took several years to motivate church participation in a mission trip to another area of the U.S. Am I discouraged? Yes! Do I stop? Emphatically, NO!
 
We do “get it,” and I pray every day that others will as well!
 
Name withheld

12/21/2011 2:42:01 PM by Anonymous | with 0 comments



Special thanks from Pennsylvania

December 20 2011 by Roger Carlson

A very special “THANK YOU” to approximately 40 churches and associations who came to Pennsylvania this year to help us in the “fields that are white unto harvest and the laborers are so few.” Construction, backyard Bible clubs, sports camps, [Vacation Bible Schools] and prayer walking are just some of the things that these teams did. Many of the teams came through our North Carolina/Pennsylvania Partnership and others came because they have established a rapport with churches during the five years of our partnership.
 
If your church or association feels God calling you to Pennsylvania next summer, please check the Baptist on Mission web site and click “Pennsylvania” for listings from churches that need help. Maybe God is calling you to come and be part of His work here in the “fields that are white unto harvest!”
 
May God bless every one of you for what you do for Him.
 
Roger Carlson NAMB MSC
Construction Coordinator
Baptist Convention Pennsylvania/South Jersey

12/20/2011 1:29:33 PM by Roger Carlson | with 0 comments



Thank you for giving to Lottie Moon

December 5 2011 by Anonymous Couple

When we were fresh faced and new to the mission field, our then 8-month-old son was hospitalized and required surgery. It was our first week of language school. With all the challenges that came our way during those days, financial concerns were not one of them … thanks to the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering (LMCO). Years later, it was the LMCO that made sure our baby daughter got great care when she was born and later diagnosed with epilepsy while in Lima, Peru.
 
From putting food on the table to covering major medical procedures, those who give to the LMCO helped us get on the field and stay on the field.
 
The LMCO has been a blessing to my family, but has also blessed our ministry to the indigenous peoples of the Americas. We have studied language in Costa Rica, ministered to indigenous people in Peru and now in Southern Mexico. It is because of gifts given to the LMCO that we have been able to come, live and serve in Latin America. 
 
LMCO gifts were at work when Nelsi trusted Christ and was baptized in a high Andean river. Because of the LMCO, lives were changed and small churches were formed in Lima, Peru. And the LMCO is currently making it possible for us to learn an indigenous language in Southern Mexico so that we can share Christ among an unreached people group. 
 
We are so thankful to God for our home church, Union Grove [Baptist Church] in Salemburg, and the thousands of other churches that sacrificially give to the LMCO so we can continue making disciples among the indigenous peoples of the Americas. May these gifts be for the glory of our good God!
 
An anonymous couple
serving in southern Mexico
12/5/2011 2:06:06 PM by Anonymous Couple | with 0 comments