N.C. Baptist Men's gathering focuses on missions
March 14 2002 by Dennis Parker , BR Staff Writer

N.C. Baptist Men's gathering focuses on missions | Friday, March 15, 2002

Friday, March 15, 2002

N.C. Baptist Men's gathering focuses on missions

By Dennis Parker BR Staff Writer

CHARLOTTE - A cold rain did not keep men and women from attending the 28th annual N.C. Baptist Men's Convention and Missions Conference on March 1-2 at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Charlotte. The theme was "Living Hope in a Ground Zero World."

Richard Brunson, executive director of N.C. Baptist Men, estimated that 1,500-2,000 people attended the two-day event.

The Friday night program featured the video "Helping Rebuild in a Ground Zero World;" special music by Kyle Matthews, a concert artist and songwriter from Nashville, Tenn.; a presentation on the Graffiti Ministries in New York by Taylor Field; and a message by Tony Campolo, author and speaker from St. Davids, Pa.

Campolo told the audience that "missions have to be motivated out of love for God and love for your neighbor. People need to know about God and God's love for them."

"For those who say that missions are unnecessary, just take a look at the world in which we live," he said. "You don't even have to go overseas. In our own communities the need for knowing God, knowing God's love are of crucial significance."

He said: "Missions begin by getting into a personal relationship with Jesus wherein you are redefined - in which you come to see yourself with having incredible worth, incredible value and capable of doing incredible things for God."

During his Saturday morning sermon, Campolo said Christians, like Saint Francis of Assisi, should have an intense relationship with Jesus. "He took time every day to be loved by Jesus and to love Him back," he said.

"When was the last time you gave God 15 minutes of absolute stillness in which you asked for nothing?" Campolo asked. "When was the last time you let Jesus feed you, invade you, penetrate you? When was the last time you felt Jesus taking possession of you? Do you allow yourself to enjoy the feeling of Jesus loving you?"

A missions fair and two sets of breakout sessions were also part of Saturday's program.

The Baptist Men's conference concluded with the video "N.C. Baptist Relief at the Pentagon" and a sermon by Anne Graham Lotz, the founder of AnGeL Ministries and the daughter of Billy Graham.

Her message focused on Christians serving as God's messengers. "We're all messengers," she said. "If you're converted you're a messenger. ... In one word, our message is Jesus."

She said her concern for N.C. Baptists and the church in general "is that with all of our technology, and all of our opportunities, all of our videos and all of our seminars, all of our stuff, we're in danger of missing the message."

She continued by saying, "The message God was giving you and me on September 11 is 'wake-up, its time to get serious about Jesus; its time to get serious about your faith.' ... This is life and death. This is Jesus we're talking about. And we're talking about a world that's going to hell without Jesus. And it's time for you and me to wake-up and get serious about the gospel - sharing the gospel with the lost world.

"You can feed the hungry; you can clothe the naked and you can house the homeless but they'll go straight to hell without Jesus." she said. "All of your work is meaningless if you forget the message."

Lotz commended N.C. Baptist Men for the work they perform on the mission field. "Mission projects," she said, "provide a means for taking the message" to people in need. "Our work is to present Christ to a lost and dying world. You can do that by ladling soup, by clothing the naked, by housing the homeless and by building churches, but just don't forget to tell them why - that you're doing it in Jesus' name," she said.

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3/14/2002 11:00:00 PM by Dennis Parker , BR Staff Writer | with 0 comments
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