WHY COLLEGIATE MINISTRY IS SO IMPORTANT

By Stacy Murphree
Collegiate Ministry Specialist, Austin Peay State University, Clarksville

Stacy Murphree

Currently there are more than 20 million college students in the United States. More than 345,000 of those attend college and universities here in our own state, creating a tremendous opportunity for Tennessee Baptists to reach this collegiate generation. In his book, Reaching the Campus Tribes, Benson Hines shares the necessity of viewing our college campuses and universities as missions fields in our own community. In reference to collegiate ministry, he elaborates on the great William Carey quote to say, “We should expect great things from the God who loves these college students even more than we do. And we should attempt great things for the God who has placed these missions fields before us.” Here are five reminders of the importance of attempting great things for God as we reach college students today. [Read more…]

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TENNESSEE BAPTISTS: CALLED TO BE MISSIONAL

By Michael Sams
Chair, TN Baptist Mission Board

Mike Sams

Following last week’s meeting of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board, I drove to Bardwell, Ky., to be with my 85-year-old father who was at the point of death.  Thankfully, I made it in time to spend the last few hours of his time on earth with him.

Early on Wednesday morning (April 26), I watched as my dad opened his eyes wide and looked with amazement toward the ceiling. It was if he saw something or someone standing there before him. As his eyes fixed on whatever was before him, a peaceful look covered his face. He then took his last few breaths and that was it. [Read more…]

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THE LOCAL BCM: A MISSIONS FIELD NEAR YOU

Editor’s note: You can listen to Bill Choate discuss Baptist Collegiate Ministries during Episode 8 of Radio B&R, the official news podcast of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board. That podcast can be found at baptistandreflector.org/tag/radio-br.  Also, check back on May 5 & 8 for additional columns on Baptist collegiate ministry.

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Bill Choate

BRENTWOOD — The 2016-17 college year is drawing to an end for about 345,000 students attending colleges and universities in Tennessee this year.

Though each institution is different and the student bodies on each campus are unique and diverse, there are basically only two types of college students, observed Bill Choate, director of Baptist Collegiate Ministries for the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.

While that seems “kind of simplistic,” Choate explained his rationale. [Read more…]

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GRATEFUL FOR ALL CHEERFUL GIVERS

By Randy C. Davis
TBMB Executive Director

Randy C. Davis

God loves a cheerful giver.

Chances are you’ve heard that phrase from your pastor, or maybe from your momma or grandmother. We often share that verse with children when we teach them about stewardship. Well, last week I assume God was extremely pleased, and I was pleasantly surprised. No, actually I was pleasantly shocked.

It was my great pleasure to announce at the spring meeting of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board that an unbelievably generous Tennessee Baptist gave nearly $1.6 million dollars to establish the Golden Offering for Tennessee Missions Endowment. For years to come, approximately $50,000-plus in annual interest will funnel into the GOTM and be used for a variety of ministry opportunities. [Read more…]

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CAUGHT IN BRO. RAY’S CROSSHAIRS

Editor’s Note: Ray Newcomb was a leader in the Tennessee Baptist Convention for decades. Over the years we developed a mutual respect for and friendship with each other. The highest compliment I could give Bro. Ray is this. If I lived anywhere near a church where he was serving, I would join in a minute and be honored and proud to call him “my pastor.” — Lonnie Wilkey

By Chris Turner
Director of Communications, TBMB

Chris Turner, director of communications for the Tennessee Baptist Convention, visited with his former pastor Ray Newcomb at the Summit. Newcomb baptized Turner more than 30 years ago while serving as pastor of First Baptist Church, Millington.
— Photo by Corinne Williams

You did not want to get caught in Ray Newcomb’s crosshairs if you were goofing around while he was preaching.

I did. One time.

“You two boys down there. You need to quit talking and pay attention.”

I’m not sure if I was more mortified by Bro. Ray calling me out in church or by contemplating the impending consequences that would crash upon my teenaged shore when we got home. The irony is that I was actually helping my friend find the correct Scripture passage, that time. But I’ve always sort of just considered this one justice for the times I was goofing around and didn’t get hammered. [Read more…]

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NEWS FLASH: CHILI IS HOT

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Before it Hits the PressI am always amused when I read stories about people who get upset over the consequences of something they caused.

Most people probably have heard about the lawsuit McDonald’s faced years ago when a customer spilled coffee on herself. If I remember correctly, she won the case.

Just recently, a woman in Charlotte, N.C. claimed she suffered second degree burns after she spilled chili from Wendy’s on herself. [Read more…]

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PASTOR: NINE STEPS TO RECOVERING YOUR JOY

By Randy C. Davis
TBMB Executive Director

It’s right there in the red letters:  “That my joy may be in you …”

This is a statement of fact made by Jesus Himself, and yet I’ve encountered so many pastors who haven’t experienced joy in a long time. The man behind the pulpit carries both pastoral and personal burdens, and it can be overwhelming. What once was a thrill becomes drudgery, and one day, pastor, you realize you’ve lost your joy. I know the feeling. Been there.

While I was a pastor, I signed articles and letters with the salutation, “It is a joy to be your pastor.” Once, however, the slightest typo slipped through — a single letter — and communicated something completely different: “It is a job to be your pastor.” [Read more…]

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KEEP YOUTH SPORTS IN PROPER PERSPECTIVE

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

baseball-and-gloveA few years ago I was umpiring a high school baseball game in Nashville. The home team’s catcher was really good — strong arm, could hit with power. He had the tools to play college baseball and perhaps even professionally.

Between innings we engaged in a brief conversation and I asked where he was going to play college ball. His answer stunned me. He said he was done with baseball after high school. Even though he had God-given talent and ability, he basically was burned out on the game. [Read more…]

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SYMBOLS OF EASTER

By Carolyn Tomlin
Contributing Writer, B&R

cross-silhouette-sunrisePassing a shop filled with Easter gifts, I noticed cuddly lambs, soft yellow chicks, and other baby animals in pastel shades. Nearby, the traditional Easter lilies filled the air with their distinct aromatic scent. Across the street, a bakery displayed hot-cross buns and pretzels focusing on the Easter season. And as a reminder of Jesus being raised from the dead in a glorified body, a beautiful butterfly fluttered above.

  These are only a few of the representations associated with Easter. Perhaps, as adults, we are familiar with these signs, but do our children know the reason for these symbols? Do they know the ancient roots going back to the death and resurrection of Jesus? Look at a few of the traditional symbols of Easter and what they represent:  [Read more…]

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EASTER: THREE COMMANDS FROM AN EMPTY TOMB

By Steve Gaines
SBC President & Pastor, Bellevue Baptist Church, Cordova

resurrection-of-christ-illustrationThe angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid; for I know that you are looking for Jesus who has been crucified. He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying. Go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead; and behold, He is going ahead of you into Galilee, there you will see Him; behold, I have told you’ ” (Matthew 28:5-7 NASB).

Springtime is here. Dogwoods and daffodils bloom as winter retreats and warmer days are welcomed. 

Across America, churches will soon be packed on Easter Sunday. 

Why? [Read more…]

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