GOD DOESN’T SETTLE FOR THE STATUS QUO

By Kevin Ezell
President, North American Mission Board, Alpharetta, Ga.

Kevin Ezell

Kevin Ezell

Have you noticed that God does not settle for the status quo? There is no place in the Bible where He says, “There, that’s good enough. You can take a break now.” Even nature, which He created, is constantly shifting, changing, and moving in order to keep the balance He intended. 

God is always pushing us forward. He calls us closer in our walk with Him. He sends us out to tell people about Him. This is His nature.

I love to hear about our missionaries who are always pushing forward as well. They are starting new churches, connecting with new people, and finding ways to meet needs so that in the process a conversation can turn toward the gospel. [Read more…]

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THANKS FOR HELP IN DENVER: MANDRELL

Editor’s Note: The Week of Prayer for North American Missions is underway this week as churches will soon begin receiving gifts to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering which supports missionaries across North America, including former Tennessee Baptist pastor Ben Mandrell.

 

By Connie Davis Bushey
News Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Ben Mandrell, church planter and lead pastor, Storyline Fellowship, Arvada, Colo., stands in his adopted home of Denver with his wife Lynley and their four children, from left, Max, Ava, Jack, and Miles. Lynley is director of children’s ministry at Storyline Fellowship. Mandrell is former senior pastor, Englewood Baptist Church, Jackson.

Ben Mandrell, church planter and lead pastor, Storyline Fellowship, Arvada, Colo., stands in his adopted home of Denver with his wife Lynley and their four children, from left, Max, Ava, Jack, and Miles. Lynley is director of children’s ministry at Storyline Fellowship. Mandrell is former senior pastor, Englewood Baptist Church, Jackson.

DENVER, Colo. — Ben Mandrell has been a church planter in Denver for three years and has learned a lot, he said.

“Living in Denver, in the West, requires a whole different paradigm,” said Mandrell, former senior pastor, Englewood Baptist Church, Jackson.

Ranked 14th in top post-Christian cities in America according to one study, Denver is “a missions field like no other,” he noted.

Christians and especially pastors are considered anti-intellectual, old school, and out of touch with society, he explained.

A good portion of his audience on Sunday mornings are “unconvinced that this book (the Bible) is even reliable.” Many reject absolute truth, Mandrell stated. [Read more…]

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TBC CHURCHES BOOST AAEO

Baptist Press, B&R Reports

annie-armstrong-aaeoALPHARETTA, Ga. — The nearly $59 million given to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering in 2016 ranks second highest in the offering’s history, the North American Mission Board announced Oct. 12.

Southern Baptists gave $58,860,553 in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 to the offering named for noted missionary Annie Armstrong, second only to the $59,463,281 given in 2007, NAMB said. [Read more…]

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FOCUS TURNS CHURCH ‘INSIDE OUT’

By Connie Davis Bushey
News Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Some leaders of Lincoln Avenue Baptist Church, Newport, are, from left, front row, Terri Sawyer and Kathy Regan, Woman’s Missionary Union director; back row, Randy Runions, senior pastor; Heath Chambers, missions and evangelism pastor; and Edwin Franks, executive minister and education.

Some leaders of Lincoln Avenue Baptist Church, Newport, are, from left, front row, Terri Sawyer and Kathy Regan, Woman’s Missionary Union director; back row, Randy Runions, senior pastor; Heath Chambers, missions and evangelism pastor; and Edwin Franks, executive minister and education.

NEWPORT — One way to describe what has happened at Lincoln Avenue Baptist Church is that it’s been “turned inside out,” said Terri Sawyer.

In other words, the church has adopted a focus on what is outside rather than themselves.

The decision of the congregation came as it faced some financial issues recently related to a new building and some decline in membership. It had to decide whether to focus on missions, including giving to missions, or itself. [Read more…]

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MISSIONS SUPPORT: NO RESERVES, NO RETREATS, NO REGRETS!

Blake Montgomery
Pastor, First Baptist Church, Sneedville

Blake Montgomery

Blake Montgomery

As I began planning for sharing this year’s information on the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering at our church, I recently read the inspiring account of another missionary who God called and used in a unique way. William Borden’s life is a story that should challenge every church and Christian in the areas of missions, leadership, and ministry.

William Whiting Borden was 16 years old in the early 1900s when he graduated high school. He was an heir to the Borden Dairy fortune. Before he started at Yale University, his parents gave him a trip around the world for his graduation present. [Read more…]

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FORMER TENNESSEANS LEAD PORTLAND CHURCH

Josh and Amy Carter among North American missionaries featured  Week of Prayer

By Jim Burton
NAMB News Office

Portland is a neighborhood-centric city with self-contained communities making up the metro area. Church planter Josh Carter, right, visits with elementary school parent-teacher organization president Stacey Borowick, left, and fourth grade teacher Allyson Dubuque during a project at the school at which Remedy Church members volunteered. To learn more about the Week of Prayer and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering, visit anniearmstrong.com.

Portland is a neighborhood-centric city with self-contained communities making up the metro area. Church planter Josh Carter, right, visits with elementary school parent-teacher organization president Stacey Borowick, left, and fourth grade teacher Allyson Dubuque during a project at the school at which Remedy Church members volunteered. To learn more about the Week of Prayer and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering, visit anniearmstrong.com. — NAMB photos by Susan Whitley

PORTLAND, Ore. — When Josh Carter and his family migrated 2,700 miles from East Tennessee to the Pacific Northwest, he found his people — mountain people — in Oregon. The move was out of obedience to God’s call on the family.

Carter’s preparation didn’t happen without hardship and a spiritual battle. The product of a broken home, grandparents helped in the raising of Carter and his two siblings in East Tennessee. Under the tutelage of his grandfather, who pastored an 80-member country church, Carter made a profession of faith in Christ.

In college, he became active in ministries and even started a church in East Tennessee with his wife, Amy, whom he had known since kindergarten in Kingsport. Carter was 21, a newlywed, and over his head.

“I had no idea how to lead,” he said. [Read more…]

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