The Cooperative Program in Tennessee

Editor’s Note: October is recognized as Cooperative Program month on the calendar of the Southern Baptist Convention. Selected articles from this issue demonstrate how the Cooperative Program is at work in Tennessee.

By Chris Turner
Director of Communications, TBC

Students at the University of Memphis learn about the Baptist Collegiate Ministry as they stop by its exhibit recently and visit with Jeff Jones, center, BCM director. — Photos by Royce DeGrie

Students at the University of Memphis learn about the Baptist Collegiate Ministry as they stop by its exhibit recently and visit with Jeff Jones, center, BCM director. — Photo by Royce DeGrie

MEMPHIS — The countenance on Abrahim’s* face betrayed the secret he was hiding inside, and he didn’t even know it. How could he? Only days before he’d accepted Christ into his heart and now he was home in a staunchly fundamentalist Islamic country.

But being alive in Christ changes everything, and Abrahim’s parents immediately noticed.

“I was only home three days and my father came to me and said I’d changed,” Abrahim said. “ ‘What is different about you?’ he kept asking. I only told him at that time that God changed my heart.”

God had changed his heart, and He used the faithful witness of fellow college students involved in the University of Memphis’ Baptist Collegiate Ministries (BCM) to do it. [Read more…]

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Cooperative Program & Popcorn

By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector

Lonnie Wilkey

Lonnie Wilkey

I love good popcorn, but not necessarily the microwave variety.

In my household, I usually am the one designated to make popcorn. I use a deep pot with a lid on the stove top. I place oil and butter in the pot and let the butter melt into the oil. Then I place the popcorn kernels into the mixture.

At first, not much happens. The kernels float in the oil and butter as it gets hotter and hotter. Then, one by one, the kernels begin to pop.

Slowly but surely the once dormant kernels turn into fluffy popcorn. As all the kernels are popped, they gradually rise to the top of the pot. Before you know it, the popcorn has lifted the lid off the pot (you better have bowl in hand).

A single kernel could never lift that heavy lid but numerous kernels working together can accomplish that feat. [Read more…]

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TBC Recognizes Top Churches in Baptisms, Gifts

Baptist and Reflector

BRENTWOOD — The Executive Board of the Tennessee Baptist Convention recognized churches that led the state convention in baptisms and gifts in 2013.

Representatives of the churches were recognized during a banquet held prior to the Sept. 9 meeting of the TBC Executive Board held at Brentwood Baptist Church here.

“We are grateful to these churches for their outstanding leadership in leading people to Christ, resulting in baptism and to those churches that lead the way in giving through the Cooperative Program,” said Randy C. Davis, TBC executive director/treasurer. [Read more…]

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TBC Giving Below Budget for Year

By Baptist and Reflector

BRENTWOOD — Tennessee Baptist Convention churches gave $2,421,683 through the Cooperative Program in August.

For the year-to-date, Tennessee Baptists have given $27,893,395.

The amount is $801,328 or 2.8 percent below what was given at the same point last year.

With two months remaining in the 2013-14 budget year, Cooperative Program receipts are $2,523,271 or 8.3 percent below budget needs. [Read more…]

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Cooperative Program Is ‘Best Strategy’

By Larry Robertson
President, TBC, & Clarksville Pastor

I didn’t grow up in a strong Cooperative Program giving church. When I got to Blue Mountain (Miss.) College as a ministerial student, however, my eyes were opened to the unparalleled strategy Southern Baptists have to fund missions and ministry.

Dr. James Travis, longtime biblical studies professor at Blue Mountain, taught us that being Southern Baptist is more than geography or theology. Our distinctive bond is our commitment to cooperation, namely through the Cooperative Program.

In the first church I pastored as a 19-year-old boy, we ran 22 on a good day. Yet we were connected to missions and ministries far beyond our abilities and limitations as a congregation. I was able to remind those precious people that ten cents out of every undesignated dollar they gave supported 8,000 missionaries (at that time) at home and abroad, six SBC seminaries, and a whole host of other denominational causes. [Read more…]

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