By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector
Change. For many people this “five-letter” word may as well be a “four-letter” (curse) word. Most people detest change.
I admit that while I am not necessarily anti-change, I am usually not out in front leading the change band-wagon.
Change is hard for most individuals and even churches because we get comfortable with what we are doing. The only problem with getting comfortable is that we get satisfied with where we are in our life or in our church and we get complacent.
Complacency leads to “not wanting to rock the boat” because things are going well. Before you know it, we are terrified of change when change becomes necessary — and it will, no matter your stage of life.
In June, the Baptist and Reflector “changed” the way we publish Tennessee Baptist news. Instead of printing every week, we now print every other week. At first, I was “afraid” of changing the way we have done things for the last 26 years (the length of time I have served on the paper’s staff).
For the past few years I knew we were moving toward that direction. Many state papers (as large as us or larger) had already taken that step, but I was hesitant “to pull the trigger” and do it.
Decreasing revenues basically took the matter out of our hands. Add to the fact that the B&R had been placed within the TBC Communications Team with a new director (Chris Turner), the timing was right.
I am discovering that my fears of the paper not being able to keep Tennessee Baptists informed in a timely manner were unfounded. Thanks to the Internet, we have been able to post stories and comment on current events as needed.
One of our additional changes will be a new website devoted solely to the paper. When that gets off the ground, we will be able to be even more relevant and timely.
Producing an issue every other week also has given Connie Bushey and myself more time to develop more in-depth stories and features. While our “quantity” has gone down, I think our “quality” is better than ever.
The changes are not over. We will continue to work to improve what we do in order to provide Tennessee Baptists with the best possible newsjournal. The good thing is that I no longer fear the changes. Change is not so bad after all.