May 20 is set as the second annual day of prayer for Tennessee Baptist Conference Centers
By David Dawson
Baptist and Reflector
Now, he is hoping for even greater participation — and more impactful results — during the second annual Day of Prayer for the Tennessee Baptist Conference Centers.
Bearden, the TBMB’s conference centers senior manager, is encouraging churches across Tennessee to “pray with expectation” for the two conference centers — located in Carson Springs and Linden Valley — when the second installment of the Day of Prayer is held on Sunday, May 20.
“I think (this initiative) is still building and still growing,” said Bearden, “but I also think it’s already made a difference. People have prayed all along for the conference centers, but I think having the concentrated day of prayer is important. Also, this (campaign) has created an awareness of the conference centers that we might not have had before on this level.”
Each year, the two conference centers combine to host roughly 20,000 visitors. More importantly, an average of about 250 first-time professions of faith are made at the camps each year.
Jay Barbier, evangelism event specialist for the TBMB, said the Day of Prayer can have an enormous impact on the ministry of the conference centers.
“Every big movement of God started with God’s faithful people humbling themselves and asking Him to move,” said Barbier. “We unashamedly love the Gospel message and want Jesus to be glorified and magnified through our conference centers at Linden Valley and Carson Springs.”
Bearden, Barbier and other TBMB leaders, including executive director and president Randy C. Davis, are asking churches to pray for the conference centers in these specific ways:
- That God will prepare the hearts of children, youth, and adults coming to camp this summer;
- That camp staffs will be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit when leading and sharing with campers;
- That adults coming on retreat will relax and listen for God to speak into their lives;
- That all attendees will be kept safe and free from harm;
- That weather, buildings, logistics, and other issues will not become a distraction to the work of the Holy Spirit.
Bearden said that in addition to the roughly 250 professions of faith that are recorded at the camps each year, there are countless more decisions that develop as a result of the ministry.
“Even if the decisions aren’t made during camp, we know God is still at work in people’s lives through the camp experience,” said Bearden. “So, while we don’t always know the long-term results of what God does while people are at camp, we do know — and I know from personal experience — the type of things that God does with camp.”
Bearden said he believes the Day of Prayer has a chance to continually expand in the years to come.
“We are seeing some success with it already,” he said. “Last year was a good first-time experience, and that’s what really led the (TBMB) to approve the continuation of it.”
The effectiveness of the campaign is dependent on a joint effort by churches all across Tennessee to be intentional and specific about praying for the conference centers.
“The power of prayer is amazing,” Bearden said. “And I think sometimes we don’t fully comprehend it. But, to know that people are praying for the people who come to the conference centers — the children, youth and adults — it’s pretty awesome.”
For more information or for resources, contact Bearden at firstname.lastname@example.org.