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Gary Ledbetter

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FIRST-PERSON: Hope in things we’ll never see

GRAPEVINE, Texas (BP) – What gives you hope? Our ultimate hope is eternal life in Christ, and that is the best answer to that question. But there are human analogs for ultimate hope – light in the darkness, the protection of a hen for her chicks, a land of milk and honey, the bosom of Abraham, and so on. What in this life, a pure thing, encourages you to put up with the frustrations of the day? 

FIRST-PERSON: God bless America

Though America doesn't always live up to its ideals, those who founded it and kept it through very difficult days have delivered to us a nation that has blessed the world, Gary Ledbetter says.

FIRST-PERSON: Try a little boredom

A productive use of boredom, Gary Ledbetter writes, can alleviate social media restlessness, yielding moments "when you can hear the still, small voice in your head."

FIRST-PERSON: How’s your church doing?

Denominational statistics are important, Gary Ledbetter writes, because "we are connected in our Great Commission work."

FIRST-PERSON: Why attend denominational meetings?

Attending the Southern Baptist Convention, Gary Ledbetter writes, yields opportunities to better understand what "Southern Baptist" means through participation, education, encouragement and fellowship.

FIRST-PERSON: Talking to your children about …

What do you say to children about disturbing news events? Gary Ledbetter suggests, first and foremost, that "children need to know Mom and Dad are dependable and depending on God."

FIRST-PERSON: What will people say?

Gary Ledbetter reflects, "If there are funerals where someone says with wonder, "This guy had 200,000 Twitter followers," I've not attended them. Rather, he notes, "faithfully loving God and loving people is the way to impact those who know you and love you best."

FIRST-PERSON: January is coming

Gary Ledbetter laments the tone of division among Baptists displayed in social media over two unlikeable candidates vying for the White House. "It's time to talk less," Ledbetter, editor in chief of the Southern Baptist TEXAN, writes. "It's time to pray more" yet making sure of "your own core beliefs."

BAPTISTS: Reporting on the SBC

Gary Ledbetter, editor in chief of the Southern Baptist TEXAN, assesses the periodic tensions between Baptist leaders and Baptist journalists -- and their shared commitment to advance the Great Commission.

FIRST-PERSON: Life and death, blessing and cursing

Gary Ledbetter, editor of the Southern Baptist TEXAN, voices hope that "some will be saved" in a culture afflicted with "hate for God and love for death." Thousands of churches and millions of Christians still understand "that their neighbors, even the inconvenient ones, bear the image of our Creator," Ledbetter writes.