TAYLORS, S.C. (BP)–As we approach the Southern Baptist Convention meeting in Indianapolis in June, many people are wondering what this convention will bring forth, who will be elected and what will be decided.
No doubt, at this time, there are many people preparing resolutions to be brought forth. I, along with the Committee on Order of Business chaired by Gearl Spicer, have been working hard to make sure that this will be a Christ-honoring, biblically based, sweet-spirited time together.
One item of extreme importance that will be brought forth is the presentation by our North American Mission Board regarding a 10-year evangelistic strategy.
From the moment of my election in 2006, I have encouraged and worked with our NAMB evangelism division as well as their new president to present to this convention this multi-faceted, flexible plan which helps focus Southern Baptists in a joint emphasis on evangelism and soul-winning for years to come.
Dr. Bobby Welch, the past president, has crossed the nation many times calling for soul-winning to be at the heart of who Southern Baptists are. This 10-year strategy helps show us not only what to do, but how to do it. It takes into consideration the differences in our state conventions, associations and churches across this continent. It will contain multiple tools which individuals and churches may use to reach their area for Christ. It points us in a common direction.
I ask that you be much in prayer for this great endeavor. While many things may well happen at the annual meeting, I am praying that this particular emphasis will be the singular item that impacts our world for Christ.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to see our baptism numbers turn around? The reasons for decline are many and varied. Part of the reason is because of the society’s increasing negativity toward the church. Part of the reason is our own lethargy, laziness and waste of energy in fighting the wrong battles and the wrong people. Turning the situation around cannot happen easily nor even quickly. However, I am convinced that God does want the situation to turn around! I am also convinced that this 10-year emphasis may well be God’s way of getting our attention focused back on winning this continent for Christ. Please pray earnestly and diligently about this plan for our future.
Frank Page is president of the Southern Baptist Convention and pastor of First Baptist Church in Taylors, S.C.