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NAMB president challenges staff, intros 5-year ‘On Mission’ theme

ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP)–North American Mission Board President Robert E. “Bob” Reccord used video clips from popular movies Jan. 11 in inspiring agency staff to press forward in their mission even when circumstances aren’t ideal. He also introduced a new five-year theme for the agency: “On Mission Together for Kingdom Growth.”

Reccord’s comments came as part of a “State of the Agency” address to more than 300 employees and guests at the NAMB’s Alpharetta, Ga., offices.

Using a film segment from the movie “Stomp” depicting a group of men creating music with only push brooms and their feet, Reccord said, “It’s amazing when you use the most simple things what can happen.

“God is going to have to use ordinary people to accomplish extraordinary ends — because he’s an extraordinary God,” he said.

From the movie “Apollo 13,” Reccord noted how NASA engineers were given a pile of disparate materials and told they must find a way to adapt a part that would allow the astronauts to return to earth. The segment illustrated the ingenuity that can be mustered when failure is not an option.

“There are going to be a lot of times when we are going to have to make square pieces fit into round holes, using nothing but what we have in hand,” Reccord said. “When the resources aren’t what you want, then make it work with what you’ve got.”

Finally, in a further illustration of the theme of persistence, he showed scenes from the movie, “Rudy,” about a walk-on undersized college football player at the University of Notre Dame who nevertheless emerges a hero because of his self-sacrificial desire to help the team.

“That’s the kind of price people on mission with Christ have to pay,” he said. “He [Christ] didn’t say if any man or woman will come after me let him get comfortable, sit back, relax and just watch. He said, ‘If any man or woman will come after me let him deny himself, take up his cross and then and only then will they be ready to follow me.'”

Reccord launched a new five-year theme for the agency, “On Mission Together for Kingdom Growth.” He stated that the agency’s business is twofold: communicating the “greatest message ever given” and equipping and mobilizing the church for accomplishing the “greatest mission ever undertaken.”

The new theme is designed to reinforce with Southern Baptist constituencies that “we’re stronger together than we are separately,” he said.

Also, “The real bottom line isn’t the growth of the North American Mission Board by any means,” Reccord said. “Frankly, it isn’t in church growth. In the 1980s we often sacrificed church health on the altar of church growth. It is a kingdom growth issue. … I think if we can consistently say that, the message will start getting across.”

Reccord also reiterated the importance of the agency’s mission and vision statements, sharing updates on progress in the agencies’ five top priorities: impacting major cities, growing ethnic congregations, evangelizing students, mobilizing volunteers and reaching Canada with the gospel.

At the close of the session, Reccord congratulated Phil Roberts, outgoing vice president for strategic cities strategies, on his election as president of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City.

“We’re so proud of this man,” he said as he introduced Roberts. “What a God-given gentleman to head an institution of higher learning, prepping men and women to go in ministry and make a difference for the kingdom. This man was born for that. We’ve enjoyed him being here so much. We’ll miss him so deeply, but we send him proudly.”
(BP) file photo posted in the BP Photo Library at www.bpnews.net. Photo title: BOB RECCORD.

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  • James Dotson