It’s a new day in Missouri for evangelism
February 8, 2005
Our State Evangelism Conference Jan. 24-25 helped us to see some of the struggles of the past, but it also helped us to see that the future is bright. Instead of one man struggling to bring evangelism to the forefront of our state convention, we now have two positions, with a third soon to come, promoting this very important area of Missouri Baptist life. What a blessing it is for me to tell you that my office is 100 percent behind evangelism!
As we build upon the heritage we have, let us take a moment to reflect on the movement of conservative resurgence that has given us this powerful opportunity to evangelize. I am thankful for this movement as it has been a great thing in our state. This is truly a new day in Missouri—a day of great hope and wonder at what our God can do through us in the days to come.
Now that we have won some major battles, it is exciting to see that the Word of God is promoted freely and readily throughout all of our meetings and through our convention staff and leadership. Let us never forget that a whole war out there has yet to be fought—a war for the souls of men and women, boys and girls. Missouri Baptists must rise to the occasion to evangelize our Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the uttermost through our partnerships.
It used to be that it took a lot of effort for one man in the Baptist Building to step up and say that evangelism is important. Under the leadership of Executive Director David Clippard, the structure of the convention has been changed so that it is obvious to everyone that this is one of our top priorities. This is the year when we will have a director of evangelism, a student evangelism specialist and a personal evangelism specialist (a man we hope to have on board this spring) all working together to reach Missouri for the Lord Jesus Christ.
We all saw how important prayer was at the state evangelism conference. Our evangelism department believes that there has never been a great evangelistic movement that was not preceded by a great prayer movement, so our vision for evangelism this year begins with prayer.
There are two major opportunities for you to connect with our prayer strategy. On April 22-23 and Oct. 7-8, from 7 p.m. to 7 p.m., we will be promoting 24-hour prayer vigils. Through the power of prayer, Missouri Baptists can participate in God’s great harvest of souls this year as we see Him do far more than we could ever ask or think.
“Romans 6:4 Sundays” are another key part of our strategy to win the lost. What is a “Romans 6:4 Sunday?” We believe that every church in the Missouri Baptist Convention can baptize at least one person on each of three Sundays – March 27, June 26, and Sept. 25. When every church can pull its load in evangelism, the load will get lighter for the entire convention. Romans 6:4 is all about walking in the newness of life—a newness of life that we pray God will bring to our churches this year.
Remember the old game of “Tag,” when we were chosen unwillingly? Well, Missouri Baptists, we have been chosen by God and “Tag, you are it.”
I liked what Tom Elliff said at the state evangelism conference when he told us, “Babies are born one at a time.” That should be our mentality. We should be sharing our faith and looking for God to bring people into the Kingdom one soul at a time. What an opportunity we have, Missouri Baptists, to see God reach our state for Jesus! (Roy Spannagel is the associate executive director of the Church Outreach Team of the Missouri Baptist Convention.)