JEFFERSON CITY—John Yeats, new executive director of the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC), spoke Nov. 11 at the board meeting of the Missouri Woman’s Missionary Union (MWMU) “to say how much I appreciate the good work that you do.”
His topic was leadership. Yeats said that Nehemiah was an excellent leader because he was very attentive to the times. Our present day is “very strategic.”
But will we understand it?
“He (Nehemiah) wanted to be connected with what was going on,” Yeats said.
For the WMU in Missouri, it will likely be shown in an ongoing and perhaps even heightened emphasis on prayer, networking, and promotion of the three special mission offerings. The MWMU is growing, having added 51 new chapters in 2010, and these are “seeing lives changed and their churches increasing in their service for the Lord. We are seeing more wanting to be missionaries,” MWMU President Joan Dotson said. Yeats spoke to the spirit of that.
“I learned while I was in Louisiana that the WMU was the key, central ingredient of prayer and of encouraging Louisiana Baptists to give to the state missions offering and to Annie Armstrong and Lottie Moon at a significantly higher level than what many other states experience,” Yeats said. “I lay it at the feet of the WMU. It was their intercession and their encouragement that made that happen.
“When God gets ahold of our hearts, He can do amazing things. He can use our WMU in such an awesome way.”
In a Q & A session, Yeats talked about his family relationships. The board members got to learn quite a bit about his family in that manner. Dotson then presented Yeats with a pair of coffee mugs for him and his wife, Sharon. More than anything else, he gave the women a glimpse into his heart.
“We need spiritual awakening in our land in a desperate, desperate way,” he said. “It isn’t going to start at the state house. It’s not going to start in Washington. It’s going to start in our hearts and in our churches on our knees in prayer. The MWMU is positioned to be significant leaders in the role of intercession.”
ALLEN PALMERI / Associate Editors