JEFFERSON CITY—John Yeats, new executive director of the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC), said Awaken 2012, a national prayer emphasis Jan. 2-20 in the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), is essentially his heartbeat.
Yeats was part of the Louisiana Baptist Convention team that birthed the initiative. He and Claude King, who co-wrote “Experiencing God” with Henry Blackaby, co-edited the official Awaken 2012 Prayer Guide. A customized 42-page version is now available on www.mobaptist.org.
Yeats also edited a newly published book of sermons called Revive us, O Lord! His new book is being sold by the case at a discount rate on auxanopress.com. Per case discounts (10 percent for 1 case, 20 percent for 2-5 cases, and 30 percent for 6-10 cases) may be obtained by contacting Ken Hemphill, who is helping Yeats on the business end.
Hemphill said single copies of the book are not being shipped right now. However, those who wish to order books other than by the case may buy copies by contacting him at Ken.Hemphill@ngu.edu.
Missouri is joining other state conventions participating in the Awaken 2012 prayer emphasis. It is important that Missouri participates, Yeats said, because our nation is in a difficult situation.
“As individuals, churches and a culture, we have insurmountable problems that our best human ingenuity cannot fix,” he said. “We need the Lord to sweep into our churches in a fresh way. We need a great spiritual awakening to blaze through our communities and our culture.
“No one can make God do anything. Local church and convention leaders cannot launch a program to cure what ails us. We need the fresh wind of God’s Spirit and a fresh fire burning in the hearts of His people.”
Resources are being made available to Missouri Baptists to go with Awaken 2012. For a list of what is available, see related stories on this page.
“My prayer is that God will just bless us and draw us closer to His heart,” said Bob Loggins, MBC prayer and spiritual awakening specialist.
For Yeats, revival and spiritual awakening in 2012 is not just a pleasant wish or one of several good ideas circulating in his mind. It is, as he described, “an itch that needs scratching.” He believes we will perish without it in a matter of only one or two generations. As he edited the prayer guide with King, he became “increasingly convinced that it’s time to be honest before the Lord. It’s time to repent. It’s time for us to realign our lives with the Word of God. It’s time for our lives to be awakened to what matters the most to God.”
Transformed lives are needed on many levels, Yeats said.
“This nation is at war on several fronts,” he said. “The war on terrorism is important for our personal freedoms including which god we will serve. If we do nothing or withdraw too quickly, the fascists will declare victory over the West and we will live in a state of fear that will impact everything in our culture.
“The other front is perhaps more insidious because it erodes the core of our identity. It is the war of worldviews. There are multiple worldviews (or religions) pulling at the fabric of this culture. There are the zealots for particular religions that base their belief structure on strict obedience and condemnation toward non-conformity. There are those extremists diligently at work in the legal system to sterilize the public square of any philosophy that is not their own religion of secularism. There are those radically clamoring for the right to propagate hedonistic behavior at the expense of decimating family relationships.”
Why is this important for Missouri Baptists to know?
“Most people in our churches cannot remember what it feels like to be washed clean by the cleansing power of Jesus,” Yeats said.
For more information visit johnyeats.net.