JACKSON – The message “God is able” was the golden thread woven through the testimonies of missionaries speaking at M-Counter held April 20-21 here at First Baptist Church.
John Yeats, executive director of the Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC), spoke enthusiastically about how the annual women’s missions and ministry conference sponsored by the Missouri Woman’s Missionary Union and Women’s Ministry is for the greater good. “Live Sent Unhindered” was the theme. About 350 women from more than 100 Missouri Baptist churches participated.
“God is moving across the globe and you are part of it,” Yeats said. “When you ‘Live Sent,’ the Holy Spirit shows up with incredible power. State, North American, and international missionaries need you to hold the rope of support.”
Bill and Carol Bowers, International Mission Board (IMB) missionaries, are church planters in South Africa.
“God called us to an urban setting in Africa after 30 years serving Him in Missouri,” Bill said. “We planned evangelistic block parties and we didn’t have any idea how to do them.”
The couple did their research and executed a plan. “The Lord prepared the way,” Bill said. “The youth group added 50 youth from those block parties and we continued to baptize youth for three years. We had a lot of believers willing to respond and participate in something they didn’t know how to do.”
Daniel and Kimberly Goombi, North American Mission Board (NAMB) MSC missionaries, minister to tribal nations of Native Americans on four reservations in Kansas.
“Each has their own culture and they can govern themselves,” Daniel said. “They are nations within a nation and the ministry is growing. I don’t know why we are surprised at how God works. The Lord is moving in Kansas, in Missouri, and in the hearts of those who need it most.”
God had Gary and Carolyn Miller, IMB missionaries to Eastern Hungary, hand out Scripture. “We couldn’t get one of the communist strongholds out of our minds,” Gary said. “Several had tried to discourage that decision, but we went to an open market to set up a booth. We told them that we wanted the space to hand out Bibles and we still got one of the best booths by the gate.”
In five hours, they gave out about 300 Bibles and even more New Testaments.
“We did another Scripture distribution on Christmas and seniors lined up for them,” Gary said. “When we gave them one, they said, ‘we always wanted a Bible.’ God is at work.”
George and Cathy Chinn, NAMB MSC missionaries, serve in the poverty area of 200 counties around the Mississippi River. The area is located in the eight states of Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi and Louisiana. “Twenty percent of the population lives below the poverty line,” George said, “and more than half are unchurched.”
He read Mark 6:34, “When he went ashore he saw a great crowd, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.” Then, Chinn defined compassion.
“Compassion is more than sympathy,” he said. “It is sympathy, plus the heart compels action to do something about it. We help with food, home, jobs and education, because we want to minister to them in love to introduce them to the Great Shepherd.”
Frank Green, Royal Ambassadors/Challengers specialist in Tennessee, referenced Acts 8:4 as a great missions verse. “Those who were scattered went about preaching the word,” he said. “They spread the message no matter where they were or who they spoke to. Jesus uses ordinary people and He can use you. Being willing to go when asked is all that is required. With God’s help, we become extraordinary people.”
Vince Blubaugh, missions pastor of Second Baptist Church, Springfield, interpreted the conference theme through Luke 5:1-11.
“You cannot live sent without leaving everything,” he said. “We want to hold onto the nets and to the fish. We think God will meet all our needs—really? All the disciples were martyred, but none recanted or turned back. All encountered Jesus and they found him better than life.”
Yeats made practical suggestions for transforming lives that included praying, serving others, and sharing Christ.
“We need to seek Christ,” he said. “We must have the reputation of prayer warriors because apart from the Lord we can do nothing.
“Foot washers (servants) burn with a desire for the success of others. (This is) for the sake of the kingdom.
“Every godly leader models the lifestyle of sharing. It should be the normal flow of life. Living the example should be a part of the believer’s testimony but a verbal witness is necessary for transforming lives.”
Around 60 women helped with four mission projects for the conference. A total of 44 witnessing dolls were made, with 82 more to be completed by Acteens. Also, 605 school bags with Scripture were made for Lesotho to be filled with school supplies by the IMB. Hygiene items and gift cards also were collected for the Missouri Baptist Children’s Home and the Mississippi River Ministry.