Editor’s Note: * Denotes name changed for security.
SPRINGFIELD – The Missouri Baptist Convention’s (MBC) 2014 state evangelism and discipleship conference will encourage church leaders as they sow the gospel amid hardship and tears. Springfield’s Crossway Baptist Church will host the event, called the “Sowing in Tears Conference,” Jan. 27-28.
The conference theme is based on Psalm 126:5-6: “Those who sow in tears will reap with shouts of joy. Though one goes along weeping, carrying the bag of seed, he will surely come back with shouts of joy, carrying his sheaves.”
“Our desire is to provide an intensive time for pastors and church leaders to come aside and seek the Lord and to learn of His ways,” MBC executive director John Yeats said, explaining that the conference “picks up some of the same thematic elements” as the 2013 Refresh Conference.
“Needless to say, part of the emphasis this year is that our hearts are broken over the lostness of our state and our nation. Tears form in our eyes when we think that too many of our churches in the land have their eyes turned inward more than outward toward the Lord’s vision and purposes. It grieves us that unless there is a major spiritual awakening, our children’s children will be caught in the web of a collapsed, lawless culture where ‘every man does what is right in his own eyes.’ Join us as we seek the Lord together.”
According to Mark Snowden, the MBC’s missional evangelism/discipleship strategist, the conference will energize and equip church leaders to proclaim the gospel amid the daily hardship of ministry and heartache of working among the lost.
“We draw near to Christ and we go out sowing in tears, but we know that we will reap with shouts of joy,” Snowden said. He added that the team of featured speakers at the conference will each contribute to this message. The conference leadership team includes: Sammy Tippit, an international evangelist; K. Marshall Williams, pastor of Nazarene Baptist Church, Philadelphia, Pa.; Nik Ripken*, IMB missionary strategist and author of The Insanity of God; Tony Preston, professor of pastoral leadership at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary; Eddie Bumpers, pastor of Crossway Baptist Church, Springfield; Jason Crabb, a dove-award winning vocalist; and Mark Mathes, worship leader at Crossway Baptist, Springfield.
Although this conference is free, registration is required. Register online before Dec. 8 at www.mobaptist.org/sowing.