On any given Sunday, pastors stand behind large pulpits, small pulpits, pub tables, or music stands. Many of those pulpits, though, have a history.
I remember the first time I laid eyes on the pulpit at Mayhill Baptist Church, a small church in the mountains of New Mexico. I saw the worn edges, the scrapes from years of use, and realized I would stand behind a beautiful piece of craftsmanship with a long history.
That moved me deeply. Week after week, month after month, year after year, decade after decade, that lil’ pulpit was the launching pad for countless sermons. And there I stood, behind that worn pulpit to proclaim the word, joining a long line of faithful pastors before me.
As we planned for and dreamed about the SBC Pastors’ Conference (June 12-13, Anaheim, Calif.) and our commitment to expository preaching, I knew the pulpit we used was not everything, but it sure was something. After a lot of prayers, I shot my shot. I reached out to Dr. Steve Gaines to ask about the “Bellevue Pulpit,” and Dr. Gaines and Bellevue Baptist in Memphis generously and graciously agreed to loan it to us for the conference.
Sure, most of us know Dr. Gaines used it after taking the helm from the late Dr. Adrian Rogers, both faithful expositors and past Presidents of the Southern Baptist Convention, but I also learned it was used by Dr. R.G. Lee and Dr. Ramsey Pollard, who were faithful expositors and past presidents of the Southern Baptist Convention.
From the early 1950s to just a few years ago, the “Bellevue Pulpit” was the launching pad for countless sermons that proclaimed the excellencies of Christ and the good news of Jesus. We are thankful for Bellevue Baptist’s generosity and willingness to allow us to add another page of history to their pulpit, and are excited for our preachers to stand behind it to proclaim the Word once again.
NAMB, IMB, Guidestone join as partners
We are excited to announce that North American Mission Board, International Mission Board, and Guidestone have linked arms with us as gold-level sponsors. They join our platinum-level sponsor, Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and folks like Samaritan’s Purse and Maranatha Tours as our key sponsors. A few more organizations or entities are finalizing their plan to partner, too, and we are so thankful, not only for their generosity but for believing in our vision.
Similarly, conventions like Kentucky Baptist Convention, Hawaii Pacific Baptist Convention, Southern Baptists of Texas Convention, churches like First Baptist Orlando, Summer Grove Baptist, North Jacksonville Baptist, Greater Hills Baptist, and several individuals have given anywhere between $2 to $30,000. Like our own churches and our churches’ partnerships with the Cooperative Program, it is difficult to survive and thrive without faithful giving across the board––big tithers, small tithers; big churches, small churches––all combine to move the mission forward.
And so it is with the Pastors’ Conference. We cannot do it without key sponsors and significant gifts, but we also cannot do it without a large group of generous people, churches, and entities that simply believe in our vision. So, once again, I am asking for your help. Whether you can give a few dollars or a few hundred, every penny donated will help us put on a great Pastors’ Conference in Anaheim. Please prayerfully consider partnering with us, and click here.
Pastors’ Conference site re-launch coming soon
We have steadily increased our footprint on social media and are about to re-launch our website with the theme for the SBC Pastors’ Conference. On Twitter and Facebook, we continue to highlight encouraging articles, seek prayer requests, and inspire pastors in the hard work of ministry. Make sure you follow us on Twitter and Facebook but stay tuned to http://sbcpc.net and you may end up being the first to see the unveiling of our conference theme!