This summer has been a busy time of events, planning and working. Several ministries have been highlighted in this issue of the TEXAN. Migrants have been served in Jesus name along the Rio Grande. There are seven SBTC churches that provided the gospel along with necessities to those who were released from shelters. The largest training event in Texas and perhaps in the Southern Baptist Convention took place at the EQUIP Conference. Champion Forest Baptist Church hosted over 2,500 laypersons and ministers. Student camps recorded record numbers as well. Many students came to Christ, and others answered the call to service.
SBTC Director of Convention Strategies Kenneth Priest reported to the Executive Board about revitalization. The SBTC and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary are working together by having Dr. Priest serve as the interim director of the Center for Church Revitalization until a permanent employee can be secured. This will enhance the convention’s ability to assist more churches in addition to the roughly 150 churches currently in the SBTC revitalization process.
With all of the wonderful works of God, there was also evil and heartbreak. A demonic young man opened fire in a Walmart in El Paso. His racist-inspired rampage took the lives of innocent people simply because of their skin color. In the face of evil, SBTC Disaster Relief chaplains trained in ministering to those grieving went to El Paso with the love of Jesus. Hundreds of prayers were offered, numerous contacts were made in the hospitals and public places along with sharing the gospel everywhere. Seeds were sown. One person professed faith in Christ. Our hearts are saddened by the unthinkable tragedy. I along with other SBTC staff will continue to minister in El Paso over the next months. We will not let hate and violence triumph.
This year prior to the SBTC Annual Meeting at FBC Odessa Oct. 28-29 there will be a “Look Like Heaven” Symposium. The pre-convention session begins at noon on Monday and will be a time to learn how churches can work in their communities to bring about peace through the Prince of Peace.
The world is against us. The devil hates us. Our own flesh rebels against a holy God. In the power of the Holy Spirit we can overcome the world, overpower the devil and oversee the flesh. When we walk in the Spirit we are one.