Prayers, support evident during meeting

While Christmas is the main topic on everyone’s mind at this time of the year, I want to reflect just a little on the emphasis of this edition of the TEXAN, our annual meeting. God’s favor was upon us as we gathered in San Antonio.

First of all, “thank you” to all who attended. Our messenger count of over 900 and almost 500 registered visitors gave us an exceptional number of participants. Pastor James Shupp, the staff and the members of Castle Hills First Baptist Church were gracious hosts. Being in a worship center provided a spiritual ambience. Truly the Spirit of God moved on hearts. The preaching, singing, praying and even the business were done in a Christ-honoring way.

Through the means of technology there were 19,000 hits on the live streaming. People all over the world were able to be a part of the excitement. I am thrilled that friends, family members and churches were interested in what God is doing through the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention.

Preceding the convention was the Bible Conference. Many pastors, staff and laypersons were ministered to through the theme of “Forged by Fire.” Some have commented that this was the best-ever pre-convention session.

So many auxiliary activities took place I cannot mention them all, but the Criswell/SBTC Dinner and Dialogue was a hit again with convention attendees. The Spanish-language session was an encouragement to many. Ethnic fellowships, seminary dinners, and young pastors’ activities provided venues for the diverse composition of the SBTC. The annual meeting is truly a homecoming and family gathering.

President Terry Turner presided over the sessions with a humble spirit. The 2013 convention operating budget was approved. Resolutions of substance were adopted. These resolutions expressed the opinion of the messengers at the convention on topics such as sanctity of life and religious liberty to name a few. Our special guest, Dr. Charles Stanley, concluded the convention with a transparent, heartfelt life testimony. I was on a mountaintop at the end of the convention.

As we turn our attention to 2013, the annual meeting will be in Amarillo. West Texans are wonderful people who always extend a kind welcome to the convention. October 28 and 29 are the dates. Put it on your calendar. You will be blessed by being with God’s people.

Thank you for praying. Thank you for giving. Thank you for allowing me to serve the churches of the SBTC. I look forward to another year serving the Lord with you. Have a blessed time with family and in ministry during this Christmas season!

Executive Director Emeritus
Jim Richards
Southern Baptists of Texas Convention
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