Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Shepastor: "Conversations"

This past week I attended the American Baptist Biennial in Overland Park, Kansas. The Focus of this year's meeting was conversation. They called it a "Mission Summit." This was a first for ABC-USA. Some what risky because there was no guarantee that people would be open and willing to travel across the country to "converse!"

However, expansion, progression and innovation all require some level of risk. For three days delegates from all over the United States, Puerto Rico, Burma as well as other lands gathered together to sit in groups and discuss a variety of topics. Over 1,000 people participated in the activity. The intent was not to answer questions, but rather to raise questions, wrestle with conundrums, hear one another's ideas and share how the Lord is moving in and through individuals, churches and ministries. Topics included discipleship, teaming, lay leadership, missions, pastoral transitions, evangelism, youth ministry, many, many more and of course, women in ministry.

Questions were raised regarding barriers and why they exist, how is God moving in the midst of the struggle, what has God already done and how do we see God moving us forward. Intriguing conversations indeed! We have been urged to continue the conversations in order that we may "hear what the Spirit is saying unto the churches."

May our conversations move us towards a greater understanding of one another, the issues that we face, the giftedness that we possess and the strength that we have as we work together. May we be empowered to tear down barriers, and open our hearts to the voice, purposes and will of The Lord in our lives and in the work of the Church.

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Until next Wednesday,
In Faith, Hope and Perseverance,
Pastor Chris

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