Perspectives

“Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Matthew 4:19, ESV The calling given by Jesus to brothers Peter and Andrew as they were fishing in the Galilean waters was life-changing. Jesus then walking further up the shore called two other brothers, James and John, to follow Him as well. Both sets of brothers immediately dropped their nets and followed Him, leaving their old lives behind.

The story of persecuted Baptists in the colonial South is a reminder that religious liberty came at a cost and should be prized and defended today. While the persecution of Baptists in Virginia before the American Revolution is well documented, other persecution across the South has often been overlooked. Including the fact that persecution helped lay the foundation of what would become the largest denomination in Georgia and its defining role in addressing laws concerning the separation of church and state.

One of the perils of life is putting too much value on “stuff.” Stuff can be about anything. It can consist of what we have or what we don’t have.  Much of life is about our stuff.  Our house, cars, things in the house. Things around the house and things in the garage, storage building, barns and more barns. If we work hard, it’s possible to accumulate lots of stuff. Often, we have more than we need. 

As many of you may remember, last June 24 was a very important day in the history of the United States. On that day, Roe versus Wade was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on the Dobbs case. The bottom line is that the original Roe v. Wade decision was unconstitutional because there has NEVER been a national constitutional right to abortion!

Send Relief’s Atlanta Ministry Center, where I work as Outreach Coordinator, was created to work with and through local churches to serve former refugees in the United States. For me, refugee ministry is personal because I was born in a refugee camp, grew up in a refugee camp and came to America as a refugee. Yes—I am also a former refugee, like many others in the numerous cities across the United States, like Clarkston, Georgia.

Several years ago, Shaun Cunningham treated his son Landon to a Spring training baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and the Pittsburgh Pirates. Landon was looking at his dad’s cell phone sending pictures of the action to his mom when, suddenly, Pittsburgh’s Danny Ortiz swung hard and lost his bat, propelling it into the stands.

It’s always amazing to me how rude some people can be to waiters in restaurants and clerks in stores. You would think the world operates solely for their wants. I have a perfect example. It was the fall of 1986 and I was sitting in a restaurant in Washington, D.C. The man at the table next to me called over the waiter and demanded, “Smell this lemon. It’s stale. Bring me some fresh lemon.”

According to an insect identification database, 647 types of bugs and insects are found in Alabama. Some downright scare me. I looked at images of each until I located the entry most resembling the flying insect I watched from a chair on my back deck.

The only beef I have with my fellow Kentucky native and 16th President of the United States Abraham Lincoln is that he never joined a church. I’m quite sure he was a Christian, not to mention a great leader and honest man. Yet, history tells us he never officially connected with a local congregation. So what’s the big deal, many would say, especially in an age of cascading commitment and denominational decline?

As we recognized our graduates in a worship service recently, I made the comment that, “It’s been a loooong time since many of us graduated from high school.” A light chuckle rippled through the congregation as people briefly recalled their own graduation. I reflected, also, with a sense of disbelief at how fast the past 40-plus years since high school have flown.

As the Crisis Response Director for Send Relief, my objective is to help local churches in the United States understand the importance of training their volunteer teams in disaster relief and partnering with the Southern Baptist Disaster Relief network. Preparation is a crucial part of ministry because it empowers us to be more effective as we seek to be used by God to reach and minister to others.

Every election cycle someone says, “This is the most important election in the history of our nation,” or some variation of this statement. There is no doubt that elections have consequences and this is a significant time in our nation’s history. I also believe it is not too soon to begin considering some of the issues of the day. With the 2024 presidential race underway, it is incumbent upon us as Georgia Baptists to engage responsibly and thoughtfully in the political process. We are citizens of heaven, certainly, but also stewards of the earthly realm, and it is in this dual citizenship that our challenge lies.

COLUMBUS, Ga. — While preaching at Salem Baptist Church in Dalton recently, I met a dear woman who asked me to pray for her brother, Bobby Jones, who has been missing in action since November 28, 1972. He was fighting in Vietnam when he was either killed in action or captured by the North Vietnamese.

In the words of Plato, an ancient Greek philosopher, “Books give a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.” Truer words could never have been written, words which best describe, “The People’s Justice, Clarence Thomas and the Constitutional Stories that Define Him,” written by Amul Thapar, a judge on the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Reports flow in every week of God moving and revival spreading in Georgia. The Gospel is being shared, and baptisms are increasing! What Ivy Creek Baptist Church imagined would happen at their first men's event in late April since COVID-19 is nothing short of discipleship revival led by the church's men.

A near tragedy providing an up-close encounter with firefighters gradually evolved into a different direction for pastor Frank Mercer’s ministry. The Fayetteville, Georgia, pastor served Rolling Hills Baptist Church at the time. Several years ago, in the middle of the night, the home’s fire alarm roused the Mercer family, who found their back porch engulfed in flames.

Some of Georgia’s best and brightest students have been awarded scholarships to attend Brewton-Parker College, Shorter University and Truett McConnell University where they will receive educations that are second to none. Their academic achievements show their intellectual prowess. Their steadfast commitment to Christ testify to their spiritual strength. Those attributes, combined with other academic and extracurricular measures, earned them Student Achievement Award scholarships from the Georgia Baptist Education Commission.

“Quesadillas and Questions” was the theme for this year’s Georgia Tech Baptist Collegiate Ministries evangelistic outreach event. BCM students and volunteers from local churches gathered every day of finals week between April 27 and May 4 on the front lawn of the BCM. Participants cooked more than 500 quesadillas over the course of the event and gave them out for free to students, with a simple caveat. In order to get a quesadilla, students had to ask any question they had about God or Christianity.

Baptisms are always a special occasion, a worship service highlight. This outward expression of one’s spiritual commitment to Christ brings much joy. Some are more memorable than others. One of my most unique ministry experiences happened one bright Fall morning several years ago. 

Like most Baptist churches of the day, First Baptist Church of Murray, Kentucky, regularly hosted missionaries and denominational workers raising financial support. Growing frustrated with so many requesting to speak on Sundays, Pastor Harvey Boyce Taylor tried something new.

Often during my 30 years as a senior pastor, I got the itch to move on to another church. Some of those urges were legitimate, but many were not. Feeling like “you’ve pulled that ole wagon as far as you can pull it” and waiting for your next assignment can be brutal. Here are nine lessons I learned in the process.

Recently, we treated ourselves to a Chick-fil-a milkshake. As we approached the drive-through window, the employee came over and handed us our milkshake. As I handed him payment, he said, “I gotcha’! It’s taken care of. Happy Easter!” The generous driver in front of us picked up the tab, and we were blessed. This pleasant gesture caught us by surprise and reminded us kindness is still alive.

Brad Hughes, chairman of the Georgia Baptist Mission Board’s Public Affairs Committee and director of field operations for Gov. Brian Kemp, and I are very excited about this year's public affairs training events. Our theme for this year’s training is, "Living for Christ in the Public Square."

One of the key elements in prayer is petitioning, or praying for yourself. Some people shy away from such prayers, thinking that it violates humility and draws attention to themselves rather than God. Yet, it’s absolutely biblical.

A man driving along a highway suddenly sees the Easter Bunny jump out of the bushes and dart across the middle of the road. He swerves to avoid hitting him, but the rabbit jumps right in front of the car. Bam! The driver pulls over and gets out to check on the rabbit. To his dismay, the rabbit is dead. The driver feels so awful he begins to cry. A woman driving by sees a man crying on the side of the road and pulls over. She steps out of the car and asks the man what's wrong. “I feel terrible,” he explains, “I accidentally hit the Easter bunny and killed him. He hopped right in front of me.”

« Prev | 1 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 59 | Next »
Currently viewing stories posted within the past 7 years.
For all older stories, please use our advanced search.