I haven’t seen much in the way of blogging commentary on Dr. Everett’s message in Southwestern Seminary’s chapel service last week. Had I not been in Chicago at the Willow Creek conference last week, I would have driven to Ft. Worth to be there.
In light of the relationship that has developed between the BGCT and Southwestern in recent years, and some of the rhetoric that has come out, it was quite gracious of Dr. Patterson to issue the invitation to the new BGCT executive director. Dr. Everett’s message, which addressed the need for healing in relationships, and in which he alluded to the healing that the Baptist family needed, was equally as gracious.
At some point, when an event takes place that brings Baptists from both sides of the “controversy” together, I am hoping that a leader will step up, take the opportunity, and make a visible extension of the hand of cooperation. As Dr. Everett noted in his sermon, forgiveness seems impossible when the debt seems to be so huge, and as long as people continue to hang on to their lengthy list of grievances, it isn’t going to happen. But the provision is made, through forgiveness, to let go of the list and the bitterness that goes along with it, and start acting like family again. I wish I could have seen the faces of those in his audience. I could hear many amens in agreement. Perhaps this was not the exact moment, but it is clear that the relationship between the seminary and the BGCT is improving. I am looking forward to next month’s BGCT, when visiting the Southwestern booth will be an option once again.