Realizing it is just hours before election day on a national scale, it is also just a week until the Baptist General Convention gathers for its annual meeting in Ft. Worth. I haven’t actually been to Ft. Worth other than just passing through since I graduated from Southwestern in 1989, so I am looking forward to visiting the city for business and tourist reasons.
This blog is something like two years old. I got involved in blogging when Wade Burleson’s reports regarding the business of the IMB began coming across the internet, met a whole group of Baptists who share common interests, mainly blogging, missions, evangelism, love for their church, serving in it, and other Baptist related things. As events transpired in the BGCT, and considering that I am a staff member in a church that supports that body through its Cooperative Program giving, I took an interest in blogging about that as well. And so, here we are.
I do not claim to be an influential blogger. Since I started writing, the blog has received something like 68,000 hits, and averages hits from 130 different IP addresses each day. I have no idea how many of those are accidental, or how many are from Texas Baptists, or other Southern Baptists but considering the content, I can’t imagine an audience that is much broader than that. During the period of time of the BGCT annual meeting last year, when I was a candidate for First Vice President, the blog had its highest day ever of hits, with over 1,000 different IP addresses visiting.
It is, however, the perogative of the blogger, no matter how small the audience, to endorse candidates for offices of interest. I’d prefer to reserve this privilege for the SBC and the BGCT. Seeing that I have common interests in the BGCT with David Lowrie and Ken Coffee, I will use this opportunity to endorse their candidacies for office, President and First Vice President respectively, and urge you to join me in Ft. Worth and vote for them.
Both men have prioritized the need to bring new leadership into the convention, to serve on boards and committees, something I see as an absolute necessity to the survival and continued relevance of the BGCT. Both men also believe that the desire of the majority of our churches is to have a better, closer relationship with the SBC, and they will look for ways to improve and repair the damage that has been done to that over the past 30 years. Neither of them would do anything to threaten or endanger the convention’s more moderate leaning churches, and I believe they respect the right of those churches to maintain their ties to the groups they have helped form.
We need to recover our relationship with the SBC while at the same time maintaining the unique identity that we have developed, as well as our independence and autonomy. I believe we can do this, and though it may be a God-sized thing, it would be God’s Spirit at work to heal the divisions.
It is long past time for this to happen.