There’s something about the beginning of a year. All we really do is turn the page on the calendar when we get to January, but something much more than that seems to happen when we do. When January comes back around, we feel like we are starting afresh, with a clean palette waiting for us to get started on something new. Many people make New Year Resolutions with this very thought in mind. There’s just something about turning that page in the calendar that fills us with hopefulness and resolve.
As we get started on 2018, I feel like new opportunities await us as a convention. I don’t know what your church has been going through, but January provides an opportunity to make new strides in your calling from the Lord. Remember, the Lord says He makes all things new. This can be a new year for you and your church.
The MTSBC is committed to assisting you to fulfill your calling from the Lord. For one thing, January brings the official start of our three-year partnership with the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention. I believe we have a lot in common with Texas. From our independent mindset, to the great variety of churches, to our economy, there is a lot that makes this partnership feel like a natural fit.
Our partnership with Texas creates opportunities for us to develop deep relationships with churches similar to ours. These relationships can not only help us bring people and resources to our congregations, but they can also provide opportunities for us to join them in their work. Imagine the impact it could have on your church if you had a church partner in Texas where you could send your members to assist them in outreach, Vacation Bible School, mission trips, and conferences.
There’s a lot to be gained by sending your members to work with a church in Texas. For one thing, you can help your members get some much-needed experience and self-confidence. Working side-by-side with experienced people is sure to empower your members to be more effective in their service in your church. In addition, your experienced members get the opportunity to share their abilities and knowledge with others. The sense of accomplishment they will bring back can be a catalyst for a new energy in your church.
We’re beginning the process now of finding SBTC partner churches for our churches. I’m going to work hard to find each of our churches a partner with whom they can enjoy a reciprocal ministry relationship over the next three years. If you would like for me to help you find a partner for your church, just send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll send you a profile page to fill out that will help our Texas partners find a great fit for your church.
Perhaps you’re not ready for a partnership, more foundational things need to happen in your church first. Then, MPACT is where you need to be this March. This year’s MPACT is all about getting our churches to the next level. Every church has another level in it, where it is more mature and more effective. Regardless of where your church is right now, MPACT will give you some tools to take another step. We have experts coming to talk to us about everything from being a more effective pastor, to being more effective in evangelism, to making this year’s VBS the best it’s ever been. And because our churches have given so generously and sacrificially to the Cooperative Program, the MTSBC can once again pay for two hotel nights for all the pastors of every one of our churches to join us.
Dear brothers and sisters, we’re just getting started. As turning the page of the calendar to January fills us with new hope for new things in our lives, so the beginning of 2018 is the start of many new possibilities for your church. Be watching for news of new initiatives your church can be part of and new opportunities to equip your members for effective service in the Lord’s Kingdom. I’m looking forward to this new year. We serve a God for whom all things are possible. Let’s join Him in His work this year and be a part of His advance in the world. It’s going to be a great year!