Within a couple weeks of MPACT 2020, Montana went into lockdown because COVID had finally swept into our state. Since then, our churches have been holding on. Some have found new ways to share the old gospel message and to minister to people. I’m impressed by how well our churches have done in this past year of masks and social distancing.
I’m praying that soon, we’ll see our state and communities return to something closer to normal. Surely, we’ll get there before the end of the year. Regardless, people are still hurting and lost, and many are more desperate today than they have ever been. We must find ways to be there for them and share the gospel message of hope and servant-love of Jesus.
This year’s MPACT is designed to give us the tools and the encouragement to redouble our efforts to share the gospel and minister to our communities. I encourage you to come and bring your leadership, too. I think we all need to have our spiritual tanks refilled and our vision re-energized. MPACT is designed to do that.
The theme for MPACT 2021 is “Equipped for Outreach.” I’m sure you’re not alone when it comes to outreach statistics for the last year. It’s just hard to have gospel conversations and baptize people when they’re scared to even come to church or get close to people. MPACT will give us two days to think about new ways to reach people living in fear and lostness. Outreach is the theme.
This year, we’ve asked the Missouri Baptist Convention to take all of our schedule and fill it up with their best people who can share strategies and ideas for effective outreach in our communities. Missouri Baptists have responded to that invitation with incredible abandon. They are sending us more than a dozen men and women at their own travel expense to teach us some of the best of what they know.
You can go to www.mtsbc.org and see the schedule and breakouts that we have planned for MPACT this year. Four different Missouri Baptist Convention ministry directors will be speaking at the plenary sessions. In addition, almost all of our breakout sessions will be led by men and women from Missouri. Our pastor’s wives breakout will cover two back-to-back sessions so we can make sure we minister to our pastor’s wives, too. In addition, nearly a dozen members of the Crossway Baptist Church worship team are coming to lead us in worship. These folks are some of the best. They will lead us to worship the Lord with contemporary praise and worship songs and traditional hymns.
I know the past year has taken a toll on you. No one was ready for what we have been going through. I believe we can all use some encouraging fellowship, some powerful worship, and some energizing equipping for outreach. I don’t know when the masking and social distancing will end, but let’s not let that stop us from reaching people now and, more importantly, let’s be ready to dive back into soul-saving, community-shaking ministry as soon as it does.
MPACT 2021 is a great way to equip yourself and your leaders for this new year. And, remember, the MTSBC will pay for two nights lodging, Thursday, March 4, and Friday, March 5, for our pastors and their families to help you be able to be there. Plus, we have free childcare. In case you’re wondering, we even have a back-up plan if the Marriott Delta hotel decides to enforce a strict social distancing requirement. Pastor Michael Johnson, at Big Sky Fellowship in Helena, has agreed to host us if we can’t use the large meeting room at the Marriott Delta. In other words, we are having MPACT 2021 and you should make plans to be there. We’ve made it as easy as possible for you to take advantage of this fantastic time. Just go to www.mtsbc.org, click on the registration page for MPACT and register. We’ll take it from there. I’m looking forward to seeing you in Helena.