Connecting the Dots in an Unconnected World

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

How You Should Vote

I was recently asked by a friend who is not a member of our Church, "How Should I Vote on November 6?"

After listening to his displeasure with the current state of our nation and particularly the political processes. Here is my response:

  1. Vote! The worst possible response for an American is to fail to exercise one of our greatest privileges, the vote.
  2. Vote with prayer! If you know Jesus as your Savior ask Him to guide you in the process of voting. God is interested in what happens in America for God is interested in what happens in the lives of His people who are Americans.
  3. Vote with knowledge! Become knowledgeable about the issues on the ballot as well as the platforms of the political parties and the individuals running for office. Your vote should come from your first hand discernment NOT the warmed over rhetoric of the media and/or so-called political pundits whom you may know.
  4. Vote with responsibility! Take personal responsibility for the votes you cast. Those whom are elected will represent you for the term of their service.
  5. Vote with conviction! The election is not about selecting a single political party. The election is about electing the people who will best represent you and your convictions. There are no perfect candidates(contrary to what we are told). Find the person(s) who will best represent your convictions and support them and vote for them.

In my opinion this election is the most important in our nation in this generation. The challenges we face as a nation are mounting every day. We do not need another failed plan created by politicians for the benefit of politicians. We desperately need wise Godly leadership such as that of our storied history as a nation. Plan to exercise the right of casting your ballot, Tuesday, November 6.

Attempting to Connect the Dots...


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Evangelism as a Priority

Today, I read a blog posted by Dr. Thom Rainer, President and CEO of Lifeway Christian Resources an agency of the Southern Baptist Convention, titled "Seven Reasons Why Evangelism Should Be a Priority in Your Church." While I find myself agreeing with much of what Dr. Rainer wrote, assuming that Dr. Rainer's "stats" deal with Southern Baptist Churches or at least includes Southern Baptist churches, allow me a few observations.

As a whole Southern Baptists have lost their focus on evangelism. While I am not looking longingly for the past to return, in the day when we were most effective in evangelism it was not just our priority, evangelism was our reason for existence. Evangelism was the lead organization of our Home Mission Board (now North American Mission Board). Great State-wide Evangelism Conferences were conducted to equip and inspire our pastors and lay people to do the work of evangelism. Some would say that those meetings are no longer well attended and thus have scraped them. The lack of evangelistic zeal and emphasis in our churches cries out for the need of such events. Today, the stated emphasis of the NAMB allocates less than 25% of the annual NAMB budget to Evangelism and it is difficult to find a cohesive evangelistic emphasis that originates at NAMB.

Soul Winner Training, Weekly Visitation and Revivals still work to inspire and equip our people to the work of evangelism. When we remove these emphases describing them as outdated and ineffective we are simply ignoring not only Biblical mandate but real world experience. By setting aside the priority of evangelism we are in danger of being like the Australian who was given a new boomerang for Christmas and killed himself throwing the old one away.

We have mistakenly become more interested in church growth than evangelism. Evangelism must not be viewed as a church growth program but rather the response of an obedient spirit and a compassionate heart to God's Love and the reality of a burning hell. People all around us are lost and in desperate need of a Savior.

This is not "perhaps our greatest tragedy". It is absolutely our greatest tragedy. God help us to make evangelism not just A priority but THE priority of our churches and our lives as followers of Jesus.

Attempting to Connect the Dots...


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