Home > Uncategorized > The day the SBC hit a turning point

The day the SBC hit a turning point

The reality is, the day I’m about to tell you about was seeded years ago. When my denomination, the southern baptist convention, got a vision for something better. Something better than our reputation as fat, racist, combed-over, culturally irrelevant churches. Those in leadership and in places of influence chose to act on the longing for a new day. A day where we stopped doomsdaying over numbers slides and the new norm would be celebrating kingdom growth. So change came. And with any change, a fight came with it. Truthfully I will never know the nuances of the struggle to streamline our denomination to be more effective in growing the kingdom. But let me tell you the early signs of fruit. The day I consider the turning point where momentum swung. And I think it swung in an important way.

Monday and Tuesday of this week I attended the Send North America conference put on by the SBC. And here are the reasons I believe this short 24hr conference catalyzed a new wave of positive momentum in the sbc:

  1. There were as many young people as old people. First SBC sponsored event I’ve ever been to where that is the case. I’m almost 30, and I actually felt a little old there. That is crazy for an SBC event. But it means people are game for church planting. and open to being a part of the SBC network as they do it.
  2. The content was STRONG. the breakouts and main sessions didn’t feel obligatory, they just equipped. I didn’t attend everything, but the content I took away definitely equipped me. Not only that, the choice of worship leaders & speakers in the main sessions reflected a willingness to meet younger pastors & prospective leaders on their turf. again, huge.
  3. Kevin Ezell. Period. I didn’t even get to meet him, but I’m a fan. Here’s why: Authentic, transparent, loves pastors. The essence of what we all dream for the sbc happened through Kevin. He spontaneously had the entire conference pray over Paul Chitwood and his wife who learned recently she has cancer. Listen, in that moment every guy in that room thought “YES! this is what a denomination should be about. Believing God on behalf of one another & carrying burdens for one another.”  I don’t know Kevin, but I’m excited about that kind of man watching out for church planters.
  4. Food Truck Rodeo. Come on, one thing we all know is the SBC can eat well. That’s not going anywhere.

Bottom line, I left there excited about Southern Baptists planting churches. How awesome is that? Get excited people. It actually is a new day in the SBC. and I’m pumped about it.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. Phil White
    August 2, 2012 at 11:36 am

    We can still eat donuts, right? cuz Hot Now Krispy Kremes are from HEAVEN….


  2. Mark Zellner
    August 3, 2012 at 9:30 am

    I was one of those young guys at the conference (23) who helped to make you feel old! I agree that it was an amazing experience, and hopefully a sunny forecast of the days ahead. Hoping to utilize everything I learned as I seek to plant in Philadelphia.

    It was also great to see JD Greer and David Platt there. Their messages were a clarion call for the church to embrace the full responsibility of spreading the gospel.

  3. August 5, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    I was there also. I’m 31, and have served as pastor in two established, old-school type churches (6 1/2 at my current church). I went down there thinking that God was calling me into church planting, but the Lord used it to show that my job is to inform established churches like mine of the tremendous need in North America. Many SBC churches probably don’t even think about unreached people groups in North America. My church is finding out, and Lord willing, we will be coming alongside a church planter and fulfilling Jesus’ command in Acts 1:8.

    Very impressed with the conference, with NAMB, with Kevin, and the good mix of old and young in the audience. Great conference!

  4. carlo gentleman
    August 6, 2012 at 1:47 am

    When we make much of Jesus, make much of He not me…change takes place.

  5. August 6, 2012 at 9:13 am

    Spence, thanks for this recap. Great to see you at the conference. I’m also excited about Kevin Ezell, great leader!

  1. August 3, 2012 at 3:21 am

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