When it came time to collect shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child, Hardinsburg Baptist Church gave its pastor a serious case of the blues.
Pastor Paul Gibson threw down a unique challenge to the church: collect more than 400 shoeboxes, and I'll turn up to preach one Sunday morning dressed head-to-toe in blue. That's no small commitment for Gibson, a dyed-in-the-wool Western Kentucky University fan who once served as the manager for the Hilltopper's mens basketball team. He also served for two years as campus missionary to the University of Louisville.
If not for a Baptist church split, the Pilgrims might never have come to America.
John Smyth, who often is credited with being the first Baptist, pastored a church where many of the Christians who later came to be known as Pilgrims were members. But when Smyth began to argue with the future Pilgrims over church government, they formed another church under the leadership of John Robinson. In 1620, a portion of Robinson's congregation sailed to Plymouth, Mass., aboard the Mayflower.
A missions team from London saw firsthand the plight of Haitians who lack access to basic medical care-but only after doing their part to bring hope and healing to the sick.
"I was more than a little shocked at the differences we saw in U.S. healthcare and that of Haiti," said Rebecca Rollins, a registered nurse who recently returned from a trip to the impoverished Caribbean nation. "The chart was a piece of white printer paper with their name, age and physical complaints written out-no computer, no privacy, no cleaning between patients, and certainly no government agencies regulating the practices."
A Kentucky teen who was runner-up in the National High School Bible Drill earlier this year is encouraging others to get involved in the Christian competitions.
Autumn Adkins, the 18-year-old daughter of Robby and Kristi Adkins of Owenton, said preparing for Bible drill competitions helped expand her knowledge of the Scripture.
Christians must defend marriage by facing opponents winsomely and demonstrating that God's plan of one man and one woman for life promotes human flourishing, Rick Warren told international religious leaders at the Vatican.
Warren, pastor of Saddleback Church, a Southern Baptist congregation in the Los Angeles area, said he supports God's unchanging model for marriage and opposes gay marriage because "the only way to always be relevant is to be eternal. What is in style goes out of style. But no revolution lasts. Every lie eventually crumbles under its own deception. Cultures rise and fall. Cultures come and go. It isn't necessary to be on the right side of culture. It is necessary to be on the right side."
Olive Branch, Miss.-IMB President David Platt outlined his five-point strategic plan while presiding over his first trustee meeting as head of the mission agency. In a plan based on five biblical goals which have led to four practical steps and three initial recommendations, Platt offered two important reminders to reach one all-consuming goal: glorifying God.
Platt's five biblically based goals for IMB are: exalting Christ, mobilizing Christians, equipping the church, facilitating church planting and "playing our part in completing the Great Commission," he explained to trustees during their November meetings in Olive Branch, Miss.