By David Lee, BCMD Executive Director
I will get to the point. If Southern Baptists (or any other denomination) ever get to the point where we no longer value the ministry of small membership churches, then a giant step will have been taken toward the unraveling of our Great Commission efforts. That statement is not intended to bash large membership churches and mega-churches. Frankly, I wish we had more of those connected with our state convention. Neither does it dampen my dream that some of our smaller membership churches will become much larger churches tomorrow.
The statement is not given as an “out” for those churches with the potential to reach more people, who have chosen instead to sit and focus internally upon themselves while hiding the gospel under a bushel. There is no free pass here!
I just know that in our Baptist world, we have a tendency to overlook the faithful and obedient service of pastors and leaders in churches that do work in hard places where people do not flock to their doors. These are communities where any addition is won by time-intensive and often sacrificial ministry. Often these are churches served by people who give away much more than they will ever receive on this side of heaven.
And hats off to those pastors, many bi-vocational, who do not have staff or strong budgets to assist in the ministry. Yet they faithfully mobilize their people who love Jesus and take seriously the Great Commission.
Throughout our history, these are the churches who have supplied many of our missionaries, pastors, and Cooperative Program resources that have allowed us to become the largest evangelical denomination and missionary force in the world!
I am just saying.