After spending a year
focusing on evangelism, the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina (BSC)
moves on to focus on discipleship.
Find it Here, a three-year
statewide evangelism emphasis, kicked off its second year Nov. 9 at the BSC
Evangelism is the first
step, but the command of Jesus Christ to every believer is to make disciples —
not just converts.
In light of that command,
the Find it Here 2011: Embracing Christ emphasis is discipleship.
Lynn Sasser, executive
leader for congregational services, read the theme verse of John 15:8 and
explained that a disciple is one who “abides in Christ and does the things that
The Find it Here presentation
featured video interviews with pastors about the importance of discipleship.
Leon Hawks, pastor of Crosspointe Church in Concord, said the first step in
making disciples is to “be a disciple yourself. You cannot expect your church
to do what you aren’t doing.”
Sean Cordell, pastor of
Treasuring Christ Church in Raleigh, said discipleship encompasses all that
Jesus commanded His followers to do. Cordell shared that for a long time he
“equated discipleship with knowing and being able to tell other people.”
However, telling other
people often came in the classroom setting in the form of teaching and he
neglected other discipleship contexts such as the home. Cordell is now intent
on making his home a place where his family is discipled.
Sasser explained that Find
it Here 2011 does not dismiss measuring sticks such as baptism numbers, but
seeks to expand the scorecard when it comes to evaluating church effectiveness.
The expanded scorecard must
include whether or not churches are leading people to life transformation
through a discipleship journey.
Ultimate success is to “see
people following Christ and living on mission,” Sasser said.
Chuck Register, executive
leader for church planting and missions development, led messengers in a time
of commitment. Register asked messengers willing to commit to intentional
discipleship in 2011 to turn in a response card signifying this commitment.
Churches can also sign up or
get resources at www.finditherenc.org.
Don McCutcheon, executive
leader for evangelization, shared testimonials from the first year’s emphasis
McCutcheon reported about
Woodlawn Baptist Church in Conover, where 26 people made a profession of faith
in Jesus Christ and six were baptized Easter Sunday.
Hephzibah Baptist Church in
Wendell baptized 11 people Easter Sunday and saw its second highest attendance
For six months leading up to
Easter Sunday Hephzibah members committed to increasing their efforts to be
intentionally evangelistic and during that time 26 people were baptized.
Register also previewed the
next and final Find it Here emphasis: Expanding the Kingdom.
The 2011 annual meeting will
launch an intentional focus on missions and taking the gospel to unreached people
groups of the world that have never had an opportunity to hear the gospel.