To be effective in Kingdom work it is extremely important to stay informed. So much is changing around us daily – even hourly – that profoundly affects our lifestyles. Missing one piece of information can limit our effectiveness in ministry.
It is very important for Baptists to stay informed. Do the people in your church know what is going on? Is their worldview limited to the events within your church fellowship? As important as the local church is, God’s Kingdom work is too vast to be contained by the four walls of any single church.
When you pick up a copy of the Biblical Recorder or read the digital edition online, you are connecting with international missions, North American missions and North Carolina missions. You are reading about the way God is equipping leaders in places like Caswell, Caraway, and in educational institutions like Fruitland Baptist Bible Institute and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. You are learning about God’s work through N.C. Baptist Men, the Baptist Children’s Homes of N.C. and so many other ministries.
The Recorder keeps you and your fellow church members informed on church revitalization, church planting, human trafficking, church policies, cultural changes and political issues. We tell you about the work in churches of every size across our state. We print unique features on prayer, evangelism, worship, and women’s ministry. Roman Gabriel III shares a regular sports Q&A to give us a window into ministry in the world of sports.
In short, we’re here to inform you so everyone in the body of Christ will be stronger believers, servants, givers, missionaries, ministers and teachers. Whatever biblical assignment God has given you, we want to be part of God’s construction project in your life by encouraging you and feeding you.
That is what we do at the Recorder. People who read the Recorder tell me they are better prepared to face the issues of the day, and they understand the work of Baptists so much better.
The more people are informed, the stronger our churches and our convention will be.
As I speak across the state, I am surprised at how few church members know the Recorder exists. They are encouraged when they learn that a Christian news agency provides news and information from a biblical worldview to strengthen their personal service to the Lord.
The Biblical Recorder is now 180 years old. While most of those years focused entirely on the printed page, we realize that we are not in the printing business. We are in the communication business.
Cultural and economic changes have forced a decline in all forms of print media. While many still enjoy holding a paper in their hand, most people now get their news from electronic sources.
Accepting the challenge of technology, we have taken great strides in that field. In September 1997 the Recorder was one of the first state papers to launch a website. We took that site to a new level in October 2011 with a change in branding, appearance and technology.
Last month we took another giant step becoming the first Baptist paper to apply “responsive design” technology to our site. This adjusts the way our site looks on different devices, based on the size of your tablet, phone or desktop.
The result is that your BR website led the pack among all Baptist newspaper websites with the highest rankings for the first 7 months of this year.
In May 2012, we launched a weekly news email, BRweekly. It is growing and gets positive reviews. We need to broaden the readership of this free, weekly e-newsletter.
In May of this year our first BR app for smart phones went live. Many have downloaded this free app and are using it regularly to access BRnow.org.
In July we launched a digital edition online. Judging by the early response, we believe this advancement will become an important tool for our readers.
The Recorder has been using Facebook and Twitter for several years. We recently refined and accelerated our use of these social media tools.
We can do a better job of serving you if you will do a few things for us. In other words, we need your help. Here are some ways you can strengthen the Recorder and help your church family become better informed and stronger in kingdom service.
1. Encourage people to sign up for the free BRweekly.
2. Put a link to BRnow.org on your church website.
3. Encourage others to subscribe to the print or digital edition.
4. Encourage your church to begin a church group plan (copies mailed to individuals) or a bulk plan (a bulk quantity mailed to the church for distribution).
5. Publish our website in your church bulletin, newsletter or other printed pieces.
6. If your church uses video screens, display our information on a slide.
Without your help media organizations like the Biblical Recorder cannot survive. As we partner together, we’ll be here for you and for the glory of God. Thank you for the joy of serving in ministry partnership. For additional resources and details on how you can inform your church about the Biblical Recorder visit BRnow.org/resources/promote-BR.
Also, I pray that in the month of September you will participate in the strong partnership of the North Carolina Missions Offering. Visit ncmissionsoffering.org to learn how this offering is being used to reach N.C. with the gospel.