Your ‘information missionaries’
K. Allan Blume, BR Editor
March 11, 2014

Your ‘information missionaries’

Your ‘information missionaries’
K. Allan Blume, BR Editor
March 11, 2014

Information is power! Information can change the course of history. When the infantry marches into battle, one piece of intelligence information can make the difference between victory or defeat. When a squadron of fighter jets flies toward an assigned target, one piece of information can make the difference in life and death.

News and information have never been more important. We thrive on it and devour it like sharks in a feeding frenzy. Some of the information we absorb is social content – casual connections with people we know through social media tools like Facebook and Twitter.

Some of our information appetite is satisfied by reading news about national politics, cultural conflicts, weather patterns, international tensions, sports and entertainment.

This is the information age. Some call it the digital revolution or the new media explosion. Whatever the label, the conclusion is the same – the shape of our lives is heavily influenced by information.

Although Christians are not removed from this cultural phenomenon, the most important information we consume is the truth of scripture. Psalm 1:2 says the godly person will delight in God’s Word and meditate on it “day and night.” This is our indisputable beginning point. This must always be our information standard.

But we are also called to be alert to God’s activities around us. Our eyes must be open and our ears must be attentive to the news and information swirling around us.

This is why the Biblical Recorder exists. Our mission is to be your trusted information missionaries, keeping you informed about God’s work among North Carolina Baptists and Southern Baptists worldwide. We also report on political and cultural trends that collide with our Christian worldview.

Our main assignment is to provide a free flow of accurate material that will encourage churches and church leaders, with emphasis on the Great Commission.

We publish stories about the ministries of local churches and their missions outreach. We believe people need to know. When people have the right information, they are better leaders, better church members, better missionaries, better givers, better witnesses and better disciple-makers.

You support more than 10,000 national and international missionaries through the Cooperative Program and special offerings.

No single church can keep up with all of them. But at the Biblical Recorder we work with your mission agencies to pull together some of the best reports about the work in various mission fields. Space and time do not allow us to tell everyone’s stories. But we can tell many.

You can find a lot of information surfing the web. But your Biblical Recorder staff serves as information missionaries who do most of the groundwork for you.

We gather and assemble news and information that will strengthen your ministry. Our calling is to support God’s primary instrument for the Great Commission – the local church.

One of the leaders at the International Mission Board (IMB) said to me, “The IMB needs our Baptist state papers to provide strong coverage of our work. Papers like the Biblical Recorder are some of the greatest information tools we have available.”

He said the state papers are essential to our cooperative Great Commission work.

We exist to help local churches connect with a vast network of mission work.

Some of those missionaries are in training at one of our six seminaries, so we are delighted to report God’s hand at work through these training centers.

I am sure you realize that newspapers everywhere are struggling to survive in the digital age. Fewer consumers are reading the printed page. More are getting their information through electronic/digital sources.

This is the reason we are not only a newspaper, but an electronic platform that engages Baptists and other Christians with six unique media tools: (1) the print format of the Biblical Recorder, (2) the online digital edition of the Biblical Recorder, (3) our BRnow.org website, (4) the free BRweekly e-newsletter, (5) the BR app for smartphones and (6) social media connections like Twitter (@biblicalrecord), Facebook (facebook.com/biblicalrecorder) and YouTube (youtube.com/BRnowvideo).

There is something you need to know. All of these media tools are not the same. There is unique information in each tool that may not be in the others. So if you do not subscribe to the printed newspaper or the digital edition, you are missing some valuable information.

I encourage you to spend some time exploring our website. It has a wealth of information. Interact with us on Facebook and Twitter.

Please sign up to receive the very helpful BRweekly. This free e-newsletter will arrive in your inbox early every Wednesday morning. It will point out some of the week’s important news items. You can sign up on our website at brnow.org/BRweekly.

Please take a few minutes to read Mike Creswell’s column. He explains why your church needs the information services that we provide.

These are challenging days for newspapers. Some state papers have ceased publication. Some have gone to a monthly or quarterly publication, which cannot function as a vital news source. I don’t believe North Carolina Baptists want your Biblical Recorder to diminish our work or to close up shop.

Secular media thrives on the sensational, even if it is not true. But we are committed to truth. Don’t underestimate the power of the news and information you have available to you through your Biblical Recorder.

I hope you will encourage your church family to get connected to the information we provide. Visit Brnow.org/promoteBR to learn many ways you can help your church family be informed.