For many people the New Year is a time for a fresh start – a time to resolve to do things differently than the year before. Although we usually begin the New Year with great expectations we often, after a short time, find ourselves already behind in our commitments and resolutions.
This year I want to encourage you to resolve to do something that is not only practical and doable, but is very much a necessary and critical component to the life of God’s followers. I want to encourage you to pray for missions and ministry efforts here in North Carolina and around the world. Last year churches across North Carolina prayed for many months that God’s work during our annual meeting would be a catalyst for spiritual renewal. We prayed for spiritual awakening and for God to lead us toward repentance and personal holiness. God was faithful to answer our prayers during the 2012 annual meeting in Greensboro. I hope this will be a spark used of God to ignite the fires of revival that will spread through churches all across this state and nation.
I remind you that we must continue to be fervent in prayer. One way you can do this is by committing this year to pray every Sunday – all 52 Sundays – for ministries and missions that are helping advance the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Our staff at the Baptist State Convention developed a prayer guide to help you pray every Sunday for missionaries serving overseas, across North America and throughout our state.
You can use this devotional prayer guide during your personal quiet time, or you may choose to use this prayer guide during a time of family devotion. Pastors, this is also a great resource for you to use Sunday mornings with your congregation.
Your church should have received in the mail a copy of this prayer guide. You can order additional copies by visiting www.ncbaptist.org/cp or emailing [email protected]. On the website you will also find available for download PowerPoint slides that accompany the prayer guide.
Every individual you read about in this wonderful devotional tool is supported through your gifts to the Cooperative Program. The Cooperative Program is how we as North Carolina Baptists, and Southern Baptists, work together to support ministry and missions.
I believe in the Cooperative Program because it allows local churches to work together. I believe far more is accomplished for our Lord’s Kingdom when we serve together rather than when we try to do it on our own.
As you read about these pastors, church planters and missionaries, please pray for God to work mightily and to transform hearts and lives.
Ask God to show you how He may be leading you to support these missions efforts.
I pray that as you commit to praying on Sundays you would be reminded of our God’s goodness and incredible power. He is at work among us, and He calls us to be on mission for Him.
“Continue in prayer, and watch in the same with thanksgiving.” Colossians 4:2