Current News – 6-17-2020

*Shew Elected Bi-Vocational Missionary (pg. 1)

The BMA of Arkansas Missionary Committee met June 16 for an “official” vote on Johnny and Karen Shew to serve as missionaries in the Flippin area, and he was elected unanimously. The Advisory Committee had visited the church in March, and had interviewed and approved Bro. Johnny. At their recommendation, he began receiving a bi-vocational salary April 1 since they were unsure when the committee would be able to meet to officially approve him due to the pandemic.

* SOAR: Online & Free (pg. 1)

Nick Jacobsen – For the first time ever, all three BMA colleges will be giving away a SOAR scholarship. If you have a student who is a junior or senior, encourage them to go to gosoar.com, scroll to the bottom of the page and follow the links to each college: Central Baptist College in Conway, Ark.; Jacksonville College in Jacksonville, Texas; and Southeastern Baptist College in Laurel, Miss. VSM — I would be remiss if I didn’t mention VSM. Although their trips for the summer of 2020 have been moved to the summer of 2021, VSM is going to be giving away a $500 scholarship for 2021. Any student who signs up to go on a trip is eligible to win. To sign up, go to bmamissions.org/vsm.

*Lebanon on the Brink (pg. 1)

Charlie Costa -It has been a while since I’ve written about the work we are doing here in the Middle East. Obviously, COVID-19 has been center stage all over the world, but lost in this melee was the economic disaster taking place in Lebanon… With the meager resources available, we have been able to help more than 400 families. We are trying to make this assistance with food packages sustainable for the next few months hoping that this difficulty will ease.Please give generously to the BMAA relief fund at www.app.securegive.com/BMAMissions/main/donate/category; PO Box 878, Conway, Ark. 72033; or call (501) 455-4977.

*CBC Announces Preliminary Plans for Reopening (pg. 1)

President Terry Kimbrow -While in reality it has only been 10 weeks since Spring Break, it seems like much longer since the Central Baptist College campus was busy and vibrant with employees and students. When we announced on March 16 that we would transition all of our classes to online course delivery for the remainder of the semester and on March 27 that employees would transition to working remotely, we could not have envisioned all that would occur as we now look to the beginning of the Fall 2020 semester. Throughout this time, it has been the desire and intention of CBC to reopen for in-person course instruction for the Fall semester. As I have said before and I will say again, “Amid continued uncertainty, we serve an unchanging God. The distinctly Christian mission we have of integrating Christian faith and academic excellence happens in community and fellowship. We plan to do whatever it takes to be able to welcome students to campus this fall.”

What Do They Need To Hear? (pg. 2)

Anders Lee(via Mississippi Baptist)We’re halfway through2020, and it has been a crazy rollercoaster ride! Do you agree? It started with a heated impeachment of President Trump, and we barely got that off the calendar when we were hit with COVID-19.We have been covered up with COVID information — we literally have not lived a day without news on it. Then suddenly, as things started to progress to normality, the country is hit with riots and racial divide and we aren’t hearing much about COVID anymore.To be honest, I’m wondering what’s next — especially since it’s an election year! In the meantime, our kids and teens are hearing and seeing everything that is in the media, particularly social media!

Check on Your Student Ministry Workers (pg. 2)

Dan Carson – If you have been on social media over the last 12 weeks, you have seen all sorts of things. Our world is gone a little crazy. However, one of the early memes of COVID-19 and social distancing simply said that, “If you have friends that are extroverts, you need to check on them. They are not okay.” Not all student ministry workers are extroverts, but many do need to be checked on. Like those in education, their worlds have been flipped upside down. All the things they were used to doing during the summer with their students have been postponed or even cancelled. The SOAR conference had to go digital. Church camp is cancelled. Even Sunday school classes are on hold for many of our churches.

CBC Sports (pg. 2)

New signees in Baseball, Soccer & Volleyball

Do Not Retreat (pg. 3)

Larry Barker – Right now, we are living in some of the most tumultuous times, with a virus that has virtually brought life to a screeching halt and racial tension polarizing so many. The temptation is to pull back and seek safety from all the controversy and conflict. In the Made for More Resource Kit (by Todd Wilson & Brad Wigner), we are reminded: “The role of the local church is to be the mobilizing home base. This empowers all disciples to discover their personal calling and then deploy them to express the fullness of Jesus into every corner of culture and into every sphere of society.” Are you expressing the fullness of Jesus?

He’s a Good, Good Father (pg. 3)

Tom Mitchell – In this issue I’ve chosen to step away from the theme of Trailblazers of the BMA of Arkansas. Instead, I want to focus on this coming Sunday — particularly, about Father’s Day. I want to focus our attention on the Supreme Father — Jehovah God, our Heavenly Father. Please do not be offended, but I think we have come to a place where many take our Heavenly Father for granted. “Tom, what are you saying?” you may ask. There are several indicators of the error.

I Was Wrong! (pg. 4)                                                                                                                 

Editor – One of former editor David Tidwell’s favorite sayings was “Confession may be good for the soul, but it’s hard on the reputation!” With that said, here goes… When this year’s Special Emphasis appeared to be “waylaid” by a pesky virus less than two weeks after it started, I really doubted that we’d end up being anywhere close to reaching our goal. But, just for the record, I was wrong! With some generous donations from some wonderful people who love the Lord and the Baptist Trumpet, we are only $5,987.87 away from our goal. So now I really, really believe we’ll make it… because you know I’m still looking for more “But God” moments! Thank you all so very much.

Trumpet Notes (pg. 4)

SCOTUS Ruling “A Grave Threat;” Lawsuit Challenges Ill. Insurance Mandate; Bible Verses Called “Abusive;” Donations Grow In Spite of Lockdowns

Michael Jimerson Passes Away (pg. 5)

Michael Jimerson, 48 of Benton, received a liver transplant Sept. 8, 2007 and lived valiantly until he succumbed to cancer on June 13. He was the son of Gail Wells Jimerson and David Jimerson, pastor of Blackjack Baptist Church in Troup, Texas. He attended Southern Arkansas University, and served several BMA churches in the areas of music and youth, including: First in Waldo, Central in Prescott and Landmark in England. Bro. Michael was a charter member of the Collective Church in Bryant, where he served as an elder, finance ministry leader and worship team bass guitarist. Survivors include: his wife, Kasey Alston Jimerson; a son, Brayden Jimerson of Conway; two daughters, Kaylee Jimerson of Cabot and Claire Jimerson of Benton; his parents; two sisters, Shanna (Daniel) Sitton of Jacksonville, Texas and Stacey (Geoff) Jeffress of Rawlins, Wyo.; his grandmother, Allie Faye Busby of Jacksonville, Texas; his wife’s parents, Marsha and Glenn Alston, pastor of Cherrywood in North Little Rock; and his grandfather-in-law, Billy Alston. Funeral Services were held June 16 at Collective Church in Bryant, with P.J. Noland officiating. Interment was at Lone Hill Cemetery in Malvern, under the direction of Regency Funeral Home. Memorials may be made to Collective Church Benevolence Fund, 3230 Market Place Ave., Bryant, Ark. 72022.

Children’s Ministry, Going Forward (pg. 5)

Brotherhood Mutual – As ministries begin gathering, there are still many questions about how to safely and effectively teach children and youth. Some are continuing to do online activities or are holding special family services geared toward youth. Others may choose a phased-in approach to gathering youth and children. Each ministry will need to decide what’s best for their own congregation, but the following tips may help minimize the spread of respiratory illnesses as you consider how and when you’ll gather your children and youth.

Can I Get an Amen? (pg. 6)

Valarie Fish – I have been to many a church service where the congregation would resound with a chorus of “amen” any time the preacher got to going. The fierier the sermon, the more robust the “amen.” At the same time, the more verbal the congregation, the more the speaker would be encouraged. In the language of public speaking, this is known as audience engagement. A good orator knows how to illicit a response from his or her audience. Asking for a show of hands, response to a group question or moving to be closer to the listeners are strategies of audience engagement. At times, a speaker might even throw out a little kindling by saying something like “Can I get an amen?” When a speaker is asking for a response, he or she is wanting to know the audience is receiving the message.

We Had to Leave Them Behind (pg. 6)

Martha Brock – Correspondence is a letter, but what about Epistle? Well it’s just about the same. It’s a letter, but we think of it in terms of the Bible and the Apostles, don’t we? Those two words meaning the same makes me think of all the ways we are like those old time people. A guy from prison wrote me recently. It was a nice letter. He complimented the Potter’s Wheel installment dealing with Uzziah and King Herod. He said it dealt concisely with the Vietnam Vet problem. I am glad. The Potter’s Wheel isn’t aimed at anyone. It is a Bible story with a principle I can apply to my own life. I hope it hits others, and since most of us are more alike than different, it usually does.

Effects of COVID-19 (pg. 7)

Paul White – This past week, I have been in touch with our missionaries concerning how the pandemic has affected their individual ministries. As has been stated before, the near total lack of interaction with individuals due to the quarantine has placed their much-needed outreach efforts on hold. The missionary’s most valuable tools at their disposal are the one-on-one encounters within their respected communities. Please continue to pray for these bodies of Christ that are in the process of being formed.

Pastoral Ministry and Mental Health (pg. 7)

Cody Glen Barnhart • Baptist Press -Seacoast Church recently announced that former Southern Baptist pastor Darrin Patrick passed away from what “appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound.” The news sent shockwaves through social media. Patrick’s passing is a devastating blow. We seem to have lost another one of our brothers to the crisis of mental health.Patrick’s death serves as a somber reminder that the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak are not only physical — isolation feels ever-present.Because 2020 has gone awry, an entire generation of pastors feel (perhaps for the first time) the need for pointed, calculated and faithful leadership. Pastors have a lot of stress right now, and in the midst of this, they can’t even hug one another as a reminder of the brotherhood they share in Christ.

Spotlight on Missions (pg. 8)

Bryan & Pam Risner, Romania

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