*Director’s Prayers and Goals for 2021 (pg. 1)
Lifeword (Donny Parrish, Executive Director) Although 2020 will go down in history as the most turbulent and difficult year in modern history for the ministry of Lifeword, it will be remembered by our staff as the year that Jehovah Jireh provided. When COVID-19 restrictions moved us from our studios and we realized that we would have to produce media content in a new way, Jehovah Jireh provided for our every need.
BMA Theological Seminary (Dr. Charley Holmes, President) Several years ago, we were all amused by Hillary’s big red reset button and its comic failure with the Russian diplomats. Yet, sometimes, a “reset” can be positive. The majority of Baptist churches (as well as all others) currently see about 50-60% of pre-COVID attendance. Almost as many are having only Sunday morning worship without Sunday School or youth auxiliaries. It seems God has pushed our reset button without asking our permission.
BMA of Ark. State Missions (Paul White, Executive Director)Greetings from your missionaries and office staff. These have been interesting times in church planting without much of the necessary one-on-one evangelism. Yet, despite all that has transpired, your faithfulness to this great work is to be commended. Not only have we been able to maintain, but to add new areas of work. What an awesome thought — every time a service is held, the gospel is presented, a family is aided in all these various locations, it is because of you.
Central Baptist College (Terry Kimbrow, President) I look at goals and dreams differently. Goals to me seem to be more short term — what can be accomplished in the next 1-3 years; Dreams are more long term. They are God-sized, only things that He can accomplish. I am pleased to be able to share some of Central Baptist College’s goals for 2021. (By the way, we have dreams too! Maybe I can share those with you another time very soon.) As I share these goals, I am also going to share ways you can support CBC and help us reach these goal.
*2020: A Year In Review (pg. 1)
To say that 2020 was an “interesting and unusual” year would be a huge understatement. It was certainly a year that was filled with many trials, but it was also a year filled with blessings. Since space is always limited in the first of the year issues of the Trumpet, the following is a list of highlights that happened in the BMA last year. For full stories on these and other items of interest, check out the Trumpet archives on our website at www.baptisttrumpet.com.
Our Loss, Heaven’s Gain (pg. 1)
COVID-19, and other illnesses and accidents, claimed several of our beloved BMA members this year. Our sincere sympathy goes to every family and church that is mourning their losses. Space would not allow us to run full obituaries on each one of them, but articles on the following BMA ministers, leaders and immediate families can be found in the Trumpet archives at www.baptisttrumpet.com:
CBC Announces New Trustees (pg. 2)
Terry Kimbrow – The BMA of Arkansas, in their November 2020 annual meeting, elected four new members to serve five-year terms on the Central Baptist College Board of Trustees beginning in 2021. They are: Ali Chambers of Memphis, Tenn.; Jim Fink of Little Rock.; Kellie Harper of Sarepta, La.; and Dr. Kristi Roberts of Greenbrier. Also elected to serve a two-year unexpired term, is former Board of Trustees member Zane Clark of Benton.
*Some Conclusions From COVID-19 (pg. 2)
Dan Carson – I did my best to avoid it, but on Dec. 28, I received my official diagnosis. It has been a crazy week, full of ups and downs. Let me start by saying that I don’t wish this on anyone. The biggest headache is that this past Sunday was the first Sunday that I missed church since the beginning of this pandemic. The idea of missing church made me panic a little. How would the church get online? How would the tech things get accomplished that I have been responsible for? Who would fill in for me? Those types of questions tell me that I haven’t done a good job at training others to make sure that my roles are fulfilled.
*Health Church Solution (pg. 3)
Larry Barker – As the director of Healthy Church Solutions, I am excited to inform you of some improvements and changes to this ministry. As a division of BMA Missions, we are focusing on the various aspects of church and pastor health in a more holistic way. Healthy Church Solutions desires to come alongside you to help when and where you need it most. We are focused on providing resources in areas like personal soul-care, leadership, team building, handling conflict, church systems and other areas of pastor and church health.
Let’s Covenant to Pray (pg. 3)
Tom Mitchell – As I pondered the events, both positive and negative, of 2020, I was just thinking that believers need to pray fervently in 2021. Let’s pray for God’s grace to be abundant as our nation and world continues to deal with the coronavirus. We have learned much about how the world can be changed abruptly by pandemic illness. Last year, more than 300,000 died from the virus in the U.S., and more than 3,600 died in our state. Let’s pray that the Lord will intervene and that those numbers will decrease rapidly in the new year.
Happy New Year! (pg. 3)
Jeff Swart – On the last evening of each year, a celebration is held throughout our land. This celebration climaxes at the stroke of midnight at Times Square in New York City when multitudes of people cheer and shout “Happy New Year!” They blow toy horns and other noisemakers, laugh and embrace and kiss someone. This same spectacle is repeated hour by hour in succession in the various time zones from the Atlantic Seaboard to the far away islands of Hawaii. For Americans, the new year symbolizes new opportunities, new hopes and new dreams; yet the stroke of the midnight hour simply marks the dawning of another day. Whether the year really will be “new” lies within each person. If, when the celebrating is over, we fall back into the same old life — then nothing has really changed except the date on the calendar. New Year’s only becomes “new” if we make it so.
What’s Your One Word (pg. 4)
Allan Eakin – Faithful gym-goers know that with the new year comes crowded treadmills, weight stations and cardio-classes. Why? People make new year resolutions and among the favorites is losing weight. Those resolutions result in increased gym attendance. Those same faithful gym-goers know that about the third or fourth week of January the crowds will dwindle. Why? The enthusiasm for change wanes and people abandon their resolutions. I suggest that during 2021 you prioritize internal or character change above all other change. . . A couple of years ago, a friend introduced me to the idea of choosing one word for an entire year and viewing the events of that year through the lens of that word.
The Right Prescription (pg. 4)
Valerie Fish – Wear a mask. Wash your hands. Stay at home. Exercise. Drink lots of water. Take zinc. Increase your vitamin C. Avoid fatty foods. Cut out the carbs. Everyone has a piece of advice and a suggestion for staying healthy, especially in the times of the Coronavirus. You cannot turn around without some new (or old) piece of information hit ting you concerning how we should cope with a pandemic in our midst.
Harvison Marks 50Years In The Ministry (pg. 5)
Sonny Harvison, pastor of Calvary Baptist Church in Morrilton, will celebrate 50 years in ministry on Jan. 10. He surrendered to preach on Jan. 10, 1971 in Springdale and soon transferred from the University of Arkansas to Central Baptist College and was called to serve Calvary Baptist Church in Morrilton as youth and music minister, serving under Pastor John W. Smith. When Bro. Smith passed away, Bro. Harvison was selected to fill the pulpit of Calvary until the church called Jerry Jolly as pastor. He continued to serve there until he accepted the pastorate of Wildwood Baptist Church in Otto, Mo.
Jay Bagwell, BMA Minister, Dies (pg. 6)
Peggy Russell, of Bodcaw, Dies (pg. 6)
Get Ready, Set, Go (pg. 7)
Paul White – I, for one, greet 2021 with optimism; not because things might be better, but because of the One in whom I have placed my eternal trust. Every new year to me is like taking a journey where I have never been. So, I say goodbye to 2020 and all the negatives it drenched us in. Still, while I feel it was a tough year, it was not in vain, nor were your efforts. In the midst of COVID-19, the election and its difficulties, sickness and loss of loved ones and failing businesses, the good and important news is that, across the world, names were added to the Lamb’s Book of Life. While most will consider 2020 a bust, just imagine what a monumental time it was for those who received Jesus as their Savor!
No Rules, No Punishment Leads to Anarchy (pg. 8)
Dr. John Adams – It seems today that the wicked are ruling. So many true Christian believers are disillusioned. So many watch as the streets are filled with violence and corruption. Anarchy is defined as “a state of disorder due to the absence or non-recognition of authority.” Synonymous words are revolution, disorder, chaos, mayhem and mobocracy.