Current News- 1-9-19

Current News Jan. 9



*Director’s Goals & Dreams (pg. 1)

Lifeword, BMA Seminary, BMA of Ark. Youth — Editor’s Note: As I have done in previous years, I gave each departmental director in the BMA of Arkansas and the BMA of America an opportunity to share their “2019 prayers and goals.” Please join me in praying for each of these ministries this year. (Due to length, the articles will be continued in upcoming issues. They are being printed in the order they were received.)


* Our Loss, Heaven’s Gain (pg. 1)

Several BMA ministers, leaders and their wives who had Arkansas connections passed away this year. For more information, check out the Trumpet archives on our website at


*2018: A Year in Review (pg. 1)

This article contains some of the interesting things that happened in the BMA through April and were reported on in the Trumpet last year. (Next week’s issue will conclude the remainder of the year’s highlights.) For the full story on any particular article, check out the Trumpet archives on our website at


*Discipleship in Our Groups (pg. 2)

Dan Carson – Over the month of December, I spent a lot of time listening to Robby Gallaty and Chris Swain on their weekly ”Making Disciples” podcast. In fact, I have listened to all 33 episodes. (Some people binge watch shows on Netflix, I binge listen to podcasts.) I came across the program when Rainer on Leadership joined the Lifeway Leadership Podcast Network, and I realized that I had heard Robby Gallaty speak at ETCH 2017. I quickly became convicted and convinced that we need to do things differently in our churches and in turn our youth groups. The Bible has given us one really clear mandate when it comes to impacting our world. Jesus told us to make disciples. Are we doing that? Does your church have a clear pathway toward discipleship with your students? I pray that you do, but I know that many of us don’t. It is easy to say, “Sure. We have youth group meetings.” That is not enough. We need to get our students “into the Word until the Word gets into them.”


CBC Spring Registration (pg. 2)

The Spring 2019 semester is quickly approaching. The non-traditional program, PACE, will start the first course block Monday, Jan. 7. Registration for the second course block is underway now. The new student deadline to complete the application process for course block 2 is Jan. 18. Remember, there are four registration opportunities per semester. Traditional students will begin spring classes on Thursday, Jan. 17. The final registration period before classes start is Jan. 14-16. New students are invited to visit for all admissions questions. Returning students should visit For general questions, you can also contact the Central Baptist College Admissions Office at or (501) 329-6873. (Also see CBC Sports on page 2)


Getting the “Slight Edge” (pg. 3)

Larry Barker – A new year causes us to reflect and then challenges us to, hopefully, do better with this new opportunity. There are pros and cons to New Year’s Resolutions with some saying we should make new ones while others say we should not make any resolutions. At the end of 2019, what will have taken place for you to consider it a successful year? Ponder that question personally, professionally and as a church. Where do you want to be spiritually one year from today, and what do you hope your church looks like one year from today? What areas would you like to focus on in the New Year? How will your faith grow? What does growing in Christ look like for you?


Trumpet Notes (pg. 4)

Bible, No; Headwear, Yes;First Day: Democrats Seek To Restore Abortion Funding; Abortion: 2018 Leading Cause of Death; No Luggage Fee


How Do You Spell “Missions?” (pg. 5)

BMAA President Jeff Swart — Whenever a BMA Baptist thinks of “missions,” he or she might think of our world-class missions program under the capable leadership of Dr. John David Smith, Eric Johnson and Larry Barker. And you might also think of Lifeword Media Ministries, under the creative leadership of Donny Parrish, who is taking the Gospel to the unreached people groups of the world. But would the average BMA Baptist think of the BMA Theological Seminary when you think of missions? You should!


Investing in a Spiritual Legacy (pg. 5)

Since 1950, the Baptist Missionary Association has been sending missionaries around the world, intentionally spreading the Gospel and fulfilling the Great Commission. Many of these ministers have left incredible spiritual legacies, faithfully serving the Lord above all else. (Watch for articles about some of them in upcoming issues of the Baptist Trumpet leading up to World Missions Day.) The BMA has a rich history of faithfulness, and with your help this World Missions Day, those who are a part of the BMA can continue investing in the future of global missions. By investing in missions on Feb. 24, you can help missionaries leave spiritual legacies in the future. At BMA Missions, we have a lofty goal for this year’s World Missions Day — 350 participating churches. We are excited about the possibility of introducing some churches to our World Missions Day celebration! When your church registers for World Missions Day, we will not only send you free posters, bulletin inserts and a promo video to help promote your event, but your pastor will also receive a free BMA Missions fleece vest. To register, visit, call the Missions office at (501) 455-4977 or email Paige West at


Randy Sessions, BMA Minister, Dies (pg. 5)

Randal Marvin Sessions 62, of Bryan, Texas, died Dec. 23. He was the former internet services manager (BMAWeb) of the BMA of Texas and had been in the ministry for 40 years and pastored several churches in Texas. Survivors include his wife of 44 years, Karen Sessions of Bryan; two daughters, Rachel Cross and Rebekah Andrews; a son, Joe Nicholas Sessions; three sisters, JoAnne Caldwell, Beverly Knickerbocker and Gail Smitty; and 11 grandchildren. Graveside services were held Dec. 28 at Red Hill Cemetery, with Eddie Marsh and Mike Cross officiating, and under the direction of Autry’s Carroll-Lehr Funeral Home in Athens, Texas.


Mt. Vernon YIH Meets (pg. 5)

The Mt. Vernon Youth in the Harvest met Dec. 17 at Trenton Baptist Church in Marvell, with 100 present, representing 9 churches. The Attendance Banner went to County Line Baptist Church at Marvell, and the Percentage Banner went to Rondo Baptist Church at Rondo. The offering was $302.75, and the goal was the Baptist Trumpet. The program was presented by the Trenton Baptist Church youth. The meeting place for January will be New Hope Baptist Church in Wynne. (Barbara Belew, reporter).


New Year Goals Require Commitment (pg. 6)

The Late Travis Plumlee – Most people set New Year’s goals or resolutions in various areas of their lives, and that is a good thing. The new year gives us a time to mark and take an assessment of where we are in our spiritual journey. You should do this every quarter of the year. It is good to assess where you are as a family, where you are as a married couple, how you are doing in your service to the church and world at large, etc. While most Americans set New Year’s resolutions for physical health and finances, Christians should, first and foremost, set growth goals in their personal and family spiritual life. It is also good to set physical healthy goals, but don’t forget the most important aspect of our lives — our spiritual walk. In the next year, how much do you desire to increase your passion for Christ? How are you going to grow as a family? If you don’t have a specific action plan, your goals will probably fade away by Valentine’s Day.


Legislative Issues Update (pg. 6)

Larry Page – Several bills and measures have already been filed by legislators reelected and new legislators chosen by voters in last month’s general election. We will send out these legislative issue updates on a periodic basis. I encourage you to share these updates, so that we can magnify our influence on these legislative matters. Also, we will provide contact information for legislators to facilitate your efforts to provide the appropriate constituent input to those officials representing you. I have identified three proposed bills that may be of interest to members of our grassroots network. By flagging these proposals, I am not suggesting that everyone should be interested in all of them. I have highlighted each of them because they deal directly or tangentially with issues on our agenda and may pique your interest.


Happy New Year! (pg. 7)

Paul White – As we begin 2019, I am grateful God has given us this opportunity to serve Him. Like all believers, I know the time is coming when our work here on earth will be done. That’s why it’s important that we work while we have the opportunity. It’s hard not to have mixed emotions, desiring Jesus to return, coupled with the sadness that so many will be left behind. But thanks to your love of the Lord and lost souls, your missionaries are making a difference. This year has started off great as some have already received Christ through this ministry. Pray with us that God will raise up men and their families who will feel the call to State Missions. Surely the fields are white unto harvest. While some will reject our message, there are those will hear the Word and accept Christ as Lord and Savior. That’s our motive in ministry. Also, please remember and whisper a prayer for Renna Hight (Michael Hight’s mother) as she has suffered a stroke over the holidays and will be spending some time in rehab.


Behold the Lamb (pg. 8)

Dr. Ralph Izard – The BMMI was blessed to be allowed to work with the refugees in Athens, Greece. The refugees were from different Arabic countries and were in Greece for many different reasons. We were given the opportunity to minister to the men, women, boys and girls, both medically and spiritually. Many patients still had shrapnel in their bodies from the various wars in the region. We were privileged to visit Mars Hill and stand in the area were the Apostle Paul preached to the intellectual elite of Athens. We also visited the Parthenon in the Acropolis of Athens, along with the ruins of many temples to pagan gods in the area. We praise the Lord that we were able to minister to 600 people with medicine, glasses, shoes and the good news of Jesus Christ. BMMI is excited to be able to return to Athens, Greece to minister again next year.


Mailbox (pg. 8)

Geri Lofton — (The Baptist Trumpet) A Great Tool

Assistant Editor

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