Monday, June 17, 2024
Monday, June 17, 2024
HomeAll The NewsWhy Stay in the BMA?

Why Stay in the BMA?

Since surrendering to the ministry on March 5, 1991, during my freshman year at Central Baptist College (CBC), I have served in BMA in churches. At the time, there wasn’t even a question. First, God had used the people of a BMA church in Missouri to show me the gospel, and I accepted Christ at White Oak Grove Baptist Church outside of Potosi, Mo. Second, God had drawn me to a BMA church in Springdale during high school after several years of being out of church. Third, I surrendered my life while being a part of CBC and Antioch Baptist Church of Conway. God had clearly placed me in the tribe where He wanted me to serve.

Over the years, I have seen many that have come after me step down from ministry or move to another group. It has been hard to see. While I am the first to say that our churches and association still have a long way to go because we fall short in some areas, the truth is that every group has its issues. I love the work of our churches and want to see them experience renewal and revitalization so that we can impact our nation and the world for the cause of Christ.

I have had opportunities to step into other groups, but God has kept leading me to serve the men and women of BMA churches. Our group of churches is far from perfect, but God has allowed me to see many of the values that our association has to offer. I don’t have to criticize other groups to find reasons to stay connected to the BMA. The reasons for me to stick are pretty evident:

• The BMA believes in the Word of God. Whether it is our colleges, seminary or local churches, the Word of God shines through. We know it is inerrant, unchanging and our guide for life. We may interpret it differently on tertiary theological issues, but the overwhelming majority of us believe it is truly God’s Word.

• The BMA believes in missions. In a recent podcast, Nick Jacobsen shared something that he heard around the BMA Global Missions Center in Conway. He recalled for us, “Missions is important. It’s our middle name.” With a name like the Baptist Missionary Association, it should be obvious that we are concerned about reaching the lost with the gospel message.

• The BMA is a family. One of the biggest reasons it is hard for me to even consider serving outside of the BMA is because of the men and women of our association. During the same interview with Jacobsen, he stated that one of the reasons for the SOAR conference’s longevity is the family spirit that pervades the BMA. It is a spirit we should embrace. We can always do more together than we can alone.

Ultimately, I stick around the BMA because God hasn’t given me instructions to leave. If He led me away, I would be sad, but I would agree. God wants us to offer ourselves up to Him fully and completely. Real success comes through faithful obedience. May we all strive to be successful with that framework.

Without diving into the negative of other groups, why do you continue to serve in the BMA? Join the conversation at