Jobs for Life

Jobs for Life

Jobs for Life is a discipleship platform that seeks the spiritual and physical well being of people in our community. In the first quarter of 2016, we will partner with Jobs for Life and local pregnancy centers to serve the needs in our community, eliminate a barrier that exists to life decisions, and grow as disciples as we make disciples.

Attend a Next Steps informational meeting on Sunday, November 8 at 4:30 in Room E-312.

Christmas Devotional - John Piper

The Christmas Model for Missions - John Piper

“As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world.” (John 17:18)

Christmas is a model for missions. Missions is a mirror of Christmas. As I, so you.

For example, danger. Christ came to his own and his own received him not. So you. They plotted against him. So you. He had no permanent home. So you. They trumped up false charges against him. So you. They whipped and mocked him. So you. He died after three years of ministry. So you.

But there is a worse danger than any of these which Jesus escaped. So you!!

In the mid-16th century Francis Xavier (1506–1552), a Catholic missionary, wrote to Father Perez of Malacca (today part of Indonesia) about the perils of his mission to China. He said,

The danger of all dangers would be to lose trust and confidence in the mercy of God. . . To distrust him would be a far more terrible thing than any physical evil which all the enemies of God put together could inflict on us, for without God’s permission neither the devils nor their human ministers could hinder us in the slightest degree.

The greatest danger a missionary faces is to distrust the mercy of God. If that danger is avoided, then all other dangers lose their sting.

God makes every dagger a scepter in our hand. As J.W. Alexander says, “Each instant of present labor is to be graciously repaid with a million ages of glory.”

Christ escaped the danger of distrust. Therefore God has highly exalted him!

Remember this Advent that Christmas is a model for missions. As I, so you. And that mission means danger. And that the greatest danger is distrusting God’s mercy. Succumb to this and all is lost. Conquer here and nothing can harm you for a million ages.

For more about John Piper's ministry and writing, see DesiringGod.org.

*Originally posted by BibleGateway (www.biblegateway.com) and DesiringGod Ministries (www.desiringGod.org).

2014 Toy Chest

For over twenty years, Bay Leaf Baptist Church has offered a Christmas gift to the students of Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina. This gift has been in the form of our annual Toy Chest.  The Toy Chest is where students at the Seminary and College are allowed to purchase gifts for their children for Christmas. The purchase price of each toy is just a few dollars, and all these dollars go to support the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering of the International Mission Board. The church raises funds from its membership to support this vital ministry.

This year there were 130 families that participated in the Toy Chest, and gift were purchased for 314 children. 

Enjoy this year’s video of the 2014 Toy Chest.

Daniel Ford Interview - Church Planter

Daniel and Emily Ford have been serving in Moldova since 2002. They came as short term workers, grew to love the Moldovan people, and now serve as Pastor of the Hencesti Baptist Church. Bay Leaf has been cooperating with them for the past two years, and we look forward to continuing our relationship in the future. Daniel has led this church to be instrumental in evangelizing and planting new churches in the southern part of Moldova. Enjoy this video and see the servant's heart of this pastor.

Dr. Kevin Ezell Visits Bay Leaf

This past weekend Dr. Kevin Ezell, president of the North American Mission Board, visited with the congregation of Bay Leaf Baptist Church. Preaching a message of "Whatever it Takes" during Sunday morning services, Dr. Ezell, made a compassionate call to be faithful in the places God has called you - having a "whatever it takes" mindset of obedience when taking forth the gospel.

Dr. Ezell also participated in a Q & A dinner Saturday night with numerous members of Bay Leaf Baptist Church who have an interest in North American Church Planting. Answering questions ranging from NAMB's church planting strategy to the characteristics that are crucial for a future church planter, Dr. Ezell was gracious in both his time and wisdom to share with those interested.

If you would like to find out more about the work NAMB is mobilizing, you can visit their website here. You can also find our more about NAMB's church planting initiative here.

Are You Willing?

I recently had lunch with a friend that asked me to pray for he and his family as they seek the Lord’s direction in their life. They feel called to serve as international missionaries in one of the more established areas of the world, but the leaders of their chosen mission board want them to go somewhere else, to one of the more difficult areas of the world.

This has prompted a great stir in my heart. When we think of the lostness of the world we tend to think of China with 1.3 billion people with little or no religion; or we think of somewhere like India, also with 1.3 billion people who follow the Hindu religion; or we might think of the Islamic world where another 1.5 billion live.

For most of us in the comfort of the South, we see churches almost everywhere we go. In our city there are literally thousands of church buildings. Even is the Northern or the Western parts of our country where we think there are less evangelicals, there are still a lot of churches.

This is not true in most of the world. The truth is that in most of the world, the number of evangelicals still number less than 10% of the population. Even in our country, a so called Christian nation, still has a huge number (percentage) of people that do not know Jesus.

Churches, mission boards, and mission organizations many times pass over these more established areas i.e. North America, South America, Europe, and even parts of Africa. 

Why does Bay Leaf take mission trips to so many different places? We work with our people and with national leaders who are penetrating the darkness with the light of Jesus. It may be in a very modern city like Toronto, or in a dirt home in Mexico or Africa. We may go to the beautiful cities of Europe, or to the megacities of East Asia.

There is lostness everywhere. Where would you be willing to go and take the Gospel? Where would you be willing to plant your heart, your life?

Send Me: Mexico

When you think of the country of Mexico a few things might come to mind. One is Mexican food. You either love it, or you don’t. Secondly, you might think of the drug lords along the border with the United States, and the challenges of that area. Thirdly, you might think of the great number of immigrants that are coming to our country from Mexico.

While all of these thoughts may be true for you, I would like for you to think about the  mission work that is going on in Mexico. Mexico has a great heritage of religion. There are the indigenous religions of the people of Mexico, and there is the overwhelming influence of Catholicism in Mexico. The number of evangelicals in this nation is still quite small.

Bay Leaf has a partnership with one of our own people who is working in the city of Puebla, Mexico. She is working with the indigenous people that we know as the Aztecs. More specially, they are called the Nahuatl people.

Our church is planning four trips next year to help in this work. They will be in February, June, September, and November. Go to www.bayleafmissions.org/Mexico for more information about this area, this missionary, and this work.

Is this the year that you consider taking the Gospel to the people of North America?

A Command and Calling

“It is my opinion that you Baptists have created a call to missions that allows you to be disobedient to what God has already commanded you to do.”
                                                                                               Nik Ripken*

Nik Ripken's provocative quote raises an important question about the definitions of and relationship between "calling" and "command" in a Christian's vocabulary. Generally we understand that a command is an imperative statement and requirement from an authority. Calling is often a bit more nebulous. While the command to make disciples is given to the whole church and all who would be called disciples in the Great Commission, "calling," in our common understanding, seems isolated to a select few within the church. Yet we are all both commanded to make disciples and called to follow Christ in doing so. 

Consider calling through the lens of this question: In what avenue or vocation has the Spirit called you to live out the Great Commission's command to make disciples? We are all commanded. We all have a calling. 

Skybridge Community, a community of believers representing the whole spectrum of vocations, provides a network for worldwide missional relationships and resources to equip believers of all vocations and "jobs" to live out the Great Commission in their context. Recently, they posted this helpful blog looking into the nature and meaning of "calling" on a believers life: "Are Missionaries the Only Ones Called?"

Check it out! And consider the ways the Lord is calling you to be obedient to the command given to us to make disciples. In what context is the Spirit leading you to live out the Great Commission?

 

* Nik Ripken, "Called," Nik Ripken Ministries, last modified July 16, 2012, http://www.nikripken.com/called/