2018 promises to be a great year for the Bivocational and Small Church Leadership Network. We have commitments from nine state conventions to partner in providing ministries to bivocational pastors. Often, we have the opportunity to minister to their wives as well. We will also work in partnership with Baptist Associations in two additional states. It is possible that new partnership events will also be added. These events will include:
  • Several overnight retreats for pastors and wives
  • Evangelism training for pastors that will be recorded and posted on our website
  • Ministry in several new states where we have not worked before
  • Ministry with a state convention staff member who is doing a doctoral project in equipping bivocational pastors
  • An urban pastors and planters seminar in a major Eastern city (may be in 2019)
  • One state that will have six event locations and another will have four
Many of these opportunities are the result of excellent work done by our RegionalConsultants. They do a great job by sacrificially giving of their time and efforts. Some events are the result of state convention staff becoming aware of the BSCLN and desiring to work with us. From my perspective, I can see the hand of God shaping our future work through strategic partnerships that are being formed across our country.
Would you like to be a part of making the BSCLN a vital ministry to the blessing of pastors and the glory of God for years to come? You can help in numerous ways. First,please pray for the BSCLN and specifically for ministries that will be publicized as we progress through the year. Pray diligently for this ministry to locate God’s man to serve as our next Executive Director. Pray that pastors and their wives will be encouraged and equipped to do all that God has called them to do as we partner with conventions and associations across this nation.
Second, when you see an event publicized in this e-letter, please help us to get the word out to pastors. You could forward the newsletter to them and put the information on your Facebook page. I’m sure that we will have a social media strategy for publicity in the future. But friends telling friends is always going to be our best tool.
And, please pray that we will understand God’s way for us to enlist a base of regular donors to provide ongoing financial support for the BSCLN. It would be great if many bivocational pastors could donate $10.00-$20.00 per month as a means of blessing their fellow pastors. And, if churches pastored by bivocationals might donate $20.00-$50.00 per month to encourage the great pool of pastors who are serving their churches. We also need for larger churches to join First Baptist Church of Nashville, TN in providing grants or donations for specific projects. Nashville FBC gave the BSCLN a $16,000.00 missions grant to minister to pastors in nine state conventions in the mid and far western states of the SBC. If you would prayerfully consider these possibilities, and you sense the Lord’s leading, you might be at the front end of a great wave of support that our Lord is raising up to support this work. We will do everything possible to be wise stewards who are focussed upon blessing, engaging, encouraging, and equipping pastors for the great work to which God has called them.
Finally, let’s remember to thank God for the many wonderful blessings and opportunities that He has given us for the coming year. He is great and greatly to be praised.
-Larry Barnes