A Family of Baptist Congregations in the Midlands of South Carolina
Our One Priority: Starting and Strengthening Churches to Serve as Vital and Vibrant Missional Communities.
Columbia Metro: Mission Local
Our Lord’s Great Commission calls for us to make disciples locally, regionally, nationally, and globally. It is a wonderful mission given to us. It is one we engage in until all hear and we hope receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. All my life I have heard – in numerous ways – greater emphasis placed on how sacrificial it is for people to go as missionaries globally and nationally than regionally and locally. I get it. The billions of people who do not know Jesus as their Savior do not live nearby.
This is one of those situations in life where we must highlight the word “AND.” No one intends a competition between locally, regionally, nationally, and globally. We need to tell the Good News and be positive and proactive examples of Christ-like love everywhere.
Yet, the base of people and congregations who are going must develop missional capacity regionally and locally. This means we need a large number of vital and vibrant congregations locally – in a place like the Columbia metropolitan areas – where people are learning innovative Christian ministry before they go long-term or short-term to national and global places as the presence of Christ for people who have not heard.
I suggest that is not happening locally among the 100 congregations of our association compared to the depth and breadth it could potentially take place. We have mission fields in our associational fellowship areas going uncultivated. We have struggling congregations seeking to provide a Christian witness in tough places without sufficient resources to do so and others pretending these under-resourced congregations do not exist. We have people groups and missions causes either ignored or unknown to our congregations.
Who is at fault for this? We all are. Who can do something about this? We all can.
Over the next weeks and months, I will propose a new depth and breadth of missional concern for our local context. We need to answer the question –“If we cannot be faithful, effective, and dedicated to carry out the Great Commission in our own context, what makes us think we can do so in a national or global context?
Within Our One Priority of starting and strengthening congregations to serve as vital and vibrant missional communities, I am calling for a new emphasis on – Columbia Metro: Mission Local. We have tremendous mission fields within the context of our association. I call on congregations to Adopt a Mission Field. Adopt a Mission Cause. Adopt of People Group. Adopt a Refugee Household. Adopt a School. We can name many more aspects of missional engagement available in our context.
Over the next few weeks and months, we want to offer prophetic opportunities to our congregations. God has given us a great mission field in the Columbia Metro area that can then serve even more than already serving as a launching place for national and global missional engagement. Will you pray about this opportunity?
Our One Priority Briefing and the Our One Priority Briefing Online Gathering are made possible by the financial gifts of the member and network connection congregations of the Columbia Metro Baptist Association at www.ColumbiaMetro.org, CMBA@ColumbiaMetro.org, or 803.619.7110. To donate to CMBA go to https://www.columbiametro.org/donate/. Congregations can make their general contributions through this link. Congregations, missions groups and individuals can designate gifts to the Congregational Grant Fund, hunger ministry, disaster response, and Baptist Collegiate Ministry.