The American writer, Virginia Burden Tower, said “Cooperation is the thorough conviction that nobody can get there unless everybody gets there.” The “there” that we are all moving toward is the fulfillment of the Great Commission through an Acts 1:8 strategy. Jesus said we are to be His “witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judaea, and Samaria and to the ends of the earth.” Giving through the Cooperative Program fuels the Great Commission vehicle getting effective Great Commission work done around the world, in North America, and at home here in Tennessee by, through, and with the local church.
But what is the Cooperative Program doing here at home? Obviously, it is giving strong financial support to wonderful, traditional Great Commission partners in our state like Carson-Newman College www.cn.edu; Tennessee Baptist Adult Homes www.tnbaptisthomes.org; Tennessee Baptist Children’s Homes www.tbch4kids.org; and Tennessee Baptist Foundation www.tbfoundation.org; The King’s Academy www.thekingsacademy.net; and Union University www.uu.edu. Since its inception, Tennessee Baptists have supported these institutions and ministries with tens of millions of CP dollars.
Besides the support of these Tennessee Baptist institutions and ministries, what else are we doing with CP dollars in our state?
We are supporting the work of churches and associations; planting and revitalizing churches; engaging a college and university campus population of 275,000 students through Baptist Collegiate Ministries with the Gospel; Disaster Relief support; connecting churches with national and international fields on a personal level through Partnership Missions—just to name a few of the big picture items.
But let’s get more specific with where CP dollars are being utilized in our state. Here are a few of hundreds of examples that have occurred within the last year, and indeed in the last few days of the impact CP investment is making in Tennessee:
- A pastor and his wife ready to quit ministry received an encouraging word and tools necessary to keep going through a TBC specialist.
- A church planter gets much needed demographics from TBC staff.
- 2,583 people became better trained through Sunday School University conferences held across the state just within the last few weeks.
- Last spring, 5,000 people including 500 pastors, received information and inspiration through MoreLife rallies to equip their churches for Lifestyle Evangelism and Intentional Discipleship.
- The widow of a Tennessee Baptist pastor received survivor benefits just days ago when her preacher husband stepped out into eternity.
- At a BCM retreat involving UT Martin students, an atheist comes to Christ and proceeds to lead another student to the saving knowledge of Christ.
- A new church in Knoxville meets for the first time on a Wednesday evening and has 270 people show up for worship.
That’s why CP in Tennessee. God is using you and your resources to help reach our state for His glory. And for that reason, it is a joy to be on this journey with you.
Randy C. Davis
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