In Case You Missed It

Recently at The Gospel Coalition, Keith Getty posted an article titled: Facing the Music, Finding the Mission. Keith writes:

There was something unfinished causing a splinter in my mind.

 

I began sensing it last year after I finished rewriting the song “Facing a Task Unfinished,” but it came to a head in January. Over the last five years, we’ve started a new family and enjoyed incredible opportunities in music we never could’ve dreamed of—and, of course, don’t deserve. All of this came out of writing music for the church.

 

Even so, something was just not right.

 

Then it arrived: the torturous day when I finally admitted to myself that little by little, we’d been moving away from what I’d set out to do at my core—write hymns. Time and focus was needed to feed new thoughts, collaborations, and sounds. It was time to face the music. Little did I know, I was about to find so much more.

 

As the clouds broke, our focus shifted and sharpened, so we began putting pen and melody to a new project, Facing a Task Unfinished. (Download free sheet music for the songs “He Will Hold Me Fast,” “For the Cause,” and “Facing a Task Unfinished.”) In the previous five years we’d only managed to write a couple of songs each year we were really pleased with, in contrast to earlier years of writing. But in the first three months of this year, we’d written eight new songs—a testament to the new perspective.

 

In coming back to this calling, I began to freshly realize four things that reinvigorated our cause.

 

At the Lifeway WosrhipLife blog, Dr. Joshua Waggener recently discussed worship that follows the Great Commission.

When Christians think about the Great Commission, we consider where we should go. But when we think of worshiping, we don’t necessarily think about going anywhere. Instead, we often focus on “staying put” for times of prayer, singing, and preaching from the Bible.

 

But what would our worship services look like if they more intentionally reflected the Great Commission? How might we gather to worship in ways that encourage going?

 

In a post at his personal blog, Jason Engle recently reminded us that there is no such thing as a blank space Christian. Jason writes:

Recently, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary adopted a new official hymn.  They selected a beautiful new song written by Keith and Krysten Getty entitled, “For the Cause.”  I love being a student (yet again!) at this wonderful Seminary.  I appreciate their heart for the gospel, and especially their vision to see “every classroom a Great Commission classroom.”  From good experience, I can honestly say that vision provides the engine that drives each and every classroom on their campus.  This is why this hymn fits the Seminary so very well.  I have posted a video of this song that the Getty’s have created in cooperation with Southeastern.  If you haven’t had a chance to hear this song or see this video, please take a few minutes and do that.  Besides the blessing I know it will be for you, I would like to offer some thoughts as I have reflected on it, myself.

 

Meredith Cooper is a student at Southeastern, and this year she made her first trip to the SBC annual meeting as a messenger. In this post, she shares the reflections of an SBC rookie. Meredith writes:

Last week, I attended the Southern Baptist Convention for the first time. While I am not new to the SBC—I grew up in an SBC church and now attend an SBC seminary—I did not consider myself immersed in the denomination until last year when I became a full-time employee of the seminary. As I learned more about the inner workings and politics of our denomination, I have to admit that my perception was less than positive. There were various reasons, ranging from sheer lack of interest in anything political to focusing on the wrong things to simple misunderstanding. However, attending the annual meeting last week put things in perspective, and these are some things I learned.

 

At The Peoples Next Door blog, Keelan Cook writes an appeal to young Southern Baptists.

This week was the annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention. It was held in St. Louis this year and over 7,000 messengers attended. That is quite a bit larger than recent years, and I have to say, the event impacted me in a couple of significant ways. That is the reason for this appeal. I write to ask you, young Southern Baptist, to consider your involvement in our convention. Does your church send representatives to the convention? Have you ever been?

 

In my estimation, this year’s convention was deeply significant. Some pretty important issues were discussed on the floor of the convention, some sharp rebukes were delivered, and some magnificent displays of unity occurred. It was more than a convention. It was a defining moment in the direction of our giant cooperation of churches, and there is a chance history will remember it that way. What is more, I was there and I did not just watch it happen, I helped make it happen.

 

That is the beauty of the Southern Baptist Convention. We are America’s largest protestant denomination and we are not run by some elite board of decision makers. We are run by a room full of church members from across the United States and Canada. Our decisions are made by small church pastors, bi-vocational church planters, scholars, and automobile mechanics. Technically, our denomination only exists for two days a year, when all of our churches have the opportunity to send people to speak on matters concerning this cooperation we have created. It is powerful, and it is beautiful. Unfortunately, I am afraid our generation knows little of that.

Exploring Hope Podcast: One Nation Under God

On this episode of Exploring Hope, Dr. Dew chats with our very own Dr. Bruce Ashford about his new book “One Nation Under God: A Christian Hope for American Politics.” In this book, Dr. Ashford (and Chris Pappalardo) ask the question of whether or not we can be passionate about the gospel and yet care deeply about politics. Dr. Ashford joins the Exploring Hope Podcast as we get a chance to pick his brain about the different issues he discusses in his book which include important topics debated in our culture and government like abortion, race, immigration, war. Tune in to hear from this great scholar and influential writer.

 

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