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April 15, 2002






TOGETHER:
To whom much has been given ...

___A young layman told his pastor, "Some years ago, I promised the Lord I would be a faithful tither of all the income he would trust to me. But it's become impossible. I'm now making so much, my tithe is more than my income was seven years ago. I just can't keep on giving a full tithe."
___The wise p
wademug
CHARLES WADE
Executive Director
BGCT Executive Board
astor replied, "Why don't we get on our knees and ask God to give us guidance? Perhaps we can ask him to get your income down to the point you feel good about giving your tithe again."
___God has trusted Texas Baptists with overwhelmingly abundant resources and responsibilities. He has granted us 13 institutions that teach and train our young people for Christian service, four family and child care ministries, six hospital systems, ministries to the aged, and Baptist Student Ministries on more than 100 college campuses in Texas.
___We have a remarkable team of church starting consultants who work with churches to start churches among every ethnic group and in every part of Texas. The latest count tells us we now have 5,708 churches and missions relating to the BGCT.
___We are there for each other when our churches go through difficulty. When Ross Avenue Baptist Church, one of the oldest church buildings in Dallas, burned three weeks ago, our church facility team offered help. And last week, a retreat for terminated ministers and their families brought grace and healing to the hearts of the children as well as the parents.
___God continues to open new doors of opportunity. Last week, seven Texas Baptists flew to Mexico City to explore with 12 leaders of the National Baptist Convention of Mexico new ways we can partner together in missions, evangelism, theological education and ministry to human needs.
___If Texas Baptists are going to continue reaching out to our entire state, then we must strengthen our mission efforts and our institutions that prepare people for service in Christ's name. And if we are going to heed Christ's Great Commission that sends the young people of our churches into all the world, then we must provide extraordinary training for these extraordinary times.
___I have in the last month been privileged to visit with faculty and students at our three theological schools. God is bringing gifted professors to our campuses to teach gifted and committed students. Truett Seminary has just moved into beautiful new facilities on the Baylor campus, and Truett graduates already are taking important leadership roles in our churches. Logsdon School of Theology has a distinguished faculty and bright students. Hispanic Baptist Theological School is growing and looking to achieve accreditation as a Bible college by the end of the year.
___Now how do we respond? Do we say God has given us too much responsibility and we can't be expected to support all this? Or do we humbly give thanks for all that has been trusted to our care, thank God for the wonderful financial resources our Texas Baptist families possess, and move forward gladly to strengthen all we are doing through our churches and the Cooperative Program of our Texas Baptist family?
___Please join me in praying, "Thank you, Lord, for trusting us with so much responsibility and with so many resources. We will be faithful. We want you to be able to depend on us."
___Pray for this harvest.

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