During the pre-revolutionary era in the United states, John and Abigail Adams, a remarkable American couple by any measurement, conducted a fascinating correspondence. Knowing that the fate of their nation and the lives of their countrymen hung in the balance, Abigail mused: “We have too many high sounding words, and too few actions that correspond to them.” As John Adams attended the foundational meetings of the fledgling nation, he observed: “We have not men fit for the times.” Adams would go on to become his nation’s first vice president, under George Washington, and its second president, as well as contribute his son, John Quincy, to his nation’s presidency. Here was a couple who chose to do more than talk about how bad things were in the country. They took action, and left an indelible mark.
True leaders are not complainers, let alone whiners. They do not sit around for hours discussing and debating what others should have done. They are people of action who, after carefully considering what needs to be done, do not complain that others are not taking action but rather they step into the gap themselves. Anyone who has watched today’s politicians on television realizes exactly what the Adams were talking about! Much talk. Little action. The same can be said of the church. As we have pointed out in our book, Fresh Encounter, God has never used critics or complainers to initiate revival. I have looked in vain in Scripture to find a reference to the “spiritual gift of criticism” but so far to no avail! Yet the church today is brimming with them!
While today’s church has plenty of critics who are prepared to write it off as an out of date institution whose best days are behind it, those of us at BMI continue to witness God at work in churches across America and around the world. During the month of February, I was privileged to speak in a number of churches across the country. My father and I were at Twon Creek Baptist Church in Aiken, SC and at Mount Hermon Baptist Church in Danville, Virginia and had marvelous times teaching on revival. The people were responsive and excited about how God was using their church to change peoples’ lives. I had a special time at Five Forks Baptist Church in Simpsonville, SC as their people gathered and enthusiastically responded to God’s word to them. As I am writing I am in meetings with First Baptist Church, Columbia, Illinois where a great group of people are coming out to meetings each evening to understand how to go to the next level in their walk with God. It has been extremely encouraging to hear how God has been using this church to bring people whose lives were broken and in bondage to sin into healing and wholeness. I also spoke to a college worship service at Bay Leaf Baptist Church in Raleigh, NC where my son Mike attends. It was exciting to see the passion these young adults have for going to the hard places around the world to share the hope of Christ with others. Everywhere we go we are witnessing the amazing things God is doing in seemingly ordinary churches.
God is still at work and He is not looking for people volunteering to be critics and complainers! He is looking for those willing to cry out, “Here am I. Send me!”
Please keep praying for BMI as we develop a brand new leadership network that will enable us to better minister to and coach those seeking to go to a higher level in their spiritual leadership. We presently need those willing to pray for us and to donate to the support of this new venture to help pastors and Christian business people to lead at the level God is calling them to during these challenging days. We pray God will use your life in extraordinary ways during these challenging days in which we live.