DAVIS, Okla. (BP) -- Men should follow God's call and report to duty as those of influence, Southern Baptist Convention President Fred Luter told the crowd at Rewired 2014, the annual Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma men's retreat.
"It is God's desire and design for us to be men of influence," Luter told the men gathered at Falls Creek Conference Center in Davis, Okla. "God created mankind and when He created us, it was His desire and design that we would be men of influence. But every now and then we get sidetracked. Every now and then we listen to the lies of the enemy and we're not the men of God that God has called us to be."
Luter used the example of a sinful Adam hiding from God in Genesis 3:7-10 to encourage men to faithfully follow God and fulfill their God-given purposes.
"Brothers the question of the hour is, 'What are you hiding behind tonight?'" Luter asked in the opening night session. "Are you hiding behind your job, your title, your company? Where are you? Are you hiding behind your afro, your fades, your dreadlocks, your comb-over? I don't want to leave nobody out. Adam, where are you?"
Luter was among several speakers at the April 25-26 event, which included Biblical teaching, praise and worship and breakout discipleship sessions. The event also offered archery, a climbing wall, dart boards, a motorcycle village, a ropes course, skeet shooting, a bicycle tour, trout fishing, video games, a zip line and more.
"Being a Man of Influence," taken from Matthew 5:13-14, was the event's theme. The 3,000 men in attendance represented church groups from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, New Mexico and Texas.
"Brothers how many of us tonight are lost and don't know it?" Luter asked. "How many of us are in spiritual trouble and don't realize it, hiding from God? How many of us are spiritually bankrupt and hiding from God? Brothers, why are we hiding?"
Men responded positively to the retreat's ministry, said Keith Burkhart, Oklahoma Baptist men's ministry specialist. He said 700 men committed to attend a Sunday School small group for the four weeks that followed Rewired.
Burkhart, also an opening night speaker, stressed the importance of men exhibiting influence in all areas of their lives.
"We had an underlying theme of 'influence,' but we tried to cover all the bases of family, leaving a legacy, finances -- all the things that men need help with," Burkhart said. "I wanted men to see there's no difference in sacred and secular, that God has placed them where they're at in their vocation and their family and their world to impact God's kingdom as a minister of the Gospel in their own way. We just have different assignments."
In addition to Luter and Burkhart, speakers and teachers included Oklahoma Baptist University professor Christian George; Andy Harrison, Falls Creek program director and Oklahoma Baptist student ministry specialist; author and sports psychologist David Cook, and Christian rap artist Propaganda.
Matt Roberson, Jones Road Campus pastor at The MET church in Houston, led worship. For more information go to www.menrewired.com.
Adapted from a story by Chris Doyle, associate editor of The Baptist Messenger (baptistmessenger.com), newsjournal of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, where this story first appeared. Get Baptist Press headlines and breaking news on Twitter (@BaptistPress
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