FIRST-PERSON: See you in St. Louis -- June 14-15 SBC16
EDITOR'S NOTE: Ronnie Floyd is president of the Southern Baptist Convention and senior pastor of Cross Church in northwest Arkansas.
SPRINGDALE, Ark. (BP) -- Coming off our largest convention meeting since 2012 in New Orleans, our Southern Baptist family begins to dream and cast the vision for our next gathering in 2016 in St. Louis. More importantly than the size of our gathering in Columbus this year, our great and mighty God met with us powerfully.
Save the date: June 14-15, 2016.
Will I see you in St. Louis on June 14-15, 2016, for our Southern Baptist Convention? Please mark your calendar now for this upcoming and dynamic experience with our Southern Baptist family. Make these dates non-negotiable and decide now to be in St. Louis for our 2016 Southern Baptist Convention and bring people with you.
See the vision: Get St. Louis on your heart
Metropolitan St. Louis needs the saving message of Jesus Christ. Our nearly 2,000 Southern Baptist churches in Missouri need the encouragement of our greater Southern Baptist family.
Why should we see the vision of metro St. Louis?
-- 2.73 million people live in metro St. Louis
-- 1 out of 7 Missourians live in metro St. Louis
-- 50.9 percent of the population is unaffiliated with any religious body
-- Only 17.9 percent of the population of metro St. Louis is affiliated with an evangelical church
-- St. Louis is one of our SEND Cities. Watch this video to learn more.
Southern Baptists, how do we not go and make a difference in metro St. Louis? You see, when we speak of metro St. Louis, we are also talking about East St. Louis, Ill. Two states will be impacted by our gathering next year.
How can your church participate in Crossover St. Louis a few days ahead of our convention? They will be able to assist new church plants or help established churches. This leads up to the major Crossover event on Saturday, June 11. Then, your church members can stay and attend our convention on June 14-15. Please strongly consider this.
Stand together with us to reach the world
When you fly or drive into St. Louis, you will notice the Gateway Arch as you enter the city. It stands 630 feet tall and 630 feet wide. This remarkable structure has been known as America's gateway to the West, with St. Louis the Gateway City.
In 2016, Southern Baptists need to converge on this city from all over the world and see it as our gateway to reach the world for Jesus Christ. Stand with us!
7 reasons to come to St. Louis on June 14-15, 2016
1. We need to be with our family, our Southern Baptist family.
2. We need to be inspired to believe again that God can awaken America spiritually and the world can be reached for Christ.
3. We need to hear the Word of God proclaimed, pray and worship together by the thousands, and have our spiritual lives set on fire again.
4. We need to hear the wonderful testimonies and reports about what God is doing across America and the world through our work together.
5. We need to hear how our churches' financial investment in the Cooperative Program and mission offerings is being used to share the Gospel.
6. We need to be encouraged to know that when we are together and working together there is hope in America and this world.
7. We need to join together by the thousands as we pray for our nation at this critical time, calling out to God to revive His church and awaken America so we can reach the world for Christ.
Now is the time for Southern Baptists to lead. Let these words encourage your life today as you lead others into the future:
"An awakening can bring about the evangelization of the world in our generation" -- Billy Graham.
"The one who mobilizes the Christian church to pray will make the greatest contribution to world evangelization in history" -- Andrew Murray.
God is not finished with Southern Baptists, America or the world.