The Mississippi Baptist Foundation  |  est. 1943  |  Psalm 24:1
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     Southern Baptists are missions-minded people. Over 7,000 Southern Baptist missionaries are serving either in the United States, North America, or on foreign soil. The prophet Isaiah had a vision of God, a vision of himself, and a vision of a world in need when he answered God’s call to special service. Like Isaiah, our Southern Baptist missionaries responded to God’s question “Whom shall I send and who will go for us?” by declaring “Here am I, send me.”    
     Churches that comprise the Southern Baptist Convention offer financial support for missions and our missionaries through gifts to the Cooperative Program, the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering for International Missions and the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions. Our continued financial support for missions is necessary. Continued financial support for our missionaries is both a privilege and a responsibility.

     Your continued financial support is, and will be, appreciated by those who are serving as missionaries. Yet, as important as financial support may be, every missionary that I have heard speak while on stateside assignment will highlight the need for continued prayer support.

     I recall the mission emphasis several years ago during Vacation Bible School. During this particular VBS, the children learned about how missionaries Steve and Vidonia Smith shared the gospel in Argentina. The Smiths used sports such as basketball, soccer, and baseball to teach children about Jesus. Many of the VBS participants wrote letters to the Smiths in Argentina. Below are some excerpts of several of these letters presented just as the kids wrote them.

  • Dear Mrs. and Mr. Smith, I no what a misshanry is but I don’t no if I want to be one or not. Is it fun? We prayed for you.
  • Dear Steve and Vodania, I like a sport that most people wouldn’t think of. I like to swim. I like skating too like some of the people in Argendina. We pray for you and wish you good luck.
  • Dear Steve and Vidonia, I think sports is a cool way to teach kids about God. We will pray for you.
  • Dear Steve and Vodonia Smith, I like baseitball. I will pray for you all the time.
  • Dear Mr. and Mrs. Smith, I like to do ballet. We prayed for you.
  • Dear Mr. and Mrs. Smith, I like roller blading. It is like skating but the wheels are in a line. We are praying for you so good luck.
  • Dear Missionary’s, We prayed for you at V.B.S. Thank you for telling people about Jesus and thank you for telling about Argentina. My favorite sport is soccer ball. I like it because it is fun.

     Prayer for our missionaries is the common denominator in these letters. Prayer is foundational for the ongoing success of Southern Baptist mission efforts. Please continue to focus on missions through prayer, by promoting missions through the ministries of your church, through personal participation in mission endeavors, and by paying for missions. Even as you offer a percentage of your financial resources for Kingdom ministry, perhaps set a goal to offer a percentage of your time each week, month, and year to be involved in mission efforts on a personal basis. Engage in missions this week by inviting someone to participate in life application bible study and worship at church.

     Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for missionaries who have responded to your call to special service locally, nationally, and internationally! Continue to bless them, their families and their ministry wherever they may be serving. May we as individuals, churches, and a convention of churches continue to support missions and our missionaries through prayer and with financial resources. May we likewise respond to opportunities to be on mission wherever you have planted us. Amen.