By now, preparations for Spiritual Leadership Conference in June are underway at a weekly—even daily—level.
But even as we prepare the conference details and logistics, I’m asking the Lord to work in this conference this year in three very specific ways:
Repentance resulting in humility
As preachers, we’re often urging others to repent. We deliver God’s Word and ask people to respond by humbling themselves and receiving God’s grace.
But if we’re not regular repenters ourselves, we become proud. And when we’re proud, God resists us.
But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.—James 4:6
As Baptists, with an emphasis on truth, doctrine, and practical holiness, I think our human tendency to pride can be found in thinking that because we do things “right,” our ministries “work.”
The truth is any lasting fruit in ministry is because of the work and credit of God alone. And when we take pride in ourselves, our standards, our methods, or our spiritual gifts, God resists us.
I pray that during Spiritual Leadership Conference, especially through the preaching services, the Lord will work in each of our hearts—leading to personal repentance as we humble ourselves before the Lord.
But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble….Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands…purify your hearts….Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.—James 4:6, 8, 10
Revival resulting in restoration
We have the privilege of serving the Lord in a nation that is needy of revival and in a world that is needy of the gospel. It’s easy to grow frustrated over the darkness, but the blessing of this is that we have the opportunity to hold high the light in a time when it is greatly needed.
Yet, too often, our ministries lack the power of God that we so desperately need to make a difference.
For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.—1 Thessalonians 1:5
And too often, our relationships with others in ministry lack real Christian fellowship, free of jealousy or posturing.
Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.—Philippians 2:2–3
I pray that the Lord will use the preaching, music, and fellowship of Spiritual Leadership Conference to revive our hearts and ministries, resulting in a restoration of power and godly fellowship.
Renewal resulting in local church soulwinning fervor
The Great Commission of the local church remains the same—go, win, baptize, teach.
Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.—Matthew 28:19–20
But are we doing it effectively? Are we making Christ’s last command our first priority? Are we winning the lost and seeing them become grounded in the Lord and soulwinners themselves? Are we mobilizing our church members to strategically saturate our communities? Are we training young Christians in their witness?
And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.—2 Timothy 2:2
I pray the Lord uses this conference to stir our hearts for the lost around us. I pray He uses the teaching sessions on soulwinning, assimilation, and discipleship and the new 4Outreach program as tools to equip pastors and local church leaders to passionately and fruitfully witness for Christ.
… These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also;—Acts 17:6
Rest for your soul, renewal for your service
At Spiritual Leadership Conference, we believe in standing for the old paths, as taught in Jeremiah 6:16. But we also teach the portion of this verse that promises rest for your soul. We have noticed that when leaders don’t have rested and healthy souls, everyone in the “car with them” will experience a bumpy ride.
Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.—Jeremiah 6:16
If you’re looking for renewal to serve from a fresh and joyful heart while holding a commitment to biblical truth and biblical ministry philosophy, this conference is for you.
If you want to be encouraged in…
- repentance that results in humility,
- revival that results in a restoration of power and fellowship,
- and renewal that results in soulwinning fervor,
…then I encourage you to attend this year’s Spiritual Leadership Conference.
And I encourage you, too, to join me in praying that God would work through this conference in these three specific areas to bring these three specific results.