Big Gift to IMB Kicks off LMCO season, Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church & A Healthy Church is a Messy Church
An Arkansas family is making an impact for the Gospel. Joy Ledbetter’s family carried out her wishes recently and sold the family farm that had been in the family for more than 100 years. The announcement of that gift comes just days before the Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. Sunday has been set aside to pray for fellow believers in persecution. And, would you consider your church a messy church? Relationships are hard. Change is hard. Those are elements of the Gospel producing fruit in the local church.
An Arkansas family is making an impact for the Gospel. Joy Ledbetter’s family carried out her wishes recently and sold the family farm that had been in the family for more than 100 years. As she wished, they divided the proceeds – which totalled more than $8 million – between the International Mission Board and the North American Mission Board.
Ledbetter devoted her life to supporting missionaries and their work. She educated generations of children and adults at First Baptist Church of Jonesboro, Ark., about the importance of actively sharing Christ in their community, as well as around the world. She was an advocate of supporting missionaries who could be the arms of the church in sharing the Gospel.
Upon Ledbetter’s death in 2010, she left instructions for land that had been in her family for 100 years to be sold as a way to continue supporting missions. The Southern Baptist Foundation managed the sale of the 2,100-acres. The land was auctioned off in plots and the sales profits were divided between the IMB and North American Mission Board.
Ledbetter and husband Joseph, also deceased, spent time working side by side with missionaries in Asia and Africa. This connection spurred them to believe even more in the Lottie Moon offering for international missions. They knew every penny given went straight to the mission field to support and allow missionaries to share the love of Jesus.
The announcement of that gift comes just days before the Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church. Sunday has been set aside to pray for fellow believers in persecution.
April Bunn with the IMB encourages believers to think about they will pray for believers in persecution – specifically looking to see how New Testament believers prayer. She said that there are few references related to asking God to remove the persecution but, instead, ““Like the early church, we should pray for those who are suffering, asking God to give them boldness, strength and endurance, and that through the persecution of His children, God might receive the glory due His name among the nations.
Get more information at IMB.org.
Good News for Today is sponsored by The Voice of the Martyrs
Good News for Today is made possible through our friends at The Voice of the Martyrs, a nonprofit organization that serves persecuted Christians around the world. Founded in 1967 by Richard and Sabina Wurmbrand, VOM is dedicated to inspiring believers to deepen their commitment to Christ and to fulfill His Great Commission — no matter the cost. Find out more and sign up for their free monthly magazine at vom.org/goodnews.
Would you consider your church a messy church? Relationships are hard. Change is hard. Those are elements of the Gospel producing fruit in the local church. In the Baptist Press Toolbox, Ryan Rice offers perspective on the beauty of a messy church.
Know that the Spirit is at work in the messiness of the church
Maturity is a work of the Spirit, and if your church is anything like Corinth, the Lord is at work. If the Lord is at work, then your labor for Him is not in vain.
A messy church is a result of the power of the Gospel.
The reality of reaching sinners with the Gospel comes with messy work. It takes time for lives to bear the fruit of love, joy, peace, and patience. So, the more a local church reaches sinners with the Gospel, the more lives will be continually being transformed into the image of Christ.
You can read the full piece and learn more about our daily emails at Baptist Press.com.
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