In just a month, we will be hosting our 3rd annual Global Missions Conference here at Morningview, and I hope you will make every effort to be in attendance for all of the activities.  This year, Ken will be our keynote speaker.  Ken has been with us a couple times before to share with us about his teaching/training ministry among former Muslims who are seeking to reach their home countries for Christ.  He possesses keen insight into the missionary task and I have no doubt that he will inspire us as we seek to advance our efforts in Southeast Asia and South America.

We will also have the immense blessing of having all of our mission partners here with us.  Ted, Jeremy, and Steve and Carol will all be joining us from their respective fields and they will be leading the breakout sessions for adults, youth, and children.  We will have the privilege of hearing first-hand reports of what God is doing in them and through them as they seek to raise up disciples of Christ among their people groups.  Having them here will also help us develop a more detailed vision of how we will be partnering with them in 2011.

We will also have the blessing of fellowship with them and with each other as we gather for 2 different meals in the course of the weekend — Friday and Saturday evening.  At the

Saturday evening meal, we even plan to have some foods from our partner regions so that you will be able to sample local cuisine.  You won’t want to miss it.
Another new aspect of this year’s Global Missions Conference is the consolidation of our annual SBC offerings into a single World Missions Offering.  Every year, we have the blessing of giving above our normal tithes and offerings to support our Lottie Moon offering for the International Mission Board and our Annie Armstrong offering for the North American Mission Board.  This year, to coincide with our annual conference, we will receive one World Missions Offering that will cover both.  It will be divided between them based upon our historic giving patterns.  For example, our goal for Lottie is usually about 4 or 5 times larger than our goal for Annie, so we would distribute the offering to the respective agencies based upon that historic ratio.

We are making this change because we want these offerings to receive even greater emphasis.  Normally, the promotion of these offerings is overshadowed by annual holiday preparations and celebrations at Christmas and Easter.  By linking a World Missions Offering with our Annual Global Missions Conference, we will foster and undistracted focus on world missions efforts.  Furthermore, our congregation will have the privilege of coupling their missions giving with hands-on experience and eyewitness reports from those who are serving in the field.  It will be a blessing to have our missions giving coincide with our missions emphasis.

On a final note, it would be wonderful if we could celebrate the Grand Opening of our Mission House with a ribbon cutting ceremony the same weekend of our conference.  The house has come together so well, but there are still some items we need:  One Queen mattress set, mattress covers ( 3 twin, 1 queen), a vacuum, mop and broom, bathroom towels, flatware, glassware, pots and pans, blinds for 3 bedrooms and kitchen, 8 pillows, cooking utensils, a TV stand, a floor lamp, a chair for the master bedroom, and 3 rugs.  If each of us just took responsibility to purchase one of these needs, the house could be fully finished by next week.  What can you contribute to its completion?  If you feel led to take care of one or more of these items, call Heidi at our church office and let us know which ones.

I am truly excited about all that God is doing in and through us, especially how He is shaping and sharpening us as a force for world missions.  So join me in praying for this event and participating in it when it arrives.  It will be an incredible time together!  I love you all dearly.