By Ronnie Floyd
The 50,000+ churches and congregations of the Southern Baptist Convention must understand the urgency of this hour in which we live. As far back as I can remember, I know of no time more critical and more urgent than the one we are living in right now.
There is no great movement of God that has ever occurred that does not begin with the extraordinary prayer of God’s people. The time is now for us to come together before God in clear agreement, visible union, and extraordinary prayer for the next Great Awakening and for the world to be reached for Christ.
For the sake of our nation and the spiritually lost around the world, it is time for us to humble ourselves before God. Pastors, church leaders, and members of our churches, the alarm clock is going off in our nation. This is no time to push the snooze button. It is time for us to answer the call.
SBC Churches: Own up!
As the pastor goes, so goes the church. As the churches go, so goes the nation. Therefore, when you look at the spiritual and moral condition of our nation, our churches must own up that this has and is happening on our watch!
We need to resolve between one another and with the Lord that we must own up to this reality. We cannot blame the generation before us. We cannot blame the government. We cannot blame the justice system. We cannot blame the culture.
As the Church, we are responsible for where we are as a nation. We have gone to sleep at the wheel. We have settled for mediocrity. We have acted as though this is the way things are going to be. We have chosen to sit this one out. Now is the time for us to own up to the reality of our condition today.
SBC Churches: Wake up!
While our nation’s present condition is undeniable, much of the Church in America sleeps. Spiritual lukewarmness is plaguing the Church. Complacency and conflict categorize the Church more than contrition and compassion. We place more emphasis on announcements and promotions than we do on prayer.
Now is the time for our churches to wake up! We need to wake up from our slumber, indifference, and laziness. We need pastors to wake up to the fire of God and the anointing of God upon them while they preach God’s Word weekly. We need our members to wake up and stand with their pastor, holding his arms up in prayer continually.
The grim reality is that unforgiveness is the #1 sin in the Church. It builds a wall so thick one cannot break through it, so deep one cannot tunnel under it, and so high that no one can climb over it. While unforgiveness is choking the life of God’s Spirit out of many of our churches, we need to believe again that the power of the gospel is greater than the wall of unforgiveness. While the wall of unforgiveness appears to be impenetrable, Jesus came to tear down every wall, including the wall of unforgiveness.
Pastor, forgive your members. Members, forgive your pastor. Pastor, forgive other pastors. Church members, forgive other church members. Freedom awaits you on the other side. We need to wake up to the oceans of God’s grace. Open your arms to one another and to a world that needs the Lord Jesus Christ. Extend the hope of the gospel.
SBC Churches: Rise up!
Our churches must rise up in these desperate times. We must rise up to the challenges of this hour. We cannot sit this one out. We must get off the sideline and get into the game. The urgency is upon us, so rise up!
Rise up in compassion in your community. Rise up to actions of Christian love and grace toward others. Rise up, giving more than you have ever given to extend the gospel to the nations. Rise up, storming the gates of hell.
Join us in Columbus, Ohio, on June 16-17, 2015, as thousands of people converge on this city from across America.
Our theme is GREAT AWAKENING.
This is why we are committing the entire Tuesday evening session of the annual meeting of our Southern Baptist Convention to come together in clear agreement and visible union at one place at one time with God’s people. We will unite in extraordinary prayer for spiritual revival personally, spiritual revival in the church, for the next Great Awakening, and for the world to be reached for Christ.
Therefore, in Jesus’ name, I plead with Southern Baptists to humbly come together before God in clear agreement, visible union, and extraordinary prayer for the next Great Awakening and for the world to be reached for Christ. This is why we need you to come to Columbus this summer!
Yours for the Great Commission,
Ronnie W. Floyd
Dr. Ronnie Floyd is currently serving as the President of the Southern Baptist Convention.