By Janie Wise, Louisiana Baptists women’s missions and ministry strategist
What would Louisiana missions be like without the Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering?
It’s a scenario I would not want to imagine.
It is like asking, “What if churches had no desire or conviction to share God’s great love with the lost in our state?”
It is like asking, “What if we didn’t care that our neighbors and co-workers were dying without knowing Jesus?”
— Without the Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering providing assistance to church planting, the 2,908 persons baptized by our church plants since 2010 likely would not have heard the Gospel.
— The 200 congregations of the church plants established since 2010 would not have met for discipleship, for worship and fellowship, and, they would not have been reaching and teaching people who were not being reached by existing churches.
— Without the Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering to provide an allocation for children’s mission events, sixteen girls and boys would not have heard the Gospel at M-JAM in the spring of 2016 and responded in faith for salvation. Six girls at Girls’ Mission at mission camp may have waited longer to accept Jesus as Savior.
— Without assistance from the Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering over 900 women, displaced by the flooding in August 2016 from their regular quarters at Louisiana’s Correctional Institute for Women would not have received a gift box of hygiene items, including a Scripture card of encouragement from women in Louisiana Baptist churches. These boxes assure incarcerated women that they are not forgotten each year; more importantly these offenders are reminded that Jesus loves them unconditionally.
— Without an annual allocation from the Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering, 52 students at Louisiana College, along with ten women attending any one of our six Southern Baptist seminaries would be facing financial challenges as they prepare for this fall’s college tuition bills. Many of these students have plans to serve God in full-time vocation after graduation.
What if there was no Georgia Barnette State Missions Offering?
What if Louisiana WMU leaders over 90 years ago had not seen vision to give sacrificially to God’s work through Louisiana Baptists?
What if this we did not have this cooperative effort that binds us together?
Our ministries would be lesser for it.
God finds other ways to accomplish His tasks when we fail. But, oh the blessing we miss!
Named for the first executive director of the Woman’s Missionary Union, the Georgia Barnette Offering’s annual Week of Prayer is set for Sept. 10-17. The theme for this year is “Why Wait, For They Are Ready” inspired by John 4:35. This year’s offering goal is $1.7 million.