The Old Tree is No More

   So, you figured me out pretty fast. I mourn the loss of the Old Tree but I don't want to lose the forest as well. We have six universities and three seminaries in Texas relating to our state convention and the Baptist University of the Americas. Exactly one (hint) they gather in Waco) does not need your money (but will take it, so fire off a check today).

   All the others have growing needs, if not growing student bodies, right now. Most of them have growing student bodies as  well.

   Declining revenue dollars from the convention means something in Brownwood, Marshall, Plainview, Abilene, et al. It would be a catastrophe to lose any one of the culture transforming institutions that touch young people (and adults, throWeugh adult education programs).

   I would personally mourn the loss of Free Church ties to those institutions.  We all want our schools to be world-class. None of us wants them to be over-worldly, in the carnal sense. My wife tells me going to work at DBU is like going to church every day, by which she means a cultural sense of Christian values permeates campus life. I want Ivy League repute. I also want a top-down Christian culture on our campuses.

   And I want students to be able to attend our universities without bankrupting themselves.

   Too much money stops before it gets to our campuses. We have to deal with the middle man.

   The Old Tree is dead. Let's save the forest.

3 thoughts on “The Old Tree is No More”

  1. I hear your call for attention to the institutions of our denominations. I do not hear anyone’s call to church health. Nature shows us on every level all of creation reproduces when it is healthy. I see our churhes dwindling, our baptism rates dwindling and more attrition than reproduction. We are dying faster than we are growing at the foundation. These great institutions may be in jeopardy due to unhealthy churches rather than a dead old tree. The dead old tree is just an indicator of the lack of concern over foundational health. If the foundation is not energized by more than the fear of take over or the anger over political missteps then all of these institutions may need to be concerned over their future. Our foundational focus has now become financially who can and should survive. I don’t see survival at the Heart of Christ’s ministry, in fact I see quite the opposite. I think Abraham may be able to teach us this, a willingness to let go and look forward. In a day where 95% of our pastors are getting out of the ministry after serving for 5 years(according to Focus on the Family), baptisms rates that need exponential growth and churches closing their doors. It seems our current focus is bringing disaster. The last thing we need is to work harder at doing what we have been doing.
    Here are a couple of books I have foundational in future Focus. Erwin Mcmanus – An Unstoppable Force-Daring to become the Church God had in Mind and Gene Wood – Leading The TurnAround Church. Both of these are focused on breaking the barriers not just talking about them. We have discussed the problems enough.

  2. 101 years ago, my great grandfather built a house. He built it on a foundation of crowned dirt and and beau d’arc piers. Thirty years ago my father placed a concrete footing around the foundation and not long ago I recrowned the base. We are continually working to improve the performance of the foundation. And that is where the metaphor disjoints itself from the converstaioin here for if we think the foudation is wrong, are we not just mimicres of Joseph Smith? I would be careful of what I aks(sic) for!
    Jesus is irreplaceable. He is the unflawed foundation, even the crown whic is the base.

  3. I think we are getting somewhere now. I don’t see any of our great institional organizations giving themselves up for the cause. If Christ gave Himself up for a hope in mankind why don’t I see any of our great leaders doing the same??

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