In a six-part series of articles, we have been considering what identifies us as the North American Baptist Conference. This is most certainly our statement of beliefs; we are unified around what we believe about God and who we are in God through our faith in Jesus. We are also unified around our mission. We use the term “ends” to describe this mission of the NAB. These end goals have been given to us and affirmed by the churches of the NAB. While there are many good things we could be doing, these end goals are what we believe God is calling us to work toward.
There are four end goals:
- NAB churches will be trained for missional and formational ministries. This is about multiplying ministry and planting churches, which flows out of being spiritually formed by who God is and who we are in God.
- NAB churches will seek opportunities to engage cross-culturally. This is accomplished through connect with ethnic partnerships and seeking to live out a God-directed racial righteousness.
- NAB churches will develop spiritual leaders. As part of this, we seek to identify and develop emerging leaders and to equip spiritual leaders.
- NAB churches will send and support international missionaries. This is about partnering with national Christians and national churches in cross-cultural settings.
These end goals are not independent but are interconnected. They flow in and through each other. We are to be missionally multiplying ministry, and we are to be missionally multiplying those who minister and lead. This happens in North America and wherever the NAB serves. As we live missionally, we treat others with God’s grace and mercy because of who God is and who we are in God.
Make no mistake, these end goals are not just for certain kinds of people or certain kinds of churches; they are our end goals as a conference. They are transferable to various settings. We can refer to the ends in different ways and we can use different methods to reach those ends, but the result is the same. These ends flow from who God is and who God wants us to be in him. These ends give us direction and unity as we minister together.