For David Curtis, pastor of Salt Creek Baptist Church in Dallas, Oregon, going through Blue Ocean changed his life for the better. “God did some real significant work for me in that, and that spurred me to start working with a Christian counselor,” David said. “It’s added a lot of depth and been a real life-giving process, to me personally and for my family, just because of the way I’ve grown out of that.” David understands God still has some work to do in him, which is why he looks forward to the annual Bonfire gathering, what he describes as “an opportunity to get around the table with other people that are on the journey of leading and understanding how to lead from a place of health and how to navigate the challenges that we face in ministry.”
Bonfire and Planter Summit – the gathering of those planting or revitalizing church communities – are quickly becoming key components in the spiritual lives of leaders across the NAB. These annual reunions are designed to help shape us, communally and individually, into people who look more and more like Christ, because who we are becoming matters. Would you consider giving to the Ministry Resource Fund to help support the formation of NAB leaders through events like Bonfire and Planter Summit? Your generosity will, in part, assist pastors, leaders, and missionaries across the NAB through training, resources, and assistance created specifically to help them become the people God made them to be so they might impact their communities for the Kingdom.
Paul Nather, pastor of Century Baptist Church in Bismarck, North Dakota, has been part of the Bonfire community since before it was going by that name, and he continues to return year after year. “First and foremost, the reason I love Bonfire,” he said, “it is a gathering of family, it’s a gathering of the NAB, and gathering us all together to point us all forward together.” For him, “That’s what Bonfire’s always been about, soul-care of leaders together.”
The central focus of both Planter Summit and Bonfire is about becoming a people who look more and more like Christ in our everyday lives, while unifying on mission to build each other up. “We are carefully joined together in him, becoming a holy temple for the Lord” (Ephesians 2:21 NLT).
“The character formation of a leader is so important,” said Josh Huseby, pastor of Missio Church in Bismarck. And he understands its not just about pastors. “I’m reinforcing those same ideas that who you are becoming matters,” he said. “If you’re a lay leader or volunteer, it’s just as important that we’re being formed into a person that reflects Jesus more and more, and we lead and volunteer and serve out of that reality.”
Planter Summit, Bonfire, and even Blue Ocean – gatherings where pastors and leaders are able to be shaped in unity in Christ so they can help their local church to also be shaped in the image of Christ – are possible because many individuals, groups, and churches across the NAB have chosen to give in support of the Ministry Resource Fund. Would you give $50, $100, $500, or more to this fund to help support leaders like David, Paul, Josh, and so many others? Every gift supports the formation of leaders and lay people throughout the NAB, as well as a host of other ministry needs.