Happy New Year! Have you made your New Year’s resolution yet? “I resolve to…” As Christians, perhaps these should be more like prayer requests than resolutions. “Lord, help me to…” As spirit-filled Christians, we have an immense power within us to make the world a better place.
Rather than making resolutions, some persons choose a particular scripture verse to focus upon during the year, or adopt a spiritual practice, or embrace a song. “Speak to one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,” (Ephesians 5:19). Instead of being hounded by that random song or jingle that pops into your head, why not be proactive and choose a song for the year that uplifts you? Still others focus upon a single word for the year such as “thriving,” “overcoming,” “peace,” or “justice.”
Personally, when I consider improvement or betterment, I focus upon values that are at the core of all adaptive change. This year, I seek God’s help in treating every person that I encounter with dignity and respect.
As we begin a new Biennium in ABCUSA life, I am thankful for the leadership of previous officers President Josué Gómez-Menéndez and Vice President Dean Parker, who provided remarkable leadership for us as a Board of General Ministries these last two years. I very much look forward to working with our new BGM President Karen Podsiadly and Vice President Jim Wolfe, National Executive Council members Dr. Jeffrey Haggray (Executive Director of the American Baptist Home Mission Societies), Rev. Gina Jacobs-Strain (Executive Director of American Baptist Women’s Ministries), Rev. Sharon Koh (CEO/executive director of International Ministries), and Louis Barbarin (chief executive officer of MMBB Financial Services), as well as our Regional Executive Ministers Council and officers President Frank Frischkorn, Vice President Cheryl Dudley, and Secretary/Treasurer Robin Stoops. We wish former General Secretary Lee Spitzer all the best during the retirement chapters of his ministry.
May we as American Baptists draw upon the power of God to make our world a better place in 2020.
Dr. C. Jeff Woods
Acting General Secretary
American Baptist Churches USA