Partners in Ministry Newsletter
—October 2022—

Do Not Lose Heart!” is the theme for this annual meeting. One way to avoid losing heart with the many challenges in ministry today is to focus on our mission. We need to develop an intentional strategy of mission readiness. This is important because there is no such thing as “sustaining mission”. We are either moving forward or declining into the past. The Apostle Paul states it well in Philippians 3:13-14 “But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

So, what is “mission readiness?” Mission readiness refers to a church’s ability to understand, plan, process, and fulfill its core mission responsibilities, especially in the face of developing challenges and other major changes in the world around us. The last couple of years have highlighted this reality. Evaluating and reformatting our mission strategy now that we are moving beyond COVID restrictions fits a mission readiness mindset.

Years ago, I developed a series of messages entitled “Missions 101” to help clarify and answer questions related to the church’s mission. The series identified four specific questions that need to be answered:

1. Is there a Biblical Mandate? Yes!
2. Is there a Biblical Strategy? Yes!
3. Is there an Opportunity? Yes!
4. Is there a Way to Measure Success? Yes!

I prayed that seeing how the bible answered these questions would help stimulate the church body to move towards mission involvement instead of focusing on self-preservation. Our failure to embrace our Christ-given mission leads to a “no risk”, “safety first” lifestyle in individual believers and churches.

Those who claim Christ as Savior and Lord are not designed for self-preservation. We are not called to self-service but to self-sacrifice. Mission readiness results in missional engagement which inherently involves risk as we encounter the lostness surrounding us.

I believe we have lost some of our mission readiness over the years because we have not emphasized the importance of mission education, mission training, and mission participation. Certainly, this doesn’t apply to every church, but there are a great number of churches that have no intentional mission component in their ministry or identity.

I know God is still calling our children, youth, and adults to be involved in local and global missions; I think we have failed to prepare them to answer, “Here am I, send me!” Whether God calls them to serve in local missions, short-term, or vocational missions we must help them hear and prepare to follow His calling.

Missional readiness starts with the context of our daily lives. We strive to reflect Christ and His love to those around us. Each local church is responsible to develop a missional readiness strategy. The SBC, BCNM, CBA, and others can provide resources to help churches engage in a missional readiness strategy.

I appreciate the insights from Breaking the Missional Code (2006) in which Ed Stetzer explains how the church needs to shift its missional thinking:

· From programs to processes

· From demographics to discernment

· From models to missions

· From attractional to incarnational

· From uniformity to diversity

· From professional to passionate

· From seating to sending

· From decisions to disciples

· From additional to exponential

· From monuments to movements

Missional readiness must be intentional and relational within our community first. Relational engagement compels our church community to impact and reach the lost community where we live. We begin by training and educating our people, from children to adults, about the importance and necessity of living missionally, listening for God’s call, and committing to missional service. This is more than emphasizing offerings - Lottie Moon, Annie Armstrong, or even State Missions.

We must evaluate our missional readiness and then implement our missional strategy to actively impact our community and the world, in partnership with each other locally and with our mission entities globally.

Let’s meet the challenge to be mission ready together. Let me know if you would like to be part of developing “mission readiness” for our association.

Thank you again for allowing me to serve you and for your continued support of CBA and its ministries. God has truly blessed me with the opportunity to minister to you and serve with you here in central New Mexico. Let me also express my appreciation to Bethany, our Office Manager, who has been a wonderful asset to the ministries of CBA. I also want to express my appreciation to D’Ann Craft, our CBA Treasurer, and to our Executive Board who have been so supportive in overseeing the ministries of CBA.

I love serving CBA and am so grateful for your prayers and support. I’m praying for you as well.


—Christian Challenge Update—

Please celebrate with me! Sept. 21st, Wyatt and I went on campus in the morning to give our water, granola bars, and info cards. We met a young man named Edward who wanted some free food and took a flyer for Challenge and our Free Lunch event. It was a pretty short interaction, but he said he would be at Free Lunch after class. He showed up to lunch and I sat and ate food with him. Edward shared that he was from a catholic background but did not really go often and did not really know the Bible at all. We began to talk about life and I shared with him that I went to grad school to study the bible. He was really interested in this and asked what it meant to study the bible. As we were talking, I began to share with him the Three Circles EV method. When we got to Jesus, I asked him how someone could receive eternal life through Jesus. His response was, "Going to mass." I told him that going to mass, confessing sins, or doing good things actually did not save him. I shared with him that it is only by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone that someone can be saved. We went to Romans 3 and John 3 to see that faith in Christ is the only way to eternal life. He shared that he had never heard this message before and wanted to hear more after class. An hour later we picked up our conversation reading Ephesians 2, seeing that we are not saved by our works in any way, but that salvation is a gift from God. I asked him if he wanted to say a prayer to God confessing that he trusted in Christ for the forgiveness of his sins and believed that Jesus was the only way to God, and he said yes! He prayed and then I prayed for him. One thing he kept saying over and over as we were talking was how blown away he was for never hearing this message of good news, that it is only through Christ's work that one can enter heaven. We have begun meeting regularly to study the Bible and help him learn what it looks like to be a disciple of Jesus.

Be praying for Edward as he navigates this new faith. Pray that he is a genuine born again believer. Pray for him as he begins to read the bible for the first time, and how God's word in many ways contradicts what he knows of God from his catholic background.

—Jay Leibold

Announcements & Updates

Pastorless churches
Monterey Baptist Church, Lindrith Baptist Church, El Buen Pastor

Replant churches
FBC Tijeras (pray for the church and the Replant Team), Mesa Valley Baptist

Feed the Kids, Gateway—ADVANCE (NMSCL)

Church Plants
Anchor West, Vertical Barelas, Restore Church, Awaken Church, Casa de Oracion

New Partner Churches
Good News Ministries (African church, worships in Swahili)

Visit our website for updates

Got something you want to promote? New updates? Events? Prayer requests? Let us know! Email if you would like us to add an update from your church to our newsletter!

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Central Baptist Association · 2517 Wyoming Blvd NE · Albuquerque, NM 87112-1027 · USA

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