Already the trip to Jackson, TN and Union University has been worth the expense, time and effort because of renewed fellowship with old friends and the opportunity to make new friends. I finally met Timmy Brister in person, and was allowed to share a table with him, Steve McCoy and Joe Thorn.
I enjoyed renewing friendship with Ben Cole, Art Rogers, Steve Weaver, C.B. Scott, Ray Van Neste, Greg Thornbury, David Dockery and others. Some of these brothers will be live-blogging, or at least blogging about the sessions. I won't attempt that, but I will try to give some updates as I have time.
Parts of the conference will be live-streamed by a local TV station.
Frank Page spoke on the "Future of the Cooperative Program." He is the President of the SBC as well as serving as Pastor to the FBC of Taylors, SC and the self-described, "Southern Baptist Forrest Gump." :-) Using Philippians 1:12-20, Dr. Page called attention to 3 points from Paul's words that apply to Southern Baptists and the Cooperative Program.
1. The issue of mindset, v. 14
2. The issue of motives, vv. 15-19
3. The issue of methodology
I like Dr. Page. His spirit is so gracious and he comes across as a man committed to real humility. He is not willing to paper over the problems and differences in the SBC. He acknowledges the need for healthy debate and wants too encourage it. Dr. Page entertained questions after his talk and I found this to be the most helpful part of his presentation. If everyone interested the health of the SBC would imbibe his spirit, the kind of important, difficult dialogue that needs to take place across our convention could be greatly facilitated.