The Baptist Convention of New Mexico is driven by five Advancing the Kingdom Objectives that we hope to achieve by 2025. Click the tabs below to read more about each objective.
1 Focus as a Convention: A disciplemaking church for every person.
by Dr. Joseph Bunce
Let me share some things that I have observed in regard to disciplemaking churches. First, disciplemaking in the local congregation needs to be contextualized. There is no cookie-cutter approach when it comes to the process of disciplemaking. The hope is that every congregation will customize and embrace a strategy and process as to how best fulfill the Great Commission of making disciples. Second, I believe that it would be a myth to assume that a pastor can make disciples solely by preaching on Sunday morning. Regardless of how competent, capable or articulate a pastor might be, he cannot achieve disciplemaking merely by gathering people in a large room. Disciplemaking in the New Testament is never done en masse. To put it in mathematical terms, it is a one-on-one process. Third, before a church can move forward in disciplemaking, there must be an appreciation that the goal of disciplemaking is not merely the gaining of information by an individual(s), but the transformation of an individual expressed by a maturation process. Unfortunately, many churches have made the mistake of believing that they can overwhelm people with information, rather than investing time in a one-on-one process of seeking to mature individual believers. A disciple is one that comes to know Christ as Savior and Lord, grows in their faith and shares their faith. Robert Coleman said it best: “The job of evangelism is not complete until the evangelized become the evangelizers.”
Excerpt from the January 31, 2015 edition of the Baptist New Mexican article titled “These Roads: BCNM Moves Dollars to Missions.”
10 Percent of New Mexicans in a BCNM congregation.
By Krista Peterson
The Baptist Convention of New Mexico has set a goal of having 10 percent of New Mexicans in a BCNM congregation by 2025. In order to know where we are going, we need to know where we are.
We currently have 65,000 members in our churches across the state. Children under the age of 12 account for approximately 16-17 percent of New Mexico’s population. So, if our churches reflect the population and 16-17 percent are children, we would have approximately 11,000 children in our churches. Unfortunately, I don’t think our churches reflect the population very well, because many of our churches struggle to reach young families with children.
In order to reach our goal of 10 percent of New Mexicans in our churches, it seems logical that one strategy that could help the most with reaching this goal would be to reach the children. After all, a child is never a single-family unit. A child always comes with at least one other adult and often has numerous relatives who are interested in the spiritual well-being of the child.
At our Vacation Bible School training that our New Mexico team attended Jan. 15-17, we heard a similar story of a church that offered VBS. A mother with two young boys was invited to bring her children. She was led to the Lord through the church. As her boys got older, they were led to the Lord through the church. As grandparents came to watch them get baptized, they were led to the Lord through the church. It continued on and on, with the most recent conversion coming from the dad. An entire family came to know the Lord through one church having a program for their children.
If we want to reach New Mexico for Christ and build our churches, we need to start with reaching more children.
Reprinted from the February 7, 2015 edition of the Baptist New Mexican.
100 indigenous leaders being raised up and mentored annually.
By Lamar Morin
Perhaps the most attainable of the Baptist Convention of New Mexico’s Advancing the Kingdom objectives, which we are striving to reach by 2025, is the “100” objective: “One hundred indigenous leaders being raised up and mentored annually.”
In the summer of 1980, while touring with the Continental Singers in South Africa, I found myself a half-mile down inside the earth. It was a fascinating, and thrilling, experience, complete with special gear/equipment and a bit of claustrophobia. Where was I? In a gold mine!
Today I am around gold mines all the time as I travel our state and visit our churches. What are these gold mines? The people in our churches! We have well over 300 churches in our BCNM, and they are filled with something precious and valuable—people who are followers of Christ. I believe we have an underutilized, undertrained treasure in these disciples of the Lord.
“One hundred indigenous leaders being raised up and mentored annually” is a goal that excites me! When we discover healthy churches, they are always populated with healthy leaders. As we strive to plant new, healthy churches … you guessed it, they need healthy leaders.
The term “indigenous” is found in this objective. The dictionary defines this term as “originating in and characteristic of a particular region; native.” It also defines the word as “innate; inherent; natural.” Wow! One can quickly see that our churches are full of this precious commodity—people of New Mexico who are “naturals” in relating to New Mexico.
So why indigenous? I can think of several reasons. One, these future leaders are already here, so no search committees are required to find them. Secondly, they know the communities in which they live, so there is no culture shock that might send them back from where they came. Third, they represent the biblical model of disciples making new disciples (one-on-one discipleship is difficult unless face-to-face communication occurs).
Can you imagine what it would look like if each church in the BCNM began to “raise up” and “mentor” new leaders every year? The second key to this objective is found in mentoring. Many potential leaders in our towns and cities cannot afford to travel across the U.S. to Bible college or seminary. We stand ready to assist churches and pastors in providing tools to help mentor/coach/disciple these new leaders right where they live. Please join us in our endeavor to achieve this objective. Perhaps you might find a few gold nuggets right next to you at church, or even a gold mine!
From the February 14, 2015 edition of the Baptist New Mexican.
1,000 points of light, churches and church starts, spread across New Mexico.
By Scott Wilson
The Baptist Convention of New Mexico has set a goal of having “1,000 points of light, churches and church starts, spread across New Mexico” by 2025. The task of starting new “points of light” is not new to New Mexico Baptists:
• From 1860 to 1960 churches in America were very intentional in starting new groups called Sunday school.
• Churches across America began declining after Sunday school waned and no other major groups movement replaced it.
• In 1879, Homer Newberry, a Baptist layperson, helped start the longest continuing church in New Mexico, First Baptist Church in Las Vegas.
• In 1905, there were 64 preaching points and 49 churches in New Mexico. Three years later, we had 105 churches.
• In 1920, 21 churches were started in New Mexico. An axiom in 1916 helped to fuel that: “Sowing must precede the reaping.”
• Every church planting movement, or extension of the Kingdom reaching new people, begins with an entry strategy.
* John 1:14a states the Incarnation Principle: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (ESV).
* Jesus said, “As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you” (John 20:21b ESV).
David Garrison, a Southern Baptist professor, studied church planting movements and noted 10 things they had in common universally across the world. I want to point out five:
1. Abundant gospel sowing
2. Intentional church planting
3. Local leadership
4. Lay leadership
5. House/cell churches
After looking over a sampling of church starts in New Mexico history, I have observed that nearly 40 percent were started by laypersons!
A “point of light” is a “regular gathering of people among whom the gospel is being proclaimed through word and deed.”
What are we doing? We have:
1. identified 63 communities in New Mexico with a population of at least 500 people but NO Baptist work.
2. created a list to resource people starting a point of light.
3. scheduled training in April for FOUR Fields strategy of seeding the gospel in new places.
4. budgeted monies to support those starting points of light in New Mexico (Mission New Mexico).
5. begun to hear from some who have recently started, or were already going:
• Ministry of Hope (Hunger Ministry of Tucumcari) NEW Bible study
• Trinity Baptist Church in Capitan, (Two Celebrate Recovery groups in homes)
• Vista Grande Church in Cedar Crest (Afterschool Bible Club at Matheson Park Elementary)
• Indian Hills Baptist Church in Silver City (Men’s theology reading group in a coffeeshop)—Michael Head
• Unidos en Christo in Las Cruces (Point of light in Anthony, by a man developed by pastor)—Juan Lopez
From the February 21, 2015 edition of the Baptist New Mexican.
1,000,000- Sharing the gospel with 1,000,000 unreached Hispanics through disciple-based evangelism strategies.
By Ricardo Rivera
The Baptist Convention of New Mexico has set a goal of “sharing the gospel with 1 million unreached Hispanics through disciple-based evangelism strategies” by 2025.
Ten years ago I met a lady while I was planting a church. When I led her to the Lord, she began to cry. Her cry soon turned into sobbing. When I asked her why she wept, she asked me why didn’t I come to her sooner. She then told me that her husband had died a month prior without knowing the Lord. That is why I am passionate about reaching 1 million of my people.
At this very moment, there are 987,000 Hispanics in New Mexico of multiple generations. Sixty-seven percent speak only Spanish or are bilingual. The rest speak only English. Our Hispanic churches have no more than 3,000 people in attendance on a good Sunday.
We at the state convention are developing a strategy for reaching English-speaking Hispanics, and we look forward to providing New Mexico Baptists with a number of services through the Mission New Mexico Offering—like simultaneous revivals, the annual Hispanic Family Camp, and a disciplemaking regional workshop in September—so that together we will be able to reach “1 million unreached Hispanics through disciple-based evangelism strategies.”
La Convención General Bautista de Nuevo México (BCNM) ha establecido la meta de “compartir el evangelio con un millón de hispanos no alcanzados por medio de estrategias evangelísticas con base de discipulado” para el año 2025.
Diez años atrás me encontré con una señora mientras estaba iniciando una iglesia. Cuando le guié a aceptar al Señor, ella comenzó a llorar. Su llorar se convirtió pronto en sollozar. Cuando le pregunté por qué lloraba, ella me preguntó por qué no había venido a ella más temprano. Ella entonces me dijo que su esposo había muerto un mes antes sin conocer al Señor. Por esa razón es que yo estoy apasionado con el alcanzar el millón de nuestra gente.
En este mismo momento, hay 987,000 hispanos en Nuevo México de múltiples generaciones. Sesenta y siete por ciento hablan solo español o son bilingüe. El resto habla solo inglés. Nuestras iglesias hispanas tienen una asistencia de 3,000 personas en un buen domingo.
Nosotros, en la convención estatal, estamos desarrollando una estrategia para alcanzar a los hispanos que hablan solo inglés, y miramos con anticipación el proveer a los Bautistas de Nuevo México un número de servicios por medio de la Ofrenda Misión Nuevo México—como campañas evangelísticas simultaneas, el Campamento Anual Para la Familia Hispana, y talleres regionales sobre el hacer discípulos en septiembre—para que juntos podamos alcanzar “un millón de hispanos no alcanzados por medio de estrategias evangelísticas con base de discipulado.”
From the February 28, 2105 edition of the Baptist New Mexican.