“Stoll-en” Moments: It‘s All God

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By Tom Stolle
I attended the BCM/D Men’s Conference last Saturday, and WOW! It was an amazing gathering. Approximately 550 men gathered at Riva Trace Baptist Church, Edgewater, to praise God, fellowship, and become more equipped.

As the event began, the desire to praise God was evident. The men were ready. You could see it. You could feel the atmosphere was special. I reflected on Psalm 100:1-3 (NLT):

Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth!

Worship the Lord with gladness.

    Come before him, singing with joy.

Acknowledge that the Lord is God!

    He made us, and we are his.

    We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

Were there shouts with joy? Yes! Was there worship with gladness? For sure! Seeing and experiencing a gathering of this size of men acknowledging that Jesus is Lord was incredibly encouraging.

Men also gathered in various breakout sessions seeking to become more equipped. Their desire to learn more and to walk more closely with Jesus was evident!

Experiencing all of this made me realize we are enjoying a special season in our convention! Last month, the BCM/D Revive Women’s Conference brought approximately 700 women. God is stirring the hearts of our women and men in ways that I have not seen in my two decades of service at the BCM/D.

This causes me to consider a simple question? Why? Why now? I don’t know for sure, but I am thankful.

I do know this: God gives all of us gifts, skills, talents, and passions. He wants us to use these things to honor Him.

Sometimes, we lean into these gifts and talents instead of relying on God. My friend Jimmy Painter, the pastor of Cresthill Church, reminded me in a conversation last week that if we lean into those gifts and talents and not rely on God, we hit a “glass ceiling.” It’s true!

What we really need as believers is for God to do what ONLY GOD CAN DO in our lives and in our churches! In my opinion, that means we do at least two things:

  1. We must be obedient to God.
  2. We humble ourselves before God.                                              

We acknowledge and accept that we are not accomplishing any of this. It’s God who is accomplishing it, and He chooses to use us in partnership! What an amazing God that He would choose us, sinful and frail humans, to be partners with Him! Amazing!

What happened at our women’s and men’s conferences has been great. It’s wonderful to see and experience. However, we must not lose sight of the fact that it is God doing it. It is God advancing His kingdom. It is God choosing to use us as He pleases.

We are in a special season, and it feels really good. However, blessing is tied to obedience. Let’s remember to remain obedient to God and humble before Him. If we do, we can experience amazing things we could never experience relying on our own strength.

I praise God for what is happening in our convention of churches. I recognize that God is making it happen!

Tom Stolle serves as the BCM/D executive director.