Henry Martyn was a missionary to India and Persia in the early 1800s. He died of the plaque in the Tokat region of Turkey, but not before translating much of the Scriptures into the languages of several people groups. He once said, “The spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions. The nearer we get to him, the more intensely missionary we become.” I like that; “the nearer we get to him, the more intensely missionary we become.”

Thank God for people like Henry Martyn. People willing to sacrifice so others might hear the Gospel. That missionary spirit can be quite contagious. I am thinking of another man, who I am familiar with through our work in partnership. His name is John Paul, and he serves as a pastor who plants churches in the Zambales area of the Philippines. Not long ago I visited with JP, and he told me the story of how God called him to serve as a pastor and birthed in his heart a desire to plant a church in a very rural area. He started the church when someone gave him $18 to use for ministry. He took that $18 and bought a 10×10 tarp and took it to the location God spoke to him about. He tied it to some bushes and used it to provide shelter from the weather. That 10×10 tarp became his church building and he went to work. Today, hardly a week goes by that JP does not send me pictures of someone that has been saved, baptized, and is being discipled because of the spirit of missions.

Southern Baptists understand the spirit of missions and work diligently to take the gospel to the unreached. We are grateful for the work of our churches, associations, State Conventions and the International Mission Board. And we recognize that the Cooperative Program, as the missional giving strategy of Southern Baptists, fuels it all. When your church gives through the Cooperative Program, you help fan the spirit of missions and for that we are grateful!

I would love to come to your ministry and talk about the CP and share about some of the ways you are touching the world through your missional giving. If you would like to host a Cooperative Program Sunday get in touch and we will work it out!


Rick Hillard