Vol. 60 No. 4

Newsjournal Of Kansas and Nebraska Southern Baptists

April 2016

Men’s Conference at WCC, Salina, Kansas

“I feel super blessed and humbled by the turn out of our first ManUp Conference! We are hoping to see the conference continue to build and grow for 2017.
We were hoping for 100 guys, so to see nearly 200 men fill up the large chapel is truly a God thing,” commented John Harms, pastor of First Baptist, El
Dorado, KS. John, along with Mark Slattery, pastor of The Shift Church, Larned, KS, and Lyn Hansen pastor of North Park Baptist, Columbus, NE, coordinated
the event. “A big thanks to the state convention, especially Mari Parker and Jessica Ruhnke, for their help in making this happen,” said John. (see pages 4-5)

A good administrative assitant
significantly impacts your church’s
ministry. Read more on page 3
Worship Arts Camp trains youth
to serve. Turn to page 6
Do you know the missionaries with ties to your part of
Nebraska and Kansas?
See Global Partnership on page 7

Youth from First Southern
Baptist Church, Lawrence,
Kan., spent part of their
spring break serving at
Webster Conference Center,
Salina, Kan. Another springbreak team from Jefferson
Street Baptist Church, Eureka, Kan., also served there.
Here, part of the Lawrence
youth work on moving rock
to landscape around the
entrance to the new WCC
dining-hall addition.


The Thought Occurred to Me
By Bob Mills

KNCSB Executive Director

Paul said in Romans 15:19, “As a result, I have fully
proclaimed the good news about the Messiah from
Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum.” Paul focused
on making disciples, developing disciple makers, and
starting congregations who would carry out the Great
Commission. Paul’s desire and focus was to plant missional leaders/churches in the population centers. He
knew that in time the gospel message would reverberate
out from the large population centers into the next tier
cities and then small country communities. Reaching the
population centers of a geographical area and then equipping indigenous leaders to take the gospel beyond (such
as from Jerusalem into Judea, Samaria and the world) has
been a significant missions strategy since the first century.
Similarly, the mission strategy of our two-state convention is designed to impact our major people centers of
Omaha, Kansas City, Lincoln and Wichita while at the
same time having a significant impact on smaller people
centers and the rural areas. All geographic areas and
people groups of our convention are important and must
not be neglected.

The church at Antioch
was a tremendous example
of a group of believers who
developed basic missionary
strategies and behaviors
for crossing cultural barriers. This was shown when
they crossed over barriers
of culture to go and send
missionaries like Paul and
Barnabas to the Greeks and
the Gentiles people groups
all over Asia Minor.
We in KNCSB must conBob Mills
tinue to be a people who
are willing and intentional about crossing cultural, social
and linguistic barriers to communicate the good news
of Christ. The fastest growing ethnic group in KNCSB,
Hispanic people groups (such as the Mexicans, the El
Salvadorians, the Guatemalans and the Cubans) is one
example of the opportunities before us.
And now to the heart of the reason for this article…I
would like us to focus on how you and your church

can partner more intentionally with central and western
Nebraska. Despite significant efforts these areas remain
largely unreached. We need multiple church starts in
these regions of Nebraska. I am asking the churches in
Kansas and other parts of Nebraska to consider becoming a sending partner to help our brothers and sisters
reach people with the gospel of Christ.
We are not without examples of partners who have
given much to central and western Nebraska. I want to
extend my thanks to Marty McCord and the Southeast
Baptist Association for taking the initiative to partner with western Nebraska, to John Gaskin and the
Indian Avenue Baptist Church from Lawrence, Kansas
for assisting with a Native American church plant in
Alliance, Nebraska, and to mission teams from Missouri
and Arkansas who have also contributed to our work.
However, we need more individuals, churches, association and conventions to do the same.
I am asking you to prayerfully consider what you and
your church/association might do to assist in advancing the gospel in central and western Nebraska. Please
pray with us that the Lord of the Harvest will send more
Kansas and Nebraska harvesters.

wait... what’s the opposite of sympathy?
Either way, he said, “I thought that syrup was a little
thin. Oh well, I like coffee cake, and this is a pan-cake,
so, it’s all good.”
We all watched him choke down about half the stack
until he proclaimed he was ‘full’ and we teased him
relentlessly. You know, like good Christian brothers
It was all fun because we knew it was a mistake, he
knew it was a mistake, and I’m pretty sure everybody
in that restaurant heard that it was a mistake.
But, I wonder how many times in the church we put
coffee on our pancakes and refuse to admit something
is wrong.
When you put coffee on your pancakes there are a
couple of potential responses:
First, you might be unaware you did it, but you just
know that they don’t taste right. So, you eat them anyway; you just complain about it a lot.
Second, you might know you poured coffee, but

deny it to anyone else and for the sake of pride just eat
them up. You might even guzzle half a cup of syrup,
just to prove your point.
Third, you might declare, “Sure, I poured coffee
on them! That’s the way we have always done it. We
don’t need to conform to the world and get all syrupy
around here.”
Acts 7:51 says, “You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always resist the Holy
Spirit. As your fathers did, so do you.”
We (that would be all of us) have a tendency to be a
stubborn people, and do you know what stubbornness
gets you?
That’s right, coffee on your pancakes.
Be willing to change.
Be willing to admit your mistakes.
Be willing to laugh at yourself.
The world needs more believers willing to be flexible
in the presence of the Holy Spirit, and less stiff-necked
saints in need of a Holy Chiropractor.

The Cross Eyed Life
By Andy Addis

Senior Pastor, CrossPoint, Hutchinson, KS

APRIL 2016

Sometimes some of the greatest discoveries happen
by accident. This was not one of those times.
I was out to lunch with a great group of guys. We’d
been meeting every Monday for lunch at a pancake
house and walking through Bible study together.
This meeting was like many of those in recent weeks:
greetings, prayer, laughter, questions and some passionate conversation.
At one point, the young
man speaking was also
prepping his pancakes. A
short stack of three, he lifted
the top two to pour syrup
in between each one.
Rookie mistake.
For full syrup absorption,
you must push your omelet
to one side of the main
plate, leaving room for the
bonus pancakes to rest, or
breath if you will, while
the pancake plate then can
focus on one pancake at a
Andy Addis
But, that’s not the issue here.
As he talked and prepped his food simultaneously,
we listened and watched.
Grabbing the jug nearest to him, we witnessed as he
slathered his bottom pancake with coffee.
We all must have given the appropriate expression
of horror for crimes against breakfast food because he
stopped mid-sentence before interjecting, “Did I just
pour coffee on my pancakes?”
Of course, we all responded with great sympathy or


The Baptist Digest

(USPS 018-942)
Vol. 60 No. 4
Leadership Newsjournal for KansasNebraska Southern Baptists is published
monthly (except for January and July)
10 times a year.
5410 SW 7th Street
Topeka, KS 66606-2398
Phone: (785) 228-6800
Toll Free: 800-984-9092
Fax: (785) 273-4992
Web site:

Periodical postage paid at Topeka, KS 66606 and
additional entries. Send address changes to: The
Baptist Digest, 5410 SW 7th Street, Topeka, KS

INFORM -- Regularly share information about ongoing
training, curriculum, events, support and personnel.
RESOURCE -- Serve as a resource pool for practical
ideas about what is working in KS-NE congregations
and how it relates to all sizes of churches.
GENERATIONAL -- Cast .the widest net, providing stories and information that will appeal to all generations
of Southern Baptists in NE-KS.
FAMILY-FRIENDLY -- Be family-friendly with stories,
regular columns and helps for families and leaders who
work with families.
AGE DIVERSE -- Publish s. tories that address the
diversity of age, ethnicity, and geographical regions of
MISSION-ORIENTED -- Publish stories about people
and congregations involved in missions and regularly
publicize ministry opportunities.
PART OF WIDER MISSION - Help congregations
discover that they are part of the larger work of the
Kingdom of God through their ministries.

To give local news:

Local church and associational news may be submitted by mail, phone, fax or e-mail.


Advertising policy and rates are available upon
request Call 800-984-9092 or e-mail:


Editor: Tim Boyd, PhD.
Associate Editor: Eva Wilson
Printing Coordinator: Derek Taylor
Robert T. Mills, D. Min.

KNCSB Executive Director
Association of State Baptist Papers
Baptist Communicators Association

Sharing & Strengthening

Behind the Desk and Behind the Scenes

She’s often the first person to represent your church when guests call or
stop by. She (or he) works hard to assist
your church’s leaders and members. She
may be volunteer, part-time or full-time.
Your church may have one or many. A
good administrative assistant significantly impacts your church’s ministry.
And her special day is coming.
Administrative Professionals’ Day is
Wednesday, April 27. Will you—as an
individual or as a church group—bless
her in some way? Try one or two of
these fresh ideas.
Just pick up the phone, send an email
or text, or stop by to express appreciation. Or leave a surprise in her office.
Wouldn’t she be delighted to find
brewed coffee and a tray of pastries and
fruit in her honor? Or helium balloons
tied to her chair? Or dozens of “Thank
God for Beth!” signs or Post-its around

the office?
Need a thoughtful gift idea? Order a
personalized study Bible or note cards.
Design a T-shirt or trophy to proclaim
her the “Best Administrative Assistant
in Tallahassee.” A good book, bouquet

A good administrative
assistant significantly
impacts your church’s
of her favorite flowers, gift card to a
good restaurant or nail salon. A desk
set, electronic desk gadget, desk plant.
A donation in her name for missions.
Tickets to her favorite sports event,
Christian concert or theatre. Or snap a
photo of her at work, post it on social
media to express thanks, and frame the

photo as a gift. Accompany any gift
with a sincere note of appreciation.
If the women’s ministry group, ladies’
Bible class, or the whole church wants to
collaborate, how about:
nProgressive bouquet. Place a beautiful vase as a gift on her desk, with
a single flower and a card. Schedule
individuals in your group to stop by
briefly with one long-stemmed flower
from their garden or florist, and express
appreciation. Use email or social media
to invite others to participate.
nThemed gift basket. Select a theme
that fits the administrative assistant,
such as teas, books, crosses, fishing.
Each person in your group contributes
an item for the gift basket.

nOne-a-day treat. For each day that
week, calendar a different person or
group to take her to lunch or bring her a
surprise treat.
Or plan a surprise lunch in her honor.
Invite church staff, her spouse or close
friends, and people she sees regularly
at work, such as the postal carrier, custodian or church leaders. She arrives to
unexpected applause and “thank you”
signs. Take a group photo with everyone saying “thank you” to her in sign
As you show honor to God’s servants, you honor God, too. Happy
administrative professional’s day, Beth!

© Diana Davis is an author, columnist
and minister’s wife.

Chaplains Gather at Webster Conference Center
Chaplains gather at
Webster Conference
Center for training.
Chaplains play a vital
role in ministry in Nebraska and Kansas.

Normative Church Conference
Webster Conference Center
Salina, Kansas

April 22-23, 2016
For leaders in churches running under 150 in worship

Theme: Developing Spiritual Leaders
We would like to invite you to attend a conference for “Normative” churches.
This includes churches that have fewer than 150 in attendance. It is designed for
pastors, key leaders and spouses. The conference begins Friday evening, April 22,
and ends Saturday afternoon.
Cost is $50 per adult or $75 per couple. This includes one night’s lodging at
Webster Conference Center and two meals. We have also blocked motel rooms in
Salina should you prefer those accommodations.

Bob Mills, KNCSB Executive Director greets
chaplains as they
gather for training at
Webster Confreence

Sevice Awards Presented at KNCSB Board Meeting
KNCSB Executive Director Bob Mills
recognized Barbara Spicer for 30
years of service with KNCSB. The
action came during the recent Mission Board meeting in Topeka, Kan.
Spicer is ministry assistant for the
KNCSB Bible Teaching Team and
holds many other responsibilities.

More information will be sent the first of the year. Please mark your calendar
now and plan to attend.

Our guest speaker is Chuck Lawless. He is Vice-President of
Graduate Studies and Ministry Centers at Southeastern
Seminary in Wake Forest, where he also serves as
Professor of Evangelism and Missions.

Chuck and his wife, Pam, have been married for more than
20 years, and live in Wake Forest, NC.

If you have any questions, contact Jana Gifford (
or call 1/800/984-9092 (Ext. 840).

Dortha Duerson of Sublette, Kan.,
was recognized for her years of
volunteer work through Mission
Service Corps. MSC is the North
American Mission Board’s longterm volunteer program. Duerson
was designated as a Mission Service Corps missionary emeritas.

APRIL 2016

Chuck is a conference leader and author of several books,
including Discipled Warriors, Putting on the Armor, Mentor,
and Nobodies for Jesus. He has a strong interest in discipleship and mentoring. He was pastor of two churches in Ohio.


Men’s Ministry


Man Up Conference Challenges Men to Be Leaders

Ron Emery, left, Immanuel, Wichita, KS, and Brian
Hamby, right, First Southern, Hutchinson, KS,
launched clay pigeons during the skeet shoot.

A lot of meat was consumed at the Friday night
bar-b-que. There was 140# of brisket, turkey,
burnt ends, hot links and smoked sausage, along
with 10 gallons of baked beans and 15 gallons of
potato salad. Todd Bradrick, bi-vocational pastor
of First Southern, Mankato, KS prepared the meal.


Some of the men enjoyed a John Wayne movie
after the Friday night session.

in ministry in a church.
He told of men who mentored him
while he was growing up. When he shared
a problem with his friend Wesley, the
answer always was, “The Word of God
says... .
McIlvain challenged his listeners to
mentor other men.
Retreat participants also learned about
ways to reach people who might not be
part of a traditional church.
Freeway Ministries, based at the Omaha
Baptist Center in Omaha, Neb., “helps
churches reach the hard to reach,” Rick
Lechner said. Such people include the
homeless, addicts and those who are experiencing other issues.
Freeway Ministries is a 16-week discipleship program that pairs mature
Christians with new believers. It began in
Omaha in August 2015. A Saturday night
worship service at the Omaha Baptist Center attracts 60-80 people.
Visit the Web site at
Upcoming men’s events include:
n“The Main Event” Aug. 26-27 at First
Baptist Church, Raytown, Mo. LifeWay
Christian Resources is sponsoring this
national men’s event. Early registration
with a fee of $59 per person ends on June 1.
After that, the fee will be $69 per person.

Daniel McKim, 3 time World Highland Games
champion, demonstrated his method of throwing
the light weight. Early Saturday morning, some of
the men got a chance to give it their best effort.

KNCSB Man Up Retreat, March 10-11,
2017, at Webster Conference Center. Information will be mailed to Kansas-Nebraska
Southern Baptist churches and posted on
Facebook under KNCSB Men’s Ministry.

Worship was led by Ryan Young, left, Min. of Music & Youth and Jason Wheeler, right, Associate
Pastor, both of North Park Baptist, Columbus, NE.

Featured speaker Daniel McKim, used lessons from the life of King David to apply to the everyday lives
of men at the conference.

“We had a group of 20
from our church. The
conference exceeded
my expectations. It
was a blessing meeting
other Christian men,
sharing, praying and
encouraging one another.” Paul Ehernberger,
member of North Park
Baptist, Columbus, NE.
“Men are called to be
spiritual leaders. If we
do not answer that call,
the void will be filled
by others that are not
of God. We men must
aspire to be spiritual
leaders!” John Craighead, pastor of Jefferson Street Baptist,
Eureka, KS.

APRIL 2016

APRIL 2016

Fred Schweer and son Tyler, First Southern, Salina, KS, practiced their shooting skills.

“This is not where it happens. This is
training. [Life] happens in the battlefield.”
That is what Daniel McKim told participants in the first KNCSB Man Up men’s
retreat. It was held March 4-5 at Webster
Conference Center, Salina, Kan.
He challenged the crowd of 200 men
to be like David in the Bible and rely on
God’s strength to battle the giants in their
McKim, from Kansas City, Mo., was
the featured speaker for the retreat. He
is a professional competitor in the Scottish Highland Games and works as a sales
representative for an exercise equipment
company. He and his wife, Natalie, have
five sons.
He uses his competition in the Highland
Games as a way to share his faith. Visit his
Web site at http://www.believethrower.
His books are:
n “Behemoth: Power Training for
Strength Athletes”
n “Heavy Confessions”
Breakout sessions during the retreat
focused on issues that affect men.
Terry McIlvain used Jesus as an example
as he discussed how to get men involved

Terry McIlvain, addressed a group during a breakout session on Men’s Ministry: How to enlist and equip other men.



Worship Arts Camp Trains Youth to Serve

APRIL 2016

The KNCSB Youth Worship Arts Camp offered training in many
aspects of church worship.
About 140 people attended the camp which was held March
11-12 at Webster Conference Center, Salina, Kan. Its purpose was to
train youth to serve more effectively in their churches.
Breakout sessions included basic and advanced training in
guitar and keyboard, along with drama, choir, photography, stage
hair and makeup.
Participants also had the opportunity to learn about two lesserknown percussion instruments — the djembe and the cajon. The
djembe originated in Africa and the cajon (translates as “box”)
came from Peru.
The final worship session brought the youth together to showcase the new skills they had learned.
(Photos by Stephen Smith of Stephen Smith Images, Topeka,
Kan. Visit his Web site at

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife,
and the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh.
Therefore what God has joined together let no one separate.” Matthew 19:5
When a florist wants to graft two Lucky Bamboos, she will cut away a piece on
both stalks and then press them together where the open flesh wound is at. She
will then use twine to bind the two stalks together so that they can graft into one
another as they grow. Shoots will grow and over time the two plants will become
one. If you tried to separate them, you would not be able to do so without
harming both plants. It is important to remember that the binding going around the
two shoots must be removed after about three weeks because, if left on too long,
the binding will hinder the plant growth by cutting into the flesh.
I recently shared this at a shower for one of my daughter’s childhood friends. It
reminded me of the Matthew 19:5 passage about the two becoming one flesh. The
visual of the Lucky Bamboo graft is similar to marriage. We must leave our
families behind and create a new family unit. When we allow the Holy Spirit to
make us one as Jesus and the Father are one, we will be grafted into one.
The difficulty comes when we allow the outside forces to bind us for too long. We
allow family expectations, pressures, schedules,work or ministries to bind us and,
if not brought properly before the Lord these will over time
strangle the marriage and hurt its spiritual growth that is counter intuitive to the grafting you have begun to become one.
In what ways have you allowed outside forces to cut into your
marriage or spiritual growth?
Father, graft us into oneness with our spouse or, if we are not
married, with our family of God.
Simply Tara

Wonderful Weekend For Women

Change in Plans
This year I was not able to attend a meeting to help
introduce the theme and plans for our Wonderful
Weekend for Women retreat. I was struggling and
feeling like I was letting the Women 4 Him team
down and not investing in the group or the
productivity of the event planning, but God had other
The same evening I should have been at the meeting, I had the opportunity to
have dinner with a couple of ladies in Ogallala, NE, that had been having a
difficult time making connections with others in the community. It’s been sad
to discover there are women within my community that are lonely and have not
been able to build relationships. God opened my eyes to a ministry opportunity
that has been overlooked here in the Ogallala area.
Since dinner that evening, one of the ladies that I met with and I established a
time to meet weekly for a women’s devotional. Please pray for this newfound
ministry to grow and for God to continue to help me connect with other women
in need of God’s love.
When detours occur unexpectedly, the feeling of inadequacy may start to creep
in leaving us feeling empty and down; however, we must remember God has
a plan for us and He reveals Himself in different situations. Jeremiah 29:11
can’t explain this any better: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the
LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a
future.” The connection I have made with these ladies is giving me an
opportunity to serve Him in the community in which I live. Hopefully these
ladies will join me for the retreat in the fall.
Maria Christensen

Global Partnership –
What does it look like?

April 2016

I love catching people by surprise doing amazing things. Let
“Dear friends, don’t be surprised when the fiery ordeal comes among you to test
me share a few recent ones I’ve discovered:
you as if something unusual were happening to you. Instead, rejoice as you share
An association helps a missionary secure a vehicle for their
in the sufferings of the Messiah, so that you may also rejoice with great joy at the
time in the states.
revelation of His glory.” (1 Peter 4:12-13 HCSB) Have you ever heard the saying
A missionary, praying years for a partnership, resigns and the
'turn your mess into His message'? That's what this verse reminds me of.
church goes with them to pack things and say goodbye. Now
We all have trials and struggles, and they can sometimes get pretty messy. The
this pastor and church excitedly dream of what might be next.
point is that those times ARE going to come! We shouldn't be surprised. As
God leads a missionary to take the Voluntary Retirement Incentive only to have
Christ followers we aren't promised sunshine and roses all the time.
an association commit themselves to provide basic accounting and accountabilAs if the hard times aren't hard enough, here's where it gets really difficult! We
ity so that this missionary can return to the field continuing their work.
are supposed to rejoice when those trials come. What?!
A women’s ministry welcomes a college-age missionary kid to the states by
Yes. We are to use that mess to point to Christ. How we
writing monthly notes of encouragement, sending quarterly packages and lifting
react to it, handle it, and come out on the other side of
her in prayer.
it is a reflection of Him. The purpose of all things is to
An empty house and an apartment become homes for missionaries to live in
give Him glory.
while they are on stateside assignment.
This years' WWW is going to look deeper at this verse
Plans build as Nebraska and Kansas churches host the Missionary Kid Re-Entry
under the theme 'Beautiful Mess'. Ladies, you're invited
Retreat in August 2016 as they prepare for college.
to join with 400+ other women this September at WebWhat about you? Do you know the missionaries with ties to your part of
ster Conference Center and see how God uses each of
Nebraska and Kansas? Would you choose to partner with them to see God’s
our 'messes' to make them beautiful ... for His glory!
Kingdom come? Please contact the Sending Office at KNCSB if you desire to

be a part of a global partnership!
Calah Titus
Priscilla Sapp


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nWCC SUNDAY is Sunday, April 10, 2016. A short video and handout materials are
available on the WCC website ( which can be down loaded for
viewing and printing for your small group, Sunday School class or worship service.
Call Terry McIlvain if you have questions. (1-785-228-6824)
nMATCHING CHALLENGE GRANT: A dollar for dollar matching grant has been
given to WCC for $75,000 to repave the entry road from just inside the front gate to
the Dining Hall. To date, about $37,000 has been given.
nTHE BID HAS BEEN SELECTED: The bid has been selected to repave the entire
entry road at WCC and the dorm parking lot. However, until the Matching/Challenge Grant and other funding have been received to pay for this project, everything
is on hold. If you or your church would like to see this project finish before the
summer camping season, send your tax except gifts payable to Webster Conference
Center and mail them to: WCC, 5410 S.W. 7th Street in Topeka, KS 66606-2398.
nDINING HALL: Work progresses on the Dining Hall Expansion. The goal is to
have this project completed by the beginning of the summer camp season in late
May. Volunteers are needed for both indoor and outdoor projects on this building.
Call Bill Cooke toll free at 1-877-WCC-RESV if you or a small group would like to
work for a day or two.
Sign up for the free monthly WCC E-Newsletters by going to

“Thank you” for your continued support of WCC!


APRIL 2016



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