TCBF’s Emerging Priorities

Tennessee CBF is on a spiritual journey. Part of our journey is discerning a fresh vision from God in how we channel our resources, passion and energy. In 2011, four priorities emerged and captured our imaginations. We define faithfulness to God by how well we live into these priorities. Emphasizing these areas does not mean we will not continue caring about and investing in other areas important to us, it simply means these areas need attention, energy, and intentionality now.


Faith Formation

Robert Mulholland’s definition of faith formation in his book, Invitation to a Journey, inspires us:  Spiritual formation is a process of being conformed to the image of Christ for the sake of others. Here are practical ways TCBF plans to help congregations focus on and facilitate faith formation:

  • Communicate to congregations the importance of utilizing all aspects of congregational life to form faith.
  • Share stories of how congregations in CBF life are creatively approaching faith formation.
  • Create a separate faith formation webpage to resource individuals and TCBF churches.
  • Offer faith-forming experiences utilizing CBF staff and others who can enrich our understanding of faith formation.

Mission Opportunities

As Baptists, we strongly identify with a focus upon fulfilling the Great Commission and living into the Great Commandment (love God, love neighbor).  Calling out, sending and supporting missionaries is part of our DNA.  Helping each Baptist Christian recognize God’s call to be the hands and feet of Christ is our passion. As Fellowship Baptists, we embrace God’s call to serve the most neglected people in a world without borders.  Below are practical ways we will help individuals and congregations associated with TCBF be the presence of Christ in the world.

  • Create regional networks of churches and individuals committed to “serving the least of these.”  The goal is for congregations within a region of the state to work together to meet human needs.
  • Encourage TCBF churches to support ongoing CBF mission projects like Together for Hope and connect with projects that enable our folks to work alongside CBF field personnel.
  • Utilize advocates within TCBF churches to strengthen ties with CBF and TCBF and promote the Offering for Global Missions and TPIM.

Next Generations

While we acknowledge the necessity of ongoing ministries for and with older and median adults, we will intentionally target specific ministries to the generations coming behind us. Here are some practical ways we seek to engage next generations:

  • Cultivate a theology of “letting go” so next generations feel freedom to connect with the CBF community in new and creative ways.
  • Through funds generated through the state missions offering, extend micro grants to support ministry/mission initiatives of young adults.
  • Intentionally engage college students in CBF projects designed for them—including internships, Student.go, Sessions, etc.
  • Update TCBF social networking resources to create opportunities for next generations to connect.
  • Create blogs that cultivate topics of interest among all age groups, and specifically targeting young adults.

Networking

In the CBF community, everything we do is in one way or another about networking.  We affirm the creation as many portals of entry into our ministry as possible.  We encourage everyone serving in and through TCBF to be always conscious of reaching out to involve more individuals and congregations. Here are intentional ways we will enrich networking in the state of Tennessee:

  • Create quality content on the TCBF website to draw people to our site and to learn about and engage in our ministry.  Utilize the TCBF website to promote collaborative ministry/mission projects.
  • Become more adept at utilizing social networking resources to help all age groups connect with the Fellowship Community.
  • Continue to utilize the General Assembly as a primary means of helping CBF folks in Tennessee connect.
  • Utilize regional gatherings to help folks connect around mission opportunities and training/enrichment experiences.