Alan Sherouse, Alliance of Baptists
Text: Matthew 9:36-10:10
Some of you might have experienced a conversion in your life. I’ve experienced many.
One occurred sometime during my Divinity School days at Wake Forest, in part through friendship with a classmate, Brian Ammons, who frequently spoke of a church named Pullen. And at some point in those Div School days, the leftover, embedded assumptions I’d carried with me into that place – assumptions about just who should and should not be welcomed and affirmed in our Christian community – were converted. And through the work of the Spirit that weaves our lives together, I know Pullen was a part of that. So count me among those who know more about the grace of God and more about the gospel of Christ because of the witness and work of this church.
I’m honored to be here. And I thank you all: Nancy, other ministers, Brooks and Pat my hosts. Thank you for your bold and animated ministry, and you need to know that it extends well beyond you to places like a divinity school in Winston-Salem…and even north to a church in Midtown Manhattan.
I do want to greet you on behalf of Metro Baptist in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of Midtown Manhattan. That same Spirit that weaves our lives together has connected us through the work of the Alliance of Baptists. Metro – like Pullen – is an Alliance partner congregation, and our community ministry – Rauschenbusch Metro Ministries – is among those that benefit from the Alliance Mission Offering that you collect this morning.
Since this morning is a Sunday of Mission emphasis and Mission offering, I was drawn to a Missional text: Jesus sending out his disciples in Matthew.