Archive for the ‘BGCT’ Category

Bike Out Hunger, Ryan Musser and Morgan Woodard

May 4, 2010

Bike Out Hunger, some final thoughts

April 29, 2010

By John Hall

On this page, a lot has been said about the riders and why they are involved in Bike Out Hunger. The truth is, it takes a lot more people than a group of riders to pull something like this off.

Many thanks to Bobby Broyles and First Baptist Church in Ballinger; Kalie Lowrie and Katy Blackshear at Howard Payne University; Keith and Sharon Felton and First Baptist Church in Hamilton; Steve Dominy and his wonderful family at First Baptist Church in Gatesville; Mallory Homeyer of the Texas Hunger Initiative and the good folks at the World Hunger Farm; Carol Woodward and Shawn Shannon at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor; and The Fellowship of San Antonio. Your hospitality, spirit and generosity were overwhelming during these six days.

Carolyn Strickland and Joyce Gilbreath, you worked tirelessly behind the scenes coordinating places where we could rest for a bit and share about the hunger needs of Texas and around the globe. It has been a pleasure allowing you to use us to continue communicating ways people can help the hungry.

Kaitlin Chapman, Joshua Minatrea, Dennis Parrish, Brian Hurst and Rex Campbell, because of you, we were able to stay on the road and share our hearts through media efforts about needing to help the hungry. Thanks to you, Christ’s call to minister to the least of these has been magnified. Additionally, you were there for each rider with an encouraging word, a helping hand and a cool drink. You were essential.

Lastly, to each of you who prayed for us and supported us before, during and after the trip, thank you. Your support will provide food for hungry people in Texas and around the world. Your prayers were felt and made a drastic difference in our ability to ride. I have no doubt that because of your prayers, we stayed healthy and strong, riding beyond our abilities.

As I type this last post, I want to ask you to pray as our Lord taught us to pray. This time as you pray, think about the words as if they were being said by a person who does not know where their next meal will come from.

Matthew 6:9-13 (NIV)
“This, then is how you should pray:
’Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name,
Your kingdom come,
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our debts,
As we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.’”

Bike Out Hunger Day 6 in Video

April 28, 2010

An opportunity

April 27, 2010

By John Hall

As I think about Bike Out Hunger, it seems this is more than a ride from Ballinger to San Antonio.

It’s an opportunity.

For many people, hunger around the globe and even in our state is something too large for them to wrap their minds around. Everyone thinks the entire planet should have enough food to eat. Hearts grieve for children near and far who go without basic sustenance. But people seem to be at a loss of what to do.

Bike Out Hunger has given people an outlet to do something. We’ve seen it time and time again. As riders have asked people to give to the offering in honor of the ride, individuals have jumped at the chance without hesitation. During the ride, a lady in a convenience store gave one rider a few dollars to feed hungry people. A cyclist riding down the street stopped by me and gave me $20 to help the hungry.

People care about hungry people and want to help. Bike Out Hunger has helped some of those people express that compassion in a practical way.

Praise God for their actions and prayers.

Bike Out Hunger Day 5 in Video

April 26, 2010

A beautiful state

April 22, 2010

By John Hall

The last few days have only reinforced in my mind how beautiful this state is. The rolling hills. The wide expanses of green fields. And of course, the wildflowers. They dot our state in deep blues, oranges and yellows to create a mosaic as unique and wonderful as the state itself.

Yet as beautiful as this state is, it has one significant stain. Texas leads the nation in childhood insecurity. Roughly one in every five Texas children do not know where their next meal will come from. For many other children, the free lunch they receive at school is the only healthy meal they eat on a regular basis and are on their own to scavenge for food on weekends and during summers.

The problem is so large, I can’t even truly wrap my mind around the statistics.

But I can mourn over stories.

San Antonio children digging through church dumpsters in an effort to find food.

An East Texas child who stole another student’s lunch and ran down the hall. When teachers found him, he had all the lunch in his mouth. It was the first meal he’d had in several days.

Children in the Rio Grande Valley who come to a church early every Saturday because they know they can find a meal there. Without it, they won’t have one that day.

Empathy is good. Action is better. How can you help feed a hungry child? How can your church reach out to children? Giving to the Texas Baptist Offering for World Hunger will help you feed hungry children around the world. If you call 888-244-9400, Texas Baptists staff people can you and your congregation start or expand a feeding ministry.

Together, we can make this state more beautiful.

Bike Out Hunger Day 3 in Video

April 22, 2010

Students share Christmas hope across the world

December 14, 2009

For many college students, Christmas time is when they flee cramped dorm rooms and hours of studying to enjoy some relaxing time back at home with family and friends. But this Christmas, more than 30 college students from all over the state will be leaving the comfort of home to serve with Go Now Missions, the student missions arm of Texas Baptists, to share the Christmas story and the hope of Christ with people in Texas and around the world.

Teams will be serving at various times Dec. 11 to Jan. 9. Some will place warm boots on orphans’ feet in Moldova. A couple will share the hope of Christmas over coffee in the Middle East. Others will hike through Nicaragua camping in small, remote villages to help with church planting. Another group will host English corners to meet students in East Asia. More will prayer walk and practice English with locals in a North African city. Still others will work on the World Hunger Relief Farm in Texas or meet physical needs through helping with apartment ministries and food pantries at Mission Arlington.

These students go in the name of Christ knowing that they have a story to tell that will change lives. While they are away, several will be blogging here about their experiences. I hope their stories will touch your heart as you read about God working in and through them to spread His story and glory. Please join me in praying during the next month for these students who are eagerly being obedient to the call God has placed on their lives.

Unique Christmas Gift

December 7, 2009

 Are you looking for a unique Christmas gift this year?

Would you consider a mission trip?

It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to go with the Singing Men of North Central Texas to Ukraine April 18 – May 1, 2010.

Travel will be up the Dnieper River aboard the Viking river cruise ship, Lomosonov from Odessa to Kiev. Each mission partner will serve on a ministry team supporting the 10 evangelistic concerts.

For more information please contact me, or

Don Blackley, or


Loss of possessions but increase of faith

October 14, 2009

Below is a blog post by Rand Jenkins who has been serving with the disaster relief team in Manila since Oct. 7.

Felicisimo and Marieta Cables and their neighbors have fewer possessions but greater faith in the wake of the flooding in Marikina City. Felicisimo is the bi-vocational pastor of Hope Baptist Church there and lives just a few blocks from the church.

Pastor Cables got a text message from his daughter that was intended for his wife. The text read, “Waters rising. Get on the roof. You’ll be safe.” After receiving this, Felicisimo rushed out of work and started home. By the time he got close to home, all routes had been blocked.

So he swam. He swam across 800 meters of raging flood water along with cars, bits of houses and countless possessions from hundreds and thousands of homes. He made it home, only to find their house full of water.

Marieta noticed the waters rising and was quite the resourceful and determined Philippine lady. First, she went to the second floor of their house. There the flood waters rose to her chest, and she began thinking of options. She sloshed her way to the upstairs front window and yelled to her neighbor on their third-story roof.

marieta cables and sonMarieta does not know how to swim. She climbed out of her window and onto the telephone pole that, at this point, still had live wires and then grabbed a rope thrown by the neighbor. Once on her own roof, she walked in water while holding tight to the rope until reaching the safety of her neighbor’s taller roof where they held a worship service praising God.

“I still have my family and my faith, which is what matters and what got me through this time,” said Pastor Cables. “One item I’d like to find is my favorite Bible,” he continued. “Missionary Bob Harwell, from Texas, gave me his in 1992 and it was filled with notes and encouragement. That Bible gave me the inspiration to finish seminary.

“The fact that people traveled so far to help us clean up is a great encouragement to me, our church and just simply reminds me of the salvation we have in Christ,” he added through tears.

One of the first projects of the Texas Baptist Men disaster response team sent through Baptist Global Response was to mud out the Cables’ house and a church across the street, not where he pastors.

“In talking with Felicisimo, I learned his story and that he lost a Bible that meant a great deal to him,” said Ernie Rice, Texas Baptist Men team leader. “So I gave him mine that Sunday when I preached in his church.”

While several of the volunteers led and attended area house churches in the area hit by flooding, four went with local missionaries to distribute food in some of the poorest of the poor areas. One of the stops on Oct. 11 was the first disaster relief the area had received since the September 26 typhoon. At this location seven people accepted the Lord.

Metro Manilla, made up of several cities, received a month’s worth of rain in one day of typhoon Ondoy after days of rain had already saturated the ground.

TBM is there serving at Baptist Global Response’s invitation and working with 20 other volunteers in mud out disaster relief alongside Southern Baptist of Texas Convention, Baptist Men of Kentucky and Baptist Men of Oklahoma. The TBM volunteers on the mission trip are Ernie Rice, Miguel Tello, Leo Vega, Harold Patterson, Bill Gresso, Jack Vawter, Russell Sheik, Rey Villanueva, Rand Jenkins and Stan Knight.