Sunday night in Orlando turned out to be a night of great fun and fellowship with bloggers I had never previously met. Let me share a few tidbits with you.
- Bloggers, evidently, attend the convention, but stand in the hallways chatting. On my way into the convention center, I saw a tall (I mean really tall) thin man I recognized as Micah Fries. Then, a few steps down the hallway I saw another tall man (not quite so thin) – Tim Rogers. He was standing there talking to Bart Barber, Wes Kenney and several others. As we were standing there, David Rogers walked by. It was a regular bloggers convention. Tim Guthrie also joined the group and Scott Gordon wandered by as well. A little while later I saw Dwight McKissic and Tim Guthrie chatting, and I horned in on that conversation. Good times! It was great to meet in person some of the men I’ve “fellowshipped” with on blogs over the last couple of years.
- Tim Guthrie and I hijacked a shuttle bus (well, we were the only passengers) to Tony Roma’s where we met up with Bart, Tim Rogers, and others. Great conversation. I tried hard to be a good influence on Tim Rogers, but I am afraid that I failed.
- I had a short but wonderful conversation with Dwight McKissic. He has publicly announced that he will offer several resolutions and motions at this convention. He plans to move that we disfellowship churches that practice racism. Several years ago, we took a public stand against homosexuality, and said that churches that condone homosexuality would not be considered in good standing with the SBC. Dwight is asking that we include racism as just such a sin. Is there any reason NOT to vote for this motion? I certainly cannot think of one. Racism is not only a heinous sin, but a blot on the history of the SBC. While we have made a lot of progress as a convention, we still have a long way to go. Let’s do it. Let’s tell the world that the SBC is not a welcome place for racial discrimination.
- At Tony Roma’s we spent some time talking about the SBC presidential vote that will take place Tuesday. It will be something of a shock if anyone wins this on the first ballot. A runoff seems a likely scenario. There seems to be very little consensus on who will win.
- We also discussed the GCR report which will be voted on Tuesday afternoon, right after the presidential election. While Tim Rogers and I do not have a shared perspective on this report, one thing we agree on. If the GCR passes with less than an overwhelming majority (80%?) then we are in for a mess as the report is implemented. There are four options that I see. First, the report could be voted as a whole with an overwhelming majority. That would be my hope, of course. If this happens, we will have a mandate to begin the implementation process. Second, we could pass the report with a less than overwhelming majority. The report would be passed, but implementation would be much more difficult. The third option would be a defeat of report. I would be sad, but at least there would be a clear word from the convention on the issue. There will certainly be a motion to divide the question and vote on each recommendation separately. It is possible that this motion will succeed and that some of the report will pass and some will fail. The most likely items to fail would be the one about Great Commission Giving and the reorganization of NAMB.
Here are my predictions for the GCR vote. I think the motion to vote separately on each item will be defeated. I think the GCR will pass. What I do not know is whether it will be by a large enough majority to serve as a “mandate.”
Tomorrow, I’m going to spend less time talking to bloggers and more time listening to the preaching! Really, I am!