Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Wisdom Will Prevail

I am confident that wisdom will prevail in the recommendation for my removal as a trustee of the IMB.

I have spoken at length with trustee Chairman Tom Hatley and trustee Vice-Chairman Lonnie Wascom. Both these men were personally gracious and listened to my concerns, as I theirs.

All of us desire what is best for the Southern Baptist Convention. All of us desire for our respected President Jerry Rankin to feel our support. All of us desire for people to realize that our missionaries are the heroes of the SBC, and we do not want to do anything to harm our ever-growing work.

It is amazing what God's people can do when there is an opportunity for free flowing communication and corresponding respect. I really appreciate the opportunity to visit with these two men and reiterate my love for them both.

The Southern Baptist Convention is filled with some wonderful people. We may not all see eye to eye on everything, but I am grateful for my two brothers and their obvious desire to to work through what some might call a difficult time, but in the end, might be one of our convention's finest hours.

I believe wisdom will prevail and the recommendation for my removal will ultimately be rescinded.

In His Grace,



Nick said...

Good to hear, Wade. Sounds like things are looking up.

Paul said...

Wade, that's good news!

Kevin said...

I sincerely hope and pray that wisdom does prevail. Thanks again for all you are doing.

God bless,

Tim Sweatman said...


I share your optimism about how this will turn out. Often when people act in the heat of the moment we will do things we later regret. Based on what I have seen, some of the trustees are now coming to realize the ramifications of their actions and are trying to figure out a way to resolve things. I'm naive enough to still believe that when things are brought out into the open that things turn out for the best.

If I may make one suggestion, perhaps you may wish to refrain from making specific predictions about what will happen. It is great to express general optimism, but predictions have a way of coming back to bite the person. I realize that you're not actually saying that these things will definitely happen, but some may take your expressions of confidence regarding future events the wrong way.

Anonymous said...

What about the issues you raised regarding the new policies on baptism and "private prayer language"?

Anonymous said...

Did the two other trustees call/visit you, or did you initiate the contact with them?

Kevin Bussey said...

Great news Wade!

wadeburleson.org said...

Let me be clear.

This post is only about the recommendation for my removal.

Anonymous said...

I am glad that you have established more of an open communication with Tom Hatley and Lonnie Wascom. Keep talking to them. Yet, remember to be “wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove.” It is true that the SBC is “filled with some wonderful people.” It is also true that the folks behind the scenes who where calling the shots for their “hidden agenda” will continue to do so. Their main objective is to get rid Dr. Rankin. This has been their goal for several years. You are right to love those that have treated you wrongly for in doing so you reflect Jesus. At the same time remember that Jesus never lost sight of the problems of the human heart.

One thing about a caucus (and they have always existed) on boards and agencies of the SBC is that they basically originate when a strong outside source imposes his agenda upon a flattered, willing trustee. Then the trustee will gather an audience among the other trustees by “dropping” the name of the outside source to them as if he is their loving grandfather cheering them on to do the “will of God” as he [the grandfather] has presented it to him. At this point the trustees are so awe struck that “Grandfather” has called upon them to do his bidding that the “herd effect” takes place and Christian thinking is forgotten and bad things like what has taken place at the IMB will occur. Frankly, this is not an isolated event. It is happening on other SBC boards and agencies and has happened for years. Ben Cole’s idea may be the only way to check this activity for SBC trustees in the future.

I feel that SBC trustees need to be reminded that their objective is to represent the convention and that they are accountable to the convention and not to special interest groups or the administration of the boards or agencies to which they serve as trustees for the convention.

francie said...

too often all the church and or that matter a lost world sees is fighting and division in conflict - thank you for being a model for healthy conflict resolution - i applaud your perservance in standing firm and not running away mad - taking your toys and leaving the sbc sandbox so to speak - brother you and the others invovled are really putting flesh and feet the God's Word - you are acting according to His standards and not men's -

what a testimony God has to bring glory to Himself - it's easy to see the flaws and to get caught up in the fighting - but it requires more of us to hang in there and trust God that He is in control and He is working all out for our good and His glory!!!

May God contiue to give you deep/strong roots in Him and may He give you an never quenching thirst and hunger for Him!

In His Grip,
Francie Booterbaugh

wadeburleson.org said...

Mr. Evangelical Free,

That question was asked.

And will continue to be asked.

There are ways to change the course of a convention.

People need to hang in there, participate in the process, and change will come.

art rogers said...

That's great, Wade. I think that there may be a sense at the board that they had better handle their business before we handle it for them with vacating the whole board as Ben Cole has suggested in his open letter.

We need to keep praying this part through and we also need to keep in mind the policies that still need to be addressed.

When the board drops the recomendation for your removal, Wade, I will congratulate you. Until then I rejoice in the progress and continue to pray.

Anonymous said...

Good to hear, Wade. Keep on keeping on.

Danny C

Rod said...

I would think the recommendation will be rescinded too...with conditions.

I bet at the cost of blogging. No trustee blogging. Are you still willing to give that up?

Then don't we lose this battle for openness? Maybe the time isn't right...some many questions?!?!?!?! Thankful for God and His answers; He will lead us through and out of this mess.

Anonymous said...

Incredible to hear Wade! If they do wish to withdraw their motion and desire you to be a trustee, what happens with the policies that are in effect? Will you still desire to be an IMB under those policies?

wadeburleson.org said...

I'll continue to work to overturn the policies.

Anonymous said...

Wade, I am a SBC pastor in Arkansas and am VERY concerned over these same issues. I am thankful for your stand and encourage you in it. I have read many of your posts and sense no personal agenda or divisive spirit. I would like to know from you what I can do as a SBC pastor to keep the IMB trustees accountable and impress upon them the importance of changing this direction they have taken. Please respond to drbrd_2000@yahoo.com.

May God continue to bless you and your family.

Anonymous said...

I say, let the entire matter come to the floor of the June annual meeting. If the IMB trustees, acting as a majority, can intentionally arrive at such an incredibly terrible decision as they have regarding Wade, then the messengers present in June need to know who they elected in past meetings--and possibly do something right about it. Or, if the leaders of the IMB trustees (chairman, vice-chair, etc.) are inept enough not to rule out-of-order a motion to remove Wade from the board, then the convention messengers in June need to realize that those leaders probably have worked to establish similarly poor policies (tongues, baptism)--and that, quite possibly, the same leaders are incapable of protecting (or unwilling to) Dr. Rankin from subversion by others either on or off the IMB board.

There's a good chance that this entire matter will simply be glossed-over for the sake of graciousness during the June meeting, but no one can correctly call that "love" or "conflict resolution"--the potential for similar poor decisions or actions will continue to exist and to a high degree.

I say, don't let the matter drop. Make the convention grow up a bit--and its elected leaders, too. Clearly, the SBC needs it, and it's the kind of people God can use better in a lost and dark world.

Bob Cleveland said...

I think it's admirable that you maintain optimism in this. God bless you in that; it would be so easy go slip into pessimism. I don't share that optimism, in light of the grossly flawed reasoning I see in the prior actions of the IMB powers. My convictions won't let me withhold my tithe from my local church, or else I would not contribute anything to the denomination ever, again. Their decision on prayer language and their cowardice in how they worded it (the candidate would have eliminated himself/herself from eligibility, rather than stating the IMB would not let them serve) tell me there's precious little wisdom in operation. At least that I can discern.

God bless you. And, oh, yes .. check John 16:2. It applies here.

Anonymous said...