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With the beginning of a new year, let’s take time to reflect. To celebrate. To praise God for what He has done – and for what He will do.

We launched a new emphasis at the annual state convention meeting in November: Reach Every Student.

With more than 200,000 students in Alabama who do not have a relationship with Jesus, there is much to be done.

We must not grow stagnant in our call to reach the next generation. Yet, we must also praise God for what is happening!

Last semester there have been 61 professions of faith reported through Baptist Campus Ministries: 27 students and 34 others. Praise God! American students. International students. Faculty and staff. Members of the community. The nations and our neighborhoods are being impacted by Baptist Campus Ministries across our state.

What a privilege to engage the largest mission field in our state, seeing God at work in powerful ways!

This past summer we had more than 310 professions of faith reported through One Mission Student missionaries. One of my favorite stories was from a group of students serving among an indigenous people in Mexico.

While traveling out of the village one day, they stopped at a small market and a local person asked their guide why they were there. The guide’s response was simply “They’re Christians.”

That story challenged me in many ways – they’re here because they’re Christians.

Our identity determines our direction. It determines our conversations. It is who we are, and it is why we are here. It is why we seek opportunities to go and to share.

What a powerful reminder for us here as we go across the street or across the globe. We are Christians and that impacts everything we do.

Student missions applications are arriving daily. Those who work in student ministry (or just know college students!) understand the word procrastination. That idea rings true even in the student missions application process.

However, this year we have received a record number of applications this early in the process.

I pray for each application that comes across my desk — praying that each student would not only prepare for the experience that lies ahead for them this summer but that they would also be faithful in engaging their campus and community today. May God be glorified in their obedience to His call on their lives.

As we enter a new year, we look back with great celebration, and we look ahead with great anticipation. May God be glorified as we seek to Reach Every Student – and, in so doing, reach the world.

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