Here’s how I’ve seen the miracle of the Cooperative Program

June 4, 2019

I may not look like a “missionary kid,” but I’ll always be an MK in my heart.

Southern Baptist missionary parents raised me in Argentina, blessing me with the opportunity to see God at work there. That experience shaped me!

I saw my dad pick up people who wanted to go to church, sometimes up to 14 at a time! He cleared land next to the church building and made a volleyball court to draw young people, playing with them and sharing the gospel with each one.

My mom organized the WMU, and my dad trained leaders. They ordered resources, taught doctrine and built Sunday School rooms so they could leave the church in capable hands and move on to strengthen another one during their next term.

I loved seeing many people come to Christ, and I learned to play the guitar so I could help lead our youth group in worship.

Here’s one thing I learned: God uses His people to accomplish His vision of a multitude from every nation, tribe, people and language, bowing before the throne to give Him the glory and honor that He is due. But I’m not talking only about the “sent ones,” the missionaries, but about the “senders” — you — His church.

From a young age I realized we were sent, but as I grew I began to understand the power of churches working cooperatively to send us and keep us on the field. Southern Baptists were there for us when we faced a medical evacuation due to my dad’s blood clots, and over the next year — first in the Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem and then over many months at home.

From a young age I realized we were sent, but as I grew I began to understand the power of churches working cooperatively to send us and keep us on the field.

Your gifts to the Cooperative Program sent us back to Argentina, where my parents served another fruitful 20 years impacting countless lives. You provided my education, including a college scholarship and reduced tuition that Southern Baptists receive in seminary.

After I married Sarah and we surrendered to serve in South Asia with the International Mission Board, you provided training, orientation, travel, housing setup and a four-wheel drive vehicle for our medical work in mountain villages. You also furnished translation resources, countless copies of the Jesus film, as well as homeschool materials, our salaries for life’s necessities. We were especially appreciative of the generator you sent for those long days without electricity, in addition to necessary surgeries for our son, vaccines and braces. You enabled us to come back on stateside assignment to be with family and share testimonies in churches of what God was doing in South Asia, while mobilizing others to join us in the work there.

And after more than 20 years serving among South Asians, God made it clear that He wanted to keep using us for His work, but that our focus would shift to North Carolina. Working with the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, I am privileged to partner with churches to impact Pockets of Lostness throughout the greater Triangle area.

Through the Cooperative Program, you provide the funds we need to carry out the strategy of impacting lostness through disciple-making. Your offerings are used broadly as we organize prayer walks, lead evangelism training, provide resources, engage internationals, impact those living in poverty, disciple children in Baptist children’s homes, minister to the aging and much more.

As we help disciples become disciple-makers, their impact ripples out when God calls some to serve Him to the ends of the earth. God calls, and through the Cooperative Program, you provide the means to see His glory spread throughout the earth. From my heart… thank you for giving sacrificially!


by John Davenport 
Strategic Focus Team  /  Baptist State Convention of North Carolina

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