The Editor’s Desk by Shawn McMullen
One month from now thousands of Christians from across America and around the world will gather at the Duke Energy Convention Center in Cincinnati, Ohio (July 5-8) for the 72nd annual North American Christian Convention (NACC).
We’ve adopted this year’s NACC theme, “Unleashed: The Church Turning the World Upside Down,” as the theme of this issue to acquaint you with this national gathering and encourage you to attend. You still have time to register (at www.nacctheconnectingplace.org).
Unlike many national church conventions, the NACC doesn’t convene to conduct business or vote on church policies and positions. Instead, it brings Christians together for worship, preaching, teaching, reunion, fellowship, and networking. In addition, hundreds of exhibitors fill the NACC exhibit hall each year to connect attendees with missionaries, mission agencies, publishing houses, Christian colleges, Christian camps, and other non-profit ministries.
This year’s theme is drawn from the history of the early church in the book of Acts. The following statement from the NACC Web site explains it well.
The church in the New Testament impacted the world. It changed culture from Jerusalem to Judea to Samaria and to the ends of the earth. The early disciples turned the world upside down with their message, their lives, their commitment, and their passions. Can you imagine the church of today having the same influence in our world, being a part of such wondrous miracles, and seeing people receive Jesus like never before? The time has come for contemporary Christians to be unleashed—to be empowered by the Holy Spirit, fueled by a passion to reach the lost and impact the world!
We hope the articles in this week’s issue of The Lookout bring you to a deeper appreciation of the spiritual commitment of the first church and challenge you to tap into the same power and passion that characterized its members.
Preacher and author Dr. Bill Patterson invites you to journey with him through the book of Acts in “A Church That Changed the World.” Dr. Patterson refers to Acts 1:8 as an outline for early church history, showing how the first Christians followed Christ’s command to start from home and then take the life-changing message of the gospel to the world. His focus on the concluding chapter of the book of Acts reminds us of our call to continue to spread the gospel to those who have never heard it.
NACC president Dudley Rutherford writes in this issue to encourage us to participate in the convention and to anticipate big things as a result.
In addition, we’re featuring an excerpt in this issue from the recently released book bearing the same title as the convention theme. Compiled by Dudley Rutherford, Unleashed: The Church Turning the World Upside Down contains chapters written by the 2011 NACC main speakers. Each chapter uses the book of Acts as a foundation to provide powerful examples of how the church today continues to carry out the revolutionary mission of Jesus.
We hope you’ll be encouraged to attend this year’s NACC after reading this issue of The Lookout. And we hope to see you there.