Empower Conference closes with reminder about ‘Christ in us’ & salvation for Buddhist woman who heard ‘revival’ was going on
February 28th, 2014 / By: Sharayah Colter | Staff Writer / comments
HOUSTON—John Morgan, pastor of Sagemont Church in Houston, which served as host for the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention’s Empower Conference this week, closed the conference on Wednesday (Feb. 26) by encouraging attendees to remember that the only hope of evangelism is “Christ in us.”
Morgan followed a long list of preachers and speakers, including Southern Baptist Convention President Fred Luter and New York Times best-selling author Eric Metaxas, and musicians such as Phillips, Craig & Dean and The Old Paths.
“The ministry of Christ in this world is nothing more and nothing less than Christ in you,” Morgan said, “You know when Jesus went back to heaven, he said it’s best for me to go back, because when I’m in Jerusalem, the people of Capernaum don’t see me. It’s best for me to go back, because if I don’t go back, the Comforter won’t come, and my plan is for me to be in you through the person of the Holy Spirit, so that when you are born again, I move into your life.”
Something is not adding up, though, in the juxtaposition of the number of people who say they’re Christians and the picture the world is seeing, Morgan explained.
“There are 1 billion professing Christians on the planet today,” Morgan said. “If they’re all Christians, that means God is in 1 billion people all over the planet right now. It would look to me like with 1 billion people living and looking like Jesus, the world would say, ‘Behold, they’re not like those religious people. They are different.’ Something would happen around the world. But we would rather sit and argue who’s the most spiritual and who’s doing it right, rather than letting go and let God have his wonderful way—his marvelous way.”
And while those arguments continue, Morgan said, the world watches. And as they watch they form an opinion of the God those Christians they know say they serve.
“You see, folks, the way you treat your neighbor, the way you treat the schoolteacher, the way you act at a ballgame, the way you act at the supermarket, the way you act at the bank, the way you act in everything you do, when you go into the restaurant, determines whether those people ever see God. Do they see God in your life? That’s what I’m asking you. Now really, do they see God in your life, or do you go around doing this church stuff and believe that one day we’re going to hit the key—we’re going to get the right music, the right preaching, the right kind of services and all this other stuff that we spend hours talking about, or are we just going to lift up Jesus who said, ‘If you lift me, up I will draw people to me’?”
When that happens, Morgan said, revival will come.
Though the three-day event at Sagemont was an evangelism conference geared to pastors and church leaders, a Buddhist woman from across town heard a “revival” was going on at the church with the big cross on Tuesday night, Morgan told the conference.
At her mother’s encouragement, the woman drove until she spotted the 170-foot-tall, 97-ton steel cross that sits on 448 tons of concrete in Sagemont Church’s front yard. Once inside, she found a brochure about Buddhism on a table at a missions exhibit. She picked it up, thinking it was about becoming a Buddhist.
“One hour after she left the mission booth, with tears in her eyes, kneeling just behind those television cameras, this 50-year-old lady gave her heart to Jesus Christ, and next Wednesday night she’s going to be baptized right there in that baptism pool, and I say, glory, glory, glory, glory to God!”
Morgan said he prays the conference was indeed not a conference, but a revival, just like the woman’s mother thought she’d heard and as the woman who found Christ experienced for the first time.
“I pray we’ve had revival. That is yet to be seen,” Morgan said. “But now we’re going to blast off like a shotgun.”