Bryant pastor says church will ‘die’ without missionscomment (0)
December 19, 2013
By Grace Thornton
When Todd Smith decided to go on his first missions trip in 2004, he went all in.
He flew, took a bus, rode in a truck and drove a boat hours into the jungle to take the gospel to an unreached village in Peru.
And after that, he was never the same.
Now Smith, pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, Bryant, can’t stop going.
“Ebenezer does many missions trips each year, and they also have gone on all the associational missions trips I have led,” said David Patty, director of missions for Sand Mountain Baptist Association. “They’ve been with us to Albania, Mexico, Guatemala, Alaska, some of these multiple times.”
God shows up in the places they go, Smith said, and it’s making an impact on the church, too.
“Now it’s not ‘if’ we’re going but ‘where’ we’re going,” he said. “Everybody wants to go. We’ve got little kids who are saying they are feeling called to do missions.”
The church has a particular affection for Peru, the place where Smith experienced missions for the first time. One project they’re helping to support is a camp for pastors in the jungle to come and be discipled and trained by a missionary there.
Smith has already seen God do amazing things in Peru, and he said he knows God can do even more.
On one trip, his team went into the jungle and stayed three weeks, preaching the gospel to whoever would listen.
“We said we were leaving the 99 to go find the one,” Smith said.
But at the end of their trip, 99 had come to faith in Jesus Christ.
“The Lord has been shining,” he said.
On one trip, they built houses for people living in the dump in Guatemala. On another, they helped build a church in Nicaragua. On yet another, they took food bags to the needy of Honduras.
And in Romania, they saw God send an ambulance to a remote village as they prayed over a dying child.
Seeing God work is keeping Ebenezer ablaze, Smith said. “The church, if we aren’t doing missions, we’re going to die.”