Pat Pajak has a heart for the state of Illinois, where at least 8 million of our 13 million neighbors don’t know Christ. IBSA’s associate executive director of evangelism encourages use of NAMB’s “Who’s your one?” prayer focus and “Three Circles” witnessing tool as he trains hundreds of churches in faith-sharing each year.
Pray for the evangelism team and churches across Illinois as we continue to take on the great lostness in our state. Pray for evangelistic zeal for all our churches. And pray for your “one” person who needs to hear the gospel, perhaps for the first time, from you.
DAY 2: Grand calling
MONDAY, SEPT. 9
IBSA aids Illinois Baptists in reaching their “one” by equipping churches to share the gospel and baptize new believers. More than 700 people were baptized throughout the month of April. Called “One GRAND Month,” this statewide evangelism outreach was a continuation from last year’s “One GRAND Sunday,” when more than 400 people were baptized on the same Sunday.
Pray for those who were brave enough to stand up during One Grand Month to share how their lives were changed by new-found faith in Christ. Pray for IBSA churches to reach unbelieving people with the gospel throughout the year.
DAY 3: Church Planting
TUESDAY, SEPT. 10
Everyone Hears is a new initiative from IBSA to saturate the state of Illinois with the gospel of Jesus Christ, starting with concentrated efforts in places without a gospel witness. Church planting director Eddie Pullenuses this initiative to train churches to give every man, woman, and child multiple opportunities to hear the gospel. Many of those Everyone Hears churches will help start a new church in their target community.
Pray for the IBSA and NAMB church planting catalysts who are committed that everyone hears the gospel in Illinois.
DAY 4: Our largest mission field
WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 11
About two million people who now call Illinois home were born outside the U.S. Second-generation church planting catalyst John Yi and strategist Jorge Melendez work with churches in Chicagoland, reaching families who have migrated to the bustling region. These newer residents may not speak English, but their children are quickly becoming assimilated. Both men work with families and new churches so everyone can hear the gospel in their heart language.
Pray for IBSA’s church planting team who are uniquely fitted to reach generations of families that others may not.
DAY 5: Next Gen
THURSDAY, SEPT. 12
IBSA helps churches reach children, youth, and college students through VBS, missions events, Youth Encounter, and summer camps at Lake Sallateeska and Streator conference centers. Children attend these events to learn more about Christ, while teens are given avenues to grow in Christ while serving others throughout the year. With 1.5 million families in Illinois and 3 million children and teens, this is a big missions responsibility.
Pray for next gen director Jack Lucas, camp managers Philip Hall and Mike Young, and their ministry teams as they lead churches and train up the next generations for Christ.
DAY 6: Missions Mobilization
FRIDAY, SEPT. 13
Mission trips are once-in-a-lifetime experiences, every time you go. Whether a trip is near or far, those who go are given the chance to witness God at work in ways they never could have planned. As IBSA’s director of women’s ministry and church missions, Carmen Halsey has seen God move time and again on mission trips. Part of her job is to train volunteers to share Christ in new environments, which will then help people share Christ more in their daily life at home.
Pray for IBSA mission mobilizers. Pray for 22,000 Illinois Baptists who serve in long-term and short-term missions. Pray about your personal commitment to missions nearby and far away.
DAY 7: Leaders and vision
SATURDAY, SEPT. 14
Nate Adams and the IBSA leadership team guide ministry to revitalize churches, plant new churches, and advance the gospel in Illinois. Nate has served as executive director since 2006. Like others on the team, he travels the length and breadth of our vast mission field, encouraging church leaders. In 2015, IBSA launched the zone consultants, who train leaders in 10 regions. And with a renewed focus on revitalization, IBSA is helping churches grow strong even as bringing a gospel witness in the current culture becomes more challenging.
Pray for Nate and his wife, Beth, and the IBSA leadership team, as they travel, train, and minister to Baptists in every corner of Illinois.
DAY 8: Giving day
SUNDAY, SEPT. 15
Today, and perhaps for the rest of the month, churches will collect the Mission Illinois Offering. This annual collection supports ministries in Illinois that are important to the people of Illinois. And they are funded particularly by Baptists in our state. Just as Lottie Moon gifts support International missionaries, and Annie Armstrong gifts support North American missionaries, the Mission Illinois Offering supports missionaries right here at home. Discipling kids at camp, training the next generation of leaders, reaching newcomers and long-time residents who don’t know Jesus, churches in need, and strong mission partners sharing Christ. That’s all because you give.
Pray for the missionaries and staff of IBSA, that God may give favor to their work and open doors for the gospel. Pray for Illinois Baptists who support their work, that they may give generously today.