With all your heart is the theme for Prayer Ministry Month at First Baptist Church. The Rev. Leland Crawford says, “This is a time we, as a church, spotlight the role of the Intercessory Prayer Ministry in our church and the role of the church and individuals in intercessory prayer. I’ve witnessed how prayer can change circumstances and more importantly, hearts.”
This year’s verse is Jeremiah 29:12-13: Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
Each Sunday in February will feature testimonies from members of the Intercessory Prayer Ministry and special messages on prayer.
Sunday at 6 p.m., First Baptist welcomes Minden native Dr. Blair Blackburn as guest speaker for the Prayer Banquet. The Rev. Crawford invites the community to the special time of praise, prayer and fellowship. A complimentary meal will be served.
Since 2015, Dr. Blackburn has served as President of East Texas Baptist University in Marshall, Texas. From 1995 to 2015, he served at Dallas Baptist University in a number of administrative positions, becoming executive vice president of DBU in 2002.
Dr. Blackburn is a graduate of Tyler Junior College and the University of Texas at Tyler; holds a Masters from Texas A & M-Commerce; and holds a doctorate of Education in Educational Administration from Baylor University.
As an adjunct professor, Dr. Blackburn has taught leadership courses at the doctoral, graduate and undergraduate levels.
Among his many honors, Tyler Junior College honored Dr. Blackburn as Valuable Young Alumnus, and he was also named the University of Texas at Tyler the 2016 Distinguished Alumnus.
Dr. Blackburn has also written the book, A City on a Hill: An Architectural of Dallas Baptist University (2014). Widely traveled, he is the presenter of dozens of Christian faith presentations throughout the United Sates as well as the Koya University in Kurdistan, Iraq; the International Education Conference, Shanghai, China; the Chilean Bible Society, Santiago, Chile; and the Peruvian Christian Educational Association in Lima, Peru.
Dr. Blackburn is “a man of deep faith and commitment to Jesus Christ.” As President of ETBU his “primary focus is the intellectual development and spiritual formation of students to educate and equip them for God’s vocational call on their lives.”
Dr. Blackburn’s encouragement to ETBU students:” May what happens on this hill, within the walls of our buildings and on the hallowed grounds of this beautiful campus, continually mold and shape us. May it ultimately transform us into becoming more like Christ as we seek His knowledge and His Truth, reflecting His light as a City on the Hill.”
Dr. Blackburn and his wife Michelle have 3 children. His parents are Jerry and Nell Blackburn, formerly of Minden.
The Intercessory Prayer Ministry was established in 1991 under the leadership of Roberta Kitchens. Over the years, the ministry has grown to over 300 church members: men and women committed to the prayer ministry. In the Prayer Room at FBC, seven different prayer stations exist for immediate crisis, general needs, expectant mothers, missionaries, college students and more, listing hundreds of needs. Mrs. Kitchens says she “would love to see the Prayer Room staffed 24/7.
Being a prayer warrior takes a committed heart to pray, daily.” The prayer ministry also includes a homebound prayer ministry and a crisis email ministry, E-Prayer. If you have a prayer need please call 371-PRAY. All requests are strictly confidential.
The public is cordially invited to this special time.