By John Pierce

Having the Baptists Today/Nurturing Faith staff together for three days was a real treat. Rather than firing emails at each other or joining a conference call, we sat uninterrupted for many hours to share, plan, refine and dream.

The results were beyond my expectations and enhanced by the serenity of a North Georgia mountain lake and the wonderful hospitality of Tommy and Beth Ann Boland who have long supported the work of Baptists Today in so many ways.

Finding a date in which eight busy people —spread about from North Carolina to Montana — could meet was something of a miracle in itself. But we pulled it off.

We are a nimble organization that seeks to respond well to opportunities that arise. We value trust, competence, creativity and collaboration — all in an effort to produce a high quality, thoughtful news journal and other resources for churches and individuals.

Over the past year and a half, we have launched the Nurturing Faith Bible Studies by Tony Cartledge (found in the center of Baptists Today with excellent free teaching materials online) and a new book publishing initiative with the Nurturing Faith imprint.

Other projects are emerging quickly. So we spent a good bit of time determining priorities and streamlining processes. (But we also found time to eat well and hike up to a scenic mountaintop.)

In doing so, something else emerged: the realization that much can be accomplished through good teamwork, generous supporters and a clear, compelling and meaningful mission.

Yesterday, we left our lovely gathering spot — filled with fresh ideas, multicolored flipcharts and enough laughter to keep us going — and returned to our various places with longer To-Do lists and backed-up emails. Yet we also took away a clearer appreciation for the tasks at hand and those who generously invest in our mission.

Working with such creative and committed colleagues is a joy.

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