Sunday, June 17, 2007

San Antonio Hindsight: Part Two

A Personal Perspective

The San Antonio Convention had personal significance for us in several ways. First, on Monday evening Tracy and I walked into the Marriott Rivercenter hotel. We had to overcome some things to do so. Five years ago we brought to that hotel an infant boy that we were adopting. That overnight was a mystical, amazing experience—I never realized how quickly God can knit together the hearts of parents to their children. The next morning, moments before the legal deadline, the birthmother called that hotel room to announce that she had changed her mind (which I fully affirm is her right to do). We bundled up the one who, in our hearts, was our little boy, and we gave him away. Then we slunk out of the Marriott Rivercenter. I deliberately did not book a room for us in that hotel, but I knew that we wouldn't be able to avoid the convention hotel for the entire week. Sure enough, there we were on Monday night. My feelings were a strange mixture. Somewhere walking around San Antonio is a five-year-old boy who was almost my son. That kind of pain doesn't go away entirely. But on the other hand, walking around San Antonio with me was a four-year-old boy who is my son…and an eleven-month-old daughter crawled a good bit of the Convention Center to boot! Our confidence in what God has done gave us the courage to return to what was once the site of a disaster in our lives.

No More Live-Blogging

I just can't do it. It feels sacrilegious to be typing away on my computer, blogging during church. I won't ever attempt it again. Sorry.

Meeting People

I met a bunch of new people this week. Les Puryear is a great guy, and a few minutes chatting with him was one of the highlights of my week. I got to meet Marty Duren, of Fox News Channel fame :-) . I met Dr. Russell Moore. Chadwick Ivester is a brand-new acquaintance. I met Tim Guthrie, who appears to be doing great after the heart attack. I met Alycelee. I tried to keep Bob Cleveland from stepping out into traffic. I never did find Dorcas Hawker. I'm skipping about fifty people. Sorry. And then there are all of the people whom I already knew but got to see once again. Top of that list is Harold & Betty Ray. I look for them every year at SBC. Bro. Ray has been the Director of Missions at the Mt. Zion Baptist Association in Jonesboro, Arkansas for a long time. He was a ADoM at Associational Boys Camp in 1981 when God made plain to me His calling upon me to preach. I have a lifelong love in my heart for the Rays. Of course, there were many others.


These are some personal reflections about San Antonio, and they will probably be meaningless to the vast majority of my readers. But, this kind of entry is helpful from time to time if for nothing else than to remind you that this is a blog, not a newspaper. :-)


Dorcas Hawker said...

Bart -

It is hard to find someone who has been assigned to shadow your every move. You should have turned around. I was the one in dark glasses with the listening device in my ear. ;)

Actually, I was in section 8, 3 then 9 consecutively during the convention. But I didn't see many bloggers myself in the actual meetings, only in hallways or hotel lobbies.

I am glad you enjoyed your stay in San Antonio with your little ones. There sure were a lot of kids there this year. Maybe there are a few younger SBCers left after all.

Bart Barber said...


I thought Ben planted a listening device on me when he hugged me Sunday morning. I didn't think to look for HUMINT assets, thinking that he was sticking with SIGINT.

Bob Cleveland said...

Bart: After sitting through the rest of the Convention, I kind of wish you hadn't stopped me.

But seriously, you didn't mention that you ran across traffic to do that. Like, duuuh.....

It was good to see you. This disagreeing agreeably thing works, but then so does agreeing disagreeably. I don't know which I prefer.

See you next year. Or before.

CB Scott said...


I know you "ain't heavy. You're my brother."

The story you told about the baby is the one thing that I fear from the hands of another, for I agree with you and I know I could not and would not try to stop it.

We wii fight on other fronts, but on this you and I are locked side by side.


Bart Barber said...


I couldn't help but think of you even while I was writing this. Tracy and I pray for you, brother, and for Carrie.

It was really nice to meet you. I have great hope that John Killian will straighten you out after all. :-)

CB Scott said...


I finally got John Killian and Bob Cleveland at the same table at the SBC. It was truly fun to watch.

Seriously, I have met some great people since coming back to Alabama. They have made my life and ministry here a joyful thing. John and Bob are both fine men and I am happy to call them both friends.


Russell D. Moore said...

Dear Bart,

The story of your almost son brought tears to my eyes. We came close to a similar experience when we were adopting our oldest two sons. Reading this made me go into their room and kiss them one more time while they sleep.

It was great fun to hang out with you in San Antonio.

Bart Barber said...

Dr. Moore,

I didn't know that we shared the common bond of adoption. Thanks for commenting. I, too, greatly enjoyed spending some time with you.

GuyMuse said...

This one reaaaaaly hit home with us. The same thing happened to us with, who is today, our daughter. Two days after bringing her home, her birth mother wanted her back. It was the most difficult day of our life. For four weeks we prayed fervently over the situation with the saints who would come to our house for daily prayer meetings. We agreed that after four weeks if God hadn't answered we would consider the matter closed and accept His will. After four weeks of hearing NOTHING, we held a memorial service and said "good-bye" to her. We ceased praying ourselves, but one of the dear saints with whom we work kept praying fervently anyway (even with me telling her not to.) Six weeks after giving her back, we received a phone call to come pick her up again. She has been with us ever since. So, yes, I can really identify with what you write.

Bart Barber said...


What a great story. In myriad ways God shows us the truth of Romans 8:28, doesn't He?

Alycelee said...

Bart, I do appreciate your willingness to share that personal story.
I am an adopted child and God has used the very story of my life to teach me how involved God has been, how marvelously sovereign He has been in my own life-from beginning to now. Out of this story that God weaved together comes my calling in Him.
Now I am a mother in the kingdom of God, to His children that He sets in my appointed path.
Thanks again, it was wonderful and I look forward to hearing "the rest of the story."