Since it became obvious to me today that it is now acceptable to campaign to be President of the Southern Baptist and because, obviously, no one would ever nominate me, I have decided to make history by nominating myself.
My name is (Dr.) Micheal Pardue and I am nominating myself for the Presidency of the Southern Baptist Convention. I am not famous. In fact, I am not even well known, not even in my own state. Not even in my own community. I grew up in an SBC church, I was called to ministry at an SBC camp, I married an SBC girl, and attended an SBC seminary.
I pastor a fairly average SBC church in rural North Carolina. We have had good periods in our nearly 100 years and we have had struggles. I am not sure where church health experts would peg us right now, but I am sure they would have an opinion. We are not large and we have a limited reach. I will actually not be able to travel and speak as much as most SBC presidents because I do not have the extra staff to cover for me in my absence.
We do support the Cooperative Program at 10%. I imagine that is less than some of your churches while more than some others. Again in this, I guess we are average. I cannot take credit for our giving. It takes the offering of the entire congregation and their yearly vote on our budget to put this giving percentage in place.
I am the husband to Rachel. I am not sure she has any interest in being the First Lady of the SBC. She probably will not come speak to your women’s event. The fortunate thing is that we have the Women’s Missionary Union. For the next year (or two) you’ll need to call them. They’ve been doing this missions thing for a long time anyhow.
I have seven children. Yes, that is a lot. Yes, we know how that happens. And yes, we will hope we are through. We are a multicultural family. Four of my children are adopted. I don’t tell this to you to brag, but so that those of you prone to gossip (you are good Baptists after all) will not think my wife or I have a previous marriage since some of my kids clearly do not look like me.
I am the author of multiple books, but none of them have sold well and all but one are self-published. I expect that there will be some increase in sales after this speech, even if it is the media attempting to find out how kooky the man who could have been president really is.
Often these elections are about who you know. I wanted to take a moment to humble-brag about a few of the pivotal moments in my ministry. I once preached in a revival with Richard Blackaby. I spoke with Danny Akin in the parking lot at Southeastern Seminary when he was walking his dog (he also handed me my diploma). I heard Kevin Ezell speak in chapel at Midwestern Seminary last year. I was once corrected by D.A. Carson after I messed up some facts from church history. Finally, and maybe most impressively, I had a seat beside Johnny Hunt on a plane from Greensboro to Atlanta last fall, even though I got bumped further back in the plane after a delay. He did autograph his book and rode the tram with me after we landed.
Obviously, the most important question many of you will have is “Am I a Calvinist?” To answer this I look to the wisdom of beloved Southern Baptist patriarch, Bilbo Baggins: “I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.” In other words, to some of you, the answer would be “yes.” For others, a resounding “no.”
I want to close with this reminder. I am probably not your choice to be President of the
SBC. I will not be elected. However, If you vote for me, I can promise you this: you’ll regret that vote much less than the vote many of you will cast for Donald Trump later this year. May God Bless you, may God bless our convention, and may he lead us to even better days for the sake of His Kingdom.