'Anointed to do good'
New President Rupert Lazar expanded on his presidential theme “Anointed to do good” in conversation with Lynn Green during the lunchtime session
The theme is taken from Acts 10:38. Doing good is a call on every single one of us to go out and be a blessing in whatever situation we find ourselves. It is ‘being proactive about people’s well being’, Rupert said, 'look at people with soft eyes, tender eyes, and do what Jesus would have done.'
In addition, the theme is a reminder of the gospel power within us. Too many of us have lost confidence in the power of the gospel to change lives, Rupert continued.
‘It’s not about compartmentalising, but recognising that we have the example of Jesus to follow, and the power through the Holy Spirit.
‘It’s dynamic, flexible, more about the life we are living, in the moment. Are we filled with the Holy Spirit? Yes. Do we have power? Yes we do.
‘Once we start compartmentalising we run into problems. Let’s not leave evangelism to the experts, as Justin Welby recently said. I don’t think Jesus compartmentalised.’
Consequently, he struggles when people claim they have 'no gifts'. 'Every Christian has at least one gift. There is nothing too small or insignificant. Indeed, we have many gifts to build the church.’
He did not choose the theme, he explained. ‘I was thinking and praying about it. It was in the midst of all that, one night it popped into my head. I knew it was from God, and from that perspective I didn’t choose it, it was chosen to give to our family.’
Born in Trinidad, Rupert is the first Caribbean President of our Baptist Union. There has previously been a Sri Lankan (Fred George 1997-8), and a Ghanaian (Kingsley Appiagyei in 2009-10). In 2006-7 Kate Coleman, who was born in Ghana before moving to the UK aged three, became the first black female President of our Union.
Rupert described becoming President as a ‘tremendous honour, privilege, and who knows where it’s going to take us? It’s going to be fun!’