LORI SMITH ~ Student & Missions Director
Lori Smith grew up in the ministries of Cedar Spring Baptist Church. She served as a summer missionary with the SC Baptist Convention after her freshman year of college. She helped to establish a ministry for Laotian refugees who were moving into the Spartanburg area. After her Sophomore year of college, Lori served as a Baptist Student Union Summer Missionary in Falls Church, Virginia. She served as a summer youth minister at Northbrook Baptist Church in Spartanburg during the summers of her junior and senior years of college. After teaching for three years in Spartanburg, Lori moved to Korea to teach 4th grade at Korea Christian Academy.
Lori returned from Korea to go to Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary where she received two master’s degrees. She received a Master of Religious Education and a Master of Marriage and Family Counseling. Upon graduation from seminary, Lori served as Minister of Childhood and Family Education at First Baptist Church, Humble, Texas. After three years, Lori served as a High School Counselor at Splendora High School in Splendora, Texas. In November 1999, God opened the door for Lori to develop a Missions Ministry at her church, United Baptist Church/High Point Fellowship in Splendora, Texas. She served as Minister of Missions with United/ High Point for over 7 years and continues as a partner with them even today. During her time at High Point, Lori also established a nonprofit 501c3 named Harvest Seekers International. As it grew, she felt God leading her to focus on that full-time.
Harvest Seekers International exists to train, mobilize, and actively engage Christ followers in knowing God intimately and making Jesus Christ known among the nations. HSI partners with churches, missionaries, and Malian Nationals to train, mobilize, and send out volunteers to creatively tell God’s story among all peoples. Lori spent 10 years serving in Mali, West Africa, alongside churches and Malian nationals to make Jesus known among the peoples of Mali. Lori continues to serve as President of Harvest Seekers International and as a partner with Harvest Seekers Mali.
After returning home from Mali, Lori began serving with Cedar Spring Baptist Church as Student and Missions Director in 2020. She enjoys walking with students as they grow in faith and pursue a real and personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Her heartbeat has always been missions, and she finds great joy in leading the people of Cedar Spring to actively engage in making Jesus known in our community, city, state, nation, and world.