I’m continuing my series of reviews of videos that are promoting the Edna McMillan State Missions Offering (SMO). This year, SMO has a goal of raising $1.2 million to help advance the Gospel in Oklahoma through engaging brokenness and meeting needs.
Last week, I reviewed the Crisis Care video that SMO is promoting. This week, I’m offering thoughts from reviewing the Church Revitalization video.
You’re welcome to watch the video here:
- Russell Steel
At the beginning of the video, I thought I was listening to Sam Elliott describe the panhandle of Oklahoma. Pastor Russell Steel of Guymon, Grace Southern has the perfect personality to lead a church in northwest Oklahoma, and I love his narration to open the video.
Steel seems likeable, cordial, even funny, but you can also tell he has a great passion to serve the Lord by shepherding His flock. Even when he’s not talking in the video, you see him driving a bus to pick up kids for church, giving them “high-fives” as they come aboard.
I’ve never met Pastor Steel, but I know many pastors like him who will do whatever he can for the church family he is called to lead. I am glad God has him serving in the Oklahoma panhandle.
- Grace Southern
The most important entity in the video is Guymon, Grace Southern, a small church in the least populated area of the state. Steel mentioned when he first became pastor of Grace Southern, they had 23 people involved in the church. They grew to more than 65 coming to worship, and it appeared they were on their way to positive growth.
Then the pandemic happened in 2020. Like many Oklahoma Baptist churches, Grace Southern faced the possibility of closing doors, even disbanding.
But God continued to add to His church, and the video shows inspiring glimpses of how Grace Southern is prevailing, through support from Oklahoma Baptists and SMO.
- Loveta Carter
This sweet lady made a great impression on me. Watching her talk about how the church went through a tough experience (“It was hard. It was tough”), viewers relate to what Loveta described. After seeing great results of men and women and children coming to Grace Southern, it is disheartening to hear how drastic of a change COVID caused, even to a small church in Guymon.
As you can feel the concern of Grace Southern in Loveta’s description, you may also become misty-eyed when you hear Loveta conclude the video, expressing great appreciation of Oklahoma Baptists supporting churches like Grace Southern through SMO.
- Griff Henderson
I do know Griff Henderson who serves as a regional ministry partner for Oklahoma Baptists. He may seem to play the role of a hero figure in the video, but actually, Griff shared an encouraging word about the generosity and great support Oklahoma Baptists provide to all churches. Griff was instrumental in helping a revitalization at Grace Southern, preaching during a revival the church had earlier this year.
Those who know Griff know him to be a great encourager, and it was great to see him in this video because not only does he offer great encouragement to Grace Southern but many other churches in the northwest region of Oklahoma.
- Liana Shatila
It’s great to see God working in the lives of people like Liana. She shares how she made a profession of faith in Christ while she was in prison. Now, God has Liana serving at Grace Southern and impacting young people. Just as God changed her life, He also is using Liana to impact others.
I love all these SMO videos. What puts them over the top are the overhead droid shots. They are magnificent and make Guymon look beautiful and impressive. Listening to Loveta share her appreciation and watching the shot of the Guymon water tower was the perfect ending to the video.
For more information on the State Missions Offering, visit oklahomabaptists.org/smo.