As I write this, I am literally between offices. I have moved out of my office at Oklahoma City, Quail Springs. I have yet to move into my new office in the Baptist Building. In transition, after 30 years of service as the pastor of a local church, this is a big change.
Moving out of my office, I packed an old piece of paper, framed, with 19 signatures—my Certificate of Ordination. That certificate declares that I am a “Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” That language, Minister of the Gospel, comes right out of the New Testament. It is Paul’s way of talking about his calling.
“(The gospel) of which I was made a minister, according to the gift of God’s grace which was given to me according to the working of His power” (Eph. 3:7). I am no longer the pastor of a local church, but I am still pursuing my calling as a minister of the Gospel. By God’s grace and in His power, I am striving to advance the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I thank God for His calling on my life. I am grateful to Oklahoma Baptists for this sacred trust, which is a new opportunity to serve the Gospel cause.
Over the next few weeks I want to share with you a few basic convictions that I have concerning my work as the executive director-treasurer of the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma. The first is simple: Kingdom work is spiritual work.
I will be spending much time in meetings, with budgets, discussing buildings, programs and plans. All of that is important; however, Kingdom work is spiritual work. J. Oswald Sanders used to say, “Spiritual work is done by spiritual people using spiritual means.” Spiritual means are the weapons of our warfare—prayer, purity, faith, truth, righteousness and the proclamation of the Gospel. The more access we have to material and human resources, the more important it is for us to remember and confess that all is vain apart from the grace and power of God.
We are weak, and He is strong.
Let us always be mindful of God’s Word to the exiles concerning their leader Zerubbabel. “Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit says the LORD of Hosts.” (Zech. 4:6) I am committed to careful planning and faithful administration. Strategy and execution are essential. However, I also find myself quoting my favorite proverb nearly every day. “The horse is prepared for the day of battle, but victory belongs to the LORD” (Prov. 21:31).