EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is an expanded article based on the 2020 Cooperative Program Prayer Guide for Oklahoma Baptists. For more information, please visit www.oklahomabaptists.org/cp.

In addition to serving as president of Oklahoma Baptist University, Heath A. Thomas is professor of Old Testament at OBU. He’s taught Old Testament since 2005 in the United Kingdom, North Carolina, and Oklahoma. He has written several books on Lamentations and Habakkuk and has contributed to several other theological tomes.

The privilege of shaping students’ lives fuels Thomas’ passion for academic service, whether in the classroom or in administration. “As I enter this new phase of leadership, I pray, ‘God, grant me wisdom’,” the OBU president said in February, to lead the university in such a way “that we might be faithful to the Lord Jesus, to serve our community well, and do all to the glory of God.”

Transformative education is accomplished by seeing Jesus “as the center of all things,” Thomas said. “As Col. 1:15-20 reminds us, Jesus holds all things together, and He is king over everything, including university education.”

From the age of 10, Thomas has fished in Appalachian mountain streams, and over the years he has become adept at fly fishing. His largest to date: a 24-inch brown trout caught in Colorado. He continues to fish in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, in Colorado, and in Broken Bow. He also enjoys running or walking as he grapples with what he is studying, for his growing relationship with the Lord, for his next book, or for his next administrative task.

Recently, through his reading of the New Testament book of James and the Old Testament book of 1 Kings 3, the Lord has impressed on him a need for wisdom, which derives from “a deep and abiding dependence on God,” the OBU president said. ”My prayer is that the Lord would grant me His wisdom to serve Oklahoma Baptists well, to lead Oklahoma Baptist University effectively and to be faithful to Jesus.”

Because of the generous giving of Oklahoma Baptists through the Cooperative Program, an amazing array of ministries are supported. This unified giving encourages fellowship with other believers all over the world. Collectively, Oklahoma Baptists are advancing the Gospel together. Learn more at www.oklahomabaptists.org/CP