Since May 20, life in Oklahoma has centered on disaster relief. People have given so generously. Oklahoma and Southern Baptist Disaster Relief have both done the usual remarkable job of serving.
Local churches in the affected areas have given their all in service to people in need. Frankly, this ministry of service is a beautiful picture of the love of God at work through His people. It is also a wonderful expression of cooperation on a level rarely seen.
There is much to be done. Soon, the national media will turn aside and cameras will be turned off, but the work of disaster relief volunteers will continue until the last person and family is served to the best of our ability. Every dollar given will be expended to assist and aid those who have lost so much.
While this disaster has garnered our attention, as well it should, there are other exciting things happening among us. Falls Creek and CrossTimbers are now in full swing.
It is time for us to pray with fervency for the leaders, musicians, and preachers who will share the Gospel. Falls Creek is so impacting because there is no place on earth covered so powerfully in prayer. When youth and sponsors leave for camp, they are immersed in prayer.
Most of our churches share the names of students who are attending and an individual prayer warrior takes a name and focuses on that student or sponsor for the week. Powerful!
CrossTimbers Mission Adventure Camp is for children 3rd through 6th grade. This is the first year we are holding camp at the new location near Falls Creek. It is a beautiful facility that will serve Oklahoma Baptists for many years to come.
I believe children will be just as blessed as the teens at Falls Creek. This camp focuses on missions. Children learn about Southern Baptist missions at home and around the world. The lessons taught at CrossTimbers are vital to the future of Southern Baptist missions.
With the loss of the GA and RA programs in so many churches, children have few opportunities to learn about our mission enterprise and the Cooperative Program. At CrossTimbers, missions is central to everything.
The Gospel is always the priority of both camps. There are few places on earth where the Gospel is more clearly presented than at Falls Creek and CrossTimbers. It is the Gospel that brings us to Jesus.
Day after day and night after night, in a multitude of ways, the Gospel is clearly presented to children and youth. Some campers will attend these camps and leave lost—that is their choice, but it will not be because they did not hear the Gospel of salvation.
I close this article with a personal note. As most of you may know, I have been diagnosed with prostate cancer. It was caught at an early stage and this kind of cancer is not aggressive. Protocols for treatment of prostate cancer are changing.
In consultation with my doctors, we have chosen to do “active surveillance.” I will have tests every four months and a biopsy at the end of year. If the numbers change or there are other signs of the cancer advancing, I will move to treat the cancer.
I have received so many emails, cards and prayer grams from around the state. I cannot tell you what that has meant to me. I am humbled by your concern, and Polla and I so appreciate every expression of love. Please don’t stop praying!