Recently, I attended CrossTimbers with my daughter who just finished 3rd grade. We were excited to arrive to camp!
After unloading our luggage and claiming a bunk bed in the dorms, we hiked up to the cafeteria for lunch. Setting down our lunch trays, we started a conversation with two campers across the table.
Through the conversation, I learned how one of the camper’s father had been in prison most of her life. She was new to church, so I was excited to know she would soon hear the Gospel at least 14 times a day at camp!
As we finished up lunch, I told her the same truth she would hear that week has likely been told many times to her father in prison. In that moment, my heart was filled with gratitude for the commitment Oklahoma Baptists have in caring for the hurting and vulnerable.
Each year, Oklahoma Baptists faithfully give to the Edna McMillan Oklahoma State Missions Offering in order to reach further into our communities with the life-changing message of Jesus.
This year, the offering highlights four crucial areas of brokenness in our state:
- Christ-centered addiction recovery
- Support for foster care ministries
- Hunger funds
- Prison and jail ministry
In Luke 5:31-32 (NASB), Jesus tells us, “It is not those who are well who need a physician, but those who are sick. I have not come to call the righteous but sinners to repentance.” This truth compels us to embrace brokenness as an opportunity to advance the Gospel.
In the month of September, this special offering will be emphasized in our churches. We have the opportunity to respond with generosity in an effort to see our cities impacted by the hope we have in Christ.
These gifts will be utilized locally to feed the hungry, encourage families caring for children in foster care, bring Christ-centered care to those dealing with addictions, and take the message of Jesus into prisons and jails.
Not only will your church have the opportunity to respond financially, but churches also have the opportunity to teach the next generation through missions education.
Through age-appropriate activities, children can learn about various ministries funded through the Edna McMillan Oklahoma State Missions Offering. Activity pages can be downloaded at StateMissionsOK.org to integrate into lesson plans during the fall semester.
Our prayer is these engaging activities will create missional conversations, laying a foundation for young believers to respond, as the Lord calls them into His work.
As your church prepares to collect an offering to distribute to areas in need of Gospel advancement, please pray how the Lord is asking you and your family to give. Invite the children in your home to participate through prayer and giving. Then ask the Lord how you might get involved in an area of your community that is in need of the life changing message of Jesus.
To see a full list of allocated funds through the Edna McMillan State Missions Offering, visit StateMissionsOK.org.
Last week, as my daughter and I were leaving the beautiful campground in the Arbuckle Mountains, the upcoming missions offering emphasis was on my mind. My heart was filled with joy because of you.
That week, I met hungry children who were being fed throughout the year by their local church. I saw children from hard places—whether their parent was in prison or a family member dealing with an addiction—loading up on buses and returning home with big smiles and truth in their hearts and minds.
The work we do as Oklahoma Baptists has a direct impact on the lives of thousands living in our own neighborhoods. With great joy, let’s continue the work by funding these areas of brokenness so that Christ may be made known throughout our state.