There is an expression we have all heard before, “You can’t see the forest for the trees.” Capital campaigns can be like that at times. We can get caught up in colors and building placement, when what matters most for us in the work of Oklahoma Baptists are the lives that will be changed inside these buildings.

Last week, I had the joy to meet with the Falls Creek Building Committee, BGCO staff and Wynn Construction staff to discuss the three new buildings: the Jordan Welcome Center, the Thompson Family Lodge and the Mathena Family Event Center that are under construction at Falls Creek. As we looked at color schemes for the exterior of the buildings, I thought, “How blessed we are to be so far along in the process.”

Foundations are being poured, stem wall forms are being built and the outlines of the buildings are taking shape. We were able to envision what the buildings would look like in a short time. In the next few months, each week you will see the skyline of Falls Creek change drastically for the good.

While in that committee meeting, I had a call from a Sunday School class at Broken Arrow, First, wanting to contribute to the Centennial Campaign. One donor called to set up an automatic credit card donation for Falls Creek, while another gave an estate gift in honor of a parent who loved Falls Creek.

These are just a few ways in which people have helped to make the next phase of updates to Falls Creek possible. One of the extra blessings for us in Oklahoma is the Downing matching fund that will double any of these donors’ gifts up to the $2.3 million set aside by the Downing family.

The most important thing to remember through this process is that the true focus is about what will happen in those new buildings, not just focusing on the buildings themselves.

While we are rightfully thankful for what God has allowed us to do through the generosity of our donors, still the beauty or functionality of the buildings should not overshadow the significance of the reason for these structures…PEOPLE—lost people, hurting people, people yearning to have a closer walk with God and the tens of thousands of people who will worship our Savior at Falls Creek in these new buildings. While some camps seem to wane in popularity or struggle to attract attendees, Falls Creek is burgeoning with people looking for God.

Your gift to the Centennial Campaign means more people will come to know Jesus or will begin a closer walk with Him after being in the environment of Falls Creek. I would love to visit with you, your association or church about how you can make a gift to the Centennial Campaign and make a lasting difference in the lives of young people during the eight weeks of youth camp at Falls Creek, or how your gift will reach those thousands who attend the annual women’s and men’s retreats held each spring. Your gift can have a limitless effect over many generations.

Talk to your family, Sunday School class, Connection group or small group at church and consider a gift today to assist with the Centennial Campaign for Falls Creek. Your gift can help ensure that the debt on the R. A. Young Tabernacle and current unfunded projects are completed debt free by the 100th anniversary of Falls Creek in 2017. Your gift is not about buildings, it is about changed lives. It is about people!

Contact me for more information about your gift for the Centennial Campaign at 405/516-4868,, or toll free at 800/690-6933.