While this time of year is always a season of thankfulness and gatherings of family and/or friends, this year seems uniquely sweet, especially at the Foundation and among Arkansas Baptists. This year’s Arkansas Baptist State Convention annual meeting had the feeling of a reunion with a remarkably strong spirit of unity. As we left our time together at First Baptist in Cabot, I could not help but feel thankful and optimistic. In the weeks that have followed, those feelings have just grown stronger. So, what exactly do those terms mean?
Thankful: mindful and aware of benefit received
This is one definition of thankful that I have found which certainly reflects my feelings. I am keenly aware of the value of being an Arkansas Baptist and the opportunity of serving at the Foundation. We are also remarkably mindful of the blessings the Lord has showered upon us here at the Foundation this past year. We have truly experienced a time of unprecedented favor, and for that we are tremendously thankful.
Optimistic: hopeful and confident about the future
Wow! Now this one is spot on in regard to our outlook at the Foundation. We have certainly been humbled by God’s blessing and favor, yet we find this to be fuel for our hopefulness in the future. His provision provides such confidence in knowing that he has called us to be faithful and obedient servants. We are also optimistic that God has called people to serve at the Foundation as stewards in carrying out our assignments of stewardship and cooperation.
Also front of mind for me personally, is the following excerpt from The Choice: The Christ-Centered Pursuit of Kingdom Outcomes, “Obedience to God and the alignment of our strategies with Scripture position us for Kingdom outcomes, also known as fruit. This does not mean that we won’t have difficulties. It simply means that we will not try to use people and money to accomplish our purposes. We will, instead, invite others to participate with us in God’s work as faithful stewards and obedient disciples. With this perspective, disciples are blessed, ministry is accomplished, and God gets all the glory (p.40).”
Thank you, Arkansas Baptists, for allowing us to serve in such an amazing season.