Dr. Sullivan's Commentary
BY DR. JOHN SULLIVAN
FLORIDA BAPTIST CONVENTION
Reflections on our 20th Anniversary
Many of you have been gracious and kind to send words (even a few gifts) to congratulate us on our 20th anniversary of serving the Florida Baptist Convention. Nancy and I were so appreciative of the 20th Anniversary Observance presented during the Florida Baptist State Convention.
The actual day of our completing 20 years with the Florida Baptist Convention will be Feb. 1, 2009. Let me share some things I have observed:
1. In the 20 years we have traveled somewhere between 850,000 and one million miles – mostly on Florida highways. The Lord has been good to keep us safe. Nancy is an excellent driver from wherever she sits in the car – front seat or back!
2. Baptists in Florida are the finest and most unselfish people I know. Your gifts to the Cooperative Program for missions in Florida and around the world have been exemplary. Even in tough times when adjustments have to be made, you are still the most generous and gracious people I have ever known. Your love for Jesus and your desire to see others come to Him are a blessing to my soul.
3. We have the finest pastoral leadership in Florida that exists in the entire Southern Baptist Convention. I realize I am prejudice but with all my heart, my conviction is that God has singularly blessed our state with excellent leadership in our churches. Thank you pastors for taking your stand for Christ and for His church. You are not only God’s gift to your church you are God’s gift to me. Bless you for who you are.
4. The State Board of Missions that you give me year after year has had only one agenda that I can find – “How can we help the staff win Florida for Christ?” They have been wonderful during the 20 years. It would be impossible to thank them adequately for the hours spent, miles travelled, meetings attended, recommendations considered and work accomplished. Thank God for the evangelistic/missionary heart of our State Board of Missions.
5. No executive director-treasurer could have a better staff with which to work. Our staff is our best asset. They are quality and capable folks. They love the Lord and have the expertise to do the job we ask them to do. They have adjusted when asked; they have taken on a heavier load when necessary and they have maintained integrity in their work. This kind of staff makes the work of the executive director much easier and enjoyable.
6. On a personal note about staff, I could not possible be gone as much, travel as much, preach and teach as much, if Patty Vansant and Fran Murray did not care for the details in my office. They have been with me all of the 20 years and I am grateful for their work and loyalty.
Thank you, Florida Baptists, for 20 wonderful years!
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