One of the joys of being a part of the Missouri Baptist Convention family of ministries is the partnership we enjoy with the churches. This partnership is exemplified during the board of trustee meetings. Our boards consist of members from our MBC family of churches. At this summer’s Baptist Homes & Healthcare Ministries board meeting I was privileged to reflect upon the words Paul as recorded in 1 Corinthians 15:57, “Thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
For those who follow Baptist Press or the mainstream media, the nursing shortage has taken national new spotlight. Baptist Press called the shortage, “A dire situation.” The trade publication McKnight’s is hailing the healthcare shortage as “The Great Resignation,” based on the historically high number of healthcare workers who have resigned during the pandemic. So, what sets Baptist Homes & Healthcare Ministries apart during this season? Our confidence and trust in the Lord! The healthcare shortage is real and Baptist Homes is facing the same challenges others in the healthcare industry are battling. However, our leadership understands the LORD is the source of our victory in the midst of this battle.
In 1 Corinthians 15 the apostle Paul is concluding a painful and difficult conversation with the church at Corinth. In this letter he is clearly calling for change. Three truths merit attention from Paul’s concluding thoughts. Despite the challenges, Paul reminds the church of the following:
1) Thanks be to God! Even in the midst of the internal problem and external challenges, thanks belong to the Lord. These words are echoed in Ephesians 5:20 where believers are exhorted to “give thanks always and for everything to God the Father.”
2) …He gives us the victory. I can almost imagine the members at Corinth wondering, “how can we successfully accomplish all that God is expecting of us?” The answer is…He Gives Us. Victory is a gift. Victory comes through obedience, not human effort. As it is written in Zechariah 4:6, “not by strength and not by might, but by my Spirit, says the LORD.”
3) …Through our Lord Jesus Christ. The third truth is the source of our victory, the Lord Jesus Christ. There is no greater example of victory than our Risen Savior. The two days between Christ’s burial and resurrection may not have felt victorious. As believers, we must live by faith, not feeling. It is helpful to remember that on that second day the last chapter had yet to be written and the victory had yet to be seen.
Baptist Homes & Healthcare Ministries is committed to a biblically informed worldview that transcends healthcare shortages. In fact, these shortages have caused us to pray, plan and pray some more. I am also encouraged by the regular reminders that our churches are praying for the caregivers, the residents and leadership of the Baptist Homes. Some healthcare institutions may be in “The Great Resignation,” but at Baptist Homes, our leaders are giving notice of our resolve to serve, educate and advocate for the aging.