Reyes encourages students to be "the Incarnation Gospel" to the nations
PLAINVIEW – Just as the world itself is changing rapidly, so is the face of missions, according to Dr. Albert Reyes, president of Buckner Children and Family Services, a ministry of Dallas-based Buckner International.
“Missions in the 21st century is less about telling the Gospel and more about doing the Gospel, being the incarnation of the gospel to people,” said Reyes in his keynote speech at the McCoy Lecture Series at Wayland Baptist University on April 11.
Quoting research from a book about the global shift, Reyes noted that the traditional mindset of missions involving Americans going overseas to a third-world country is changing as well.
“The notion of doing mission work and going has to shift in our minds,” he said. “You don’t need a passport or malaria shot to go to the nations. The nations are already here; they’re just down the block in many places.”
Noting Jesus’ address to the synagogue in Isaiah 61, Reyes said he had “come to give good news to the poor” and said Christians are called to do the same today. To do that, he said, Christians have to be willing to do the work of missions and ministry and provide for the needs of people aside from just sharing the gospel.
“There are a lot of nations that aren’t glad today. I think the reason why is that they have nothing and we have everything,” Reyes said. “How much longer can (America) go as a nation of such prosperity while others have nothing?
“Do you know what it means to be poor? I don’t,” he asked the student assembly. “When you’re making decisions about what major you’ll choose, you’re not poor. If you’re eating three meals a day, you’re not poor.”
Reyes encouraged students to realize the great blessings and provision they have been given by God and to know the responsibility that comes with such blessing.
“The reason you’re blessed is not for you; it’s so other nations can be blessed through you,” he said. “It’s a tremendous stewardship, but it’s not for you. The gospel that came to us must go through us. The provision that’s given to us must go through us.”
Along with Reyes’ address, the chapel featured the presentation of the Dorothy McCoy Mission Service Award recognizing dedication to missions endeavors. This year’s award went to Glen Godsey, a 1952 Wayland graduate who pastored Hispanic churches for decades and has been the associate director of missions for the Caprock Plains Baptist Area since 1985.
In his presentation, pastor Dr. Travis Hart of First Baptist Church noted Godsey’s longtime commitment to the gospel, beginning with his surrender to the ministry in 1948 in Tennessee and his 50-plus years of ministry, particularly among the Hispanic people. At age 82, Godsey remains passionate and committed to the work of God, Hart noted.
Created with an estate gift of Dr. Dorothy McCoy, a longtime math professor at Wayland who died in 2001, the lecture series is an annual partnership between WBU and First Baptist Church of Plainview. The focus is on missions, something McCoy held dear and participated in even into her later years. The series began with the chapel service at 11 a.m. and continued with the evening worship at FBC.