The desire to conquer foes, win battles, and courageously save the day seems to be hard-wired into most men. As boys growing up, like so many others, I played army and cowboys. Later, we learned that our heroes were men of action. God also calls and uses His own “action heroes.”
Imagine what it would be like if the famous karate champion and actor, Chuck Norris, became a preacher and the president of a University! A friend of mine actually did baptize Chuck and his wife in a Dallas Baptist Church. However, Dr. Thomas White also fits the bill. He opened four karate schools and began to fight competitively. He was eventually inducted into the World Martial Arts Hall of Fame and won the Black Belt Middle Weight World Amateur Championship. As a Christian, he used his skills and schools as his mission fields, but was eventually called to the preaching ministry. He married Joy Martin while a student at our Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary and served in leadership there. After receiving his Ph.D. in theology, he became a key Vice President at Southwestern Seminary under Dr. Paige Patterson.
God has used him mightily in numerous areas, and this past year he was called to be the tenth President of Cedarville University in Ohio. Dr. Paul Dixon, an active member of our church, was President there for 25 years and is currently their Chancellor. I have been privileged to serve as a trustee and was so excited that we were able to call this dynamic, young leader-theologian. He is a man of strong convictions as well as obvious physical fitness and intellectual heft.
Our family is currently experiencing Christmas and a few days of vacation in the Colorado mountains. Dr. White graciously agreed to preach for me this weekend. I am excited to introduce him to you and believe that you will love his forthright style and strong exposition. I look forward to continuing my series of messages next week about Jesus’ miracles.
As we move into the new year, other Christian “action heroes” will minister to us in the near future. Our youth will experience another Discipleship Now weekend, January 17-19. They and our Saturday night worship service will hear Sean McDowell, son of Josh, the famous apologist and Christian speaker. He is a captivating speaker. Then on Sunday, Chip Ingram, one of our favorite Bible teachers, will preach in the Sunday morning services and share a special seminar that evening in the Worship Center, 5:30 – 7:30. All ages of adults will be blessed as Chip speaks on the subject, “Building Your Dream Home Using God’s Blueprint.” This is a seminar full of practical principles to help us to develop close-knit and Christ-centered homes in the areas of both marriage and parenting. He will cover a broad spectrum but give specific principles. Chip is one of the nation’s most popular speakers on radio. His books and seminars are also very popular. He pastors in California and served as the former President of Walk Through the Bible. May all of us “Fight the good fight of the faith and take hold of eternal life to which you are called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses” (1 Timothy 6:12 ESV).
Have a happy and holy new year!