Through the Open Door: Oklahoma Regional Concludes in Finale of Faith

 In All Church of God, Central, CHOG, Church of God Convention

By Carl Stagner

“With every breath that I am able, I will sing of the goodness of God.” These lyrics apply not only in a broad sense for all our days on this earth, but also, and more specifically, from June 18 through 20, 2024 at Crossings Community Church. After all, it was over these three days the Spirit of God poured out blessing, favor, and anointing upon the speakers, worship leaders, breakout session facilitators, and the guests of the Oklahoma Regional. How appropriate, then, for the grand finale event of the second of three 2024 Regionals to begin with the gathered saints singing in one voice, “All my life you have been faithful, all my life you have been so, so good!” Thursday’s closing session not only illustrated in high-definition the goodness of God evidenced throughout the history of the Church of God movement, but also that same goodness accessible in abundance via the “open door” to the future he has in store.

Jason White and the Crossings band led the congregational worship in carefully selected songs that aligned with the theme and occasion to near-perfect precision. “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness…” the pastors and ministry leaders sang with gratitude and gusto. “I will build my life upon your love, it is a firm foundation,” they echoed again and again, reflecting on the Object of our worship and the Subject of our ministry. “O praise the One who paid my debt…” prepared Regional guests for yet another precious time of reflection at the Lord’s table, guiding heart and mind to the Truth that unites sister and brother in the bond of love. It also prepared everyone for the closing message of the event, a mic-dropping word from the Lord so eloquently and artfully delivered by the Movement’s beloved Tatum Osbourne, who hails from Brooklyn, New York.

Bringing the conference content full circle in the closing session Thursday morning, Pastor Tatum Osbourne took the text and topic back to Abraham’s era in the book of Genesis. Echoing Pastor Deidre Franklin’s sermon on the faith and trust vital to our journeys with the Lord, Tatum shone the spotlight on the end of the eleventh chapter. The story of Terah and Haran can leave readers disappointed unless understood in the context of the opportunity God’s church has today to “not die in Haran.”

Tatum Osbourne

“We, as a church, are in a critical season,” Tatum asserted. “What we do, the decisions we make, will have generational impact…. We cannot afford to miss the opportunity to walk through the open door God has set before us!”

Tatum suggested four pitfalls to guard against, pitfalls that otherwise could cause us—not only individually, but as a movement—to miss our “God moment”:

1. A spirit of procrastination,
2. Comfortability,
3. Fear (of the unknown), and
4. Grief.

“How many doors closed to you because you chose to delay?” Tatum asked rhetorically. “Don’t forfeit the open door because of your comfortability,” she warned. After all, “comfortability will box God into a pattern he operates outside of!” Regarding fear of the unknown, she insisted that “Faith requires we relinquish control to the sovereign God” and that we recognize the propensity of grief (including over the loss of “the way things used to be) to immobilize us. Again, we don’t want to die in Haran when God has a better place he’s promised for us!

In addition to the stern challenge to make way for the next generation of leaders in God’s church, Tatum Osbourne closed with this challenge: “Will we walk through the door and trust God with what’s behind the door, even if we can’t see it?” Osbourne, who recently announced to her church family and Facebook friends of plans to embrace a new ministry calling to the Greater Jacksonville Church of God in Florida, knows a thing or two about walking through the open door. With grace and poise, she and her husband Kevin anticipate the blessings on the other side, blessings that await all of us in prompt obedience to the Holy Spirit.

Regardless what’s behind the “open door” referred to in the 2024 Regionals theme verse of Revelation 3:8, we can trust in the goodness of God. No matter what we may face when we return to our homes and spheres of ministry, we can trust in the goodness of God. And, like the hymn that closed the morning worship Thursday morning, “Because he lives, [we] can face tomorrow!”

Learn more about the 2024 Regionals at Follow Church of God Ministries on social media and for the latest Regional updates.

Feature (top) photo: Jason White and team leads worship Thursday morning in the Venue at Crossings Community Church.

Start typing and press Enter to search