On Thursday, October 13, Tennessee Baptist Convention Hispanic Church Specialist, Jess Fairbanks, went home to be with the Lord. While involved in a meeting at the seminary extension office at the Southern Baptist Convention building in Nashville, the heart of this vibrant, passionate, Kingdom-focused gentleman suddenly, and yet peacefully, stopped beating.
Jess had been on our staff for one month. His genuine gratitude for having the opportunity to serve on the TBC ministry team was very refreshing. The exuberance that Jess demonstrated for Hispanic work in our state was obvious.
I was personally excited about how God was going to use this brother to help our churches reach our state with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. But God’s sovereign plan was different than what we had anticipated.
The home going of my new friend, Jess, has been a stark reminder that we should make every day count because every one of our days has been counted.
“As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent us. Night is coming when no one can work.” John 9:4
Last Thursday we were reminded that night is coming. We were also reminded of a few other things:
- Do His work with passion and excellence.
- Urgently reach someone with the Gospel today.
- Love your mate.
- Hug your kids no matter how old they get.
- Laugh hard, and laugh often.
- Cherish your friends…and let them know you do.
- Forgive quickly and completely.
- Live like this is your last day on earth—it might be.
- Be a massive dose of encouragement for people around you.
- Get over the small stuff.
- Enjoy the journey…enjoy Jesus.
Please do me a favor and pray right now for Jess’s wife, Carole, and their children David, Sarah, and Elisabeth, and their precious granddaughter.
It is a joy to be on this journey with you…even through the valleys.
Randy C. Davis