Ladies and Gentlemen,
What a pleasure it is to be here at the 84th Annual Convocation of the Bethel Baptist Association.
As I reflect on the theme for this year’s proceedings, I am reminded of Proverbs 3:5-6, which advises, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and he will make straight your paths.”
I find this verse very reassuring. We have all experienced moments of doubt in our journeys, whether spiritual, professional, or personal. We have all experienced moments of great uncertainty. But it is in these very moments that we must, as this convocation reminds us, put God first at any cost. Because it is only through our faith in Him that we can experience true peace.
Key to our capacity to move forward, upward, onward, and together, is faith. We would be nowhere as individuals, or as a nation, without faith. Faith straightens paths; it renders the impossible possible and makes reachable that which lies just outside our grasp. Faith can move mountains, and it can cross seas.
In my capacity as Prime Minister, I have leaned heavily on faith in Christ to guide me through challenging trials and difficult decisions. An abiding respect for Christian values is written into our very constitution, and this government continues to abide by the religious principles which have served as a guiding light for our Bahamas for so long.
I am certain that this association, made up of 16 churches from across our archipelago, is no stranger to the transformative power of faith. I am also sure that we can all agree faith is not merely a belief, but an action. Faith without works, as the popular scripture goes, is dead.
So, as we come together this evening to celebrate 84 years of camaraderie, worship and service, let us hold fast to that most vital of spiritual tools. Let us acknowledge the Lord our God in all that we do and let us never discard the shield of faith. For without it, we would surely fall to the flaming arrows of the evil one.
Thank you all for allowing me to share in this special occasion, and may God continue to bless this congregation, and the entire Commonwealth of The Bahamas.