Long legacy of love leads to new endowment
When meeting Otis Goins, no one is ever confused about why he helps the aging in his community. He is motivated solely by his love for Jesus.
“The Holy Spirit impressed me early in my ministry to be kind and to care for widows and children,” 82-year-old Goins says, “and to support pastors – to be a blessing to those who serve the Lord.”
Goins is in his 56th year of ministry. He is the pastor at First Baptist Church New London in Stanly County.
“Even though I’ve had a good time being a pastor,” Goins says, “I have thought about retirement.” He says he was set to leave a good church where he had pastored for almost 13 years. “My last service was the second Sunday in February, 2000. Soon after, another church called and asked me to supply. It was a church where I had once served. My notion of retiring led to four and a half years there and then I came to New London in March, 2005. That was nearly 12 years ago.”
Goins was 25 years old when he accepted the call to become a minister. Three of his mother’s brothers were pastors. His mother was a devout Christian and Goins recalls his father as a man who “loved the Lord.”
Goins remembers the day he accepted Christ and “got saved.” He says that “the Lord had been dealing” with him for some time.
“I was saved the week after Easter Sunday in 1953,” he says. “I was 18 years old.”
His home church where his Uncle Walter pastored – New Hope Baptist Church in Ellerbe, NC – conducted a week of revival services. His mother faithfully attended – driven each night by his father in the farm’s pickup truck. This night, his father worked too long in the tobacco barn and asked Goins to drive his mother.
“I remember thinking, ‘I don’t think so.’ But then I thought, ‘What kind of a man would I be if I didn’t drive my mother to church?’”
Even though Goins was under conviction, he reasoned that it would be okay. He drove up to the church, his mother went in the building, and he went to be with a friend that he saw near the door.
“I thought I was all set,” he confides. “We would sit in the back. I remember thinking, ‘I can do this. It won’t be too long and then I’ll go home.’”
What Goins didn’t know was that only a few nights before, his friend got saved.
“I walked in with him and he didn’t sit on the back pew,” he recalls. “We walked right up to the front and sat on the first row.”
He says that he made it through the service but during the altar call, Uncle Walter came and stood by him and placed a hand on his shoulder.
Goins remembers it well: “He leaned in toward me and whispered, ‘Otis, don’t you think it’s time you got saved?’ I looked him in the face and nodded, ‘Yes sir. It’s time.’ My life has never been the same.”
Every day, Goins works to meet the needs of the frail aging in his community. He recruits, inspires, and partners to help others. His partners include the Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, the Community Coalition for Christ, churches, business leaders, friends, and acquaintances.
Goins says that when he finds out about an aging person’s need, he just shares the need with others. He says there are times when he drives up to his house and there are things left under his carport – a stove or refrigerator, a medical bed or wheelchair, windows or lumber.
“It’s always a blessing to see what the Lord is able to do,” he asserts.
Goins says it is the love and concern that you show others that makes the difference. He says it’s about what the Lord can do through you to help someone in need.
He has served on NCBAM’s Advisory Team since its inception in 2009 and works hand-in-hand with NCBAM. Goins is also active in the leadership of Stanly Baptist Association.
Recently, The Reverend Otis Goins NCBAM Endowment Fund was established to honor Goins. The endowment will help continue, in perpetuity, ministry to the frail aging. Earnings from the fund will be used by NCBAM in projects that help aging adults maintain their independence.
“The endowment is about reaching people in need – for years to come,” Goins says. “This is not about me. It is so far beyond me. It is about helping people. It’s about Him – the one who died upon the cross for us.”
Contributions to The Reverend Otis Goins NCBAM Endowment Fund are tax-deductible and may be made payable to the North Carolina Baptist Foundation. On checks, please memo account #000797 or The Reverend Otis Goins NCBAM Endowment Fund.
Mail gifts honoring Goins to The North Carolina Baptist Foundation at 201 Convention Drive in Cary, NC 27511 or to North Carolina Baptist Aging Ministry at P.O. Box 338 in Thomasville, NC 27360.
Contributions to the Fund may also be made online at www.ncbam.org. Use the comments field to designate your gift.
For more information about The Reverend Otis Goins NCBAM Endowment Fund or to learn how to establish an NCBAM endowment, contact NCBAM at 877.506.2226 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
“It’s a joy to be able to serve,” Goins says. “Although it doesn’t feel like it, growing up in Ellerbe was a long time ago – time goes by in a hurry. And it’s what you do for others that stands out as years go by.”