Foundations are the structures we build the rest of our buildings upon.  As it relates to this article, what are the beginnings, the experiences, the life happenings that our local ministers have lived through that led them to be pastors or priests?  Finding out what those foundations are for the ministers of our community is the focus of this series of articles.


By Dale Fillmore

First Church of the Nazarene, Okmulgee


Randy Matthews

“I felt impressed that I needed to surrender my life to the Lord.  I thought that might mean to be a pastor,” said Randy Mathews.  Randy was raised in Morris,  and graduated from Morris High School in 1993.  He is currently the pastor of the Clearview Baptist Church in Okmulgee.

“I was saved when I was in the 7th Grade,” says Randy. “Later that same year, I was at summer camp when I was impressed to surrender my life,” says Randy.  “I’ll do whatever You want me to do.  I’ll be a pastor,” he told the Lord, “if that is what You want.”  

When Randy returned to school for the 8th grade, he had to write a journal entry about the biggest thing that had happened to him over the summer.  Randy wrote about the experience he had while at summer camp.  Later on, when everyone was deciding what they were going to do for their careers, he left his options open, thinking it would probably be the ministry.

With the idea of the ministry in mind, Randy went to Pensacola Christian College in Pensacola, Florida.  He could have gone to some other school playing baseball.  Randy’s coach had assured Randy that he could get Randy and some of Randy’s teammates scholarships to play ball.  Randy decided not to go in that direction.

After two years, Randy left the school in Pensacola.  “It was just too legalistic,” he said.  He began to drift from the Lord.  He came back home and went to work for Covington Aircraft.  His home church went through a split and had to secure a new pastor.  “The Bible suddenly came alive through this new pastor,” Randy says.

Shortly after, he went on a mission trip to Russia for two months and when he came back, he made a fresh surrender of his life.  He needed to “get back on track,” he said.  Randy enrolled in Heartland Bible College in Oklahoma City.  He married in 2000 and soon became a Mission Intern.  He was struggling to find the place where God wanted him and moved around a bit.  When he came back to Morris for a funeral, he felt impressed that it was Okmulgee where he needed to be.

After a series of moves; from meeting at the Seventh Day Adventist building, to a church given them by a group in Henryetta, they finally purchased land in Okmulgee where they built their current church building.  He is serving the Lord with a real sense of satisfaction, joy and purpose here in Okmulgee.

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