Proverbs 19:21 says, "Many plans are in a person's heart, but the Lord's decree will prevail." We have our plans, but God's purposes outweigh them all.
The path of Dr. Tommy Doughty, associate dean for Leavell College, is no exception. His journey from northern Mississippi to New Orleans has been filled with twists and turns. But he has landed exactly where God wanted him.
Dr. Doughty's story starts like many others. He was raised in a Christian home and came to a saving knowledge of Jesus early. But his time as a high school student at the Mississippi School for Math and Science helped him connect a head knowledge of Jesus with the needs of others.
"I was meeting different kinds of people and was being exposed to a world that I'd really never seen," Dr. Doughty said. "I lived at school, so I didn't live with that same influences that I'd grown up with at home. At the same time, I learned a lot about different kinds of people—folks with different backgrounds and those who didn't have any kind of church involvement."
That concern for people, especially people who held different ideas about life and faith, continued to grow. Eventually, Dr. Doughty shifted away from his plan to pursue engineering and began digging into the world of theology and apologetics. He also felt God leading him toward a career in academics, so he came to New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary's for his Ph.D. studies.
In New Orleans, God moved again. Instead of finishing his Ph.D. in three years, Dr. Doughty joined the NOBTS business office. That position slowed his doctoral pace, but it accelerated his passion for connecting with people and their needs. It also gave him some great experience in academic leadership.
"There is no way I can do what I do right now without that experience," he said. "It helped me build relationships within our institution and with others. That, in itself, was preparation to fulfill God's call for me."
Dr. Doughty found his calling as a student at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and Leavell College. Now, he's helping today's students do the same. In fact, that's a common denominator for every faculty and staff member at NOBTS and Leavell College. Each individual is committed to the work of preparing servants who will walk with Christ, proclaim His truth, and fulfill His mission.
Whether you're a member of our alumni family, a faithful friend, or curious about the work of the seminary, your support through the Providence Fund meets the critical demand of keeping Southern Baptist theological education in New Orleans. Why is it important that we remain here? Because there is great pain and darkness here. Students learn how to carry the light of Jesus by serving the church in the presence of deep lostness.
That's why we are inviting you to become a partner with us in our mission. Your generous gifts encourage and equip students to become the leaders God created them to be. Through your support, you make a difference for the kingdom God, both now and in the future. You also can relieve much of the stress that Tommy saw firsthand in the NOBTS business office.
"We have students who are called, but they have real needs," he shared. "They're still working and serving their churches. They still have family emergencies. If they're in an academic program that requires them to take 9-12 hours, they've got all of that on top of it.
"The fact that they get to be a part of this community because its affordable to them, because they have that ongoing support, makes this an amazing place. There are so many needs because this is such a great work."
God truly is working at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and Leavell College, and we want you to be a part of His plans. As you consider supporting NOBTS and Leavell College, please know that today is a best day to start. And the Providence Society is a best way to start.
Thank you in advance for your gifts to NOBTS and Leavell College. Your partnership with us and your prayers on our behalf mean more to us that we could ever express. We appreciate you, and we wish God's richest blessings on you and your ministry in the days ahead.
The Providence Fund