Baptist & Reflector
FRANKLIN — For several years the Tennessee Baptist Convention has been recognizing “people in the pews” who are getting outside the walls of their church and making a Great Commission impact through the “Eagle Award.”
In the past the convention has honored coaches, a businessman and a military veteran, said Randy C. Davis, president and executive director of the Tennessee Baptist Mission Board.
This year the convention is recognizing Jason Little, a layman from Germantown Baptist Church, Germantown, and president and chief executive office of Baptist Memorial Health Care in Memphis, he announced during the Virtual Summit on Nov. 10.
Davis said that while they could not give an award to every health care professional in Tennessee Baptist churches they selected Little to represent those in the medical profession who have been on the frontlines during the worldwide pandemic.
Anthony Burdick, pastoral care director at Baptist Memorial Health Care, noted that Little is very open about his faith. “I believe it is very clear in the way Jason talks about his faith that he feels called to his ministry as a CEO here at Baptist. He is very much about ministry in the marketplace,” Burdick added.
“The real privilege to be able to serve in a place like Baptist Memorial Health Care is that we’re able to make decisions with a biblical worldview,” Little said.
The Baptist CEO acknowledged that health care is a stressful field, but “when we use the first filter of what the Scriptures say, it enables me to make decisions and then sleep really well at night.”
Burdick observed that Little’s faith has been evident through the pandemic “in the ways he has kept our staff informed through videos and through reaching out and being a constant presence.”
Burdick also noted that Little initiated the COVID assistance fund and encouraged senior leaders and the management team to make significant contributions. About $1.3 million was raised and distributed over the course of three months to about 3,000 employees, he continued. “That speaks volumes to me. That’s putting your faith to your feet.”
Little observed that Jesus could have performed any miracle “but He chose the miracle of healing. I think that is because healing is a picture of God restoring all things to Himself.
“So, when we get to serve in health care as a part of God’s healing instrument — restoring people’s health — there’s a very spiritual component to that,’ ” he said.
Burdick said that when he sees Little at work he sees “someone who is committed to the call of Christ in the work that he does here at Baptist. It’s not much of a stretch to say that I can see Jesus Christ in Jason Little. He shares his faith openly and he encourages all the rest of us to do that.’ ”
Little said he is honored to receive the Eagle Award on “behalf of not only our 19,500 team members, but all health care workers across the state.
“To be able to stand up and be counted and serve our patients in their time of need is not only extremely affirming, but it’s also very humbling. We are grateful for this award,” Little said. B&R