When I first met Mack's family, all I heard was, Dr. Keen is a great Preacher. He is one of a kind. He is a godly man. Well, my expectations of Dr. Keen where very high. So I finally got to hear him preach. Again, I was expecting hell fire and brimstone preaching. My expectations fell short. When the service was over, I was like, that's it? That was Dr. Keen? Those where my expectations. I am ashamed at that now. I was immature and didn't know greatness when I saw it. I never really got to know Dr. Keen, after all I was just visiting. When I did get to hear him preach, he was in an out of the service before you could even greet him. Then a few years later when he was transitioning from being Pastor to becoming Pastor Emeritus and beginning a new ministry, my view of Dr. Keen changed.
We were attending First Baptist's Missions Conference. Dr. Keen was transitioning from Pastor to Pastor Emeritus. Dr. Keen and his wife Mary, sat right in front of us. That year for missions they were doing a coin offering each night. Mack and I were gathering up our change and Dr. Keen turns around and asks us for some change, so we give him all that we dug out for ourselves to give. (When Dr. Keen asks you, you do it. I think he new that.) The next night, I tapped Dr. Keen on the shoulder and asked him if he had any change? He looked at Mary and said, "They're trying to take all my money." I know that doesn't seem so great, but that's when Dr. Keen became great in my eyes. He wasn't preaching or didn't really have a part in the service, just sitting in the pew, just like the rest of us. He really was human.
Dr. Keen is a godly man. When he enters the room, you feel God's presence. I've heard testimony of his prayer closest and he CAN get a hold of God. When you talk to Dr. Keen he never takes the glory for himself, he always gives it back to God. I still don't know him well, but I can spot a true man of God a lot easier these days. My husband is a product of his ministry and teaching. Things I see modeled in my husbands life and ministry are a result of Dr. Keen teaching him. My husband always says, "My preacher used to say...."
A great preacher is not someone who rattles off a lot of hot air, but can rightly divide the word of God. Who teaches you and counsels you from the word of God. Over the years you see it modeled in their life. They have a relationship with God.
I've gotten to know Preacher a little better over the 22 years, I've been a Siekbert. We've had lunch a time or two, treated to ice cream and been in a few meetings with him. It is an honor to know him and Mary. If you get a chance to rub shoulder with some of the greats don't miss the opportunity.
"It's because of yielded people being used of God. You just took the counsel and obeyed it." Dr. Keen