BWFLI team stretching and blessing the next generation of leaders at East Texas Baptist University
Cliff Shiepe, best-selling author, inspires students
ETBU students gathered at midnight to discuss “What’s Next” and job market tips
Former All-American, All-Pro Bill Glass stirring the athletes
ETBU Steering Committee Chair Emily Prevost and BWFLI President Brenda A. Smith sharing a celebratory moment
The news reports say, “Isolate… separate.” The Spirit of God says “gather, assemble, stand together.” We may be temporarily apart, but never alone. The presence of God is ever with us. As we pray, communicate, and encourage one another, we are the active, viable Body of Christ.
Our physical, earthly bodies may be quarantined, but the spiritual oneness through Jesus cannot be denied. Let’s stand one by one in the Spirit holding up the shield of faith to ward off the fiery darts of the evil one.
The old, old hymn says “No, never alone… He promised never to leave us, never to leave us alone.” We are One in Christ Jesus… we are brothers and sisters held strong in the bonds of love.
Be of good courage. Keep up the calls, texts, and messages. One day soon we will indeed greet each other face to face with a holy hug and kiss!
by Brenda A. Smith, BWFLI.com, BreakfastWithFred.com
“I just keep on.”
I asked a young female runner what she does when she wants to quit. “How do you handle the pain?” “I just keep on” was her answer.
Our Christian higher education friends face pain in their races, as well. There are uphill stretches, stormy weather, and adversarial environments. How do they respond? They know that there is an eternal prize and they run the race with faith and perseverance. They endure because they are serving Jesus. We may be on the sidelines, but let’s be voices of hope and encouragement. “Keep on for it is the Lord Jesus Christ you serve!” “Keep on for you are building men and women of character, experience, and skill.”
This month we are a community of friends who believe in the mission; stand strong in prayer; and offer ourselves in service.
Having Ears to Hear
by Bob Deffinbaugh, Bible.org, BWFLI.com
“And the LORD has sent to you all His servants the prophets again and again, but you have not listened nor inclined your ear to hear (Jeremiah 25:4, NAU).”
“He who has ears, let him hear (Matthew 13:9).”
“16 They began to discuss with one another the fact that they had no bread. 17 And Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you discuss the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet see or understand? Do you have a hardened heart? 18 “HAVING EYES, DO YOU NOT SEE? AND HAVING EARS, DO YOU NOT HEAR? And do you not remember (Mark 8:16-18).”
“These things I have spoken to you while abiding with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you (John 14:25-26).”
“Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God (1 Corinthians 2:12).”
“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God (Revelation 2:7).”
College is all about learning, but spiritual truth is communicated (both directions: 1 Corinthians 2:7-16; Romans 8:26-27) by the Holy Spirit. Pray that Spirit-filled teachers will convey spiritual truths to willing and eager students who have ears to hear what our great and all-knowing God has to teach them.
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Weekly Thought – March 24, 2020
Fred supported the value of education, especially Christian higher education. He was unable to attend college due to financial constraints. However, he dedicated much time to students of Christian colleges and universities. He was also given two honorary doctorate degrees which he highly prized.
Excellence in Education
Dr. Walter Hearn, the Yale bio-chemist, commented that every night our learning of the day has so expanded the areas of our ignorance that it would be easier to “ignorize” the world than to educate it. Our ignorance will expand beyond our knowledge.
Christians understand that human knowledge is incomplete. It is constantly changing and can be current, but yet inadequate. The Bible says “we see in part… we see through a glass darkly, but then hall we know.” We understand that man will never unveil all mysteries, but that it will one day be accomplished.
An advantage for the Christian is an understanding that there is a finite effect of education on life. Often the secular community believes life can only be improved through education. For example, the scientist puts full faith in scientific endeavors; the politician stands on political strategies for the way to a perfect life. The Marxists hold that their system leads to abundance. Yet, no perfect answer comes from a scientific or governmental system.
We Christians are happy to accept the benefits of science, education, politics, or any other human agency. But we understand that the truly abundant life must be built and maintained through faith, not through human disciplines.
Christian education also has the additional advantage of integrating spiritual reality (not just ritual) into all areas of life. It can bring Christian life into harmony with itself. It provides the theme – the key. It must keep the bridge open between the soul and the mind. The mind separated from the soul can become a dangerous power. United in building character there is clarity of motivation and established restraints. The mind may clearly see possibilities, but the heart puts on the brakes. The mind needs the heart to recognize what is noble, true, and high.
An additional force in Christian education is the opportunity to identify the power of God. Dr. John Goodenough, Lincoln Professor of Electronics at MIT, said after her became a Christian he valued the verse “Now you have the power to become.” He said he had always known what was right and wrong, but he had never had the power to do it. When Christ came in, then he had the power of God to do what he had always known he should do.
Christian education affords an opportunity to ground and train our young minds, sending them into the world as mature Christians who will make a significant difference in the times ahead.
This week think about: 1) How can I pray for Christian schools? 2) Who do I know in Christian education I can encourage this week? 3) What support can I offer in terms of volunteering, or financial giving?
Words of Wisdom: “But we understand that the truly abundant life must be built and maintained through faith, not just through human disciplines.”
Wisdom from the Word: “Give instruction to a wise person, and he will become wiser still; teach a righteous person and he will add to his learning.” (Proverbs 9:9 NET Bible)