Christian Living July 2013

Page 1



Ninety-Nines Proving Women Can Fly


Fellowship Christian Dirt Bikers’ Clean Fun Policy


Chaplain Knows Soldier’s Life First Hand


The Kitchen Make Sweet Potato Soufflé

Ninety Niner: Gene Nora Jessen

Contents July 2013 “If you don’t know that God loves you, he does. He loves his creation. And you’re his creation.” — Lacey Mosley, Christian singer

Columns 12

Breaking Free: The privilege of prayer

Features 15 Faith & Finances: St. Paul Baptist Church:

Be aware of misconceptions

4 19

Still flourishing in 2013

Robert Morris:


A soldier called to ministry Soldiers’ Families


Notes from Home: A mom’s pride

Departments 6

Creativity in the Kitchen:

Cooking “Sweet Potato Souffle”

Cover Story — The Ninety-Nines:


Idaho women flying high Backcountry Airstrip 12


Helping Others:


Christian Businesspeople:

Maria Jones feeds body, soul

Mel Snider

In Each Edition

Full Throttle Fellowship:


Open-door to family fun July 2013 | Christian Living


Editor’s Intro


Quotes & Scripture:

Welcome to ‘Christian Living’

Velma Morrison’s favorite Scripture

Volume 1, Number 1 Publisher Sterling Media Ltd. Editor Gaye Bunderson 208-639-8301 Sales & Marketing Melva Bade 208-501-9024 Sales Manager Sandy Jones Graphic Design Denice King Contributors Dani Grigg, Joel Lund and Brian Raymond Cover Photography Pearman Photography Distribution Assistants Doris Evans and Shawna Howard

Christian Living is committed to encouraging and instructing individuals in their daily lives by presenting stories of people in the Treasure Valley who are living on a foundation of faith in Jesus Christ and who serve as uplifting examples to others. Views expressed in Christian Living do not necessarily represent those of the publisher. Every effort has been made by Christian Living to insure accuracy of the publication contents. However, we do not guarantee the accuracy of all information nor the absence of errors and omissions; hence, no responsibility can be or is assumed. All Rights Reserved. Copyright 2013 by Sterling Media Ltd. Christian Living is published every other month and is available in high traffic locations throughout the Treasure Valley.


Welcome to ‘Christian Living’ By Gaye Bunderson Think of this publication, if you will, as akin to a well-built structure. First, an idea is conceived. Then plans are worked and re-worked. Builders are brought in to start construction on the project, and ultimately a foundation is laid. The foundation is tested for weaknesses, and it’s strengthened where necessary. Next, things move in an upward progression. Decisions are made about what the building will look like, how it will appeal to the eye of passers-by, what will draw people into the building and, once in, what will make them want to stay? And the building goes up. It’s sometimes a slow process. But slow doesn’t necessarily mean bad; it can mean well considered and constructed with care. That, we think, is our publication.

It’s a Christian publication, and it’s our view that too frequently Christians are viewed as all cut from the same mold, and not a very complimentary one at that. They’re humorless, judgmental, boring — maybe even mean. And when people think Christians are like that, it inevitably clouds their perspective of God. OK, we admit some Christians may be all of the above. But the primary purpose of this publication is twofold. To illustrate the inherent diversity in the Christian experience and to highlight the interesting, bold, charitable and even fun things Christians do. More important than that, we seek to illuminate the fact we serve a God so amazing and creative He made an immense universe of stars, seas, sands and mountains, and yet so caring that even in the enormity of a planet of seven bil-

lion people, He knows every single one of them by name. As the editor of this publication, I hope everyone who reads this magazine will be entertained and enlightened by the contents herein. We have many stories to read and an eclectic mix of columnists to share their expertise. Although some of the people featured in the magazine sit in certain pews on Sunday, we are not promoting any particular church; we are wholeheartedly nondenominational and 100 percent Christian. The world is full of diverse peoples of all stripes and, like God, we seek to love them all. Come join us in the adventure that life was meant to be. n Gaye Bunderson, Editor


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Christian Living | July 2013


Intriguing Past, Rich Future By Gaye Bunderson The St. Paul Baptist Church in Boise is a cultural success story. More than a mere structure, it represents the aspirations of a group of people who were not even allowed to own property at the time the church was built in 1921: the city’s small African American population. The church’s storied past has been well documented by historians such as Mamie Oliver, area academic and minister, and by the descendants of its original builders, such as Mary C. Hardy Buckner, daughter of the Rev. William Riley Hardy, who founded the church, built it, and became its first pastor. St. Paul is still very much a part of Boise, albeit in a different building and location and with a more diverse congregation. The original structure that housed the church has for many years been on the National Register of Historic Places and is now the home of the Idaho Black History Museum in Julia Davis Park. Among the people who fill the church’s pews on Sunday morning are: Jerome Mapp, the first African American to serve on the Boise City Council; Marcus Spigner, the state’s first African American postmaster; and Cherie Buckner-Webb, current member of the Idaho Legislature, now serving her constituents in District 19 in the Idaho Senate — another first. Buckner-Webb is also the descendant of St. Paul’s founders; Mary

The original St. Paul Baptist Church was converted to the Black History Museum and relocated to Julia Davis Park. (Photo by Gaye Bunderson)

Hardy Buckner is her grandmother. In oral presentations, BucknerWebb shares her family’s recollections of life in Idaho in the early 1900s, including the establishment of the church. In her speaker’s notes, sent to “Christian Living” via email, she refers to early church membership as “family by birth, family by choice, family by faith.” While Buckner-Webb’s notes are colloquial, Oliver’s historical writings on the church — such as “Boise’s Black Baptists: Heritage, Hope and Struggle” — are scholarly, as befits her longtime career as a university professor. Oliver notes,


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among other things, that African American churches “offered communal welcome to newcomers and communal succor to the sick, the hungry, the jobless.” Small wonder St. Paul, moving as it did from a house fellowship to a built church, became such a pivotal place for the city’s black demographic. France Davis, an airman at Mountain Home Air Force Base in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s and now a minister and adjunct professor in ethnic studies at the University of Utah, wrote that as a lonely airman he found refuge in the social and spiritual network at St. Paul.

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“With all due respect, the Black Church in Boise was for me a place with connections . . . . she was the stabilizing influence in my own life and across the community.” (Taken from “Boise’s Black Baptists: Heritage, Hope and Struggle”) As Oliver and others have noted, St. Paul has influenced the larger population of Treasure Valley beyond its walls as well. “During its history, the congregation of St. Paul’s Church has extended its ministries to the Boise community, sharing its music, its unusual culinary talents, and theological influence,” Oliver has written. The church continues its outreach today. The new St. Paul Baptist Church is located at Now located at 1316 Bannock, 1316 Bannock in downtown Boise. its current pastor is Rev. Michael (Photo by Gaye Bunderson) J. Ross Sr., who said in 2011 the mission to create disciples.” church purchased a building across Mapp said the center is tentatively the street and christened it the St. set to open to the community in Paul Family Life Education Center. 2014, though the church holds some Its mission is “to help people meet of its programs there now. their full potential in Christ,” Ross St. Paul Baptist Church is no lonsaid. ger the only religious establishment Mapp said St. Paul “expresses love drawing African American congrein so many different ways.” gants in the Treasure Valley. Others “In the Family Life Education include the Miracle Temple Church Center, we’ll have a youth ministry, after-school programs, job training, of God in Christ, Abundant Life Christian Fellowship, and the Agape drug and alcohol counseling, and Christian Worship Center. a library,” he said. “Having activiThese churches “are currently ties for the community brings them attracting younger African Americloser to the Lord. We have a comcan citizens, college students and

families migrating to Idaho to work, most often in corporate positions,” according to Oliver in her black history series titled “Idaho Ebony.” Oliver herself, though her late husband served as pastor of St. Paul from 1972 to 1988, now serves as minister at Mountain View Community Fellowship in Boise. But for many of the city’s longtime notable African American residents, St. Paul is still their church of choice. “It’s been very rewarding attending the church. I’ve been attending it since 1979,” Spigner said. “I think it’s good for the community and good for me as well. First of all, I get a lot of culture in the church. Also, I grew up in the South, so a lot of things remind me of the way I grew up.” Buckner-Webb, who is married to the Rev. Henry Webb, acknowledges the decades-old church has changed. “It’s not the building my great grandfather built, the congregation has changed, many of my church family have passed on, but the legacy lives on in a million ways,” she said. “It is home. I feel the weight and honor of a charge to keep: to share the legacy of those who came before, to encourage and support, to laugh and cry and welcome and mourn, to pray and meditate, to sing and shout.” n

An Abbreviated History of St. Paul Baptist Church 1909 — First public record of congregation meeting in small building at Sixth and Front streets 1921 — Building permit issued for building of church at 124 Broadway Avenue after Narcisa Gestal offers her lots. Gestal is described by Cherie BucknerWebb in present-day oral presentations as a “Basque risk-taker”; Mamie Oliver writes of her, “She took whatever flack she had to” for selling land to blacks 1925 - 1928 — Leadership upheavals follow the lengthy tenure of the church’s first pastor, Rev. William Riley Hardy; then, later in 1928, the church is set on course again by the Rev. D.D. Banks

1993 — Capital Christian Center offers its building at 14th and Bannock to St. Paul, which by then had outgrown its original facility 1994 — The congregation moves to its new home; historical documents describe the parishioners as “joyous … giving thanks to God for His rich blessing” 2001 — Current pastor Rev. Michael J. Ross Sr. becomes senior pastor at the church, following in the estimable footsteps of others before him 2011 — The church acquires property to build a Family Life Education Center with the intent to reach out to others in the community, helping them reach their full potential in Christ, according to Ross Christian Living | July 2013


Southern Food Right Here In The West

Yvonne Anderson Thomas knows spiced Creole dishes suit her palette how to stir things up. Just visit her well. Facebook page at Brown Shuga Soul Some Creole- and Cajun-styled Food to read enthusiastic comments food options at Brown Shuga include about her culinary skills. pulled pork sandwiches, mac and Anderson Thomas sells soul, Crecheese, cabbage, barbecue ribs, potato ole and Cajun dishes from a stand at salad, coleslaw and baked beans. 24th and Fairview in Boise. She also Anderson Thomas is recognizable offers catering services and makes for her occasional television appearfrequent appearances at community ances, filling in on local cooking festivals throughout the year. Her shows as a replacement for Boise’s turkey legs are an event favorite. Chef Lou. “I go through 30 cases of turkey legs She donates all the tips she receives on a weekend at a festival,” Anderson from her business to the Boise Rescue Thomas said. “I’m not advocating Mission, and her trailers — she now drinking, but they’re a good fit for the has two of them and a 24-foot truck Boise Beer Fest because the men can for her catering services — sit on land carry a glass in one hand and a turkey Yvonne Anderson Thomas is owner, chef and owned by the Mission. caterer at Brown Shuga Soul Food in Boise. leg in the other.” “Yvonne is an amazing chef, as (Courtesy photo) “Not that I’m advocating drinking!” anyone who’s ever eaten at Brown she laughed. Shuga Soul Food knows. She catered my Christmas While there may be some highly specific definitions Eve dinner, and it was absolutely amazing. Everything for soul, Cajun and Creole dishes, Anderson Thomas she cooks is fantastic, and her mac and cheese is inbreaks down the differences simply. credible,” Jean Lockhart, chief operating officer at the “Soul food, basically, is really just comfort food, what Mission, said. “But her cooking isn’t her only amazing you remember your grandma cooking. It’s food cooked gift. She’s also incredibly kind, generous and has a great from the heart,” she said. optimistic sense of humor. She’s always willing to give The concept goes back to slave times, she said, when people a hand up. At the Rescue Mission’s Thanksgivslaves had to use whatever they could find to subsist on. ing banquet, she singlehandedly made 2,300 rolls. As And when they got hold of something edible, such as if that weren’t enough, she came and helped cook and a pig, they literally had to use every part of the animal serve the rest of the meal as well. possible to make as many meals as they could from it. “It’s a blessing to us to know Yvonne, and we are The family ties associated with soul food are what An- grateful to God for her.” n derson Thomas stresses most, as she recalls the African Below is one of Anderson Thomas’s favorite recipes: American tradition of big family dinners eaten Sundays after church — a tradition her own family carried on when she was growing up in the South. Yvonne Anderson Thomas “We’d go to church, then around 3 or so, we’d go to Brown Shuga Soul Food Gramma’s for a big meal and catch up on the week,” she said. 6 lbs. of yams 1 teaspoon of nutmeg Some of the soulful dishes offered by Anderson Thomas include fried chicken, black-eyed peas, collard 1 cup of brown sugar ¼ cup of cinnamon greens and sweet potato souffle (see the recipe right). ½ stick of butter 1 cup of sugar Anderson Thomas sees little difference between Cre¼ cup of vanilla ole and Cajun cooking. “Cajun food came about when the slaves and the French intertwined... French-influenced food mixed Mix together in a mixer until smooth. Bake in a with Cajun food,” she said. casserole dish at 350° for approximately 45 minutes Tuesdays are Cajun Day at Brown Shuga, and the to 1 hour, until golden and bubbly. Enjoy! menu includes Jambalaya, gumbo, red beans and rice, collards and cornbread. (Note: You can use fresh yams and bake them first, or you can use canned “I don’t like bland food,” Anderson Thomas said, yams. Drain all the juice off first.) and the frequently blackened Cajun dishes and highly

Sweet Potato Souffle

July 2013 | Christian Living

QUOTES In Scripture

Velma Morrison’s Favorite Bible Verses Velma Morrison is one of the most recognizable women in Idaho. She was married to the late Harry Morrison, founder of the internationally renowned Morrison-Knudsen Co. in Boise, and is the namesake of one of the city’s most esteemed venues: The Velma Morrison Center for

the Performing Arts. Now 92, Velma lives in California. In her memoirs, “The Bluebird Will Sing Tomorrow,” written by Kitty Delorey Fleischman and published in 2003, Velma included a page of some of her favorite Scripture passages. They include:

Romans 8:28 — And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Proverbs 3:5 — Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. Proverbs 3:6 — In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Psalm 95:2 — Praise God’s name. Let us come before His Presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto Him. John 14:1 — Let not your heart be troubled: You believe in God, believe also in me.

Continued on page 17

Christian Living | July 2013


A Soldier Called To Ministry

Captain Robert Morris served his country in the military and now serves soldiers in his capacity as a military chaplain. (Courtesy photo)

By Gaye Bunderson Robert Morris was a soldier first and a chaplain second. He joined the military in 1984 straight out of high school: “I was an 11 Bravo infantry guy.” He served in the U.S. Army in Operation Just Cause in Panama in 1989 and later was part of the Multinational Force and Observers in the Sinai between Egypt and Israel. Now that he’s the head chaplain at the Idaho National Guard at Gowen Field, he still seems every bit the military man in dress and demeanor. He’s a major by military ranking, and as a chaplain, he’s fulfilling a mission he believes he was being groomed for as far back as adolescence. “I felt called to the ministry in high school,” Morris, now 47, said. Even though he joined the military mainly for the educational opportunities it would allow him, compliments of the G.I. Bill, he didn’t originally spend Uncle Sam’s July 2013 | Christian Living

money on divinity school. Born in Longview, Wash., he attended Central Washington University, graduating in 1994 with a law and justice degree. He got law enforcement work in Idaho after graduation and returned to the military in 1996 when he joined the Idaho National Guard. Soon, he started to feel the tug toward ministry again. In 2000, he moved from Boise to Yakima to pastor Terrace Heights Baptist Church for the next eight years; it was at this time he attended Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary in Vancouver, Wash., obtaining his Master of Divinity degree in 2008. He remained in the Guard throughout the entire time, returned to Boise after divinity school graduation, and was commissioned a fullfledged chaplain. Speak with Chaplain Morris and you’ll find yourself engaged in conversation with a man who clearly loves his calling. “My favorite part of being a chaplain is ‘ministry of presence,’ being with the soldiers, building relationships, getting to know them. Where the soldier is, that’s where I need to be,” he said. As of Valentine’s Day, he was off to Kuwait to serve America’s men and women in uniform.

A threefold vocation

The three core values of his job, he said, are to nurture the living, care for the dying, and honor the dead. Since the onset of wars in Iraq (over) and Afghanistan (ongoing), he has delivered about 25 death notifications to the parents of Idaho’s fallen soldiers. He admitted he sometimes takes solace in the comfort of fellow chaplains to deal with the daunting task. His job also involves ministering to the spiritual needs of servicemen and women, and he breaks down their primary needs into four

categories: 1) Relationship problems: Marital, girlfriends, boyfriends, parents and other family dynamics. 2) PTSD (post-traumatic stress syndrome) and anxiety: Helping soldiers resolve the spiritual aspects of warfare, including justifying combat and answering the question, “Can I be forgiven for all I’ve seen and done?” 3) Spiritual issues: Offering advice and counsel about life’s trials. 4) Leadership issues: Giving guidance to both people in leadership positions and to soldiers who feel they’re under pressure from what he called “toxic leadership.” “The chaplain has really done the Lord’s work here,” General Dick Turner of the Idaho National Guard said. “He’s very good at getting people together, very good with our soldiers and airmen. He’s with them all the way with whatever they need service-wise.”

Clearing things up “Let me dispel some of the misunderstandings about army chaplains,” Morris said. “They serve a two-part function.” Those functions include performing religious rites in their own faith group and coordinating with other faith group leaders to make sure the military recognizes all religious beliefs and allows soldiers their constitutional rights. “The military tries to exercise freedom of religion, and the chaplains are the gatekeepers of that,” Morris said.

However, only observances that don’t interfere with the military’s mission are allowed. “My job is to see all things are accessible to a soldier to practice his religion, but not if it interferes with missionessential tasks,” the chaplain said.

I was away from home.” There was a beautiful sunset one day as he toured Mount Sinai. “It was an orange, desert sunset,” he said. “There’s nothing like it. … God spoke clearly to me that day. Being on Mt. Sinai was the closest I’ve ever felt to God physically. Favorite scripture “It was just a very important Morris said his favorite passage of scripture is Joshua moment for me. God made himself very real to me. I 1:6-9. It reads in part: “Do knew I didn’t need to worry.” not be afraid; do not be disAccording to the Bible, couraged, for the Lord your Joshua accompanied Moses God will be with you wherpartway up Mount Sinai ever you go.” when he was given the Ten He feels the Lord spoke to him through this passage at a Commandments. After Moses’ death, Joshua led the turning point in his life. “When I was on active duty Israelite tribes in their conin Egypt with the MFO, I was quest of Canaan. “I have a kindred spirit with at a crossroads. I was nearing the end of my enlistment, try- Joshua,” Morris said. “He ing to figure out what to do,” was a soldier too, you know.” Morris said. “I was struggling; n

CHAPLAIN: Care For Soldiers’ Families By Gaye Bunderson Prior to leaving for duty in Kuwait on Feb. 19 as part of a service and support operation for military personnel, Chaplain Robert Morris of the Idaho National Guard urged people in the community to care for the families of deployed soldiers. “Anytime you have a soldier with a family, it’s the family that sacrifices,” he said. Morris himself has a wife and two daughters. General Dick Turner of the Idaho National Guard said there are some military dependents who don’t have a support structure to rely on. He said the Guard has services in place to assist them, but they sometimes don’t ask for help. “A soldier can be deployed for up to two years, and a lot can happen in that time. It’s important to understand that for someone having a family member deployed that they’re used to having around and they’re not there anymore, they may need some help. “All of a sudden, it’s just one person to be the parent. They have to be the mom and dad and everything else.” Chaplain Morris especially exhorted ministers to be aware of deployed soldiers’ families in their congregations. “Ministers have to help them and offer support,” he said. n

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COVER STORY By Gaye Bunderson A number of women in Idaho are getting high the right way — by flying airplanes. They are members of an elite international organization called The Ninety-Nines, a group established in 1929 by 99 women pilots. Amelia Earhart was its first president. More than 50 women belong to the Idaho Ninety-Nines chapter, with roughly 10 to 15 members in the Boise area and nearby communities such as Payette, Homedale and Emmett. They are a diverse bunch. In many ways their only commonality is a love of flight. Area membership includes a rancher, a realtor, a crop duster and a flight instructor. Women in Idaho have been taking to the skies for decades. Archives from the Women Airforce Service Pilots, or WASPs, indicate that a female pilot named Marian Toevs graduated from basic training in 1943 and was sent to Lemoore Army Air Base in Cali-

The Sky’s The Limit

fornia for test flights of the BT-15 aircraft. Records show that during a “routine flight” from Lemoore to Fresno, the plane she was piloting crashed, and she perished. Toevs was from Aberdeen, Idaho and learned to fly while attending Eastern Washington State College. Modern-day pilots include Lois Chattin of Meridian, an art teacher at Renaissance High School, and Gene Nora Jessen of Boise, a retired flight instructor with a colorful past in the aviation industry. Chattin and Jessen recently gathered at an area coffee shop to talk about their experiences in The Ninety-Nines. “I like the thrill of flying,” Chattin said. “That’s why I do it, not because it’s comforting or relaxing.” “It’s pretty neat to find something in your life that’s both a challenge and a lot of fun,” Jessen said.

The 76-year-old is no stranger to challenges, or fun. In 1962 she flew throughout the contiguous 48 with two other pilots to promote what was then a new aircraft, the Beechcraft Musketeer. Her experiences are chronicled in a book she wrote titled, “The Fabulous Flight of the Three Musketeers.” The threesome was made up of one man and two women. According to Jessen, it’s sometimes the dress code that was required of the women that intrigues people most. “We two girls flew in a dress and high heels. … Mrs. Beech wanted us to dress properly,” Jessen said. She fell in love with flying as a teenager when she participated in the Evanston, Ill. Civil Air Patrol (the volunteer civilian auxiliary of the U.S. Air Force) prompted by her brother’s interest in the group.

“We two girls flew in a dress and high heels. … Mrs. Beech wanted us to dress properly.” ~ Gene Nora Jessen

Gene Nora Jessen, 76, has lived a colorful life flying airplanes — and even almost becoming an astronaut. (Photo by Laurie Pearman)

10 July 2013 | Christian Living

For Some Idaho Women

“I like the thrill of flying. That’s why I do it, not because it’s comforting or relaxing.” ~Lois Chattin

Lois Chattin of Meridian teaches art for a living and flies planes for the thrill of it. (Photo by Laurie Pearman)

“The Civil Air Patrol instructor told me I was a natural, and I believed it,” she said. Her flying career would ultimately span 50 years and include the Musketeers, working as a flight instructor, and becoming what she calls “an astro-not.” She was one of only a few women chosen to participate in a clinic that was purportedly a stepping stone to training for space flight in the ‘60s. She passed the tests, and for all intents and purposes that should have been her entry into preparation for becoming an astronaut. But it was not to be. NASA was trying to establish early credentials an as equal opportunity employer, but it was apparently only as a matter of political correctness, according to Jessen. American women astronauts would not become a reality until Sally Ride’s

flight on a space shuttle in 1983. “I’m famous for not having become an astronaut,” Jessen said. Chattin spent a year and about $7,000 learning to fly and obtained her license in 2006. About every several months, she rents a Cessna 152 and flies the skies. At least two area members of the group are notable for their careers as commercial Boeing 747 pilots, while another member flies a helicopter to herd cattle on her Jordan Valley ranch. The Idaho Ninety-Nines chapter meets once a month, sometimes holding educational meetings and other times gathering just for fun. They also participate in programs designed to draw young women into the field of aviation, and every few years they also hold a “flying companion” program to help alleviate passenger anxiety about traveling

untethered thousands of feet above the earth in a machine. “We can talk to people about their fear of flying,” Jessen said. “We tell them, ‘an airplane is built to fly and stay up in the air,’” said Chattin. Chattin said learning to fly was the hardest thing she’s ever done, as well as the thing she’s most proud of in her life. Jessen, who’s married to a World War II pilot, said she’s grateful for the opportunities that flying has afforded her. “I came from a modest home; we didn’t have much. And still every time I get in a plane, I think, ‘Why me, God? Why am I so fortunate?’” she asks, relishing the wonders of flight and the beauty of a world seen from an airplane window. “It’s so mythic,” she said. n Christian Living | July 2013 11


Don’t Neglect The Privilege Of Prayer

By Brian Raymond It seems as though weariness and heavy burdens are more than plentiful, but rest seems rare and rather elusive at best. As time marches on, our culture allows for the fatigued to find even more activities to squeeze into an already hectic schedule: television stations offer 24-hour broadcasting, an increasing number of restaurants and department stores are remaining open for a 24-hour period/seven days per week. What was once viewed as sacred holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas are now viewed as retail opportunities for both the seller and the buyer. The Internet allows us to do virtually anything on a 24-hour or on-demand basis.

As the days go by it seems that we often have too many activities and too little time at the end of each day. We are increasingly staying up later and getting up earlier in order to “survive” this thing we call life. We balance our days with four-shot espressos in the morning, Monster Energy drinks in the afternoon, and a concoction of either Trazadone or Ambien at night so that we can try to sleep. We wake up each morning with fatigue or a sleep-aid “hangover,” load up on the espresso, and then start the insane cycle all over again. We see this break-neck schedule as normal and perceive rest and restoration as abnormal. Christians and non-Christians alike appear to be trapped in this vortex and we cannot seem to see our way out of it. As

Brian Raymond is a licensed clinical social worker specializing in Nouthetic/Biblical counseling. In January 2010 he was the co-founder of Christian Clinical Concepts, LLC in Nampa. He is currently in private practice at Christian Clinical Concepts. He may be contacted at (208) 475-1875 Monday through Friday.


Keep Backcountry Airstrip Open By Gaye Bunderson Members of the Idaho Ninety-Nines chapter are a dynamic bunch, participating in Air Race Classic and other flying events. So it may seem strange that one of their primary focuses as a group is to groom an airstrip in the somewhat obscure Idaho community of Smith Prairie, an hour and a half north of Boise. “We adopted a little airport in the backcountry,” Gene Nora Jessen, a member of the women’s aviation organization since 1958, said. Jessen called the Smith Prairie Airport “a good airport” that can be used in emergencies or to fly in recreational visitors. The area features hiking, fourwheeling, and horseback riding, among other outdoor 12 July 2013 | Christian Living

adventures. Without the ongoing care of the Ninety-Niners, Smith Prairie might be completely without air service of any kind; members scrupulously maintain its 5,400-foot turf runway. “If we didn’t take care of it, it would deteriorate and may not stay open,” Jessen said. There’s no monetary compensation for their efforts; they merely enjoy the camaraderie of group events and fostering their love of all things flight-related. “Getting together with these women is a lot of fun,” member Lois Chattin said. They also get a tiny bit of recognition from the town. There’s a sign at the airport that reads: “Maintained by the 99ers.” n

Christians we increasingly wonder if God cares or if He maybe has even left or abandoned us. I believe that the question is not whether God has left us but rather have we abandoned Him? Prayer is a powerful tool given to us by the almighty God. We often fail to utilize this spiritual weapon and then wonder why we are struggling in our relationships and marriages, why we are depressed, anxious, downtrodden, and ultimately empty. In Psalm 145:18 (NASB), King David reminds us that: The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth. This verse requires an action of us: to CALL UPON THE LORD. We have become so busy in our lives that we often fail to do the one thing that should be on the top of our daily priority list: PRAY. Pray for ourselves, pray for our children,

pray for our spouse, pray for our community, pray for our leaders, pray for our country, pray for our enemies….pray for change. With the advent of the Internet, iPods, iPads, cellular phones, laptops, and various media in our homes and automobiles, we are now choosing to keep our minds distracted on a multitude of other things rather than get quiet and alone with our Creator. When I meet with individuals and couples alike, I always inquire about their prayer lives. Most, who state

that they are Christians, reply that they don’t pray often or not at all. Most couples report that they DO NOT pray for their spouses or with their spouses. Our mental, relational, emotional and spiritual health directly correlates to the priority we place on prayer. The Apostle Paul reminds us in Philippians 4:6-7 NASB: Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. n

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” — Matthew 11:28 (NLT)

Save A Bundle On Your Bundle Of Joy (NAPSI) — The next time you or someone you care for is about to have a little addition to the family, a few helpful hints may prevent a lot of subtraction from the family budget. After all, parents spend on average about $14,000 during their baby’s first year, making baby products a $9.8 billion industry in the U.S. annually.

Helpful hints

Raising a baby doesn’t come cheap, but there are plenty of ways to save. These money-saving tips from Sandra Gordon, one of the nation’s leading baby products experts and author of the book “Save a Bundle: 50+ Ways to Save Big on Baby Gear,” can help make the difference: • Shop midweek — Often, the best deals on baby gear are available during the week because retailers want to generate consumer traffic. • Join the club — Get on the email list of your favorite baby stores and keep your eyes peeled for notices about in-store sale events or online-only promotions. Also, sign up on manufacturers’ websites for coupons. • Make a list — As with grocery shopping, write down what you really need and stick to your list. Impulse buys on stuff you really don’t need can wipe out your savings. • Learn to share — Ask friends if their kids have outgrown anything and consider consignment shops and yard sales. n

Christian Living | July 2013 13


With Full Throttle Fellowship

Full Throttle Fellowship is a Christian-based group that invites everyone to just come out and enjoy the sport of dirt biking. (Courtesy photo)

By Gaye Bunderson Google the phrase “full throttle” and you discover that it means doing something to the maximum and not holding back. In 2007, dirt bike enthusiast Brent Thomas of Boise decided to start a Christian bikers group and he went at it, well, full throttle. He had high aspirations for the group, as he spells out on the website of what came to be called Full Throttle Fellowship. In his Founder’s Note, Thomas explains he started Full Throttle as a way of achieving two primary goals. “First, it could provide Christian dirt bikers a way to meet others for riding and fellowship. Second, I hoped it could provide a way for Christian dirt bikers to provide unconditional friendship for all who love to ride,” he wrote. Full Throttle doubled in size from 100 to 200 members in six years. “Sometimes 30 to 40 families show up for events,” Ron Loman, new lead organizer of Full Throttle, said. The membership is diverse and includes people of all ages, varied professions, both males and females, novice to expert, and believers from many different denominations. Particularly unique is the fact all people, whether they hold a Christian point of view or not, are welcome to join Full Throttle Fellowship 14 July 2013 | Christian Living

without fear of being preached to or proselytized. “We’re not hitting people over the head with the Bible,” Loman said. “People come because it’s a good safe place to bring the family.” Comments left at (the Full Throttle website) seem to bear out the fact people enjoy the group for its open door, good clean fun policy. A sampling includes: “It’s nice to ride with a group where there are no egos or attitudes.” — Aaron “Great, calm, happy group of people.” — Amy “Joining FTF is a good thing because dirt biking is great fun but something that shouldn’t be done alone. The people I rode with had a genuine concern for the safety of all the riders attending.” — Ric Membership is free, and anyone who is a member may “host” a ride by placing it on the website’s event calendar. Rides are held in such places as the Owyhee County desert, including Hemingway Butte and Rabbit Creek; Little Gem Cycle Park in Emmett; and throughout the Idaho City area. “Trail maintenance is paid for by road stickers we’re required to get through Idaho Parks & Recreation. We’re also working with Idaho Parks & Recreation to clean up Little

Gem,” Loman said. Enjoying the outdoors is a key element in what makes dirt biking worthwhile, members say. Some members like to ride safely but with an element of daring. Others take a more conservative approach. “I like to keep my tires on the ground,” Loman said. Occasionally, the group hosts dirt bike maintenance workshops, with instructions on how to rebuild a bike engine or fix a flat tire. On the website, one member invited others to call or email him if they needed advice on suspension adjustment. Combine the thrill of riding a dirt bike with enjoying the state’s great scenery, throw in the joys of camaraderie, and you end up with all the ingredients that explain why Full Throttle has been such a success. “It’s nice meeting a lot of guys; we get support from each other,” Loman said. “One thing I’ve noticed with our club is people helping each other out, like young guys calling around trying to find good used tires. There’s a lot of people out there helping other people. I’ve never met anybody with any egos, nobody trying to beat the Joneses. There’s people coming out there with bikes that are 20 years old. “With us, it’s come as you are. Nobody frowns down on anybody.” n

FAITH & Finances

What You Don’t Know… Can Hurt You By Joel Lund After working 14-plus years in the financial services industry, I came to realize how many critical things consumers don’t know about it, in general, and about the people working in it, specifically. The trouble is that there is an ongoing disconnect between perception and reality. The average consumer thinks that they understand the “lay of the land” where it comes to all things financial. But so few actually do, there are often unwanted outcomes for the consumer, as a result. Let’s look at 10 of these areas of disconnect.

Common Misconceptions About Financial Professionals

1 “Anyone can be a financial professional.” To many people this seems true, largely because just about everyone knows someone who has “gone into insurance” or “become a financial advisor.” This knowledge usually isn’t happy, due to the fact that the industry’s age-old, time-honored marketing plan is to have the new professional start their career by contacting every single person they know...starting with family and friends. Did you notice the implication? Many start in the industry; few survive long enough to thrive. Why is that? 2 “Those companies will take anyone.” The flip side of No. 1, it seems that financial firms will hire just about anyone. To legally work with the public on financial matters, the aspiring professional needs to have an exceptionally clean background — because it will be checked. Many candidates are immediately disqualified. Once the background check is behind them, they next need to pass tests...hard tests. Depending on which side of the aisle they work on (I’m simplifying this conversation to the insurance and investment industry), the typical licensing requirement involves two exams, just to get started in the career.

More than two tests are not uncommon. However, the tests are not the same, depending on the new professional’s focus. Investment professionals will generally complete the Series 6 & 65, or the Series 7 & 66, while insurance agents commonly obtain life and health/disability licenses (some will also obtain the Series 6). 3 “They’re all the same!” Picking up on No. 2 above, the stage is set for misunderstanding as early as licensing. If the consumer asks any financial professional, “Do you do financial planning?” they will always hear an enthusiastic, “Yes, of course I do!” To a limited degree, the answer is always true insofar as the professional being asked does financial planning — within their training and licensing. But here’s the problem: the insurance professional is doing financial planning within the scope of insurance. Only. So, while it is true they engage in financial planning, it is not comprehensive in nature. This is true for the investment professional, too. Their scope of planning would cover the client’s investments, like retirement assets, college funds and perhaps savings accounts. It is very unlikely, though, that they’d spend a second considering the insurance risks and existing solutions the client has, or needs. Thus, the ramifications of a client’s being underinsured (almost universally the case) are not considered. At all. Next time we’ll look at how the compensation and sales environment of the financial advising industry really works. n

Joel Lund is an experienced financial advisor, author, and former youth minister. He is also CEO of his own company, Prepare For Rain, LLC. He may be reached at (208) 514-8607; by email at; or on Twitter, @ PrepareForRain.

Christian Living | July 2013 15


Maria Jones — Feeding Body And Soul By Gaye Bunderson The Idaho Foodbank depends on more than 200 partner organizations in its effort to feed the state’s hungry families. Many of those organizations are faith-based, and one of the numerous Idahoans who contributes free time to distributing food to the needy is realtor Maria Jones of Nampa. Jones is a member of The Rock, formally known as the Christian Mission Alliance Church. She began working with the church’s food pantry about four years ago and took over as its manager 3½ years ago when the prior manager stepped down. Jones said the work is time-consuming, and she struggles with getting volunteers. “People have families and jobs, and it’s hard to juggle it all,” she said.

Volunteer work includes picking up, loading and unloading food from the Idaho Foodbank storehouse at 3562 S. TK Ave. in Boise. Jones arrives each Thursday morning at 7 a.m. at church-owned land at 77 S. Happy Valley Road in Nampa. The Rock does not hold 16 July 2013 | Christian Living

Earlier this year Elisha Jones, Maria’s nephew, helped load trucks with boxes of food from the Idaho Food Bank; behind him in the blue cap is Luke Salsido, another volunteer. (Photo by Gaye Bunderson)

“If you help the poor, you are lending to the Lord — and He will repay you.” — Proverbs 19:17

services at the site, but there are buildings on the land and it is here that food is distributed every Thursday evening from 6 to 8 p.m. Jones and a crew of about three people head to Boise in a church van and a trailer for 8 a.m. pick-up of goods at the Foodbank. “We put in orders and ‘shop the

floor’. We’re given 30 minutes to shop and load, and you never know what they’re going to have,” Jones said. She and her volunteers load from 800 to 4,000 pounds of food each week, depending on how wellstocked the Foodbank is at any given time, as need and donations rise and fall throughout the year. Back in Nampa, Jones and her crew may finish unloading as early as 10 a.m. or as late as 3 p.m., depending on the amount of available food they were able to load. At about 5:30 p.m., she and approximately six to eight volunteers start to prepare for the 70 or so families, on average, who will show up to gather their weekly sustenance. “They have to make a meal out of what we have,” Jones said. That may include anything from edible cactus to ricotta cheese, but more common items include rice, potatoes, onions and canned goods.

As pantry manager, Jones tries to provide healthful recipes for families to make the most of the products that are given to them. But the food, she said, is just the beginning. “It’s a means to an end. I want to give a hand up, not a handout. My goal is to give them tips on shopping, ‘couponing,’ budgeting, and cooking nutritionally.” She hands out free Bibles and prayer request cards during the food distributions but stresses no one is obligated to take them and it is not a condition for receiving food. (Partner agencies of the Idaho Foodbank are prohibited from giving out food contingent on religious requirements.) “I want to build relationships,” Jones said. “We pray for the people; we build a bond.” Asked if people accept the Bibles and prayer cards, she said she often runs out of both. She can easily re-order the cards but is currently in need of a free-Bible resource to help her keep the books in stock. She devotes 12 to 15 hours a week to the food pantry and believes it is something she has been called by God to do. “The Bible says the poor will always be with us, but many of these people are in temporary need. They’re not homeless, just down on their luck.” She estimates about 40 percent of the people return to the food pantry on a regular basis, and she doesn’t question their frequency or their motives. No one is ever turned away. “If they pull up in a Mercedes holding a cell phone, I’ll give them food. If they don’t really need the food, that’s between them and God,” she said. The building where the food is distributed has no heater and no water heater, and Jones hopes someone will be willing to step up and meet the need for those items. The Idaho Foodbank acknowledges how vital its partners are to the efficiency of its emergency food chain. “Our network of partners is the foundation of the food bank system,” Karen Vauk, Foodbank president and CEO, said. “We could not provide the millions of pounds of food assistance Idahoans need without them. They allow us to have a statewide reach with a local touch and are truly an invaluable resource.” Many of them, like Maria Jones, do it quietly with little fanfare and a lot of heart. n

… a local magazine that’s new and unique, where you’ll read about real life stories from real life people right here in the Treasure Valley. Find us bi-monthly in area churches, hospitals, doctors’, dentists’ offices, grocery stores and convenience stores.

Favorite Quotes continued from page 7

John 14:2 — In my Father’s house are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. John 14:3 — And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me, that you also may be where I am. John 1:3 — The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

To Advertise Contact: Melva Bade, Sales & Marketing 208-501-9024 Christian Living | July 2013 17

CHRISTIAN Businesspeople

Mel Snider — Bible Fits Into His Business Practices By Gaye Bunderson Mel Snider wants to make it clear: You can’t manipulate God. The Boise businessman, owner of Ag Concepts, is an American success story who attends church and tithes regularly. “Follow Biblical principles and you will be blessed,” he said. But he warned anyone wanting to follow his example to be careful not to give just to get. That would mean your heart isn’t in the right place, and God is pretty hard to fool. Snider, who is 68, is semi-retired from Ag Concepts but said he’ll never fully stop working. Besides, he already tried that. At age 41, he sold the independent insurance agencies he owned with the thought of hanging it all up. “I had another income source from shelter homes (now called assisted living facilities),” he said, “but I didn’t like retirement at all.” Snider owned many enterprises throughout his life. The majority of them have done well, even though he has no formal business education. “I chose not to go to college,” he said. He owned a hardware store and a glass store in South Dakota. He purchased a California-based company called Custom Chemicide after it went bankrupt, and he was able to acquire its intellectual property. “I bought some taco stands, and they weren’t doing well, so I wanted to know how to get people to come back,” Snider said. Snider wasn’t following in anyone’s footsteps when he pursued entrepreneurialism. His father was a pastor. “We moved to Idaho from Nebraska when I was 5, and Dad pastored a church in Nampa. Then he accidentally got shot, so he took a smaller pastoring job in Mountain Home,” Snider said. One thing he picked up from his father is his work ethic. 18 July 2013 | Christian Living

Mel Snider owns Ag Concepts in Boise. Though he was born a pastor’s son, he preferred to pursue a business career but says he remained true to his father’s principles. (Photo by Gaye Bunderson)

“If you have Christian values, you work. Dad, as a pastor, didn’t know what a 40-hour week was, and I don’t know what a 40-hour week is either,” Snider said. He said he “involves” his Christian values in his business and claimed, “It’s easier to be a success in business when you apply Christian values.” One of his principles is respect for others: “I’d rather be with people than take advantage of them.” He acknowledged there are unscrupulous business people who couldn’t care less about ethics but who are nonetheless successful, at least financially. He also said he sometimes has to deal with those people in his business undertakings. But Mel Snider is a positive man. “I go to business seminars, learning to look for the best things in life,” he said. “I’ve had problems, but nothing I’ve let bring me down.” One of the biggest trials he and his wife endured is her five-time battle with cancer. “With being positive, you have to make a decision. People may say negative is easier, but if you work at being positive, then it becomes a way of life,” he said.

Ag Concepts sells five farm soil enhancement products and is headquartered at 12552 W. Executive Drive in Boise. Snider knew nothing about agriculture when he purchased the company 27 years ago, but he operated his business with high standards for what he sold. “I got disappointed with the quality (of the products), so I started manufacturing them myself — not because I wanted to be a manufacturer, just for quality,” he said. Eventually, a 2,000-square-foot manufacturing plant located in Bliss, Idaho grew to its current 50,000-square-foot size. “Success comes from having an idea and trying to follow through with it. Have a niche market and try to fill it,” Snider said. Despite his own business accomplishments, Snider doesn’t choose his companions based on the size of their bank accounts. In his sphere of acquaintances there are many affluent members of society, and yet he counts among his friends a majority of people of average means. “By far, I hang around with more people who don’t have money,” he said. “I’m very comfortable with that.” n

Notes from Home Cheering Your Small Child’s Big Achievements By Dani Grigg My 2½-year-old son Jonah’s entertainment yesterday evening consisted of dragging his tricycle to a new spot in our backyard then sauntering over to where I was working in our garden and telling me, his hands swinging casually, “I moved my tricycle.” I would reply, “You moved your tricycle?” And he would say, “Yep.” I would say, “Nice job!” Then he would saunter off to repeat the delightful sequence. He eventually moved on to moving his “lawn mower” (not really a lawn mower — just this cart thing that’s supposed to help babies learn to walk) and then his bike. He kept me informed about his progress every step of the way. He was so proud of himself. But I understand — I am so proud of him too. When Jonah was a baby, I was assigned to write a newspaper profile story on a local guitar luthier who was having some success. This man tried to describe for me the feeling he had when he watched the guitarist in one of his favorite bands perform with a guitar he (the luthier) had made. I could see the feeling in his eyes, and I recognized it: It was awe. A personal, joyful, bursting kind of awe. I remember the first time Jonah reached out his baby hand to grab a toy. I’d been holding it in front of his face, giving it a little shake. Staring at it as he had so many times before, this time he finally, so very slowly, lifted his right arm. My heart stood still for a moment as he brought it straight up, then — concentrating — moved it to the left. His chubby fingers made contact, and he closed them around the rattle.

Up til that moment, it had never occurred to me that purposefully lifting an arm for the first time was a meaningful accomplishment. But as I watched him achieve something he never had before, my spirit shouted for joy. It did a little jumping heel click. It shoved its fists in the air. Dani Grigg is a Boise freelance writer, wife, and I smiled at my baby boy in won- cheerful mother of two young sons. der — not just noticed him using the word “so” at his achievein the right way (“let’s go to the ment, but at the store so we can get some gloves realization of for daddy”) and I cheered. Rehow fully and cently he pulled his own pahow brightly I jama pants all the way up and was cheering for I cheered. And yesterday, he him. perfected the art of sauntering I’ve always and I cheered that too. n cheered for him. Today I

Christian Living | July 2013 19

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