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Contents July / August 2015 Features Beth Moore:
A fresh message in Boise
“Both the Pharisees and the scribes began to grumble, saying, ‘This man (Jesus) receives sinners and eats with them.’” — Luke 15:1-2
14 Columns with 18 8 Outdoors Dougherty:
Knowing your worth Goodbye, addiction
Gospel sharing: Testimony tips
Great fish debate
Cover Story —
Volume 3, Number 4 Publisher Sandy Jones Editor Gaye Bunderson firstname.lastname@example.org 208-639-8301 Sales & Marketing Melva Bade email@example.com 208-631-3779 • Vin Crosby firstname.lastname@example.org 208-989-2097 • Sandy Jones email@example.com 208-703-7860 Cover Photo Brad Elsberg Graphic Design Denice King
Marriage Toolbox: Being God-honoring
Northwest Nazarene University:
Boise Bible College:
Faith: 30 Challenging A solopreneur’s life
Eternity Bible College:
Aggressive vs. assertive:
Health: 38 Maximum Trashing toxicity
Up & Strumming:
Transformative education Creating servant leaders New site opening
When it hurts: Keep worshiping
Daily Bread: 26 Your Financial myths
34 In Each Edition 36
Unlocking heart’s mystery www.boisechristianliving.com
Distribution Specialists Idaho Distribution Services Website Design SEO Idaho
Consider This: In His image
Learning the difference Overcoming pain
from Home: 16 Notes Prefrontal cortex
Contributors Drew Brown, Dan Bobinski, Dan Dougherty, Ann Doupont, Terry Frisk, Dani Grigg, Leo Hellyer, Anna Lee, Janet Lund, Joel Lund, Rosie Main, Aspen Morrow, Rebecca Owens, Bene’ Paul, Preston Sprinkle & Dan Woodworth
Webmaster Liza Morgan 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 2015 by Christian Living Magazine LLC. Christian Living is published every other month and is available in over 800 locations throughout the Treasure Valley, including most grocery stores, convenience stores, medical waiting areas, and churches. If your church would like additional copies please email us today at firstname.lastname@example.org Find us on Facebook Badge
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Publisher’s Corner: New every morning Christian Living | July / August 2015
His mercies are new every morning — it’s easy to start being critical of others and condemning them as if we are the judge and jury. Mr. Young effectively puts his reader in the Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves actual judgment seat, where they become just full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the that — judge and jury — giving them the final world to save sinners — of whom I am the say in another person’s eternity. I quite literally worst. But for that very reason I was shown broke out in a sweat; could hardly breathe — I got to decide if someone went to heaven or mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, hell?! Regardless of the fact that it was fiction, Christ Jesus might display his immense this wasn’t a real person, I knew in an instant I patience as an example for those who would didn’t want that privilege or that responsibility! believe in him and receive eternal life. Now I have never forgotten that feeling of despair. Lately my heart has a renewed conviction to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the for the victims of sex and human trafficking*. only God, be honor and glory forever and Instead of condemning them, we need to ever. Amen. — 1 Timothy 1:15-17 (NIV) Sandy Jones, Publisher remember these boys, girls, women and even Christian Living Magazine men are living a life not of their choosing. Even I receive a devotional each morning in my if they’ve been able to escape they still have email — it’s how I try to start my day. This morning I opened the nightmare of living through their memories. A year ago it and was hit right between the eyes by the honest truth, I knew almost nothing of this travesty. Suddenly everywhere regardless of the fact that it was Paul’s words, I might as well I went God put people in my life that were vested in getting have written it myself. I make no secret that I have a prodigal the word out that this isn’t just a Third World issue, not even testimony, and while I know I’m forgiven, I doubt that I’m the just a national issue, but is right here in our community! I was only one that the enemy attacks with our many past indiscretions. Suddenly I found myself owning many of those mistakes confronted with it everywhere I went, even at church. One of our contributing writers, Hilarey Johnson, got me a once again; caught myself wandering down that old desert copy of her book “Sovereign Ground” which opened my eyes path and stopped to remind myself that His mercies are new to just how easily an innocent youngster can fall prey. Although every morning. Hilarey’s book is fiction, I quickly realized how a vulnerable, We recently moved, and in the process of unpacking have naïve person might really make these same sad choices, not been sorting things out into three sections: keep, donate and to mention those who are taken and forced into this horrific trash. Perhaps it’s the developing art of discernment of what lifestyle. I almost never do book reviews, but if you’re looking to keep and what to add to another heap that helped me to catch this so quickly — and to humbly remember that God has for a good read this summer I highly recommend it! (Available on amazon.com, or ask for it at your local bookstore.) thrown my past mistakes into the sea of forgetfulness. Enjoy your summer, and as often as you get the chance we Several years ago the book “The Shack,” by Wm. Paul hope that you’ll be the hands and feet of Christ, showing Young, was all the rage. Curious, I decided to read it. While God’s love right here in our community. God bless! n I struggled with the feeling that it was blasphemous, (and for that reason could never recommend it), I must admit that Chapter 11, Here Come Da Judge, caused me to pause for *There are several local organizations based on making more than a moment; in all actuality it still causes me to stop a difference in human trafficking victims’ lives. If you when I find myself condemning someone for their actions know someone you suspect is being held against their whether in my own mind, or behind their back. Please underwill in a human trafficking situation please share with stand there’s a difference between condemning someone, and them the Human Trafficking Hotline phone number holding them accountable for their actions. 888-373-7888; if you believe they are in imminent danScripture tells us we are to hold one another accountable, ger call 911. Additionally the City Light Women’s and but in an era where the media thrives on pitting us against one Children’s Shelter is now providing emergency shelter another, our politics and, yes, even religions often do the same and long-term care to victims of human trafficking. By Sandy Jones
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Author, speaker bringing fresh message to Boise
Beth Moore, shown here at one of her speaking engagements, is the author of many Bible studies and faith-based books. She will bring an entirely new, Godinspired message to Boise July 24-25 at CenturyLink Arena. (Courtesy photo)
By Gaye Bunderson In January of 2014, internationally known Bible teacher and author, Beth Moore, felt the Lord leading her away from the usual format of her annual Living Proof Live conferences. “He started moving Beth toward more than a girls’ weekend. He wanted her to reach out to unchurched women, or women who’ve been hurt by the church and don’t want to come back,” Ange Keskey, city coordinator for Living Proof Live Boise, said. Moore is founder of Living Proof Ministries which, in conjunction with LifeWay Christian Resources, conducts the conferences. Women in areas around select cities get together to help pave the way for the gatherings and serve as Living Proof Life co-coordinators in their area. After Boise was chosen as a 2015 tour stop, a small group of Treasure Valley women gathered to begin making preparations. Alongside Patricia Murphy of LifeWay, the local women started to build a network throughout Idaho, western Montana and Wyoming, northern Utah and Nevada, eastern Oregon, and southwestern Washington, attempting to reach out to women across all demographics in an effort to build a community that will last long after Moore’s July 24-25 presentation at CenturyLink Arena. “We had an amazing rally,” Murphy said. “The ladies who
July / August 2015 | Christian Living
attended caught the vision we shared with them. One of our goals is to use this event as an opportunity to lean into the lives of women who are hurting.” “We really don’t want it to be just an event,” Keske said. “We want it to be a catalyst for something more unifying in our valley. This is a call to women who want more in their life, more fellowship with each other. We’re not designed to walk through this life by ourselves.” The women of Living Proof Live Boise are reaching out to the unchurched through prayer. They’re contacting churches throughout the multi-state region to help in this effort and, according to Keske, they’re working from what they feel is a God-given strategy. They started last August and by the time Moore comes to town, they’ll have had nearly a year to cultivate hearts and prepare them for Moore’s presentation. “She will have a fresh message. It’s not regurgitated in any way. It’s whatever the Lord led her or put on her heart to present,” Keske said. The Lord is opening doors in different places, according to the city coordinator. LPL Boise is reaching out to women through Love INC, Rachel’s Vineyard, Lifeline Crisis Pregnancy Center, City Light, Chrysalis, assisted living facilities, and refugee centers. “Women need to stop being ashamed of their backgrounds. That’s what made them who they are and can bring them to the Lord and help them realize their need for Him. Drop the comparisons,” Keske said. LPL Boise is using 1 John 5:12 as its guiding scripture: Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. “We’re praying for this throughout the valley,” said Keske. “That is our hope. That women who come (to hear Moore) find Him and find life.” Living Proof Live Boise’s strategy includes asking women to set their alarms for 5:12 p.m. each day and to pray for the ministry for one minute. “If they’d like to support us more, they can join our prayer warriors group and receive a weekly email with guided prayers through the book of 1 John. Additionally, women can initiate or include LPL in prayer groups. Our prayer coordinator, Debbie Brown from Eagle Church of the Nazarene, developed our strategy and writes our prayers so it’s all organic to the valley,” Keske said. Living Proof Live Boise encourages women to reach out to other women with an invitation to attend Moore’s presentation — even if it means reaching out boldly. “We are valuing the relationships and opportunities He has already given us naturally. Don’t wait for a ‘word from the Lord’ to invite someone you’re friends with, or to call a leader you already know. If you think of talking to them, consider that the Holy Spirit. Here’s the key: as we are diligent to do what we know to do and take good care of the connections we already have, He will give us more,” Keske said. “And the women will be well cared for (well-shepherded) throughout the process.” The “theme verse,” as Keske calls it, is Proverbs 8:33: Don’t squander your precious life. Blessed is the one who listens to me, awake and ready for me each morning, alert and responsive as I start my day’s work. When you find me, you find life, real life. (The Message)
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Moore spoke in Boise three previous times. Keske not only attended one of her presentations but also met her in person. If she was going to sign on as a city coordinator, Keske said, it was important to her to know that she was representing someone of good character. Now, having met Moore, Keske attests to the fact she is genuine, warm and truly has a heart for the Lord and for people. She also loves to laugh, poke fun at her own strongly southern accent and, despite overwhelming success, lead with a servant spirit. Living Proof Live will be held from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Friday evening, July 24, and re-convene from 8:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Saturday, July 25. Interested women may register through lifeway.com/livingproof or by calling 1-800-254-2022. Worship will be led by Travis Cottrell. In addition to the main event, LifeWay Christian Resources will host a women’s ministry training opportunity, called “YOU Lead,” July 23-24 at Calvary Chapel Boise. According to a release provided by Keske: “This is a chance for women around the area to receive national-level training in all areas of women’s ministry through several breakout sessions.” For more information about the training, go to lifeway.com/Event/WomensEvent-YOU-Lead-Boise-ID. Moore’s Boise presentations have been well-attended in the past and hopes run high for what might be accomplished this time around. “There’s something amazing about sitting in an arena and worshipping the Lord together,” Keske said. “Our hope and prayer,” Murphy said, “is that women who attend fall in love with the Word of God (Ephesians 4:12) and those who don’t know Christ come to salvation in Him. Beth is an amazing teacher and is gifted in sharing the Word of God in a way that encourages women and gives hope and encouragement to those who are struggling.” n
Christian Living | July / August 2015
OUTDOORS With Dougherty
The great fish debate: crappie or walleye? By Dan Dougherty
I recently heard that they are starting to catch some nice crappie in the narrows at C.J. Strike. That statement always bothered me if I was not part of the “they.” How many times have you heard about a hot fishing or hunting spot and made an accelerated effort to get there only to hear on arrival, “It was great the other day...”? I really didn’t know much about catching crappie until I moved to Idaho. I had caught and released a few in the Snake River when my father pastored in Clarkston, Wash. I was a trout fisherman and didn’t have the foggiest idea what to do with a crappie. In Caldwell we lived next to my dad’s new church, beside Indian Creek. I thought it was the best-kept trout fishery secret in Idaho, but that’s another story. The first of the summer after my junior year of high school my great uncle, Joe Root, invited me to go crappie fishing. He and another member of the Deer Flat Free Methodist Church were taking his boat to Owyhee Reservoir for crappie. We stopped at the Marsing Hardware Store to get our day Oregon license and then headed through Leslie Gulch to the reservoir. It was a beautiful scenic drive (still is!) and we also saw several antelope. Fishing out of his aluminum boat with jigs we caught buckets of fish. I was quite delighted with the constant action and never having to re-bait. I learned how to fillet a crappie, and several weeks later a large group of family and friends had a fish fry at Joe’s house. I was introduced to deep-fried crappie with your choice of tartar, ketchup, or cocktail sauce. Forget trout! I had a new favorite fish. At the end of June that summer (1967), I accompanied my father on a trip to Wisconsin. He was going to be the speaker at the Wisconsin Church of God Youth Camp at Green Lake. We left the Caldwell train depot at midnight on the Portland Rose’s eastern journey back to Chicago. My oldest brother David picked us up at Grand Central Station for a trip to Racine, where he was an associate pastor. We ate at a cafe in Racine that evening. It was July 1 and the first day of the new law in Wisconsin (the Dairy State) allowing yellow margarine instead of white to be served. After Sunday’s service in Racine, we traveled to Green Lake for a week of camp. Green Lake was northwest of Milwaukee. Passing through Milwaukee I found it humorous observing a pretzel factory and brewery located next to each other. Only in Wisconsin!
The vehicle I was riding in was the first to make it to the camp. Camp was beautiful — spacious grassy lawns under a canopy of large broadleaf trees of many varieties. The lake was as smooth as glass, reflecting the sunny blue sky above, grassy banks and green surrounding trees. At the first camp meal that evening, I noted that out of about 100 campers 13 to 18 years old a good majority of them where girls. There were many girls 15 and older. Being the oldest boy at 17½, all I could say was, “Thank you, God!” (Don’t you remember what it was like at that age?) I was somewhat shy, and an aggressive, cute (almost 16-year-old) girl from my brother’s church took me in tow. She even held my hand at Vespers! The next day during rec time, she wanted to go for a walk instead of swimming or playing softball or volleyball. We walked a short distance, sat on a grassy knoll and looked at the beauty around us. I quickly saw a fisherman on the nearby bank. In excitement I excused myself and trotted down to see what he was catching. He told me he caught several pike earlier in the morning cruising the shallows, but was now after walleye. He showed me a white bass he had just caught. I asked him if there were any crappie. He said yes, but walleye were his favorite. I told him I love eating crappie. He said crappie were good, but he preferred walleye. That was my first awareness of the great American argument: “crappie or walleye” — which are the best eating fish? As I looked back at my sitting companion, I saw a look of pain on her face as she got up and hurriedly headed back up the path. I thought that maybe she needed to use the restroom. I stayed and the fisherman showed me how he fished for walleye with a bottom walking rig and night crawler. I learned the best time to fish was at dawn, dusk, and night. Three days before and after a new and full moon were best fishing days each month. My brother later tried to enlighten me on interpersonal relationships. I told him I understood, but it boiled down to priorities. Laughing, he agreed and told me to be prepared for changes as life passes. Dad preached great sermons but was disappointed at the overall lack of commitment. His last sermon of the week was truly inspired. I was greatly touched and was the first to go forward for re-dedication and thankfulness for a nurturing family. The Holy Spirit had filled the place. I quickly observed the altars were packed full with
ie or Walley p p a e? Cr
July / August 2015 | Christian Living
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youth. The Vesper service that followed later that evening was like a huge celebration and lasted until almost midnight. Many times over the years Dad and I reflected back about that wonderful experience. I have caught a multitude of crappie since that time. We have had great success on many occasions at Owyhee, Brownlee, C.J. Strike, and Upper Brownlee/Shores. For years we had annual crappie feeds with up to 40 people. We even had a daughter-in-law who didn’t like fish, but learned to love crappie. On a trip to Seattle several years ago, I stopped at the park below McNary Dam on the Columbia to reminisce. We spent several outings there when we lived in Pendleton. I talked to a man getting ready to put his boat in the water. Seeing his large net I asked if he was fishing for steelhead or salmon. He said neither, he was after walleye. He used to fish for both but now was mainly after walleye because they are the best eating fish. I told him I liked crappie. He responded that crappie were probably just as good, but you don’t get a bunch of one-pound cooking fillets off them. The McNary pool below the dam is one of the best places to catch walleye. They average between 6 to 10 pounds, some up to 15 to 18 pounds. Since the Columbia is the boundary, the Oregon and Washington record walleye was caught by John Grubenhoff of Pasco at 20.32 pounds and 35.5 inches in the McNary pool. I have not caught a walleye. I’ve been to Salmons Falls Reservoir several times to fish for them. I caught some nice trout, a few perch, but no walleye. In Idaho they are found at Salmon Falls Reservoir, Oakley Reservoir, and Oneida Narrows Reservoir. The state record was caught by Damon Rush of Pocatello at 17.875 pounds and 34.5 inches in Oakley Reservoir. Since first talking to the fisherman in Wisconsin 48 years ago I have heard many times on cable fishing programs, in magazines, and among fishermen the argument about what is best. The northern states seem to lean toward walleye, and the southern and western states toward crappie. I lean toward crappie, but can’t make an informed decision until I catch and eat a walleye. I guess it boils down to what “they” say: “‘Each to their own taste,’ said the old farmer who kissed the cow!” n
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Christian Living | July / August 2015
Walking the talk, practicing what she preaches
Joan Endicott learned to stop complaining about all the things she had to do and starting seeing them as opportunities she was privileged to do. She wrote a book titled,“I Get To!” (Courtesy photo)
By Aspen Morrow “When you own your worth, everything in your life changes,” said Joan Endicott, speaker, author, and a woman who has not always owned her worth. “It really comes down to whether or not we choose to believe God or the world around us, whose value system is a complete contradiction to His. If we believe what He says, we would never have an issue with knowing our value and owning our worth. Our beliefs drive our behavior.” Endicott, with her stunning denim-blue eyes and professional tailored look, has owned her own business since 1998, presented Keynotes to international crowds, created Customer (& Patient) Care programs for large organizations, and coached clients across the U.S. and in several countries. She is the founder and author of “I Get To!” and contributed to other books and multiple publications. Through her Keynotes and writings, she’s inspired countless individuals around the globe. Joan quickly points out that any success anyone experiences is by God’s protection, grace and provision. She knows she is
10 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
being refined by life’s fires: from abuse she experienced as a child, car accidents that should have killed her, her mother dying all too soon of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), to various other heartbreaks in life. “Everyone has heartache. What we do with it is the difference-maker. All of us can flip that stumbling block over and make it a stepping stone. Life is 10 percent fact and 90 percent how I react.” She became a Christian “verbally” at first, but began making a deeper commitment in junior high, being mentored up in Christ through several amazing youth leaders and role models at a little church she could walk to, just blocks from her Portland, Ore. home. “Never underestimate the power of example,” she said. “During an incredibly impressionable time in my pre-teen and teen years when I really needed it, my youth leaders and other church members modeled what I realized I wanted: a Christcentered life, marriage and home.” She married her husband Mark on December 20, 1980. As an adult, Endicott began mentoring teens. She did her first Keynote at a teen event over 30 years ago. (This was also her reason for seeking — and winning — her Mrs. Idaho International title in 1994-95.) “I could relate all too well to the pain in their eyes as they determined their worth based on what other insecure peers and society said.” Now more than ever, there’s an epidemic of this issue for women (and men) of all ages. Recently she hosted her “WOW!” Academy, Women Owning their Worth, in the Treasure Valley. She challenged the women: “Ask yourself: Do you believe God, or do you believe the world when it comes to your value? He says you are fearfully and wonderfully made. If you believe anything in contradiction to that, aren’t you calling God a liar?” (If your women’s group is interested in hosting this program, contact Joan’s office.) Romans 12:2 says, “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” One of the biggest heartaches in her life renewed her mind and transformed how she looked at everything in life. “October 26, 2001, was a sunny, crisp fall morning and as I walked my dear friend Laurie out to her van, we talked about the difficult year she’d been through. I hugged her and said, ‘I love you and am so proud of you.’ ‘I love you back!’ she said as she drove off.” About 20 minutes later, Endicott heard the constant whirring of a helicopter. After noticing it was Life Flight, she decided to walk down to the scene of the accident. “Upon arrival, shock waves hit instantly; I couldn’t breathe, my throat tightened and tears flowed as I saw Laurie’s van had been T-boned by a large truck.” Endicott asked the policeman, “Where is she — the lady in the van?” He indicated she was in the helicopter. The rest of the story is that Laurie wasn’t okay. Her brain damage was terribly severe — she would never be the same. For weeks after the accident, Endicott spent much of her time at the hospital trying to help Laurie wake up and praying for a miracle. “One morning when my alarm went off, I was so exhausted I just laid there thinking about all the things I had to do…have to get up, get my kids up, make breakfast, pack lunches, drive them to school…then begin all my have-to’s for work,” she said. “I wanted to pull the covers over my head and not have to do anything.”
Then something life-changing happened: Endicott simply pictured Laurie lying in her hospital bed — unable to do one thing for herself or those she adored. If she could jump out of her bed and do everything on her list (your list – any list), she would have done it with sheer joy and gratitude! “My perspective transformed! I began thanking God for the abilities to perform the simple everyday miracles I’d just been complaining about and purposed to never say ‘I have to’ or ‘I’ve got to’ again, but instead ‘I Get To!’” said Endicott. “I know Laurie would also want me to remind each of us that we are irreplaceable. Certainly crisis creates clarity on what matters most in life. Let’s not wait for a crisis to fully appreciate the people in our lives along with the abilities and opportunities we all have. When you make this simple shift in how you show up at work and in life, everything changes.” Endicott wants people to realize that freedom to be all that God calls and equips us to be lies simply in believing God. “‘Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. (John 8:32)’ … Every moment of every day ‘I Get To!’ choose if I’m going to believe God or my own fears, insecurities and lies the world throws at us.” She encourages people to find a coach or a mentor and to walk out our faith. “God designed us for community — we need each other,” she said. Although most of us do not have thousands of people watching us, each can be the mentor to one, one who might just become the woman like Endicott who influences so many others. n As a special offer, you can go to igettobook.com for two free chapters of her book. To apply for a free Coaching Strategy session, visit www.about.me/joan. endicott. Joan Endicott’s mission is to inspire and instruct others on how to improve their businesses and lives and achieve their goals. Like her Facebook page for daily doses of fresh encouragement. Contact her for speaking, training and coaching at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (208) 453-8056.
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Aspen L. Morrow is an author, speaker, salt addict and mompreneur. She is the owner of Pottenger Publishing (www.pottengerpress.com) and Aspen Consulting & Associates. She graduated from Oklahoma Baptist University with a degree in public relations and has worked as a business owner, freelance writer, editor, author and publisher. Her books can be found on Amazon or she can be reached at (208) 870-9238 or email@example.com.
Christian Living | July / August 2015 11
The challenges of God-honoring marriages It is time that we Christians who are in, By Leo Hellyer or believe in, marriage as designed and As I start this edition of Marriage ordained by God Almighty, step up and Toolbox, I am reflecting on the very real take off the kid gloves and prepare to go and widely present challenges that face to war. It is time to face the fact that we God-honoring marriages today. Our are in a daily spiritual warfare for our marriages are affected by lack of energy, marriages, as well as our Christian faith overworking, emotions, health issues, itself. It is time for the silent majority to distractions, careers, finances, outside be heard. If we don’t open our mouths relationships, politics, anti-Christian and move our feet and put up our philosophies and movements, etc. hands, what we believe in and hold close Our marriages face challenges from to our hearts will be overwhelmed by the many different directions, but each of din of outside and ungodly influences. these challenges comes from the same It is time that we once again rememorigin, Satan himself. He loves to deber the 19th century hymn, “Onward ceive us by disguising the ugliness of Christian Soldiers.” The first verse of this world with a shrewd marketing this foundational hymn states, “Onward campaign, and by wrapping his deceit in beautiful and tempting coverings. There Leo Hellyer is a non-staff pastor with a lo- Christian soldiers! Marching as to war. cal church and has been married to his wife, With the cross of Jesus going on before. are two different groups of people who Norma, for 42 years. The couple volunteered Christ the royal Master, leads against are prime targets for Satan’s energies: with FamilyLife on its Boise ministry team the foe.” It is time that we put on our Christian leaders and married Chrisfor 20 years. They are both employed by Christian armor and go into battle, maktians. Boise Rescue Mission Ministries, Norma at ing sure that we are following Christ, As a husband and wife in holy matriLight Home for Women & Children and that we are moving forward in His mony, trying to live life in a God-honor- City and Leo at River of Life Rescue Mission. strength and not in our own. ing marriage, we are undergoing spiriThey may be reached at silverplate426@ There are many weapons available to tual warfare on a daily basis. As we have msn.com. If you have questions about Marus to be victorious in the battle for our discussed before, it is very important to riage Toolbox, or need other assistance, Leo marriages. Prayer is the most powerful remember that our mate is not our enmay be reached at (208) 344-1357. and most reliable weapon in our arsenal. emy. Your mate is your partner in battle. Every tool in your Marriage Toolbox becomes much “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, more effective with the consistent use of prayer. The but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiri- more we are in close communication and communion with God, through prayer, the more attuned we are to tual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.” His wisdom, discernment, direction, will, and strength. — Ephesians 6:12 (NASV)
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“This film is about the power of prayer, the necessity of prayer in our lives,” said director Alex Kendrick. “If we return to prayer, passionately and actively seeking the Lord, and we’re right with Him and right with each other, God can do amazing things in our lives.” To receive additional information about “War Room,” go to warroomthemovie.com. This movie alone is not going to save our marriages, but it can be the catalyst that gets us first down on our knees and taking our challenges to God Almighty, and then up on our feet to fight valiantly the battle that Christ leads us to fight. Many Christians are quick to point out how bad society has become, or how corrupt and godless our nation and individual communities are. Hopefully many of us will make it a priority in our lives to attend “War Room” when it opens locally. The victory comes when we put action with our faith, bravery with our words, and step forward into battle with Christ leading us every step of the way. Resign from the silent majority, enlist in God’s army, and step up and fight for your marriage and the marriages of others by becoming prayer warriors. n
My wife and I had the privilege recently to join a number of other Christian leaders in our area as we attended a preview showing of the latest Kendrick Brothers movie, “War Room.” Attending this movie, taking others to this movie, and possibly purchasing the DVD/Blu-Ray when they are available, should be a key tool in every Marriage Toolbox. Without giving away too much, I can tell you that this is a very powerful, moving, challenging, motivating and life-changing movie. It will be premiering in theaters across the country, including the Treasure Valley, on August 28. If you want to win the battle for your marriage, and your life, this is a must-see movie. Have you found yourself facing different challenges to your marriage, and fretted and worried and agonized, and then finally turned to prayer as a last resort? Prayer needs to become our first response to any situation that we face in our lives.
466-0002 Office • firstname.lastname@example.org
Christian Living | July / August 2015 13
Jason Coombs gets a whole new life
Jason Coombs knows firsthand the tragedy of addiction. He now helps others who are enslaved by drugs and alcohol. (Photo by Sandy Jones)
By Sandy Jones On a cold dark night, near Christmas, snow blowing sideways at both ends of the covered alleyway, a young homeless man finds himself sitting on the frozen, stained concrete behind the rescue mission in Salt Lake City, Utah. Surrounded by filth and the pungent smell of various body odors mixed with stale cigarettes, he is one of about 10 homeless people in the alley because they were all either drunk or stoned, or both, and unable to go inside. His last 10 dollars — the money for his next fix — having just been robbed by a man wielding a screwdriver, Jason Coombs looks up and asks, “Why? How did I get here? I had such a wonderful life…” Born in 1978 in Bountiful, Utah to a pediatrician and his wife, Jason is the third of four children. A sensitive child and teen, Jason felt great empathy for anyone being hurt or bullied. He was the 8th grade class president, and the captain of his high school soccer team his senior year. What Jason didn’t share were his feelings of inadequacy, that he just wasn’t quite good enough. His grandfather was a high-ranking official of the national LDS church, and often his teachers would prompt Jason by asking, “How would your Grandpa feel if he saw you…?” They may have been trying to help him be a better student, but what they were really doing was feeding his empty feelings. During Jason’s junior year of high school he discovered that his friends had been sneaking off drinking and smoking. Not sure why he was excluded from their mischief, Jason took it upon himself to join in. After all, these were the same boys he’d grown up with, was in the same Scout troop with, went to
14 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
church and shared beliefs with. He remembers vividly the day he vowed that he was going to drink that weekend. Jason immediately felt the rush of making his own choice, of deciding to do something that wasn’t in line with his parents’ wishes. That weekend he joined in the fun with the others at a friend’s home. The parents were away. There was an elderly grandmother living with them who took a shot of whisky morning and night for medicinal purposes, so the friend’s parents had an open liquor cabinet, providing easy access. Taking his first shot of whisky, Jason thought it tasted like gasoline, and it was only through the coaching of his friends that he was able to keep it down. By his fourth shot the alcohol hit, and Jason remembers thinking, “This is amazing! I feel light. I don’t feel afraid. I feel good enough. I can conquer the world right now.” On his sixth shot, he blacked out. Awakening the next morning, Jason found himself covered in Magic Marker artwork courtesy of his friends, and he was oh, so sick. Crawling up the stairs, Jason could hear his friends talking about the night before, and when Jason’s name came up it seems he had been the life of the party! Under his parents’ watchful eye, Jason was too busy with school and sports to have many of these nights, and he never again drank to the point of blacking out. As captain of the soccer team, it was his job to defend the team’s state championship title, so he was devastated when he blew his knee. The thing that was most important to him — his soccer career — was gone. He was shattered. While he was recuperating on the couch in the family living room, Jason’s mother would bring him two pain pills every couple of hours, as prescribed. He soon learned that those pills had the same calming effect that alcohol had on him. Jason reasoned with himself, that if two made him feel good, then 10 might make him feel wonderful. As his mother would bring the pills every two hours, Jason would then stash them in the crack on the couch until he had eight or more, and then he’d take them all at once. True addict tendencies, if anyone had known what he was doing. Jason got his life back on track, graduated from high school and went to Brazil for two years as a missionary. It was the happiest he’d ever been; he’d replaced his feelings of inadequacy with hard work and sharing the gospel. This spiritual high ended soon after he returned home, faced with bills, finding a job and school. Jason coped with these new stresses by returning to pain pills, but now adding marijuana and alcohol. Amazingly, he was able to function well, graduating from college and marrying a wonderful woman. Having sold advertising while in college, Jason landed a prestigious job in the advertising department of the NBC affiliate in Salt Lake City; the youngest sales person they’d ever had, he was soon their top salesman. The pace of life just got faster and faster; soon, his belief in Christ, prayer life and scripture study moved to the back burner. He was no longer serving others, thinking only of himself and how he could get ahead faster. Jason and his wife were in a car accident, sending them both to the E.R. with whiplash. Jason capitalized on the opportunity to get as many pain pills as possible, as he was now using recreationally. Still in denial of his addiction, he was able to function at a high level, deceiving those around him.
One day a co-worker pulled out a bottle of Oxycontin 80’s, (one of the strongest opiates on the market), and told Jason that he could get his own prescription. Having been referred to his coworker’s doctor, Jason didn’t think twice about paying his $500 co-pay in cash as the doctor wrote him a prescription, telling him which pharmacy to go to. Over the next five months Jason saw this doctor several times. The co-pay kept increasing, up to $1,000 for one visit. Jason would pay the doctor in cash, then go to the pharmacy and use his insurance to fill the prescription. While Jason was out mowing his lawn one day, a dark brown car with tinted windows and government plates pulled up. A man in a tie got out and asked if he was Jason Coombs. Upon verification the man handed Jason a stack of papers and basically said, “You’ve been served. This is a subpoena to appear in court and I suggest you read these thoroughly. Have a nice day.” As the man drove off, Jason started to read through the papers. Pages and pages of felony and misdemeanor charges: charges for doctor shopping, charges for insurance fraud, for obtaining false prescriptions, among the list. His world came crashing down. Jason tried to outrun it and keep it quiet. Having recently changed jobs, he was shocked to find the Drug Enforcement Administration showing up at his current job sites, his former job, his new office. They knew where he lived. They’d actually had a tail on him for some time. They were sending him a message. All the while Jason was lying to his boss and co-workers, trying to hide, to manipulate, to minimize, and to justify his actions, and to divert their attention. Finally, he told his wife and his parents. He hired a lawyer and entered his first drug program. Jason couldn’t stay clean and it became a vicious circle of going through treatment, getting out, failing, and going back into treatment. It was in rehab that he was introduced to meth and heroin, two drugs he’d never tried before. Now he was in and out of jail, and treatment, but he just couldn’t find his way. Everything fell apart. His wife divorced him. He lost his job. He lost his home and pets, and found himself wandering the streets of Salt Lake City, a slave to the drugs and alcohol that had once helped him cope. Jason’s fifth attempt at treatment came via an old friend, David Pinegar, who had gone to Brazil with him. David had also been a heavy drug user and had successfully completed treatment at Renaissance Ranch in Park City, Utah. Jason reached out, asking for help, and David answered, sharing how he’d been helped through the faith-based treatment plan at Renaissance. One last time Jason went to his parents, asking for their help to get him into this program. Entering treatment, Jason’s counselor explained that drug and alcohol addiction is a “feeling disease.” Jason no longer knew how to feel anything but high or angry. His counselor patiently led Jason through the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, encouraging him to give his feelings and wounds to God. Jason struggled mightily with this concept — how could he give it all to God when he knew how incredibly disappointed God had to be in him? Jason’s own thoughts were basically, “I’m going to die this way and whatever happens on the other side of life is — if I go to hell, then I go to hell. I’ll probably be more comfortable there than in His presence anyway.” Jason had no idea of how to even begin to approach God. In hope of helping Jason achieve Step 2 of AA (“Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity”), his counselor asked him to write down what attributes he would want his own personal higher power to have, and to bring the list to their next meeting. Continued on page 17
Christian Living | July / August 2015 15
NOTES from Home
A somewhat scientific look at kids’ brains thrashing, etc., over the smallest of trigBy Dani Grigg I’ve got a four-year-old and an almostgers. Do you want an example? Well, three-year-old, and you know what that I’VE GOT ONE. With two little kids means? Tantrums. running around my house, I’ve got a It’s not their fault, though. See, there’s million. Here are a few reasons my kids this part in our brains called the prehave fallen apart during the last few frontal cortex — it’s some gray matter weeks, from their perspective: behind the forehead. I’m an expert on • He took my trash. this because I listened to a podcast once • Brother knocked over my imaginary (How Temper Tantrums Work on the shopping cart and spilled my imaginary How Stuff Works podcast. Google it. donuts. You won’t regret it). • I ate all the applesauce and now it’s Dani Grigg is a Boise freelance writer, wife and The prefrontal cortex is in charge of gone. regulating emotions, impulses and social happy mother of two young sons. • Plans changed. behavior. But according to the podcast, • My breakfast bar broke. it doesn’t do a great job of it in the beginning. It’s immature. • The sun is not out. It doesn’t even begin to mature until we are about four. • Mom wants to change my diaper. So in the meantime, we’ve got the tantrums. Little kids • Mom locked the door while she was using the bathroom. get disappointed or upset, and reigning in those emotions is • My shirt is stuck on my head. beyond their brains’ abilities. • Mom gave me the wrong cup. If you’ve ever seen a child, you’re probably familiar with • I woke up. tantrums. Every kid has them. There’s screaming, crying, • Brother pretended to squirt water at me from his banana. So that’s fun. BUT. I don’t know why it took so long to occur to me, but recently I realized there is another side to the prefrontal cortex coin. It’s true they can’t regulate their disappointment, but you know what else they can’t regulate? Their joy. Every day, we’ve got the screaming and crying, but also every day, we’ve got the laughing and jumping. They get SO EXCITED over, again, the smallest of triggers. Do you want an example? Well, I’ve got a million of those, too. Here are some reasons my kids have shown delight over the last few weeks: • The sliced peppers look like skis. • I made a sheep noise. • I get to take a nap with my new loofah. • “Suds” is a funny word. • Mom found my favorite underwear. • Kody and Ava are coming over. • Brother looks funny with his shirt stuck on his head. • Dad’s pretending to eat me. • Mom’s doing a silly voice. • I woke up. • I’m galloping. • I’m spinning. So, prefrontal cortex: I’m not sure what I want from you. I love you as you are, but also I don’t. I could do with a little less crying in my life, but could I do with less laughter? Fewer shrieks of excitement? Less joyful galloping? It will be bittersweet to watch as my boys develop control over their emotions and impulses. For that reason, I’m glad it’s slow. Prefrontal cortex, I think you’re probably doing things The author’s son has a meltdown. But someday, his prefrontal cortex will about right. Keep up the good work. n fix all that. (Courtesy photo)
16 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
Addiction Continued from page 15
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Just what did he hope for in God? At their next meeting Jason went to the drawing board and wrote: “I want Him to be forgiving. I want Him to be loving. I want Him to be patient. I want Him to play the guitar. I want Him to ski with me, and to be funny, to have a sense of humor. I want Him to be available and to hear me and for me to feel that He’s here. I want Him to be okay with me calling Him ‘Dude’.” Asked if this was a higher power Jason could believe in, he quickly said yes. Jason’s relationship with God and his understanding of Him, His personality and His characteristics have grown and deepened. About two months into treatment Jason started writing letters to God each day, starting with the words, “Dear Father.” It’s been six years since he started his first book of letters, and he has recently started on his 12th volume. This has been a huge part of the healing he has gone through. “Christ healed so many and to feel that happen in my own life, when I couldn’t go five minutes without thinking about using and I couldn’t go a full day without using to now just being so at peace without that thought in my head.” – Jason Coombs Jason equates the experience of addiction to that of drowning. When you’re drowning all you can think about is air; you become panicked for air. Addiction is the same thing except drugs and/or alcohol become your air. Through his recovery, the need for his “air” was removed. Today Jason relies on his relationship with God for his feelings, instead of the counterfeit feelings he got from drugs and alcohol. Jason claims his recovery as a modern-day miracle, every bit as real as any miracle in either the Old or the New Testament. n Footnote: Jason Coombs is the executive director of the Western Idaho facilities of Renaissance Ranch Addiction Treatment Centers of Idaho, an alcohol and drug rehabilitation program centered around gospel principles for all religions and practices. His close friend, David Pinegar, is the executive director of the Eastern Idaho facilities. Learn more at idahoaddictioncenters.com. Jason often speaks to groups about the disease of addiction, and may be reached at (208) 286-4274.
Christian Living | July / August 2015 17
USING your testimony
Tips for sharing the gospel message for boldness helps with this. Asking Him By Ann Doupont When we were first saved, a change to prepare the hearts of those to whom took place on the inside of us. Jesus you will be sharing your faith, and then entered into our hearts and our lives becoming sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s were never the same. We became new leading, will enable you to tell them what creatures in Christ with old things passed He has done for you. away. All things became new. Think about it. What has He done for This reality, which can be found in 2 you? What sins has He forgiven in your Corinthians 5:17, isn’t always at first unlife? Whether it was being an habitual derstood by the new believer. However, liar like I had been before coming to a change really did take place. Their deChrist, or an angry person like I also had sires changed from what they were before been, or having been on alcohol or drugs they asked Jesus to come into their lives (like I was before Christ entered into my and they became a new creation, one life), you have a testimony to share with that had never before existed. other people. Each of us who has been born again Ann Doupont has a passion for writing By writing out your testimony on paper has a testimony to share with others. Not which she bases on her times spent alone and then rereading it before sharing all of them are as dramatic as others are; with the Holy Spirit. She writes anything it with others, prayerfully considering from tracts to books, whatever the Lord yet, all have been forgiven for their sins which words are best to use, you will be inspires her to write. She has known the and put on a brand new path for living. surprised how easy it becomes to share Lord for over 35 years, is a member of Life In Revelation 12:11, we find that we Church in Meridian, and the author of four the goodness of God with other people. can overcome the plans of the enemy of print books and nearly 50 ebooks, all of It is for His sake that we are to do this; our souls by the blood of the Lamb and which are for the purpose of personal and but in turn, we also are blessed. the words of our testimony. Jesus shed spiritual growth. You may see her works at Another thing you might consider is to His most valuable asset, His blood, on amazon.com/author/anndoupont and write a simple tract using your testimony the cross at Calvary. Upon acceptance of on her blog at anndoupont.blogspot.com. along with an appropriate Scripture this fact and acknowledgment of Jesus as She may be contacted by writing to her at Boise4Jesus@yahoo.com. verse or two, and a prayer for salvation. the Lord of our lives, we are saved from I did that in 1999 and had 4,000 tracts our sins and from eternal damnation. printed. It included my contact informaThe wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal tion, which was my post office box, as I didn’t find it wise life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Romans 6:23). That’s to use my home address on tracts. the good news. Jesus died in our place. He took the punLater, I published a book with my testimony in it, calling ishment we so rightly deserved. it “God Can Heal Anything!” showing what it was like The very last thing that Jesus said to His disciples before having had mental illness and how I’d been healed from ascending back to the Father in Heaven was that they it. would receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon Each time I tell people what the Lord has done for me, them and that they would be witnesses unto Him wherit comes out differently. While waiting in line at the groever they went. As soon as He had spoken those things, cery store, I often find opportunities to tell people about He was taken up into Heaven where He will stay until the appointed time of the Father for His return. (See Acts Jesus. You also can do this, or at other places where you regularly go. There are people everywhere who need to 1:7-11.) hear about Jesus. Having your testimony ready to share That same promise is available to us today. When the with them is one of the easiest ways to share the gospel. Holy Spirit comes upon a person, they are then empowTime is short and Jesus is returning soon. People need ered to share Jesus with others. What has the Lord done for you? Look for opportunithe Lord and you might be the only person who is able ties to tell others about it. It blesses Him when you share to reach them. You might be the only Jesus they will ever your testimony with others. Although it’s true that not see. everyone will agree with what you tell them, some will. In sharing the gospel, words are necessary. People are They will be inspired, encouraged, and given hope that not mind-readers. Considering your own story of salvaHe really cares about them. tion, and what the Lord has done for you since, tell others Some people are shy by nature. They have difficulty about it and expect a wonderful change to take place in talking to others, especially strangers. Asking the Father their lives. n 18 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
NNU: 100 years of transform
Above: The main campus of Northwest Nazarene University rests on 88 acres within the city of Nampa. Right: Olivia Metcalf, one of NNUâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s two chaplains, speaks to a student congregation during an on-campus service in 2014. (Photos courtesy of NNU)
By Anna Lee Guided by a vision of the Kingdom of God, Northwest Nazarene University seeks a more excellent way, to be a transformative learning community expressing the love of Jesus by forming scholars, nurturing disciples, serving the Church, shaping the culture, and redeeming the world. This vision has been ever-present at NNU from the founders to the present day.
Humble beginnings Described as a man of unswerving purpose and indomitable courage, Eugene Emerson was a rancher, businessman and community leader who sought to provide his children with the education he never had. Emerson felt a call to bring the still young Church of the Nazarene to Idaho, and in doing so founded Nampa First Church of the Nazarene. After a trip to Pacific Bible College (now Point Loma Nazarene University) in California started by Church of the Nazarene founder Phineas F. Bresee, he was dedicated to creating a similar school in Idaho. On December 26, 1913, Emerson founded the Idaho Holiness School, which would later grow to become Northwest Nazarene University. He purchased four blocks of land across from Holly Street and deeded it to the school before becoming the mayor of the City of Nampa from 1922-25.
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mative Christian education Emerson partnered in this project with H. Orton Wiley, who became the first president of NNU in 1916. Wiley pored over his Bible, seeking God’s will for the fledgling school and penned his vision for the college: “[It] seeks not to conform to the ideals of worldly institutions; it seeks rather in all things the Kingdom of God.”
Answering God’s call Verne Ward III and his son Verne Ward IV exemplify the educational process found at NNU that pursues both intellectual and spiritual development. Both have become God’s creative and redemptive agents in the world. A member of the class of 1978, Verne Ward III built upon his foundation in Christ at NNU and in 1983 followed God’s call to serve in Papua New Guinea. There he and his wife Natalie served as Nazarene missionaries, discipling and mentoring pastors and lay leaders in the area. In 2005, Ward III was named regional director for all of Asia and the Pacific, and in 2012 he was elected to be director of Global Missions for the General Church of the Nazarene. Ward III holds a master of arts in spiritual formation from NNU in addition to his undergraduate degree. Verne Ward IV has also pursued a life of fulfilling God’s call but through a less traditional educational path. Ward IV graduated from NNU with a bachelor’s degree in mass communication and is currently pursuing a master of communication management. Ward IV currently serves as the communications coordinator for the Africa Region of the Church of the Nazarene. Some of his duties include leading the Africa Region’s communications team, advising leaders in communications strategy, arranging and managing the production
of media products, and developing communication channels. He and his wife Rachel serve together as missionaries in South Africa and reside in Johannesburg. After being educated at NNU and pursuing their call to missions, the lives of Verne Ward III and Verne Ward IV are a testament to the legacy of an NNU education and the fulfillment of the mission of NNU: the transformation of the whole person, enabling each student to become God’s creative and redemptive agent in the world. Despite coming from different fields of study, each is able to use their knowledge and gifts to seek first the Kingdom of God.
Continuing the tradition The things that make up the history of Northwest Nazarene University are the same things that define NNU today. “Seek ye first” is a phrase that has transcended time and served as the school’s motto ever since the beginning. The cultivation of God’s people is something NNU has done in the past and will continue to do moving forward. Today, NNU serves approximately 10,000 students including more than 2,000 undergraduates and graduate students and 8,000 individuals earning continuing-education degrees or certification credits. NNU offers more than 60 areas of study, 18 master’s degrees in seven different disciplines and two doctoral degrees. In addition to its 88-acre campus located in Nampa, Idaho, the university also offers programs online as well as in Boise, Idaho Falls and in cooperation with programs in 35 countries. Nearly 100 years after its founding, Northwest Nazarene University remains committed to delivering a transformative education through experiential service and leadership opportunities, close academic relationships with faculty and a supportive-faith community. n Anna Lee is communications coordinator at NNU.
BBC & Eternity Bible College stories on pages 22-23
Students at NNU walk to chapel. Chapel is held on campus three times a week. (Photo courtesy of NNU)
Christian Living | July / August 2015 21
BOISE Bible College
Glorifying God, equipping servant leaders
The student body at Boise Bible College is a healthy blend of happy, youthful faces. (Photo courtesy of BBC)
By Rebecca Owens The biggest little Bible college resides in one of the littlest big cities in the Pacific Northwest. As the old saying goes, looks can be deceiving; Boise Bible College does not look like much, as it is nestled within a Garden City neighborhood along the Greenbelt. Nevertheless, this petite school has a fierce spirit of love, a strong grasp on truth, and a powerful desire to persevere towards its mission: Boise Bible College glorifies God by equipping servant leaders who build up the church to advance the gospel worldwide. It should not come as a secret that the world at large is often disillusioned; the death of absolute truth, for example, has led to moral confusion. Sometimes, it drags us down into its despairing ocean of lustful delights, as illustrated in James 1:14-15. Without the hope of Christ, earth would be a frightful place. Rejoice that God the Father sent grace and salvation through His Son! The joy of salvation is the very heart of Boise Bible College — to spread the redeeming love of God around the world. Staff, faculty, and administrators are motivated to mentor the spiritual growth of students who are giddy for opportunities to evangelize and serve. Look in any classroom, office, or lounge at BBC and you will see Paul’s message to the Ephesians on display: 22 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. (4:11-13, NIV) Under the lordship of Christ and the authority of Scripture, the core values of BBC all reflect this mission. BBC equips its students with literacy of God’s Word, ministry skills needed to make disciples of all nations, character development that evolves into a lifetime of Kingdom work, and leadership abilities that begin and end with service. This institution not only values equipping students for a lifetime of ministry, it values accountability from, as well as amenity to, the local churches. Since its quiet conception in 1945, Boise Bible College has never wavered from its sole purpose and mission because it has always been intentional to seek first the Lord’s will. Over the course of 70 years, this Bible college has graduated nearly 900 fervent alumni who have settled all over the world to spread the gospel. Indeed BBC is small, but it is as potent, and as beautiful, as a newly bloomed jasmine. n For more information about the college, go to boisebible.edu. www.boisechristianliving.com
Boise extension site opening this fall healthy, humble disagreeBy Preston Sprinkle ment. Eternity is an interFrancis Chan is a welldenominational college and known Christian speaker will resonate with anyone and author of several books, who loves Jesus, cherishes including the New York the gospel, and submits to Times best-selling “Crazy the authority of Scripture. Love.” Eleven years ago, Second, Eternity Bible Chan had a crazy vision of College desires to transform starting a college. Not just both mind and heart — not any college, but one that just the mind. Oftentimes, would offer debt-free educaeducation can fill students tion, where students could with head knowledge, but study the Bible without fail to reach the heart. But being shackled by a pile of Jesus desires our whole being government loans. In 2004, Preston Sprinkle, Ph.D., is the vice and seeks to renovate our his vision became a reality president for Eternity Bible College’s minds and our hearts. Perwhen 100 students showed Boise extension and is the author of haps you’ve met some Bible up to class at Eternity Bible College in Simi Valley, Calif. several books, including the New York college graduates who have become puffed up with their Today, Eternity has over 200 Times best-selling “Erasing Hell” knowledge. Such students students and many graduates (David C. Cook, 2014), which he co-authored with Francis Chan. tend to be arrogant and furthering the Kingdom of argumentative; they often God around the globe, and hinder rather than help our ministry. Eternity none of its graduates have any school debt has no desire to fill students with head knowlaccrued during their education. Not a one. Beginning this fall, Eternity will open up its edge about God. Rather, the college seeks to instill a passion to know God through a first extension site in Boise. vigorous study of His inspired Word. The plan to launch the extension was Third, Eternity seeks to be inclusive of all birthed in the summer of 2013, when I, as an types of people at every stage of life. One Eternity professor, contacted several pastors of its mottos is: “We offer affordable biblical in the Treasure Valley and asked them if an education to anyone who desires it.” When extension site in Boise would benefit their people hear “Bible college,” they often think ministry. My query was met with an overof a training ground for aspiring pastors and whelming “yes.” So in May 2014, my family missionaries. But what about the rest of us? and I moved to Boise to lay the groundwork What if stay-at-home moms, businessmen for the extension site. Classes will begin on and women, mechanics and baristas want August 24. to grow closer to God through studying the Eternity is a rather unique Bible college. Aside from its commitment to debt-free edu- Bible? Eternity welcomes them all. After all, if you’re a Christian, then your primary cation, the college has three primary values job on earth is to be a disciple who makes that shape everything it does. disciples. First, Eternity is dedicated to education That’s why we are here. Whatever other rather than indoctrination. The college seeks vocation you have is secondary, or a means to teach students how to think, not what to by which you should work out your primary think. Of course, there are certain beliefs and practices that are central to the Christian vocation as a disciple maker. The college certainly has students who are studying faith: the Trinity, the deity of Christ, salvafor vocational ministry (missionary, pastor, tion by grace through faith, the authority of etc.), but its classes are oftentimes filled with Scripture, and the necessity of holy living people from every stage of life. as defined by the Scriptures. But Christians Most of Eternity’s classes are offered once often disagree on secondary issues like the a week at night to accommodate working end-times, the gifts of the Spirit, the mode people. If you already have a college degree, of baptism, and the various forms of church ministry. Instead of telling students what they you can still audit classes for a fraction of the cost of taking them for credit. n must think about these matters, the profesFor more information, contact me at sors at Eternity train students how to think biblically about these questions and allow for email@example.com.
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Christian Living | July / August 2015 23
AGGRESSIVE vs. assertive
Learning what’s healthy for relationships
Let’s consider each of the four quadrants independently. Aggressive people (in the upper left quadrant) stand firm to get their views heard and their needs met, but they rarely inquire about other people’s point of view. Quite frankly, they’re going to “win,” and they have no qualms about making that known. If people are extremely aggressive, they will not only fight to win, they’ll also fight to ensure you lose. Clearly, being aggressive is unhealthy for relationships. Passive people (in the lower right quadrant) are quick to yield to the needs of others and rarely stand firm about getting their needs met. Many Christians believe that this is where Christ wants everyone to be, but this is not true. Everyone has needs, and to be healthy, we must know what our needs are and seek to have them met. Space limitations preclude me from covering
By Dan Bobinski Ever have someone walk all over your feelings and not care? It hurts, doesn’t it? Such people may think they’re asserting themselves, but in truth, walking over people’s feelings is being aggressive, not assertive, even when it’s done with a smile and sweet-sounding words. Some friends of mine were recently hurt deeply by someone who claimed to be asserting himself, but apparently he didn’t truly understand the meaning of the term. In Matthew 22, Christians are commanded to love the Lord, and to love our neighbors as ourselves. In the definition of Godly love provided in 1 Corinthians 13, we are told to be patient and kind, not envious, not boasting or proud, and not rude or dishonoring to others. Additionally, we are not to be self-seeking nor easily angered (among other things). With that in mind, let me state that acting aggressively is not in keeping with the above commands we are given by Christ. But, as I said, people often confuse aggressive and assertive, with the result sometimes being severely damaged relationships. Therefore, with the hope of clarifying some things and preventing future pain for as many people as may read this, allow me to lay out some definitions for aggressive, assertive, passive, and passive-aggressive. On the diagram shown above right, notice the vertical axis represents your desire to be understood and being open about getting your needs met. The horizontal axis represents your ability to give genuine consideration to other people’s points of view. By assigning low and high levels within that diagram, we can establish four basic quadrants: aggressive, assertive, passive, and passive-aggressive. Interestingly, most people tend to live predominately in just one of those quadrants, usually due to a number of factors. However, the healthiest place to be is in the upper right quadrant, which is called “Assertiveness.” It’s also interesting to note that because assertiveness requires a conscious choice, it is the least natural of the four.
24 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
this in detail, but suffice it to say that because Granted, you may have a position on which you simply cannot compromise, but their needs are often unmet, passive people that doesn’t mean saying “so what?” to other can build up a lot of unspoken resentment. people’s perspectives, needs, and feelings. AsTherefore, while passive behavior in the sertiveness involves keeping lines of commuhome can provide short-term peace, in truth nication open, and optimistically believing it is unhealthy, and the long-term result is that solutions can be found that accommousually painful. date everyone concerned. The problem for passive people is that Finally, let’s talk about the passive-aggreswhen they finally make a stand and seek to sive quadrant. Frankly, I feel sorry for this have their needs addressed, there’s so much group, because they won’t openly state what frustration bottled up that they jump straight they want, nor will they truly consider other to being aggressive and stop seeking to learn Daniel Bobinski is the Director of people’s points of view. As such, they struggle Teaching at Family Experience ministry the needs of others. They’ve sacrificed and with seeing the bigger picture and often see have been selfless for so long, that when they (familyexperience.net), the author themselves as blameless victims. They want of several books, and the owner of do make a stand for themselves, they leave their needs met, but because they won’t state Workplace-Excellence.com, an international what they need and they don’t care what the needs of others behind. training firm based in the Treasure Valley. others need, they develop a passive form of Hopefully the diagram shows how to do aggressiveness that has plausible deniability. things better, because assertiveness is the This is an unhealthy position and is not good for relationships. healthiest place to be. That said, becoming assertive almost Passive-aggressive people often require a lot of personal healalways requires a conscious choice plus a fair amount of pracing before transitioning to assertiveness, because their method tice (because assertiveness rarely occurs naturally). Aggressive of survival is based on their ability to deflect and distort reality. people must learn empathy, and passive people must develop To conclude, I believe that part of showing love to our courage to speak up and balance it with their existing empathy. neighbors is when we honor the people in our lives by patiently Essentially, assertiveness is built on a win-win mindset that finding out what they want, politely stating what we want, and says, “I want to win, but I’m not going to walk over you to working so everyone gets a win. By doing this on a regular bado it — I’m going to seek out and respect what you want and sis, we become assertive, and we have much healthier relationwork to help you get a win, too.” ships, even when the choices before us are hard. n
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Christian Living | July / August 2015 25
YOUR Daily Bread
Myths that impact your personal finances purchases should be planned well in advance By Terry Frisk and price should not be the only considerAs Christians, we are taught to be good ation. Shifting from a “buy now, pay later” stewards of our finances. However, we often to a “save for major purchase” philosophy receive advice regarding the use of our typically results in better buying decisions by hard-earned money. Sometimes, following focusing on the best value for your money. that advice can negatively impact our finanConsumers often pay more for items they buy cial security. From the many financial myths on credit because they pay more attention to that abound, I have selected the following the monthly payment rather than the price five popular myths that can affect our finantag. cial well-being: 5. You get what you pay for. A higher 1. Buy the most expensive house price does not always equal higher that you qualify for. Just because you quality. Generic or store brand products qualify for a certain loan amount doesn’t are often equivalent to name brand products. mean you can afford it. Lenders used to Quite often, generic or store branded prodexamine a borrower’s income and current ucts are produced by the name brand manudebt load and extend credit based on estabfacturer and just packaged with a different lished parameters. As a result of increased label. Also, the higher priced item may have competition among lenders, rules have been additional features that may make it more greatly relaxed or eliminated to attract more Terry Frisk is a partner in the firm B2B CFO, providing financial advisory services to attractive, but do not add to the basic function borrowers. small businesses. He also counsels individuof the product. I once counseled a young family whose on personal financial matters through the I recently saw an ice chest on sale that conbank approved a mortgage with a payment als Cathedral of the Rockies Budget Counseling tained internal lighting to illuminate the inside that was 50 percent of their gross income. ministry. He may be contacted through e-mail of the cooler. This feature added a significant This was in addition to an auto loan payat firstname.lastname@example.org. amount to the price tag of the cooler, but it ment that was 10 percent of their income. did not change the basic function of keeping This left little money for household essenthe contents cool. tials and none for savings. When shopping for a house, defiJust because a belief is common and widespread doesn’t necesnitely pre-qualify for a mortgage and limit the amount so that the resulting payment is no more than 25 percent of your gross sarily mean that it is true. In today’s consumer-based economy, practicing good stewardship with our finances can be challenging. income. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on 2. Your credit card balance doesn’t really matter your own understanding; in all your ways submit to as long as you can make the minimum payment. The minimum payment for most credit card companies is 1 percent him,and he will make your paths straight. of the principal balance plus interest. At this rate, it would take — Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV) Through prayerful consideration of these and other 17 years to pay off the balance assuming there are no addimyths that threaten your personal finances, you tional charges made to the card. Since the average interest can overcome the financial challenges that affect rate on a credit card is currently around 15 percent, this your life and become results in a huge amount of interest charges. In addition, better stewards of merely paying only the minimum payment will reduce your finances. n your credit score, resulting in higher borrowing costs, insurance, and any other costs that are based on your credit score. 3. Do what you love and the money will follow. Very few people can actually turn an activity they love into a career. When I graduated high school, I wanted to pursue a career as a jazz trombonist. I quickly learned that the opportunities for jazz trombonists were slim and the competition was immense. I also had an interest in math and was good with numbers. I obtained an accounting degree and became a CPA. As a result, I have enjoyed a rewarding career in accounting and finance. I would change this advice to “Do what interests you that provides your desired standard of living.” 4. Buy now before the price increases. I usually hear this in two contexts: justification for buying on credit and as an excuse for not building personal savings. Major
26 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
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‘UP & Strumming’
Hand pain hampered love of guitar
Janet Lund fell in love with the guitar when she was 8 years old, but by age 30, she experienced such severe pain in her hands, she was not able to play. She has since lost all the pain in her hands, now writes songs and performs them, and once again experiences the complete joy the guitar has always given her. (Photo provided by Janet Lund)
By Janet Lund I was first introduced to the guitar at 8 years old. It was love at first sight! Within a few months I emptied my little savings account and brought home a tall, dark and handsome guitar. I named him Fred, and so began a long and beautiful relationship. Fred, ever faithful, went along with me to Girl Scouts, camp outs, church events and even school a few times. For more than two decades, I continued my love affair with Fred and his stringed friends. Until one day, after performing, my hands started to ache. As the day went by, the pain increased.
her. Of course, playing the guitar had become a cruel joke. Giving it up was like ripping out part of my soul. Finally, I had to end my working career as a youth minister. My mother-inlaw came over every day to do my laundry and the dishes. This allowed me to keep the pain level just low enough to struggle through preparing meals. Still, I cried a lot from the pain and the ever-near depression that came with it. Sometimes when I couldn’t hide my tears, my daughter would come over and gently kiss my hands, hoping they would feel better. At its worst, I prayed to God for death.
Good loving gone bad
In the midst of all this misery God surprised me with an unexpected solace. Though I couldn’t play songs, I learned I could write them. Collaborating with a friend, we started writing together; he would accompany the two of us on the guitar. Joy stole back in. We recorded a CD together. Many of our songs were published. Churches all over the Northwest use our songs for worship. Encouraged, I started writing songs on my own. And, after five years since the onset of chronic pain, plus a move to a new town, my husband observed that I had adjusted to not having help with house chores. He suggested I try picking up
This was the beginning of a long, difficult journey of perpetual doctor appointments, tests, physical therapy appointments, repeated conversations about the pain, lots of questions…and no answers. On really difficult days, the pain traveled up my fingers, right through my wrists and past the elbows. On the worst days, I would lose complete control of my hands. Once, while trying to prepare dinner, the sharp knife I used just fell out of my hands, lancing into the floor. Life unraveled. At age 30, I couldn’t pick up my precious toddler without excruciating pain. I couldn’t even play Legos with
28 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
Greater love, unexpected
my guitar. I nearly growled at him, not prepared to be disappointed. I was deeply afraid I still couldn’t play. He gently persisted. Trembling, I picked up the guitar. With trepidation, I played for a few minutes and then waited. I was certain that if I played too much it would take weeks to recover. But the pain never came. So I played a little more. And waited again. No waves of pain. No massive setbacks. Of course, all of my delicate hand muscles were out of shape. But there wasn’t debilitating pain.
A new door, a new love
I intentionally played just 10 minutes every few days to see how it would go. Then came longer periods of time. Finally, I played some of my own songs…those that I had written but never played before. I couldn’t believe it. It was really happening! I could play again. A new chapter was being woven, to both my dismay and my delight. In response, I have recorded two CDs — “Strings Attached” and “Up & Strumming” — celebrating the fact that I can play again (they are available on iTunes). And I am preparing to record my third full-length album, “BlueStrings.”
Embracing a new normal
Yes, I still struggle with chronic pain. There are still many things I can no longer do, but instead of focusing on what I can’t do, I focus on the most important thing that I can do. As long as I take care of myself, pain no longer hinders my ability to play. After all that I have been through, what matters the most to me is that I’ve got my “strings attached” and I am “up and strumming” again.
It’s about the journey
You may find this hitting close to home. Maybe you are suffering in your own darkness, struggling with a chronic something. Maybe your circumstances are permanent, but maybe they aren’t. Either way, how you respond to the situation makes all the difference. Figure out your boundaries and then create your new reality within them. Decorate your new normal with hope, new experiences, and joy. Paint it with the positives! How? Look for the “can dos.” Under your present circumstances, what things can you do? How can you still impact your world? As long as you are here on earth, God has work for you to do. He can always use you. Even while in prison and dealing with his own afflictions, the Apostle Paul continued his work for God — passionately! Open your eyes and observe. Open your ears and listen. Reflect on what you can do. Match up the things that you can do, things that make you happy, with the needs of others. Be creative. You can still experience joy and make a difference in this world. n Janet Lund is a musical mom and wife, and the co-founder of Prepare For Rain LLC. She is a singer/songwriter and an inspirational speaker and coach focused on women, especially women in youth ministry. She and her husband are both retired youth ministers, with 15 years of full-time experience combined. She loves teaching guitar, with an emphasis on performance. She has performed in the U.S., Canada and Norway. She lives in Boise with her husband Joel, their daughter Jessica, three charming cats, and one very loving dog. You can contact her at PrepareForRain.com, and you can follow her — and preview her music — on Facebook/Janet Lund Music.
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Christian Living | July / August 2015 29
Going behind enemy lines in your head But it’s easy to forget that the person responsible for paying you may not have enough cash to cover payroll. You don’t really think about it. I certainly didn’t wonder about it. I was more focused on what I was going to spend my paycheck on. Or whether there would be enough to go around. But I knew money was coming. There was a predictable pattern. Show up and work x-hours per day/week/month and collect x-dollars for my time. Consider this: another study reveals that more than 543,000 businesses close their doors every month. Having a predictable paycheck is very attractive, but a sustainable paycheck isn’t guaranteed.
Potential is alluring
Small business owners choose potential over predictable. They prefer to be paid for their knowledge rather than their time, enough so that they go solo. Their knowledge might be delivered in a service, a product, or both, but they find greater meaning and purpose in this way than being paid for just their time. Even people who accept the more common exchange of getting paid for their time often wish to be their own boss. Be in control. Do things differently. It is a bedrock principle of the American Dream: Go out on your own. Gain the freedom and independence you don’t have working for someone else. Be your own boss. The inside of a piece of candy in a chocolate box is a mystery until you break into it. The same is true of life and launching a new business: you never know what you’re going to get (to borrow a quote from Forrest Gump).
By Joel Lund
Ready. Fire. Aim.
One of the legacies of the Great Recession is the massive increase in people working on their own. Whether they chose this path willingly — out of frustration with their work environment (like me) — or had it served to them in a pink slip, the number of solopreneurs jumped during this difficult economic period. According to one study, 543,000 new businesses were created each month throughout 2011. Officially, the recession ended in 2009, but more people were creating new businesses two years later. Presumably this reflects the high unemployment rate during that period. Still, that’s more then 6.5 million new businesses launched in 2011. And we’re still creating them at this pace.
Predictability feels good
Running a business by yourself is a typically a daily challenge to your faith. It’s hard work. And often enough, it is new work. Many new businesses are born out of an interest or hobby. And like all newborns, they don’t pop out mature, self-sufficient and productive. Most take a lot of time, energy and focus to grow up into a sustainable company. Uncertainty claws at the owner’s door every day. On the other hand, as an employee of any size company, you agree to exchange your time and effort for an agreed rate of compensation. You expect to get paid for what you do wherever it is you work, right? Whether you’re paid minimum wage or a princely salary, you know that according to the agreement, you will get paid for your work.
30 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
No safety net
Solopreneurs, by and large, have no pattern at all to their income. They might work for days, weeks or months without seeing much — or any — income. Now that’s pressure! They still have normal bills to pay. And life always tosses something unexpected into the mix: “You need a root canal!” Or the car breaks down. Or worse. Savings are depleted. Faith in the future is stressed. Relationships are strained. Doubt creeps in…and overstays its welcome. This is a common situation in a solopreneur’s life, as well as a small business owner’s. But this is true for many non-entrepreneurs, too. Will this job last? Is my position being commoditized? Will my skill sets still be needed down the road? Is my degree still relevant? Is the company I work for healthy?
Behind enemy lines
Of the patterns we’ve looked at, the most troublesome pattern isn’t how we choose to be paid. Working at a J.O.B. or laboring in starting up your own company both bring challenges. Any work option has compelling reasons and corresponding pitfalls. Working for “The Man” brings predictability but often a slowgrowing rise in income. Going solo brings excitement and the potential for more money but offers no certainty and considerable risk. Regardless of how you earn a living, one experience is universal. When you spend too much time in your head, you are behind enemy lines. Many people are miserable in their work. They long to lean into their dream of making a difference, bringing a new service into the world, writing the next great American novel, whatever. They have a passion that is being unmet. They go to their job because of the predictability of the paycheck. But they hate their situation.
Then there are the solopreneurs. After the initial thrill wears off, many grow miserable trying to build something from scratch, often with little training or assistance. They slog away, hoping that…one day…their business will take off. They’ll be validated. All the pressure will have been worth it. But secretly they miss having a regular paycheck. It is imperative that, regardless of your work situation, you partner up with other people to add perspective to your view of things. When we stay in our heads — thinking, vexing, spinning, sleeplessly churning and rehashing — we are not making progress. All we’re doing is burning up time and energy. Think it’s time to bust out on your own? Great! Go talk to someone at the SBA (Small Business Administration) first. Develop a plan. Create a budget. Count the cost. Line up resources that will help guide you. Don’t rely on only your intuition. Especially don’t accept the wisdom of cousin Larry, who fancies himself knowledgeable about everything. Friends and family will think you’re nuts. Already on your own? Up to your neck in the complexities of building a company from scratch? Good on you! Again, make sure you are talking to someone else and not just listening to your voice. Don’t impulse your way along to the success you dream for. Get outside perspectives. Hire a business coach suited to your business model.
Stand by me
Forrest Gump was right. Life is like a box of chocolates. We really don’t know what we’re going to get. It’s full of surprises. Most of the time they’re great and wonderful. But not every time. Whether you choose the path more trodden, preferring a predictable paycheck, or you break out on your own, diving into building a business, know this: when you are making decisions on your own, taking counsel from only yourself, you are behind enemy lines. Most of us are not patient, kind, fair or accurate in our assessments of our value, worth or skills. And this is on a good day! Add a dash of uncertainty and a big splash of pressure, and we’re doomed. Liberate yourself. Talk to someone who can help you. Get out of your head. You need perspective. Sooner is better. n
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Joel Lund is an executive coach, specializing in helping people powerfully use their entrepreneurial DNA to make an impact on those they lead in private, public and church sectors. He is an award-winning author in non-fiction and fiction (under his pen-name Brandon King). Starting in his teens, Lund has been an engaging speaker, and has presented all over North America. In a former life, he earned two degrees in Christian studies and served full-time for 8 years in youth ministry. Want to know more? Visit PrepareForRain.com.
Christian Living | July / August 2015 31
Revealing His perfect image through us By Dan Woodworth mitted themselves to the teaching The spiritual atmosphere in America of the apostles, the life together, the is “gray.” In the Book of Acts it was common meal, and the prayers. “black” and “white.” The Jewish reliEveryone around was in awe gion was lacking authority and power. — all those wonders and signs done It was “black” (no light). The Church through the apostles! And all the bewas “white” (full of light.) She was pure lievers lived in a wonderful harmony, and full of resurrection power. Acts 4:33 holding everything in common. They in the Greek reveals: And with great sold whatever they owned and pooled power the apostles gave witness to their resources so that each person’s the resurrection of the Lord Jesus and need was met. They followed a daily great grace was upon them all. discipline of worship in the Temple Every time the Holy Spirit, through followed by meals at home, every the disciples, did a miracle, the religious meal a celebration, exuberant and community of the Jews would rise up joyful, as they praised God. People in and arrest them or beat them or threaten general liked what they saw. Every them never to speak in the name of Jesus day their number grew as God added Dan Woodworth again (see Acts 4:1-4 and 5:17-19). They those who were saved. were “black” with no light and the “light” We in America have a difficult time of the Holy Spirit threatened them. relating to those disciples. We may attend a church meeting Today our churches “blend in” with our secular comonce a week. They met daily to worship in the temple and munity. We do not experience the “light” and “darkness” in their homes. They were excited and joyful! We have “proconflict that Jewish religious leaders had against the disgrams” and “events.” They had many, many raw, radical ciples. We have “swallowed” the penalty and power of sin miracles that confirmed the work of the Spirit. They sold and shame. No light. everything and pooled their money so that every person’s Some think that the early church had “special grace.” Let need was met. We give our money to keep our “programs” me suggest that we look at Hebrews 13:8: Jesus Christ, operating. They were filled with joy. Most believers today the same yesterday, today and forever. Who He was in are depressed. They counted souls. We count heads. We the Gospels and the Book of Acts about 2,000 years ago is try and get people into our church meetings and hope for who He is today. increased numbers with innovative teaching. Back then our The churches in underdeveloped countries in South Captivating Christ saved and added people every day. America and Africa are experiencing miracles just like the Today many of us in America concentrate on our weakdisciples did in the Book of Acts. Most of the people have ness and brokenness because of our shame. Instead of lookno doctors or counselors or many of the modern conveing at how weak we are, let’s look to Him, the Originator niences that we have in America. They must depend upon and Finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:2 in Greek). the Lord directly to provide for them and to protect them. There is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. They understand the drastic difference between spiritual The law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus has set us darkness (evil spirits) and spiritual light (the Holy Spirit). free from the law of sin and death! (Romans 8:1-2 in They experience many things that the disciples did in the Greek). Let Him heal our shame with His grace! Book of Acts. The Church in the Book of Acts did not focus on themWe in our culture here in the United States have a ratioselves. They focused on the grace of our Resurrected Lord. nal, logical, analytical, cognitive and natural mindset. It They were filled to overflowing with His Spirit. does not make sense for us to go to the end of a pier, cast a Notice Peter in Acts 9:32-35 in The Message: hook into the water without any bait, catch a fish, open its Peter went off on a mission to visit all the churches. mouth and find a gold coin inside it to pay taxes (see MatIn the course of his travels he arrived in Lydda and thew 17:27). met with the believers there. He came across a man The disciples in the Book of Acts had a “spiritual” mind— his name was Aeneas — who had been in bed eight set. They depended on the Holy Spirit for their very life. years paralyzed. Peter said, “Aeneas, Jesus Christ Most of their experiences were not logical. They were in a heals you. Get up and make your bed!” And he did hot, fiery battle with the religious spirits operating through it — jumped right out of bed. Everybody who lived the Jewish leaders. They were persecuted and constantly in Lydda and Sharon saw him walking around and being harassed every time a miracle healing happened. woke up to the fact that God was alive and active They were empowered “in the Spirit” to live from day to among them. day. In the Greek we see that everyone who lived in Lydda and Let’s look at Acts 2:41-47 in The Message: Sharon turned to the Lord. What would happen in AmeriThat day about three thousand took him at his ca if we walked in the purity and authority of the Spirit like word, were baptized and were signed up. They comPeter did?
32 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
Some may argue that Peter was an apostle and we can’t do that today. Let’s look at who Philip was (a deacon, not an apostle) in Acts 8:5-8 in The Message: Going down to a Samaritan city, Philip proclaimed the Message of the Messiah. When the people heard what he had to say and saw the miracles, the clear signs of God’s action, they hung on his every word. Many who could neither stand nor walk were healed that day. The evil spirits protested loudly as they were sent on their way. And what joy in the city! Many times we pray “if it be Your will.” Peter and Philip knew the will of our Astonishing Abba. They knew that He desires to heal. Peter and Philip did not say, “I am weak. I hope this works. We tried this before and it didn’t work.” No! Both of them knew who they were and what they were called to do. We glorify God when we are filled with the Spirit like Peter and Philip were. I will share a real experience I had to illustrate this point. In the town of the last church that we planted I was the pastor of our church and a volunteer chaplain in a local hospital. One day as I was praying and walking down the aisle visiting patients in the hospital, I was asking and thanking the Lord to lead me to the patients He wanted me to see. I walked into a room and an 85-year-old patient told me she slipped and fell and shattered her left pelvis. I touched her and spoke to her like Peter did to Aeneas. About three days later she called me and asked me if I had walked through the wall into her room. I told her that I walked through the door. She told me that she saw a bright white light in the hallway and it came into her room and I appeared at the foot of her bed. After I spoke to her and left, she said they took her to have a CAT scan. (She was told to remain still for two weeks and she wondered why her doctor wanted to have her take a sudden CAT scan.) Her shattered pelvis was perfectly whole. Our Living Lord healed her. The doctors were amazed. They released her to go home that day. She asked me if her daughter and she could come to our church meeting. I said, “Of course. You are welcome to come.” They were saved and became faithful members. That type of experience happened many times in our church and in the hospital. I am just a normal guy. Our Loving Lord is no respecter of people (Acts 10:34). He will reveal His love and power through anyone who allows Him to do it. The Apostle Paul commands us in Ephesians 6:10 in the Greek: Be empowered in the Lord and the strength of His might. Our Living Lord is glorified in His strength in us. Let’s look to Him. In the Book of Acts the disciples prayed and prayed and prayed. They were praying all the time! If we call a prayer meeting today in our churches, very few people show up. We need to learn to love to pray like they did. I do not have all of the answers, but our Living Loving Lord does. He knows how to purify His church and bring salvation to Boise and beyond. He has a perfect plan for our community and our country. We do not need to “project” the image of trying to “look good.” Let Him reveal His pure perfect image in and through us. He desires for His Beautiful, Beloved Bride in America today to be pure and powerful in the Spirit. Why don’t we pray and ask and thank Him for doing what He did in the Book of Acts For Us, In Us and Through Us (His FIT Plan)? Our community is wounded. Let’s be His Healing Hands Transforming our Wounded World. n Dr. Dan Woodworth was highly honored to earn the Doctor of Ministry (DMin) degree from the King’s University in Los Angeles in 2009. His passion is to encourage and empower people with the transforming power of hope and healing to become all they are created to be. He and his beautiful bride, Irene, have planted three churches. They are in the process of creating a cross/cultural, cross/generational healing community solving pressing problems in Boise and beyond. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Christian Living | July / August 2015 33
WORSHIPING through pain
Suffering isn’t a punishment from God By Drew Brown Today I’d like to talk a little about something that we all seem to want to avoid. It’s like the plague of the church these days. Pain. More specifically, worshiping through pain. So often we get misled or misunderstand our situations, and many of us feel like if we’re struggling it’s because we’ve gone against God. So let’s hit this right up front — we’ve all gone against God... it’s called sinning. To sin is to miss the mark. More specifically, missing the mark of God’s perfection. And let’s face it, being human is being imperfect. That’s why God sent His only begotten (meaning from Himself) Son to suffice for our sins. (See John 3:16-17 — and read John 3:17 twice, it’s just as important as 3:16.) Your pain, struggles, and suffering aren’t punishment for your sins. Albeit, they might be natural consequences for your actions; but God isn’t singling you out and punishing you for your past. If we can recognize that this pain isn’t a punishment from God, then we can look at things from a different perspective. We can ask ourselves, “Is this simply a natural reaction to what I did? Is this a form of spiritual warfare? Or is God refining me and preparing me for something I can’t even imagine in the future?” Obviously these questions won’t work for every situation, but they do cover the majority. And for the times where these questions don’t really work, God’s typically prepared you for that too. My wife has stage IV breast cancer. One that’s so aggressive that they call it one of the four horsemen cancers, because there’s nothing you or the doctors can do to stop it. You can slow it down for a little while, but just for a little while. All you can do is simply buy some time. Let me tell you, this isn’t a punishment for a former sin. So what is it? This article isn’t long enough to go deeply into that. But suffice to say that both Shannon and I are in this for God’s glory and willing to go with His plan.
Shannon and Drew Brown, with their children Josh and Gabbie.
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Has Shannon fallen from faith? No. Have I? No. Has it been a major struggle? In some ways it has, but at the root level — believing that Jesus is Savior and following Him — we’ve never truly struggled there. My goal in sharing that wasn’t to get a bunch of emails or phone calls; however, I’d be happy to talk if you need to. The goal was to let you know that I understand suffering and staying with Christ through the struggle. Trust me, I’ve been a full-time caretaker for Shannon and a stay-at-home dad for our two little kids for over a year through this. So how do we stay with Christ through the pain? Well for us it goes back to John 3:17: “For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” Worship isn’t just the songs we sing at church; those are truly more praise. Worship is your life, it’s how you live for God. It’s not the talk so much as it is the walk of Christianity. And we’re here to basically do three things: bring glory to God, edify the body, and share the good news that is the Gospel. The best advice I can give in worshiping through pain is simple to say, but can be difficult to do. Be in the Word and pray continually. Too often we seem to ask God for an answer or for His thoughts on a topic when He’s already given the answers. A lot of times I’ll pray and have a scripture come to mind that really fits. Be in God’s word, the Bible. Read whatever translation you can and will read (trust me, in all the translations Jesus was born from a virgin, lived a sinless life, died on the cross, arose from the dead on the third day, fulfilled all the prophecies regarding the Messiah, ascended into Heaven, and is currently waiting at the right hand of God until the time of His triumphant return). Pray a lot. Talk with God. Yes, He’s given us the Bible, but I don’t believe He’s silent today. And I’m sure that He wants to hear from you, even if it’s telling Him how angry you are for allowing whatever situation to happen. Don’t believe me? Read Job. One last thought... I don’t believe that God makes the bad and terrible things happen (although some might argue), but I do believe that God uses the worst events to shape us (and others) into something even better. Sometimes we need to be broken before we can be fixed. May God bless you. Shalom. n
Christian Living | July / August 2015 35
Unlocking the mystery of the human heart “Psychology today is a lot more interesting By Bene’ Paul than when I first studied it. There is considIt was only natural that Gary Meuser erably more physiology and biology, with would become a pastor and a teacher. more emphasis on the brain,” he said. While After all, his father was a pastor and at CWI, he developed a class on death and his mother was a teacher. But a writer? dying and said it gave him a lot of opporThat would come later in life. tunity to insert Christian principles into the Gary is a native of the Northwest, curriculum because “everyone wants to know having been born in Wendell, Idaho, what happens to you when you die.” and schooled in Boise, Idaho and Crow He was always looking for more informaand Mill City, Oregon (small logging tion to add to the classes he taught. When towns in the Willamette Valley). He is a an auto accident left him with a broken graduate of Northwest Christian Colsternum, and bleeding behind his heart, he lege in Eugene. decided to do more research on the physiolHaving been influenced by a highogy of the heart. He learned from scientific energy guidance counselor as a young studies that just like the brain, the heart has person, his goal upon entering college neurons — highly specialized cells responwas to become a guidance counselor. He got his bachelor’s degree in ChrisGary Meuser has a degree in clinical psychol- sible for communicating information in ogy. He has been a teacher and pastor, as well both chemical and electrical forms. He also tian education, got married, then started his master’s in psychology at the as an author. His book is a Bible-based look learned that the heart is fully functioning at the human heart. (Courtesy photo) before the brain is developed. He became University of Oregon. He completed aware that science had discovered that “the his master’s degree in clinical psycholheart thinks.” ogy, graduating with honors from Pepperdine College in A few years later, Gary was admitted to the hospital with a Southern California. perforated lower intestine. Toxins filled his body, and upon His teaching and pastoring career took him many places his recovery he continued his research on the human heart from Oregon to California and Hawaii. The Hawaiian to more completely comprehend what the Bible taught. teaching job was with Youth with a Mission (YWAM) in “As interesting as psychology is, it doesn’t hold a candle Kona. Along the way he and his wife Carolyn had five to the Word of God,” said Gary. “The Bible teaches that children and moved back to Idaho. They started the first the power to live the Christian life flows from our heart.” take-and-bake pizza company in Boise, which gave their He dug deeper and deeper to see what the Bible had to say children an opportunity to develop a good work ethic. The business also helped their children earn money for outreach about the human heart. He noticed that the word “heart” is used nearly 10 times trips and for college. more in the Bible than the term “mind.” As he studied Recently, Gary taught psychology at the College of Westthose Scriptures, he found that the heart thinks, plans, ern Idaho (CWI) in Nampa.
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understands, memorizes, speaks, contemplates, and teaches. As he read and listened to the Bible on his tablet, he was flooded with nearly 1,000 Scripture references on the heart. Proverbs 4 became a very important chapter for him. When he read the following words, he knew God was showing him the importance of the heart: “Let your heart retain my words. Keep my commands, and live. Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth.” — Proverbs 4:4 “My son, give attention to my words; Incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your eyes; Keep them in the midst of your heart; for they are life to those who find them, and health to all their flesh. Guard your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.” — Proverbs 4:20-23 Prior to this, Gary developed a class for his church on living strong in the second half of your life. He called this class “Second Wind.” As he developed the class, he became aware that he had a message he wanted to share about the importance of serving God right up until the very end. He noted that there are several examples in the Bible of people who did that. Moses was 80 when he began to lead the Hebrews out of Egypt, and his vigor was strong until his death at 120. Joshua was 85 when the Israelites entered the Promised Land, and the Bible tells us he was just as strong as he was at 40. History tells us that the apostle John was pioneering churches in his 90s, after he left the Isle of Patmos.
Gary wanted to preach and teach this message about the heart, but his health would not allow it. To think that he would pass on without completing what God wanted him to do was an excruciating thought for him. In prayer, Gary felt that God was prompting him to write a book about the heart. “This book, ‘A Smarter Heart: Unlocking the Mystery of the Human Heart,’ contains a message designed to equip Christians for Christ’s return,” Gary said. “The Holy Spirit speaks to the heart, and God does His greatest work out of the human heart. We get saved by a function of the Spirit (in the heart), then try to live it out solely by our minds. People get tired trying to battle the enemy in their own strength. God enables us to use the power of the Spirit of Christ in our hearts to live the victorious Christian life.” n “A Smarter Heart” is newly published by Endurance Press. It will be widely available in book stores and on Amazon.com. For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Bene’ Paul has written and edited newsletters for Christian singles in the Sacramento, Calif. area. Currently, she is a business marketing coach in the Boise region.
CYM NO BUMMER SUMMER Calendar of Events
7/1 • Sandlot Over The Line BBQ & Movie 6 - 9:30
Meet at church at 6 pm, then will end up at Max’s house.
7/15 • Tacos & Pool Party 6 - 8 pm At the Bolt’s House
7/19 — 7/25 • San Francisco Mission Trip 7/29 • Giant Slip & Slider + Water Games 6 - 8 pm At the Church
8/5 • Float the River 6 - 8pm
Meet @ Barber Park - 6 pm Pick Up @ Ann Morrison Park 8 pm
*Must have a current Cloverdale Permission Slip/has to be on file
8/12 • Jump Time 6 - 8 pm Meet there @ 6 pm.
*You have to have a Jump time permission slip which can be found on Jump Time’s Website as well as a current Cloverdale Permission Slip/has to be on file.
8/19 • End of Summer BBQ & Hang Out 6 - 8 pm At the Buchanan’s House
3755 S. Cloverdale • Boise 208-362-1700 Ask for Pastor Max For details & permission slips go to
*Times may change. Check Facebook & Instagram
Christian Living | July / August 2015 37
Trash the toxicity in your body and mind By Rosie Main Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. — 1 Peter 5:8 Each day we are bombarded with toxicity that interferes with our ability to function and be used greatly for God. These toxins may dwell in our: 1. Thoughts, our actions, and what we choose to do. 2. Our food or environment or what we choose to allow into our bodies or be surrounded by. We are created to be healthy and be saints, but we see more people sick, suffering and dying prematurely because they are “lifestyling” themselves to death. John 10:10 says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” Yet we see more people not fulfilling that abundant life due to how they live their life, because we are so toxic. I challenge you to trash the toxins and for the next 30 days crush all the things that are creating toxicity within you so that you can be used fully by God for the long haul.
Trash your toxic thoughts and actions
We live with an attitude of “What’s in it for me? What is the least I can do? If it feels good, let’s do it.” God created us to have a purpose and live our lives to our potential, yet we choose to live minimally; our actions destroy our potential. So we must start changing our habits and how we think. What do you think about? Is it something that is propelling you to be the saint you are called to be, or is it producing toxicity? What or who are you listening to? Is it something that is positive and uplifting, or is it bringing you to a lower level and creating toxic thoughts? Turn off your TV for the next 30 days and only read and listen to uplifting material. I challenge you to step away from people who are trying to bring you down. I don’t mean you ignore them, but choose to put on the armor of God and don’t allow the fiery darts to harm your decision to detox your life.
Trash the toxins in your body
I challenge you to get rid of anything that is toxic in your food or products. We are seeing so many people who are on so many medications because of toxicity. Hormones are so imbalanced, creating cancers and issues in our families. God does not make junk! Stop putting junk in you!
38 July / August 2015 | Christian Living
Start by removing everything in your kitchen cabinet that is not made by God. If you can’t read it, don’t eat it. Get a trash bag and dump the toxic foods filled with chemicals that are killing your family and destroying your health. For the next 30 days, I challenge you to eat only “God food” and get rid of “man food.” The over-reliance on highly processed, chemically laden, industry-based goods and products seems to be the major culprit. Xenoestrogens are artificially made compounds produced by industry. These differ chemically from archiestrogens (naturally occurring) produced by living organisms. Xenoestrogens mimic the effects of true estrogen and interact with cellular receptor sites. This process contributes to estrogen excess and blocks the effects of true estrogen. To make matters worse, these endocrine disruptors lodge in fat cells where they are resistant to breakdown. Many of these chemicals will act in a synergistic effect when combined with other endocrine disrupters. This synergistic process exponentially enhances their effects within the body, causing major problems at the cellular level. I challenge you to take a garbage bag and trash the toxic products below and replace them with good, non-toxic things: • Commercially raised animal products • Plastics and canned goods (many have plastic lining) • Personal care products (makeup, lotion and perfumes) • Oral contraceptives • Drugs (consult with your medical doctor) • Food additives and preservatives • Styrofoam products • Laundry and dishwashing detergents • Household cleaners and air fresheners • Pesticides and herbicides Take back control of your health by following these recommendations: Minimize the usage of endocrine disruptors as much as possible. Get off all oral contraceptives, hormone creams, and hormone-based prescription medications, etc. Consult your doctor about this as weaning stages may be necessary. Stabilize your blood sugar. Unstable blood sugar causes enhanced fat storage, decreased cellular detoxification and hormone signaling. The healing diet is critical for quick effective blood sugar stabilization. To learn more, call me at (208) 859-6170 or go to my YouTube channel at https://www. youtube.com/user/MainHealthSolutions to learn more. Do a quarterly detox cleanse. Begin by cleansing the liver and gallbladder so they can effectively transport excess estrogen out of the system. Enhance your estrogen metabolism with key nutrients and herbs. Finally, support the pituitary gland with adequate rest, movement, and nutritional components. Email me at email@example.com to get protocols. Maximize your nervous system. Be sure that the brain-body pathway is clear and free of interference. This maximizes internal repair mechanisms. With a healthy nervous system, the glands and tissues are
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able to self-detoxify and eliminate poisonous chemicals. Forward head posture and loss of the natural curve in the neck dramatically affect this self-detoxification process. Burst-train for incredible fitness. High intensity exercise opens detoxification pathways (sweatRosie Main ing), enhances cellular oxygenation, stabilizes blood sugar, and promotes reparative hormones, among other things. Additionally, it allows the body to burn fat more effectively and to metabolize excess estrogen molecules. Go to Main Health Solutions on Facebook to find out about our next event. n
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Christian Living | July / August 2015 39