New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 29, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas
Saturday, July 29, 2000 — Herald-Zeitung — Page 7A
laking a new look at what is normal
It appears that somewhere in time, the story of Jesus became tainted with misinformation and misinterpretation. I wasn’t around when it happened so I dor’t know who’s to blame. All I kno* is that w e are now in a position to have to sell something that should sell itself. In fact, presenting the “good news” should be as easy as convincing a south Texin that air conditioning is a good thing!
Apparently, as time massed, the appeal of the “good news” (gospel) was marred Iv people who no longer lived Lke it was good. I’ve heard it sad that the reason why many people don’t want to become Chrstians is because they know too many who are! Something is terribly amiss.
Consider the semons you may have heard. The “tim or bum” theme would suggest that becoming a part of God’s family requires giving upnormalcy and become a citizen >f Neuville. In order to be heavet-bound, according to this manta, you have to give up the best if life and assume a low er sandard of satisfaction and fulfilment.
Consequently,people choose to put of!'the decision to be a follower of Jesus $ long as possible so they can coninue to live “normally.” No mater how bad “normal” may be tcthem, it can’t be as bad as Chritianity appears to them. They'll fake their chances before they deride to offer the remaining morsels of their life to Christ.
Jesus said ii John 10:10, “I have come thut they may have life, and that hey may have it more abundantly.” Could this verse really b true and if so, why aren't more Christians living abundantly? After all, the verse says to me tlat the whole motive of Jesus wasnot only to give us normal life, )ut a kind of life that is super-nomai.
Living in jesus should make us respond bkt? Tony the Tiger: It’s not just goof its GREAT! Our actions andattitudes should be attractive to outsiders, never repulsive, Jbsus himself attracted crowds like sw imming pools attract kids. While their motives were often questionable, there was no question they enjoyed his presence.
Whether you like it or not, we w ho have made Jesus our personal forgive! and leader represent Him here and now. We should be the most joyous, peaceful, loving, caring people around. People outside of Christianity should look at us w ith nterest and appreciation.
T he first church mentioned in the Bible (Acts 2:47) had this reputation in the community. We should demonstrate the most normal life of all, not the most bizarre or worse yet, boring life.
lf people want to reject the “good new s,” it should be because they don’t want to turn from self-centered living to God-centered living and not because we live a life that suggests aberrant behavior. Our lives should be direct representations of Jesus so that like him, we cause people to want w hat we have.
People have an insatiable hunger for great new s — especially from credible sources.
(Tim Judkins leads the contemporary worship service each Sunday at hirst Protestant ( hunvh.)
Bridge to the Nations Bible Institute opens Sept. 11 on W. San Antonio St.
Vacant no more, the glass-fronted building where Treetops Restaurant used to be is now' abuzz w ith life as the faculty at Bridge to the Nations Bible Institute prepare for registration and orientation on Sept. 11.
The institute has already received 22 applications, according to LaMoine Davis, business administrator at the Institute. “We eventually plan on having 200, but right now our goal for the fall is between 25 and 50,” Davis said.
Bridge to the Nations offers two programs: a one-year program designed to help students gain knowledge of God’s Word and a two-year program designed as an optional continuation of the first program, in which students are further prepared for effective ministry' in foreign fields, local churches and in the home.
To those watching, the institute may seem like a sudden project, but the vision has been in the mind and heart of the Rev. Karen Duncan, pastor of Tree of Life Church, for almost two decades. “When my husband and I moved here 19 years ago it was always a desire of our heart,” said the Rev. Duncan, founder and president of the institute. Some may have expected her to let go of the idea w hen her husband passed away four years ago. Though the loss of her husband was undoubtedly a trial, the memory of him and his vision for the Institute is not a bitter one for Duncan. “The work of God continues on,” she said. “He was a great man and laid a good foundation.”
By founding Bridge to the Nations, Duncan hopes to prepare students for the
K. JESSE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung
The former Treetops Restaurant on West San Antonio Street is now The Bridge to the Nations Bible Institute, which opens Sept. 11.
mission field, “By helping them discover their gifts that they can use to be a blessing to others, by imparting a spirit of faith in their heart.”
Larry D. Hunt, Th.D, academic dean at the institute, also recognizes a great need for such an institute in South Texas.
“After many years of ministering in various capacities at home and on the mission field, I have come to see that the great purpose of God is people.
I have learned that God’s monumental business is the salvation of souls out of the bondage of sin and death,” Dr. Hunt said.
By definition, a bridge is “a structure creating a highway bringing together different continents, cultures and people groups. A provision for contacts, connections, transitions and supplies.”
This was the definition in mind when the name,
Bridge to the Nations Bible Institute, was chosen. “We wanted to be able to connect people w ho have a desire to go to the mission field w ith people who need to know God,” Duncan said.
The institute is structured in three 12-week quarters. The morning schedule will be from 8 a.m. to noon Tuesday through Friday with chapel each day at 11 a.m. There will also be a limited night schedule. Bridge to the Nations offers Spanish I and II, the only classes in which participants need not be enrolled in the school. Tuition at the Institute is S700 per quarter or $75 per credit hour.
Anyone interested in contacting the institute may call Dr. Larry D. Hunt at (830) 625-6375 or visit the institute's web site at w w w.bridgetothenations.org, which is under construction and should be completed in the next month.
With fall registration less than two months away, Duncan is not too busy to think about next year. “We will build on the lessons that we w ill have learned this year. I want the first-year students to be able to minister with confidence. I want to see the students continually growing...we want them to be doers of w hat they'v e heard,” Duncan said.
K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung
Dr. Larry Hunt discusses the goals of the Bridge to the Nations Bible Institute with potential students Pastor Tom Ray and his wife, Cathy.
K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung
Dr. Larry Hunt will serve as academic dean of Bridge to the Nation’s Bible Institute. Fall registration begins Sept. 11. for information, call 625-6375 or visit the institute’s Web address at www.bridgetothenations.org.
Senior high youth enjoy New life gets grant white water rafting trip
Shown in the picture are the youth group leaders enjoying their white water rafting trip down the Arkansas river with the Noah's Ark guide, Charlie. Leaders attending were Jim Asher, Kit Johnson, Janet Asher, Jerald Schroeder, Celeste Salge and Debra Johnson.
Twenty-seven senior high youth and their leaders recently went on a faith-building adventure to Noah’s Ark in the mountains of Buena Vista, Colorado. The nine-day trip was not only awe inspiring but also spiritually enriching. The group spent a day w hite water rafting down the Arkansas River before embarking on their mountain trek. Each individual had a backpack which carried their clothing, food and shelter for the stay. After establishing a base camp, time was spent studying God enjoying lively discussions around the dinner tarp, playing games and just relaxing in the surroundings. The group even played a game of w hiffle ball on the mountain.
Those attending were: Darren Albrecht, Tim and Matt Aurora, Jackie Baerwald, Keith Britton, Carly and Jacob Borchers, Alison Boatright, Adam I iamel, Tara Marski, Grayson Moore, Matt and Andrew Hogue, Lisa and Joey Judkins, Matt Miller, Michelle Lindt, Haley Norris, Chad Salge, Michael Seibert, Andreas bavin, Andrea Schmidt, Matt Sultemeier, Julie Schlameus, Melissa Markgraf, Joshua Mueller and Kat Willmann.
Special to the Herald-Zeitung
CANYON LAKE, Texas - A Canyon Lake residential treatment facility for troubled girls is a lot closer to matching a large grant thanks to a $50,000 gift from Palm Valley Lutheran Church of Round Rock. New Life Children's Treatment Center, owned and operated by Lutheran Social Services of the South, Inc., treats girls 11 to 17 who suffer behavioral and emotional problems, many as a result of abuse and neglect.
“The ministry of New Life has been something our congregation has been interested in for some time,” said the Rev. Mary Kaiser, associate pastor of Palm \ alley Lutheran Church. “We are very excited about the program ”
Recently, the quilting group at the church delivered handmade quilts to each of the young residents at New Life. The congre
gation also has giv en clothing to the center.
“We are very grateful that the Palm Valley l utheran congregation has chosen to expand their support for the children's ministry at New Life with such a generous gift,” said Dr. Kurt Senske, president and CEO of LSS.
The Palm Valley grant came at an opportune time, on the heels of a matching grant from the prestigious Meadows Foundation of Dallas, said Senske. The foundation w ill match dollar for dollar — up to $ 187,180 new gifts for the expansion of New Life.
“As a result, the Palm Valley Lutheran Church's grant is worth $100,000,” said Senske. “This wonderful gift puts us well on our wav to matching funds goal of $187,180. I hope others are inspired bv the actions of Palm Valley and join in support of the New I.ife ministry”
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