Signs of Growth
The following quotes are from end-of-the-semester papers that the Personal Finance students were required to write. They provide evidence that God is still at work in our midst even though there have been some hard times. This Personal Finance class has helped me see finances in a whole new light.
“What if I converted my earthly money into something with eternal value? … I was reminded that the cash in my wallet is actually God’s money. I’m just the caretaker or steward of it…” (Sarah)
“I was living like there was no tomorrow but clearly the Bible says that we as Christians need to be responsible for what God has given us. ‘Temporal sacrifices will pay off in eternity and temporal indulgences will cost us in eternity.’ This quote has set my mind on eternal decisions that I have to make.” (Rachel)
“It is scary to know that the way we handle the money God has entrusted to us reflects our relationship with Him. I feel my husband and I are learning from our unwise decisions of handling money. We are being humbled and learning to rely on our Father to provide our needs and honor Him in our spending.” (Lanora)
On a more personal note, a sciatic nerve has reminded me that I can’t count on always being healthy and that my health, ultimately, is in God’s hands rather than my own. This time of physical difficulty has also been helpful in calling attention to several areas in my life where God has more work to do. I am so thankful that God has continued His work in my life as well as in the students’!
Signs of Moving On
Graduation took place on May 11 and was the best graduation I have ever been to in my life! The students served through drama, music, testimonies, and art work. We celebrated two students receiving Bachelor of Biblical Studies degrees, six receiving Associate of Biblical Studies, nine students receiving one-year certificates, and one student who completed a Christian Ministry Certificate, a brand-new lay-ministry certificate awarded to those completing 16 credit hours of ministryrelated classes.
Signs of Creativity
I had the privilege of overseeing our first-ever Creative Ministry Methods class which utilized eight mini-courses taught by a total of nine different teachers. I taught three out of the five weeks. The students virtually exploded with creativity as they had opportunity to explore movie making (search Youtube.com under Indian Bible College, Ten Commandments and To the Ends of the Earth), drawing, story telling, song writing, creative writing, and sketchboard teaching. The music classes wrapped up with what was possibly our best-ever recital as well. Students sang, played piano, played guitar, and even led the chapel in singing. More encouragement came when we asked the students for feedback on what they liked or disliked about IBC. The most frequent response to the question about what they liked was the teachers and other staff. The students especially appreciate the relationships they share with us.
They also talked about the chance to grow in their faith and how the Spiritual Formation groups were helpful in bringing that about. Improvements that came up again and again were related to facilities, and we’re working on them as God supplies (sometimes through you!!).
An Answered Prayer!
Thank you so much for continuing to pray for an academic dean to relieve our president of having to serve in that capacity in addition to serving as president. God has answered! In July Kevin Newman will be moving with his wife and several children from Alaska where he served as Academic Dean at Alaska Christian College. Kevin has experience in the accreditation process as well and has been working with Alaskan Natives.
I am planning on staying in Flagstaff much of this summer, assisting with accreditation, finishing the catalog update, finishing the revised Staff Policy Manual, working on classes for fall and beyond, honing my music skills, and assisting with VBS at my church here. I will also be attending the National Worship Leaders’ Conference in Kansas City, possibly traveling to Columbia, South Carolina for another class, and taking some vacation time.
Thank you so much for your faithfulness on my behalf as prayer warriors and financial supporters as God directs and supplies.
- Please keep praying for God’s continued work in the lives of students and staff throughout the summer. Pray:
- That we would use our summer well to the glory of God.
- That we would stand firm in the faith, especially students involved in various ministries or living back in their home areas.
- That God would grant me wisdom for continued development as a teacher and mentor.
Martha R. Gushee