EDITOR’S NOTE: BP Ledger carries items for reader information each week from various Southern Baptist-related entities, and news releases of interest from other sources. The items are published as received.
Today’s BP Ledger includes items from:
PRWeb/CrossBooks/LifeWay Christian Resources
Bethany House Publishers
WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing
University of the Cumberlands
New Book Takes Unprecedented Look at Life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Lantana, Fla. (PRWeb)–The new book by Terriel R. Byrd, “By This Shall We Be Known: Interpreting the Voice, Vision and Message of Martin Luther King Jr.” (published by CrossBooks), will come as a surprise to some and as a long-awaited analysis to others.
“The inspiration for this book came as a result of seeing how little the spiritual ethos and faith commitment is highlighted when people speak about Martin Luther King, Jr.,” says Byrd. “This is a rather amazing lapse of historical record, seeing the enormous impact the Black church, and more specifically the import of American Christianity, had on the Civil Rights movement.”
Written for use in both academic and church institutions, “By This Shall We Be Known” offers readers insights in social justice, ethics, history and moral philosophy. Following the lead of King’s reliance upon lucid and uplifting prose, Byrd has crafted a work that informs, avoids highly technical language and challenges without threatening his readers. He provides excerpts from key passages, places them in their historical context, and sketches out how their message speaks to today’s world.
Critics of King are often perplexed by his optimism and nonviolent stance in the face of injustice. Byrd tackles this criticism head on.
“The realities of human suffering and deprivation did not hamper King’s high degree of idealism,” explains Byrd. “Nor did it interfere with his ability to believe that there was a solution to the problems beyond what his eyes could see. Inspirational faith was a key motivational aspect of the way King approached and dealt with the immense problems of social justice that confronted him.”
Byrd also explores King’s broader, less discussed work. “The book informs the reader about a unique aspect of King’s life and thoughts. It embraces the evangelical side of King’s ministry. It also expands King’s work beyond American civil rights into global implications, leadership and education.”
Impeccably researched, “By This Shall We Be Known” provides a look into the spiritual life of a celebrated American hero, leaving readers with a fact that, while obvious, often goes unexamined – “King recognized the personal nature of faith as something to be experienced and lived out.”
Terriel R. Byrd has 18 years of experience as senior pastor and has served as campus minister at two universities in Ohio. He currently is professor of Urban Christian Ministry Studies at Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida and oversees its Evening Ministry program. In 2007, he received the Charles and Hazel Corts Award for Outstanding Teaching. Byrd is also the author of I Shall Not Be Moved: Racial Separation in Christian Worship.
CrossBooks, a division of LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention, is a Christian publishing imprint committed to bringing more Christian voices into the publishing industry. Established authors, first-time authors, and authors anywhere in between can meet their goals and fulfill their vision for their books by publishing with CrossBooks. CrossBooks’ innovative style of publishing blends the best of traditional and self-publishing. While our authors contribute monetarily to cover the cost of publishing, we maintain a strict moral and quality standard that every manuscript must meet for us to publish. For more information on publishing your Christian book with CrossBooks, log on to crossbooks.com or call 1-866-879-0502.
First Jeremy Lin eBook for the Faith Market
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (BP) — Bethany House Publishers, with bestselling author and sports writer Ted Kluck, has released “Jeremy Lin: Faith, Joy, and Basketball,” the first faith-based ebook on the basketball star. The sports sensation, who captured the attention of the nation, went from unknown underdog to rescuer of the woebegone New York Knicks in just a few weeks’ time.
Award-winning writer Kluck, using his unique backgrounds in sportswriting and faith writing, takes readers beyond the surface of this fascinating player, exploring everything that has made Lin one of the most unusual sports stars in years — including his alma mater, his race, and his faith — and concluding with what forces have shaped Lin into who he is today and what motivates him to keep striving toward his goals. Kluck uncovers the fascinating world of an out-of-nowhere star who continues to surprise everyone from avid sports fans to casual culture-watchers.
Ted Kluck is a freelance writer specializing in sports and faith. He has written eight books, including Dallas and the Spitfire: An Old Car, an Ex-Con, and an Unlikely Friendship, and his work has appeared in such places as ESPN the Magazine and Christianity Today. His first book won a Christianity Today Book of the Year award. Ted lives near Lansing, Michigan, with his wife and two sons.
Bethany House is a division of Baker Publishing Group.
Radical Inspires City-Wide Day of Service
Colorado Springs, Colo. (WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing)–North Greenville University college student Philip Black was looking for a conference that not only offered in-depth teaching, but that also gave attendees the opportunity to put that knowledge into action. He read “Radical” by David Platt, and after some guidance from the Holy Spirit, he decided to come up with his own event: REVEAL, a day of service for members of the Greenville, S.C. community, held on March 24.
Partnering with local churches and various ministry sites, teams fanned out across the community to put their love into action. Work projects included sorting food at a food pantry, light construction and demolition, painting, sorting items at a thrift store, and handing out food to the homeless.
“My hope was not to just send out teams to serve in the community, but to actively show God’s love through tangible acts of service,” said Black. “My hope is that the individuals built relationships with each other and the locations where they served, so that they will visit more often than once a year with REVEAL. And I also hope that Radical Together is utilized as a tool in a small group setting.”
Black estimates approximately 200 people participated in the event, and about 35 copies of Radical Together: Unleashing the People of God for the Purpose of God were handed out to leaders, with the rest of the volunteers receiving the booklet A Radical Idea. According to Black, the goal of the event was three-fold: for God to reveal his heart for service and missions through his Word, to serve the community as God is revealing his love through service, and coming back to share with one another how God was revealed through worship and service.
Bluefield College’s Kristen Garrett Puts Service Above Self in Honduras
BLUEFIELD, Va. (Bluefield College)–Service above self. It’s not just a mission statement at Bluefield College; it’s a way of life. And not just for students, but for faculty and staff, as well.
Just ask Kristen Garrett, BC’s director of community outreach. Typically in charge of organizing service ventures for students, Garrett recently completed her own service project, a mission to Honduras. Ask Garrett, too, what the defining moment of that mission trip was, and she’ll tell you a story about a boy named Wilmer.
“Wilmer doesn’t remember his mother,” Garrett explained, “and after he developed an infection in his leg and had to have it amputated, his father never came back to pick him up.”
As a result, Wilmer was placed in an orphanage, but now, through the help of Baptist Medical and Dental Missions International (BMDMI) and Garrett, who sponsors Wilmer with BMDMI, he won’t be abandoned anymore.
Garrett met Wilmer for the first time during her recent trip to Honduras. In fact, she spent a month this past summer with Baptist Medical and Dental Missions International in the Central American country known for its struggles with drug cartels, coups, disease, and human disparity. During the first week, alone, she tackled the task of organizing children’s church programs, where she shared the Gospel with Honduran youth.
“Each day we had about 250 kids,” said Garrett about her work with the children’s ministry. “We played games with them, sang songs, and did crafts. I also had the privilege of teaching the children Bible stories.”
Among the many children Garrett met that first week was a 10-year-old girl named Darling, who Garrett said taught her a lesson about God’s ability to overcome barriers.
“As soon as we met, she became my sidekick for the rest of the week,” said Garrett about Darling. “Neither one of us spoke much of each other’s language, but we were still able to communicate very well. On the last night of our revival, Darling and I were sitting together and the speaker was talking about how there are some people we may never see again until we get to heaven. We both started crying, because we knew we would probably never see each other again this side of heaven.”
Garrett, who also serves as a residence hall director and coordinator of BC’s Bonner Leaders program, said that while she only spends a short amount of time with the children in Honduras, her relationship with them lasts forever.
“It is amazing how much of a connection you can build with someone over just a few short days,” said Garrett. “Before I left, I gave Darling the earrings I was wearing, and she gave me a plastic bracelet, which I have not taken off since that day. It reminds me to pray for her and her village.”
During the remaining weeks of her mission, Garrett traveled with a BMDMI missionary throughout Honduras, oftentimes across impassable roads, to visit churches and to help manage day camps for children in the villages. Through her work, she has come to love the country and its people.
“Honduras feels like my home,” she said, “and since I’ve been there, what it means to be a Christian has become real to me.”
This mission is Garrett’s fifth to Honduras, and while the work is a blessing, she admits it is a challenge in the midst of all the turmoil and hopelessness that surrounds the natives. But, this time around she found a renewed passion, a new sense of strength to continue to serve, thanks to that defining moment with Wilmer.
“One day I was painting with the children in one of the casitas, and I looked up and saw Wilmer outside,” said Garrett with tears welling in her eyes. “He was walking and playing and just being like all the other kids. It was such an answer to prayer.”
As a result of Garrett’s sponsorship and the ministry of BMDMI, Wilmer was fitted with a prosthetic leg that allows him to walk and play like other children in Honduras. Seeing that was all Garrett needed to know that her service in Honduras is only just beginning.
“I’ll continue to give to Honduras,” she said, “as long as I can.”
Students from University of the Cumberlands minister to youth in Waynesburg, Ky.
WILLIAMSBURG, Ky. (University of the Cumberlands)–When LeAnn Wright came to University of the Cumberlands in 2009, she planned to pursue a degree in music. She enjoyed singing and knew she wanted to use her vocal talents in ministry. When she started working with Appalachian Ministries and Baptist Campus Ministries (BCM), however, she realized there was so much more.
“God showed me that He had more for me than I had in mind,” said Wright.
It was this realization that led Wright into the leadership position with BCM that she now holds. As Family Group Leader, Wright recently organized a weekend event for youth at her home church, Double Springs Baptist, in Waynesburg, Ky. When Wright and other BCM students planned the event, things came together very easily.
“God made it really clear what He wanted us to do,” she said. With this reassurance, the team began the three-day ministry weekend with worship by student-run band OH! Divide and inspirational dramas designed to speak specifically to the needs of youth.
The first night of worship and drama, Wright realized something special was happening. “I looked out at the girls, and their faces were covered in tears,” she said. Because most of the young people don’t come from Christian homes, Wright was a bit surprised and excited at the response to the ministry.
Saturday was as successful as Friday, as the young people continued to seek Christ through worship, trust-building and friendship-building activities. One activity, using mirrors for girls and rocks for boys, was designed to show the teens that they are made in the image of Christ. The girls used mirrors, passing them around a circle while one would write something positive that they could see in the owner of the mirror. At the end, they read the comments and look into the mirrors for a fresh perspective of themselves. It was a touching and bonding experience for the teens, said Wright.
“We prayed, and looked at the mirrors, and all the girls had pure joy on their faces,” Wright said with a smile, tears filling her eyes.
Wright and her UC peers were able to minister to one girl who said that everyone in her life has lost hope in her. Another said she had made a mistake and now that’s all anyone sees. One of the young men from UC bonded with a teen who admitted that he struggled with drugs, and by the end of the weekend, everyone in the group saw a significant change in the boy.
Sunday morning the UC team and the youth group joined the church for worship. Calling it the “highlight” of the weekend, Wright said that two girls and one boy stood up in front of the church members and gave their testimonies of how their lives had been changed that weekend. During the altar service, the entire youth group knelt and prayed together. Church members relayed to Wright how blessed and proud they were, seeing the sincerity in the young people.
“One deacon stood up and said, ‘if the future of the church is in the hands of young people like this, we’re in good shape,'” said Wright.
The Cumberlands students were just as blessed, thanking Wright for bringing them to her church and for the experience. “One of the guys, Tom Crawford, said ‘This weekend has taught me that I can do things that I didn’t know I could do,'” said Wright.
With tear-filled eyes and a constant smile, Wright recounted the weekend. Several times, as joy overcame her words, she would say, “It was just so awesome!”
Her call from God assured, Wright plans to continue in ministry through her time at UC and after graduation. “Everything in me comes from God and needs to be used for God,” she said.
Located in Williamsburg, Ky., University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction, which currently offers four undergraduate degrees in more than 40 major fields of study; nine pre-professional programs; seven graduate degrees, including a doctorate and six master’s degrees; certifications in education; and online programs.
Campbellsville University Class Partners with Grandview Nursing Facility
By Christina L. Kern
CAMPBELLSVILLE, KY (Campbellsville University)–A class of Campbellsville University freshmen is making a difference at the Grandview Nursing and Rehabilitation Facility, according to Dr. G. Ted Taylor, professor of Christian studies and director of Leadership/Character Development Institute at Campbellsville University.
Students are partnering with patients each week to “visit and share the love of God,” Taylor said. “This experience in their freshman year prepares School of Theology majors to be Christian servant leaders and world changers for Christ.”
Alexis Allen of Shepherdsville, Ky. said she is inspired by her partner, Flora Foster. “If I’ve learned one thing from Flora, it’s to not get busy and just let life pass me by. She talks again and again about how her life just flew by and that if she could do it all again, she would have just focused on God.
“I don’t want to get to that age and think ‘well, if I just would have given it all to God.’ She’s inspired me to give it all to Him now,” Allen said.
Many of the students connect with their partner through conversations about current events, common interests and learning about each other’s lives.
Chris Mills of Magnolia, Ky. said, “God has really shown me through Mr. [Raymond] Burress that we should just be thankful for what we have, thankful for life. He has also blessed me with education; Mr. Burress was in WWII and he loves to tell his story about being a cook in the Army.”
Leslie Harper of Clinton, Ky. said Mary Gaines has been “such a blessing to me in the short time I have known her… The fact that she still finds joy in the small things gives me motivation to face and overcome obstacles.”
The goals of the partnership between Campbellsville University and Grandview Nursing and Rehabilitation Facility are for students to experience the blessing of serving others in the name of Christ, and for students to build intergenerational relationships that will help them gain perspective on the total adult life cycle.
For more information on the partnership, contact Taylor at [email protected] or (270) 789-5029.
Christina L. Kern is an office assistant at Campbellsville University.
ASIA PRAYER REQUESTS, INTERNATIONAL MISSION BOARD
SOUTH ASIA (IMB)–Brief items reported by South Asia News (http://www.go2southasia.org) in April include:
BANGLADESH. “A land of extremes is what I feel when I start to pray for Bangladesh: beautiful rice fields and also concrete city blocks, flowing with waste . . . a peaceful village with children playing near a pond and a dark factory where young children put in 12-hour-plus days, doing hard labor . . . colorful clothes and customs in contrast to eyes reflecting the emptiness in their souls . . . a great Muslim majority with all the outward signs of devotion, from clothes and hair to verbiage and rituals, and a small church full of believers with full hearts, worshipping God. Pray for this land of 160 million people. It is crowded and loud and polluted but has great hope. God’s hope fills the hearts of the less than one percent of the population who claim to know Him. Pray that God will do a mighty work in Bangladesh. Ask that the words of Isaiah 60:18 will ring true for this country: ‘Violence will never again be heard of in your land; devastation and destruction will be gone from your borders. But you will name your walls salvation and your gates, praise.'” http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
BHUTAN. Pray for Bhutanese Christian students, asking God to equip them, empower them, and use them to make Jesus known to their generation and in their country. Pray that the Father will protect them from the evil one – and protect their testimonies for His name’s sake. Ask that they would live holy, obedient lives – completely sacrificed – totally committed to Jesus. May they shine like the stars in the heavens as they hold out the Word of Life. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
DIASPORA.There will be close to 200 students coming this summer to saturate Paris with the love of Christ. They will engage in conversation with anyone they meet and share their story. They will come away with names and phone numbers for follow-up by those who work in Paris. Pray for the students and ask God to prepare hearts to hear the message. Pray for those who will work alongside these students. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
INDIA. There are many young, single women in the Punjab of North India who are believers and come from believing families, yet they are faced with quite a dilemma. Their families and culture place an unbelievable amount of pressure on them to get married and begin a family; however, it is very difficult for such women to find young men who are believers. Therefore, many young women respond to this tremendous pressure from their culture by marrying non-believers, which seems to be the only solution. Please pray for these young, single women to remain strong in their faith and to wait for God to bring them the right kind of husbands, who will love them and lead them to know the Father more. Pray also that God will raise up godly young men in the Punjab area who will be strong in their faith and become the husbands that these young women so desperately need! [email protected]; http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
MALDIVES. Pray that Maldivians who are already disillusioned with their religion will seek the Truth through Christian CD’s and literature that have been produced in Dhivehi (their heart language). Pray that God will bless and use this ministry to change hearts and souls for Jesus. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
NEPAL. There are an estimated 2.25 million Bhuddists in Nepal. A new worker writes, “We saw people raising prayer flags, counting their prayers on bead necklaces, and turning prayer wheels…all to appease their gods and work towards their salvation. A lot of what they believe and do is out of fear of the gods. They need to hear about God’s grace for them found in Jesus Christ.” The Bible states, “perfect love casts out all fear.” Pray that the Bhuddists of Nepal would come to know the Savior who can calm their fears and give them peace that passes all human understanding. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
PAKISTAN. Please join the body of Christ around the world in praying for Pakistan and Kashmir during Holy Week. From Monday, April 2, through Sunday, April 8, there is a plea for someone to be praying every hour, 24 hours a day, for all seven days straight. Ask that God’s hand will move in a mighty way across Pakistan and Kashmir. Ask that men, women and children will be so burdened by their own sin that they will be able to see that there is no other way into heaven except by following the Straight Path of Jesus. Ask that families will come to faith and that churches will begin in homes throughout this land. Ask for chains to be broken and hearts to be set free in a way that completely changes Pakistan and Kashmir for the glory of God. Ask for harvest workers in the harvest fields, and pray for the harvest workers not to become discouraged by Satan’s tactics, but to walk daily in the joy and victory of the Lord. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
SRI LANKA. The Sinhala and Tamil New Year celebrations coincide each year in mid-April. In ancient times, the celebrations marked the end of the harvest season. With the advent of Hinduism and later Buddhism, the New Year celebrations took on a more religious flair, with the Tamils celebrating with Hindu customs and traditions and the Sinhalese celebrating with Buddhist customs and traditions. Join in asking the Lord to bring a great harvest of souls among South Indians and Sri Lankans so that New Year celebrations will celebrate new birth in Jesus Christ. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
HINDU PEOPLES OF MYANMAR. Please lift up new believers in the village of ZWD. Much has happened in this village in the past year, with many coming to accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior and many being baptized. A national partner recently reported that 15 more candidates have come forward, ready to be baptized. Please intercede for the growth of these new believers. Ask that they will be strongly discipled and that they will, in turn, entrust what they have learned to other faithful people. Pray for confidence. http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
SOUTH ASIAN HINDU FESTIVALS. [April 6] Hanuman Jayanti is celebrated by Hindus around the world as a way to commemorate the birth of Hanuman. Hanuman is the symbol of strength and energy, and is worshipped for his intense devotion to the god Rama and as a deity with magical powers and the strength to overcome evil spirits. He is said to have the ability to transform himself into anything at will, move mountains, and dart through the air. His devotees will flock to temples on this day to worship him and apply sindhur (a red colored powder) to their foreheads from Hanuman’s body. Pray that Hindus who follow Hanuman will see the unmatchable power of the Most High and will cry out like the psalmist, “O Lord God of hosts, who is mighty as you are, O Lord, with your faithfulness all aroundyou?” (Psalm 89:8, ESV). http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
SOUTH ASIAN PEOPLES.As the southern part of India undergoes changes in organization and leadership, pray that each worker will continue the work with patience and endurance. Pray that the current leaders will transition well to a stateside assignment, and that the new leaders will adjust well to the work here. Ask God to work out the many details and to provide wisdom for these leaders so that His name and renown will continue to be made known among South Asian peoples. Pray that they “may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:9-10, ESV).http://southasianpeoples.imb.org/
SOUTH ASIAN UNENGAGED PEOPLES. This month, please pray for the Moger people of Karnataka. Long ago, these people were rabbit hunters, which is how they got their name, but now they mainly serve as agricultural wage-laborers on plantations. All family members participate in working in the fields: fathers, mothers and children. Lack of education is one strike against the Mogers having the opportunity to hear about the Lord Jesus Christ. Another is their language. The Moger people speak Tulu, which further serves to isolate them because they usually do not speak the primary language of the state in which they live. Praise God that a report has come that some of these Hindu people have become followers of Christ! As the Mogers migrate between jobs at various tea and coffee plantations, pray that they will have more opportunities to see the lives of true Christians lived out and, as a result, that they will desire a true relationship with Jesus Christ with all their hearts. Pray that strategies will be developed among workers that will serve to give the Moger people an opportunity to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ. Currently none of our personnel know the Tulu language. http://prayerthreads.imb.org
Visit www.WillYouCare.org/10-days/ to download “10 Days of Sacrifice” and learn how you can get involved in South Asia.
Watchman Fellowship, an independent Christian research and apologetics ministry, is a good source for facts, articles and resources about new religious movements, cults, the occult and New Age: www.watchman.org