Archive for 2011

Behind the Scenes

Gail

By reading through the blogs at discovercreation.org, one might think that only the traveling speakers make up Alpha Omega Institute. However, there are many other people involved with AOI that serve in very integral and necessary roles … without them AOI could not function.

In our office are three people who help keep the organization running smoothly. We have a full-time secretary, Gail, who handles telephone calls, e-mails, correspondence, data entry, book orders … and so much more. We depend on her to keep us on track and organized.

Scott

We also have a full-time assistant director, Scott, who also serves in many ways. He has been very instrumental in getting our web site up and functioning, keeping it up to date, keeping us informed with the changing technologies that might benefit the ministry, and … again, so much more.

Then there is our part-time accountant,Glenn, who not only does all the necessary accounting, but also keeps us in compliance with all the government entities and Christian organizations with which we are involved, and … again, so much more.

Glenn

We have a part-time ITT, David, (see Great Timing Oct. 28, 2011) who keeps our office computers and servers up to date and functioning. He does this primarily from his abode in Arizona. His father, Paul, also helps and is working on a new data system that will better fit our needs.

We have a volunteer, Helen, who comes in every week and helps enter data onto the computers. We have a volunteer, Matt, who comes in weekly to work in our library. We have a volunteer, Larry, who is helping with paperwork for ministry state compliance.

We have many volunteers who help stuff the AOI bi-monthly newsletters. We have prayer warriors, who pray for the ministry. We have donors, whose contributions are vital to keeping the ministry going. We have a governing board that keeps us accountable and helps in making major decisions … all are volunteers. There are probably others, that I am not even aware of or have temporarily forgotten (my apologies), who are also serving AOI in some manner.

One thing all of us at AOI have in common (whether it be paid staff or volunteers) … all have a passion for the gospel of Christ, the Creation message and their propagation. Words cannot even express my gratitude and joy for all of these “behind the scenes” people. THANK YOU!

 

Lanny Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

Whatever You Do . . .

I received an e-mail today from Scott (AOI’s administrator and “web-guy”) with a plea for blogs. Faithful Scott! He tries so hard to keep us speakers on track! Time goes by so fast, and it’s not always easy to come up with something “important” to write. It seems much easier when you are “on the road,” interacting with students and doing “front-line” ministry, but here at home, well … what is “important”?

I suspect that God’s view of importance is often different from ours! Now I would probably think participating in staff prayer time at AOI, attending a ladies’ Bible Study, and learning from a Jewish rabbi who loves Yeshua (Jesus) were important. But what about taking my mom to the doctor, going for a walk with my grandson, and welcoming our son, Steve, home as he transitions from working at Camp Redcloud for the past 15 years to helping with a start-up adventure ministry called Journey Quest?

What about going to dinner with Dave’s parents – and spending an afternoon with my brother who is going through some really tough times? Or how about enjoying time with good friends, Alan and Diane Galbraith, who stopped by on their way to Navaho land to teach a week of creation there? Yes, I would probably think it was important to work on a letter encouraging an atheist professor to take another look at Jesus and to meet with several individuals about some exciting possibilities for future ministry; however, I’m thinking that making dinner, washing dishes, doing laundry, and packing for Dave’s upcoming speaking trip are probably most important for me right now.

Well … the details aren’t important … you get the idea. My life, like yours, is a mosaic of what often seems mundane as well as what seems “important.” But who knows what is really most important in the long run? Man looks at the outside, but God looks at the heart. Faithfulness, obedience, and attitude matter. That’s why it’s so “important” today and every day to live our lives in accordance with Paul’s injunction in Colossians 3:17,

 

“And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord
Jesus,

giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”

 

Mary Jo Nutting

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

The Lure of the World

Why is the lure of this world stronger than the lure of God????

As I sat down with my cup of coffee and prepared to do my daily Bible study, my eyes fell to this week’s newspaper ads.  It shocked me when I realized the lure of knowing what was on sale this week was stronger than the desire to get into God’s word.  I know how very GOOD our God is and have experienced the thrill of God’s blessing on my life many times!  I know God wants only the best for me.

So why did a piece of newsprint have a greater attraction than that of opening Gods word? Why do Christians make such poor choices with their free time these days?  How has football, couponing, Christmas, cleaning house, etc. become more important to us than making time for God?

His game plan for our lives is far more exciting than watching any football game. Trusting Him for His provision is far more important than saving money on products we buy (even if they are free).  Christmas is only about Christ if you put Christ above gift giving, singing carols and eating Christmas dinner.  Having a clean house will mean nothing to your children or husband if they have to spend eternity in hell… take care of Christ’s work and the house will still be there in a few hours to clean.  I KNOW ALL THAT! So why is the distraction and lure still there?

I love this quote from Beth Moore: “I have discovered that if Satan can’t get to me with destruction, he will try to get to me with distraction.” (Beth Moore, Believing God, Life Way Press, ISBN 0-6330-9667-9)

Ok, you are being distracted … what can you do about it?  Psalm 1:2 – “… his delight is in the law of the LORD, and in His law he meditates day and night.”  If you will read his word and talk to Him, He tells us in His word that your love of the things of this world will diminish.  Psalm 119:47 – “I delight in your commands because I love them.” Read God’s word and pray BEFORE doing anything of this world and He will bless you!  Psalm 37:4 – “Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

 

Marilyn Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

In Denver, From Lecture Hall to Family Fellowship

On Oct. 13, I was able to speak at the Colorado Association of Christian Schools Conference in Fort Collins, CO.  I conducted three sessions on the topics of: Dinosaurs and the Bible, Origin of Life and the Glory of God, and New Age and Other False Religions.  It was a great opportunity to be able to influence many lives, by teaching teachers!

While we were in the Denver area, from October 12-17, we also had the opportunity to teach a two hour afternoon session at the Parker Bible Church. We were encouraged to see the enthusiasm as I taught from the book of Genesis.  Many stayed for pizza afterwards and continued to ask questions and discuss the information I had presented.

We were also given the opportunity to conduct a tour at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science for the Parker, CO, homeschool group.  The event was well attended with over 50 students and parents in both the morning and afternoon tours.  It was sad to see how much evolution is presented as fact in the museum, and how many people are led astray by that information.  But, by examining the facts and stripping off the evolutionary bias, many of the exhibits still proclaimed God’s creation and His glory.  It was such a blessing to see so many homeschool families who were extremely eager to hear the truth.

One of the highlights was that we had the opportunity to stay with a wonderful family.  The fellowship was great!  I even had the privilege to do a mini seminar in their home.  I love presenting these personal sessions, because we can do more discipling and answer many personal questions.  We have been presenting in more and more small groups and/or home Bible study groups this year than ever before.  It has been a great blessing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Richard Stepanek

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

Local Ministry

Teaching at Bookcliff Christian School

Although a very large part of AOI’s ministry involves traveling to different areas of the United States and the world, there is also a great deal of opportunity for local ministry.

Two days after a month long teaching tour of several states, I was able to do a local museum tour, teaching several families about dinosaurs and the Bible.

On Tuesday, I spent time with a homeschool cooperative teaching kindergartners, first graders, and second graders about what we do and don’t know about dinosaurs, based on the fossil record. I will have the opportunity to spend 2 more sessions with this group, teaching more about dinosaurs and the flood.

Yesterday I taught kindergartners through fourth grade at a Christian school just a few of the many amazing animals which show evidence of an intelligent designer.

This month, I will be sharing with a local campus ministry at Colorado Mesa University (formerly Mesa State College). The following 2 months I will be doing a 5 part Creation series for an adult Sunday school class at the church I attend.

All of the speakers at AOI have similar speaking schedules while at home.

Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. 2Ti 4:2

 

Lanny Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

Great Timing!

Veni, vidi, vici

Last week, David DeCesare and Paul DeCesare, a father and son team who have been doing our computer work remotely from Arizona, came to Grand Junction to make some needed changes to our computer and data-base systems.

While they were here in our office working on the computers, the server crashed. They both looked at each other while working on different computers, and asked, “Did you shut off the server?” Neither had done so.  It turned out that the server’s power supply burned out, which consequently caused damage to some other components and corrupted some programs.

Paul and David  had nothing to do with the failure. That malfunction could have happened at any time, but we are very thankful it happened while they were here! Otherwise, we would have gone crazy trying to figure out the problem, and then would have needed to bring David up, by plane or car, for a separate trip from the Phoenix area to take care of it.

God’s timing was great, although the extra problem did cause David many additional hours and some long nights on repairing things while they were here. The above picture is their Victory picture over the computer.  Needless to say, both were quite tired when they headed out of our office toward Arizona.

We also are very thankful to have capable people in the DeCesares who have a heart of service and dedication to the ministry of AOI! Thanks, Paul! Thanks, David!

 

Dave Nutting

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

Dinosaur Journey Museum Tour

On Saturday, I was able to lead several families on a tour of the dinosaur museum in Fruita, Colorado. The museum is very evolutionary, hands-on and noisy; therefore I always try to meet with the families ahead of time in a quieter location (usually at our AOI library) where I can teach a Biblical view of dinosaurs.

According to evolution, dinosaurs all died out 65 to 70 million years ago, and man has only been around for 200,000 to 3 million years; therefore, man and dinosaur never lived together. In a 1 ½ hour presentation, I give evidence of man and dinosaurs living together, which definitely goes against this evolutionary idea.

One of the other ways I try to arm the families, is to challenge them to think about the different things they will see in the museum. How much of what the museum is presenting is actual science, and how much is speculation?

In other words, is it science or imagination? What is real and what is artwork? If it turns out to be artwork, then what did they find to get that artwork? The main goal is to teach families, especially the children, to ask, “WHAT’S THE EVIDENCE?”

These questions can be used to prepare and arm them for any museum they might visit.

After the teaching session, we normally break for lunch and then head to the museum. Once in the museum, I am available to answer questions and share some interesting points on many of the exhibits. Participating families have been very thankful for arming them with a Biblical view of the evidence.  Many times, others outside the group will tag along, listening to a creationist viewpoint. For me, that is just a bonus … planting a seed of truth!

If you are ever in the Grand Junction area, and would like a museum, or Colorado National Monument tour, call the AOI office (970-523-9943) to arrange. Availability of tours depends on the presence of AOI speakers in town at the time. The AOI portion of the tour is free … we only ask that you might consider a love offering to help cover our expenses (mileage and entry fees).

You would be responsible for the museum or Monument entry fees. You can call Dinosaur Journey Museum (888-488-3466) for their current pricing. Larger groups can sometimes arrange for group discounts.  If you would like a Colorado National Monument tour, call 970-858-3617 for their current pricing.

 

Lanny Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

God Provides

When we scheduled to go to the universities in Illinois and Minnesota earlier this year, I have to admit that it was with a bit of misgiving. You see, both Mary Jo’s and my favorite time of the year in our area of Colorado is the last half of September and first part of October.

This fall time in the mountains provides us with some of our most favorite hikes amidst some of the most fantastic mountain scenery ablaze with spectacular fall colors. The temperatures are just right for us, and there are very few pesky bugs!

Anyhow, the campus ministries requested us earlier this year, and we gulped and said OK. God certainly provided great ministry at the various universities with good fruit, and when we arrived home, we found out that God provided for our personal desires.

He extended the fall just for us! We were able to take a few days in the mountains, and then on another late afternoon to get an unexpected time with a great hike to enjoy what He has made. He even saved us some great pockets of aspen trees to enjoy the golden leaves. God takes care of His kids!

 

Dave Nutting

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

Winter Is Coming!

Mary Jo & I just visited our son, Steve, at Camp Redcloud at Lake City, CO. While there, we managed to get in a couple of good hikes. We always really enjoy the fall season in the mountains and the temperature was just perfect.

However, as you can see from the photo looking across the lake over the Camp Redcloud property, winter is coming! Almost all of the aspen leaves were off of the trees.  In fact snow has already hit the higher mountains and will likely stay there until next spring. Still, this area is beautiful in every season, and will also be when it is totally covered by the thick snowy blanket.

The beauty of the area is certainly testimony of a wonderful Creator. What makes it even more special is that this gorgeous scenery is actually the destroyed remains of a likely even more beautiful, original, pre-Flood Creation.  It tells me that God can and does take something that is utterly destroyed — even by a world-wide Flood — and make something beautiful out of it.

To me, that means He can take the ruined messes of our lives and remodel them as well into something beautiful and useful for His purposes. I certainly hope that you let Him do that! Like the scenery in the pictures, you just may be amazed by the results.

 

Dave Nutting

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.

Cooperative Youth Program in Rural America

Last night, Marilyn and I had the opportunity to teach a youth group that meets weekly in a small Nebraska town. We had a normal attendance of 35, consisting of middle school and high school students and about 6 adults. Many of the students come from as far as 45 miles away to attend every week.

This youth group is sponsored by four different churches, all of different denominations. Three of the churches are local, and the other church is located about 15 miles away in another small town. These churches have been doing this for several years.  It is a blessing to see these churches working together for the spiritual growth of their youth.

The youth group first met in a school where they had the use of a basketball court. The students would come weekly, get fed a meal, play basketball, be presented with a devotional, and then play some more basketball.

Recently, a burned out building with an intact outside wall structure was donated to the group. Through a lot of hard work and generous donations, the building was remodeled into a very nice youth center. Because the new facility did not have a basketball court, one of the pastors was concerned they would lose some of the students – however, the number attending has increased. It seems that not all of the youth were into sports, but were more interested in discipleship and fellowship with their friends.

Now some might say that 35 students doesn’t seem like much; however, the total enrollment of the Middle School and High School in this community is only 55 students. That translates into two – thirds of the older student population willingly seeking spiritual truths on a weekly basis. I know of many youth groups in large communities that would covet a percentage like that.

 

Lanny Johnson

If you would like to see if an AOI seminar is right for you, or you would like to help the work of Alpha Omega Institute, please visit our website events page or our donate page. Keep up to date with what AOI is doing. Thanks for your partnership.