All posts tagged Prayer requests

Up, Up, and Far Away

While waiting for my flight to Houston, I decided to write a quick note from the Grand Junction Airport.

The Nances, Sue, and Me

Mark Sonmor, AOI’s graphic artist, is finishing the final details on some PowerPoint slides that I will need for teaching on this trip. He will be sending them by email upon completion. There never seems to be enough time to get it all done.

I will meet Allen and Molly Nance, friends of AOI as well as friends of India, in Houston and we will travel together to India.

Some Old Friends

The Nances will be in India for about two weeks and I will be there for three.  I’m planning to meet some old friends and making some new ones.  Of the many things planned for the trip, one of the activities Allen, Molly, and I will be doing together is visiting various mercy homes (orphanages).  I will also be teaching at a pastors’ conference this year, as well as the usual stops.

Please pray that the teaching will go well and God would open their hearts and minds to the teachings we bring. Also pray that He would watch over all of us as we minister to these beautiful people of God.  I will send updates as internet access allows.

 

Rich Stepanek

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Our Hope in Jesus

A few summers ago, we met a missionary couple who have established a school in Gambia (a country in West Africa). Gambia is predominately Muslim in faith. I just want to share a few excerpts from their recent newsletter: 

“Each year as Christmas arrives we are given the opportunity to remember why Jesus came to earth. All people had no hope and were separated from God by sin, yet, the prophets of old predicted a day when the Messiah would come. Unable to fix our own mess, we needed someone, a Savior, who would be able to restore our relationship with God.”

“Last year we spent our first Christmas in Gambia ministering in a Muslim culture. We had the opportunity to experience the emptiness of a Christmas season without Jesus.  Just like back then when people did not recognize His coming, Gambians went about their business, still not knowing that a Savior had been born, still not mentioning the name of Jesus……but how can they believe unless they first hear?”

“The Bible tells us that ‘In His name the nations will put their hope.’ (Matthew 12:21)  We pray that the nation of Gambia will put their hope in Him!  We pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal the Savior of the world to many more!”

“Because of Jesus we have hope. We have hope for the future, that we will be redeemed; hope for the present, that we are not alone. Hope that our failures are not greater than God’s love. Jesus came to bring us hope, not just for the future, but for today. Rather than trusting in ourselves, let us put our hope in Him.” 

As I read this couples newsletter, my heart went out to the people of Gambia and the need for them to hear the Gospel. At the same time, my prayers go out to the people of the United States … our people have the same urgent need … to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ. So many Americans are experiencing ” the emptiness of a Christmas season without Jesus.” The hope in Jesus is what Christmas is all about.

 

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.

Gunslingers?

Remember those famous movies of the old west? The main villain and his gang have been terrorizing the town. Nobody stands up to them out of fear. Then along comes the guy in the (frequently) white cowboy hat, who either singlehandedly cleans up the whole mess or motivates the town’s people to collectively stand with him.

Creation ministry on the college campus is kind of like that. A huge difference is that we don’t come in with our white cowboy hat, we aren’t riding on a white horse, and we really can’t clean up the whole mess!  Sometimes, it seems a good share of the audience is in the villain’s camp and we feel like trying to call in the Texas Rangers.

Frequently, though, it boils down to a few of the chief atheist “gunslingers” trying  to “gun” us down with their arguments about some picky detail that might appear to support evolution (that is, if they pull their hat down far enough over their eyes).

Although the “close-minded gang” may not be swayed, a seed is planted! Also, the Christian students on the campus are like the town’s people who are relieved to have someone come alongside of them. The important thing for you to remember is that we at AOI need you, our readers, to help us do that. So, if at all possible, please make AOI one of your special giving options and pray that many others will do the same.

Have a great Thanksgiving!

 

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.

Inner City Chicago

“These high school students are tough inner city kids. You just don’t know how they will respond.” It was a good warning that I received before speaking at a school in the inner city of Chicago the last few days. Many of the guys were much bigger than me, but fortunately, they responded well to the Creation vs. Evolution message I brought.

The first day, I spoke to various classes at this school on Blind Chance or Intelligent Design for 5 periods and then gave a session on geology and the Flood during another period. I am really glad my voice held out! (This was important as I was also needing a voice for a few hours that evening with some additional individuals in an informal setting).

The next day, was an all school gathering at a school where I had previously spoken about the battle for the mind coupled with asking the right questions when presented with “proofs” of evolution. The administration and I were glad that a large number of the high school students were really enthusiastic about the presentation.

We frequently hear that a group of students won’t sit still long enough for a program.  In some cases, we are told that the kids are too young and can’t sit for more than 20 minutes. All the speakers at AOI find that is not the case. Of course it helps that we use a huge number of high quality illustrations and pray a lot, too! However, I think hunger is the key! The students appear to be hungry for the truth and soak it up! Keep praying for open, hungry-for-the-truth minds!

 

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.

Another Appointed Meeting!

Recently, I was sitting on an airplane waiting for takeoff.  A woman came in at the last minute. She was just allowed the empty seat as a standby passenger. When she sat down I heard her say, “Thank Jesus I got a seat.” I told her she certainly was thanking the right person! That opened up some conversation.

As the flight progressed, she found out that I was on a speaking trip to teach creation.  Then she said she had been talking to her grandson who used to attend a church. She said her grandson was telling her about what he had learned in school – especially evolution. She had told her grandson that she believes the Bible and it says that God created everything, it didn’t evolve.  His response was, “Oh, Grandma, how can I believe the Bible when evolution is a fact?” After learning evolution, he totally dismissed the Bible and what his church taught.

I gave her my card with our website. She plans to give that to her grandson. Hopefully, he will go there and find out why evolution just doesn’t work and that there is strong evidence for creation.

Her final words to me were, “I hope your presentations go really well, the young people need to hear that.”

Yes, for sure — young people certainly need to hear this message. Unfortunately, the conversation she had with her grandson is certainly one that is happening across this country. False “proofs” of evolution are being taught, which are shaking the faith of way to many youth and adults both here and abroad. That is why we continue to travel and speak across the country! People need to hear!

 

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.

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.

Mockers and Scoffers

Reflecting on our past trip to Minnesota, I still find myself troubled by the response of 2 students at one of the universities. These 2 young women sat right up front with smirks on their faces through most of the presentation, often turning to one another to comment. During the Q&A time and our time one-on-one with them afterwards, things didn’t improve. They continued in an arrogant, mocking spirit. It seems they were completely impervious to any of the points brought up in the presentations or our answers to their questions and comments. It also appears evident that they were there only for the purpose of ridiculing, mocking, and arguing with whatever we said rather than seeking to hear or understand.

It grieves our hearts to see such hardness and deception. However, we take it as a call to prayer – not only for these 2 students, but also for the thousands of others who are being taught to scoff and mock at the Word of God and the evidences of creation. It seems many of these students will believe anything their teachers say or they read on atheistic websites that contradicts or undermines the Bible.

However, the Word of God is powerful, sharp, and active – and the Spirit of God continues to call people to repentance. We are encouraged when we realize that Saul, a skeptic and persecutor of early believers, ended up as a chief apostle to the Gentiles. And we also remember how God called us from our former way of life to follow Him.

So we have hope, as we continue to share the truth of God’s Word with everyone who comes, and we pray that God will bring a harvest. Please pray with us that He will use seeds sown during this past university lecture series to bring many to a saving knowledge of Jesus, and that many would become true disciples in following Him and sharing His Word with others who need to hear.

 

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.

Ministering at Wayne State College

This summer at a Bible Camp, the assistant director shared with us, ” … your teachings blew me away … they have totally changed my life.” ( Changing Lives –  August 30, 2011) The young man then invited us to come and share with the Campus Crusade ministry he is involved with at Wayne State College.

Thursday night this last week, we were able to share with this group. Because of an upcoming event, the room the ministry normally uses on campus was not available, so our seminar was moved off campus to a church. Usually they get around 100 students to their Thursday night meetings, but on this evening we had 130. This was surprising to the organizers because of competition with a free movie night at the local theater.

Before the seminar, we learned that a college biology Professor had offered extra credit to students to show up at the meeting. We thought we might be in for a night of heckling, but all the students were very polite. We did have 5 students leave about half-way through the talk, but no disruptions during nor after the meeting.

During the seminar I taught about human origins, with a special emphasis on the artwork students see in their textbooks, and challenged them to ask, “What’s the evidence” for that artwork. I also was able to give a gospel presentation. After the seminar, we spent a lot of time talking with several of the students. Some had questions about salvation, and others about Creation.

I was able to spend almost an hour with one very intelligent and sincere young man who believed in Jesus, but was convinced that evolution was the means God used to create.  Very quickly I recognized the arguments he was using are the same arguments we refute in our talks on ‘The Icons of Evolution.’ Prayerfully, I hope the time was well spent with this young man, and that he will someday believe the Bible for what it says, and not rely on the words of man.

 

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.

Getting Into a Public School

It is a very rare occurrence these days, but I was recently able to teach in a public school. Why I say rare – this is only the 4th school I have been allowed to teach in within the past 5 years.

A few years ago, when the Intelligent Design group began trying to get their ideas taught in the public school system, the evolutionary “world” became very nervous. The ACLU and NEA (National Education Association) teamed up to make a concerted effort to keep their material out of the school literature and classrooms.

Being Creationists, who also teach intelligent design and have done so long before the Intelligent Design advocates were even formed, they have also expelled us from the schools. It has always been hard to get into the schools, but now it is even harder.

One of the excuses used to keep us from teaching in schools is the misrepresented “separation of church and state.” We are told that because we teach religion, we cannot give a presentation to government sponsored students. This has always been quite amazing to me, because when I am allowed to teach in a public school setting, I do not teach about a Creator, or about religion at all – I teach about what is scientifically wrong with evolution. I do this in order to protect the teacher or administrator that allowed us to share with the students.

Actually religion IS being taught in almost every public school district in America. The religion of humanism (it was proclaimed a religion in the higher court system), whose foundation is evolution, is the prevalent worldview being taught in our schools
today. Because Creationism and Christianity are a threat to humanism, we are not allowed to “brainwash” their children.

Ironically, in 1999, when Richard Stepanek and I were in Russia, we were allowed to teach in dozens of their public schools. After teaching several sessions to high school age students on the problems of evolution, one of the teachers said to me, “Oh this is so interesting. The students in America must love what you teach them.” I shared with her the idea of separation of church and state and why we couldn’t get into the public schools. She was amazed. She then showed me a textbook the Russian teachers were using to teach Origins.

The first part of the book taught the idea of an intelligent designer, the second part about evolution, and the third part about life coming from outer space. “Which idea do you believe?” I asked her. “Oh, I believe in evolution,” she answered. “Then why are you allowing me to teach your students what is wrong with evolution?” She answered, “Because, I think the students should be given all the information, so they can decide on their own what they believe.”

This was from a teacher in a predominately atheistic country whose core beliefs are based on evolution! Oh, America! Why are our children no longer allowed to see all the evidence that they might also be able to make an informed decision of what they believe?

Now, please don’t misunderstand. There are a lot of wonderful Christian teachers and administrators in the schools; however, in many cases their “hands have been tied” when it comes to the right to share the Truth with their students. We need to continually pray for those teachers and administrators …that even though they are limited with what they can say or teach their students, pray that they still might be a shining light to those who so desperately need to know the Truth.

 

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.

Missing Our Atheist Friends

We were at DeKalb, IL, for 4 nights of speaking at Northern Illinois University. We have spoken at this university each fall for the past several years. Traditionally, these meetings have been heavily attended by students claiming to be atheists, agnostics, or skeptics, and the Q&A time has sometimes become quite animated.

Attendance this year was markedly down, and most in attendance were already Christians with some honest seekers. Probably a major part of the reason is that in the past, one of the most vocal anti-creation professors required his students to come to our Tuesday evening meeting, and gave extra credit for those who came to other sessions. Even though many of these students were openly opposed to our position, we enjoyed the opportunity to field their questions and interact with them. This professor has now retired, and we are missing him and his students.

Things were quite tame this year. While we missed the opportunity to speak to more skeptics, the quieter atmosphere allowed us to have deeper discussions with several individuals who might not have spoken up in a larger group. We were able to equip and encourage the Christian students to stand firm, and to answer different kinds of questions than we usually get from a group of avowed atheists.

The bottom line is that God has a purpose and a plan. We are grateful for the opportunity to present an alternative to the pervasive evolutionary, naturalistic, evolutionary teaching found on this very secular campus — and we are grateful for each person that came to hear. We are called to plant the seed. Others will continue to water, but only God can bring forth fruit. So please, pray with us that the seeds planted in Illinois fell on good ground and will bear abundant fruit for eternity.

 

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.