“Its my story, but its HIS GLORY” by Rick Laws- Dean of Students, Carolina Christian College

Posted January 5, 2012 by Carolina Christian College
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And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” – Colossians 3:17 NIV

As I am half-way through my ninth year at Carolina Christian College it has been an amazing journey.  It has been a blessing to work with students, faculty and staff . . . many of whom came from far away places such as Nigeria, Zimbabwe, and Boston, Massachusetts while others from the immediate area. As a history instructor here I love two quotes from history my students here from me on a regular basis. The first is from Saint Francis of Assisi.  Saint Francis lived in the late 1100’s AD and among other things is known as the Patron Saint of animals (which makes him my wife’s favorite saint!).  The quote I love from him is “Preach the Gospel always, if necessary use words.”  To me that quote can go hand-in-hand with the Colossians 3:17 scripture quoted above.

My other quote I often use is from Mahatma Gandhi who was an amazing leader of India who lived from 1869-1948. Gandhi began his non-violent resistance movement based on the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5 paying close attention to turning the other cheek and going the extra mile.  These ideas were studied later in the 20th century by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and used in the Civil Rights Movement of America. Gandhi lived in an India controlled by Great Britain a Christian nation. Gandhi’s quote was “I would be a Christian were it not for the Christians.” I hope in my life as a Christian and as a Dean of Students at Carolina Christian College that more people would see the words of St. Francis in me more than they would see the words of Gandhi.  I once heard a song entitled “I’d Rather See a Sermon” . . . the chorus goes “I’d rather see a sermon then hear one any day, I’d rather one walk with me than merely show the way. Actions speak much louder than all the words can say, I’d rather see a sermon then to hear one any day.”  May we all live a life in which all that we do is to bring glory to God.

“It’s All About Attitude” By Dean Latanya Lucas

Posted December 28, 2011 by Carolina Christian College
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Have you thought about the importance of attitude?  Attitude is how we approach everything in life.  We can be optimistic, inquisitive, skeptical, bored, negative and a number of other approaches to an idea, a situation or a person.  That attitude determines much of the outcome of that interchange.  If our attitude is such that we are sure we don’t like a person before we meet them, it is limited as to what they can do which might change that attitude.  We often prejudge a situation or person to our own detriment thus ending an opportunity for what might have been a positive experience.

A positive attitude can have the effect of taking 1 + 1 and making it equal three.  The positive attitude can add to the situation thus creating more than was there initially.

As you read this, you might resolve to have a positive attitude about the day in front of you.  It will make your day more pleasant not only for you but for everyone around you.  You are more likely to accomplish that which you set out to do and give you a sense of satisfaction in what you have done. So I encourage you to be encouraged because your attitude determines your altitude.


Priorities in Ministry- Dr. Derrick Thorpe

Posted November 22, 2011 by Carolina Christian College
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In his book, Priorities in Ministry, Ernest E. Mosely talks about priorities and showing the way for individual decision making, the fundamental truths in priority management, the minister as Christian person, a married person, a parent person, a church member person, an employed person, a community person, and measuring success in ministry. This paper is my response to the author’s argument for the necessity of priorities in ministry.
Ernest Mosley asserts by ordering our priorities we encounter the essence of Christ. In ministry ministers amplify their priorities when they develop a measuring rod for success. According to Mosely they must be inside out. The essence and the root of the priorities is the center circle. The central priority in ministry furnishes and fulfills life. This priority relationship must not be neglected. It is only from within that the place where priority relationship can be sustained. Further, limited potential deals with the dormant and the inherent in the circles outside which is limited and confined whenever an inside circle is flimsy; misplaced priorities.
In closing, in offering priority to an outside circle it perceives or accepts that a minister may feel righteous in doing that. Whenever an outside circle takes precedence over an inside circle lies at the core of this priority. There are maintained priorities. In a minister’s life, when the priorities are arranged there is fulfillment. I concur with Mosley that community efforts bring growth and vitality when priorities are in order.

A Mile in My Shoes-by Dr. Derrick Thorpe

Posted November 22, 2011 by Carolina Christian College
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Chapter 1-3, in Trevor Hudson’s book, A Mile in My Shoes talks about the pilgrimage experience, preparing for pilgrimage and encountering our suffering neighbor.  In chapter one he gives three important elements concerning the pilgrimage experience: encounter, reflection, and transformation.  In chapter two he discusses how to be present, learning to listen giving three basic steps and finally learning to notice.  In chapter three he converses about opening blind eyes, uncovering our inner poverty, and revealing our inner riches.  I agree with Trevor Hudson that the Pilgrimage of pain and hope is a personal encounter, with the pain of our shattered and fragmented societies.

Encounter is major ingredient in the process of the pilgrimage experience.  With the hurt and discomfort of our crumbled societies, the pilgrimage of suffering and hope is an individual encounter.  According to Hudson in potential and contingent gospel ministry, he chooses meetings that would possibly summons pilgrim groups.  Reflection on experience is significant in the pilgrim process also.  A wide range of excitement and agitation is experienced day in and day out by pilgrims in this experience.  Pilgrims run the chance of suffering the lost of the transforming perceptions without deliberation and pensiveness.  Transforming insights require serious thought.  The helpers obtain the obligatory range to meditate throughout the pilgrimage/religious journey.  In closing, I can see that collecting one’s thoughts daily upon the word of the Lord is an important part to this reflection process.  To put into words and reveal their feelings, jotting down these deliberations empower and aid pilgrims.  This is the Christian Mission.


The Black Church and Politics by Dr. Derrick Thorpe; Dean of Garduate Studies Carolina Christian College

Posted November 8, 2011 by Carolina Christian College
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Lincoln comments, “As Wilmore, Lincoln, and others have pointed out, the mere fact of black survival in a total system of dehumanization and exclusion is by itself a significant political act.”[1]  In other words, banishment produced a political act for black churches.

            In citywide and national environments, the main purpose of black churches in electoral politics is to act as organizing networks.  Its main function is to act as establishing networks.  Lincoln comments:

            The major function of black churches in electoral and protest politics is to act as     mobilizing and communicative networks in local and national settings.  No other black       institutional area has this mobilizing potential or as extensive a constituency.[2]      

  Politics must be specified to embrace the community formulating activities that are part of the ministry of Black Churches.  Politics in black churches involves more than the exercise of power on behalf of a constituency; it also includes the community building and empowering activities in which many black churches, clergy, and lay members participate in daily.  According to Lincoln:

            Politics must be broadly defined beyond electoral politics and protest politics to include    the community organizing and community building activities that are part of the ministry   of many black clergy and churches.[3]

            In conclusion, the black church as played a principal role in politics.  The politics of the black church itself is vague and unclear yet its effect on American politics is clear.  The black church has guarded it own autonomy; as a result it needs to get more involved because it still has a powerful voice yield.    





“The Road from Text to Sermon” by Dr. Derrick Thorpe, Dean of Graduate Studies Carolina Christian College

Posted October 27, 2011 by Carolina Christian College
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In section four of his book, Biblical Preaching: the Development and Delivery of Expository Messages the road from text to sermon, Robinson talks about the three different worlds: the world of the bible, the contemporary world, and the specific world in which we are called to proclaim the good news.  Identifying with the world of the text is tantamount as it relates to the road from text to sermon.  We must be aware of the prevailing times.  Expositors must seek to connect sermons to life’s distorted problems.  The objective is to take the relevancy in the word of God and fashion a sermon.  Moreover, we must communicate to a specific people whose desire is to hear God’s word, the proclamation of the Gospel.

I agree with Robinson, expositors must seek to uncover, bring into light, and flush out the sermon and bring all three worlds together. He illustrates three operations that must be carried out in order to develop an exegetical idea or concept: explain it, prove it, or apply it. Explaining the scriptural text can help guide and show the way to the bible, and at the same time relate to the text and audience.  Robinson says that this step allows for exploration for more and unseen information.  Proving the text focuses on its usefulness and value.  Examples of this are found in the preaching methods of the Apostles, who adjusted and modified themselves to their hearers to build up the soundness of their concepts.  Indeed, we must continue to confront questions and address them in order to be effective in relating the text to sermon.  Applying it helps the text live and provides an experience for the audience.  In order to connect text to sermon the expositor must never to neglect the application component.  Robinson says, “Basic to perceptive application is accurate exegesis.”[1]  In other words, authentic exegesis must connect incisively to conscious application.  Expositors must characterize the life setting of the text into which the inspiration was drawn out in order to connect a passage.

[1]Haddon W. Robinson, Biblical Preaching: The Development and Delivery of Expository Message (Grand Rapids, Baker Academic, 87.

Advantage of Adversity by Tyrone Tyson

Posted October 6, 2011 by Carolina Christian College
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I believe that adversity is often the seedbed for opportunity. Bad circumstances have a way of bringing out the best in us. I am convinced that the people God uses the most are often the people who have experienced the most adversity. Here is what you have to understand: if you do not turn your adversity into a ministry, then your pain will remain your pain, but if you allow God to translate your adversity in a ministry, then your pain becomes someone else’s gain.

I have a theory: the more problems you have, the more potential you have to help people. The old folk used to say…”You can’t speak on nothing if you ain’t been thru nothing.” One of the most paralyzing mistakes we make is thinking that our problems somehow disqualify us from being used by God. Let me just say it like it is…if you do not have any problems, then you do not have any potential.

Here’s why. Your ability to help others to heal is limited to where you have been wounded.

God comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When others are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us. “Blessed [be] God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.”  2 Corinthians 1:3-4

No one rolls out the red carpet and invites tragedy into their life, but our greatest gifts and passions are often the byproduct of our worst tragedies and failures. Trials have a way of helping us rediscover our purpose in life…food for thought….feast on it and pass it on!!