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V. O. T. E. - Election 2012

Rich and Jo Ann Davis on June 30, 2012

Gotcha! You might have thought that we were going to write about the US presidential election coming this November, but we know better than to get sidetracked with politics. We ARE, however, referring to a presidential election - that took place this month (June)! 

 We have chosen a theme having to do with government for this newsletter and we would like to use the acrostic V. O.  T. E. to help us in reporting to we the people – our faithful prayer warriors.

V = Victory

The American flag does fly over the island of St. Thomas USVI which has become our new home.The American flag does fly over the island of St. Thomas USVI which has become our new home.As we mentioned last month in our Pondering the Pond newsletter, we had a choice to make along with the board of trustees of the Bluewater Bible College (BBC) on St. Thomas USVI. The final decision of the board of trustees was to unanimously call us to serve as president of the BBC for the next 4 years or a bit longer if necessary during the transition to a new president.

One of the interesting observations about this election is that Jo Ann and I did not campaign for the office of president. The matter was entirely in the hands of the Caribbean pastors that form the board of trustees of BBC. In the technical sense it would have been nice to have more preparation for this office, but other factors weighed more heavily in the minds of the board members. 

 If this is the case, then why do we title this section “VICTORY”? The reason is because we believe that the Lord is accomplishing His perfect will for BBC, for Jo Ann and me as we represent our home/sending church in Denver, our faithful prayer/financial supporters and ABWE

 Was there opposition to this decision? Not among the Caribbean pastors on the BBC board of trustees and this is where the burden of decision lay. However, if there is no opposition, then perhaps nothing of spiritual significance is taking place. Opposition comes with leadership. 

It is of utmost importance to us that, this month (June), the leadership of our home church (Calvary Community Baptist Church, Northglenn, CO) approved our appointment to serve as president of BBC. We have the approval of the House” (House of the Lord)!  

Added to the approval of the House, the pertinent leadership at ABWE also approved our appointment to serve as president of BBC for the next 4 years or so. The Senate has also voted “Yea”

The questions that were raised in our last letter have now been answered.     

O = Onward 

We made the front page of the Daily News!We made the front page of the Daily News!Final exam week went well and the grades for all the active students have been entered on their transcripts. This was a project that Jo Ann and one of the students spent countless hours completing. It was such a blessing to gain the victory over the obstacles that made this task such a challenge.  

The Christian Home course taught by Jo Ann was well received by the students. Much effort was expended in gathering up to date materials in English. The last time she taught that course was in Spanish! The Old Testament Prophets course taught by Rich was also well received by the students as we all grew in a deeper understanding of the men who God had called to proclaim His message. 

 The graduation activities went well in spite of a couple of hiccups. The theme chosen by the senior class this year was Moving Forward which expresses such a hopeful vision as they launch into the different ministries that the Lord has prepared for them. Now we are looking forward to a new crop of freshmen along with the returning students. Please click here to see pictures of the graduation.

T = Teams 

The BBC Board of Trustees - June 2012The BBC Board of Trustees - June 2012We use the plural in the subtitle for a reason. From our point of view, there are several teams that we are part of as we seek to serve the Lord in this ministry. 

· BBC Board of Trustees – The trustees have expressed on several occasions that they desire to work in a team relationship with us as we administer the Bible College. Some of the men on the board graduated years ago from BBC in its early days. They love the school and have made sacrifices in order to see many more faithful servants like themselves thrust into the harvest. 

· BBC staff and professors – It is our desire to work together with those staff members and professors who live on campus as well as with those who live off campus. All of these people have more experience than we do in the operation of the college. Those of us on staff truly desire to keep raising the quality of how we do training as well as the courses we teach. The biggest projects before us right now are to review the curriculum and to publish a new catalog. 

· Local churches in the Caribbean – BBC serves the local Baptist churches in the Caribbean. Jo Ann and I have been attending the annual and semi-annual meeting of many of these churches during the last 5 years as well as making trips representing BBC on different islands. These faithful churches not only pray for the college and send their students to be trained there, but they also often give sacrificially to help the college stay afloat. During our years in the Caribbean we have made many dear friends among the leaders and members of these churches. BBC would not exist except for the need to help these local churches in their duty to carry out the Great Commission. 

· Prayer and financial supporters of ours all around the globe – Yes, we are laborers together with God. There are several local churches which have loved us, prayed for us, and financially supported us for many years. We are a part of their team in the effort to reach the nations of the world with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Friends and family are also a part of the caring community who love and support us in every way. You are counting on us to represent you well, and we are counting on you to hold the rope (as William Carey so eloquently expressed). 

· ABWE – When we were the Regional Administrators for ABWE in the Caribbean, Central America and Mexico (CCAM), the Lord gave us a vision and a strategy to accomplish part of His will in these tropical countries. Some of the strategic foundation that we were a part of building in the Caribbean can be aided by our role at BBC. The vision that the Lord gave us several years ago still shines brightly in our hearts and we desire to work together with our ABWE colleagues serving the Caribbean to accomplish that which the Lord is leading all of us to do. 

We are a part of all these teams and rejoice at the privilege to be connected with so many godly servants all dedicated to the same high purpose. Our greatest desire is to work together with each team to exalt our Lord and Savior in obedience. 

E = Education 

Dr. Bently Thomas giving an offering for BBC raised by the island churches.Dr. Bently Thomas giving an offering for BBC raised by the island churches.

Christian education, if done correctly, is a form of discipleship. We emphasize correctly because we deeply sense the need to do the best job possible for the Lord and all the teams mentioned above, as well as the students of BBC. 

For almost 40 years, the Lord has allowed us to be involved in many ministries. Church planting allowed us to preach and teach His word on many different levels including Bible College. We even had the privilege of starting and administrating a Christian School in Peru. No doubt, all of this experience will contribute to helping us in our new responsibility, but we are convinced that we must raise our own set of skills in order to help BBC provide the best quality of Christian education possible for the young student-servants of the Caribbean. 

For this reason, Rich has applied to, and been accepted by, Columbia International University (CIU) in South Carolina to pursue an Ed. D degree in Christian Higher Education – Leadership Emphasis. The goal of these studies is to learn how to administer a Christian college. Beginning this summer (July 16-21) Rich will be attending the summer modules offered on campus as well as continue other online courses from the campus of BBC on St. Thomas during the year. Normally, it takes 4 years to complete this program which explains why the board of trustees has asked us to continue as president over the next 4 years. 

 The strategy that we have agreed upon with the BBC trustees is for Rich to learn the proper elements needed to successfully organize and administrate a college, and then work together with the board and the staff to implement the changes that we all deem necessary. Upon completion of the studies and implementation of changes, the board will call a new president who could be mentored for a time by Rich to understand and carry on the new systems. 

The final acceptance letter from CIU to the post grad studies, as well as the announcement by the BBC board of trustees that Rich was called by them as president for the next 4+ years; and the approval by our home church as well as by ABWE all happened THIS MONTH (June)!! Now you can understand why it has taken so long to send out this letter, but even more importantly, you can understand why we are on our knees daily! 

Yes, we have taken on quite a load and we don’t believe for a second that in ourselves we are capable of doing it without help from above and below. However, we are walking by faith in He who has called us and we depend on Him to carry us to the end. Please join us daily at the Throne of Grace asking for strength, wisdom and courage to take this new path and arrive at the destination with excellence. Please click here to peruse the Quick Prayer & Praise page. 

Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Phil 1:6