by J.J. Hendrix

BEDFORD, Tex. (BNc) — The 3rd annual Brown Trail School of Preaching Alumni Lectures took place at the Brown Trail church of Christ building on Aug. 3-4, 2012. We set personal records for average attendance as well as highest attendance for a lecture.

As a graduate of the school, I look forward to this lectureship as an opportunity to show the “fruits of the labor” with the Brown Trail School of Preaching. We have graduated almost 400 men into ministry, and this is an opportunity to show the diligent study that continues with our students far after graduation.

The spiritual feast was presented before us to the theme of “Agape: Love in Action.” Spencer Ross (’08) started our lectureship off on Friday evening delivering a lesson on our “Love for the lost.” Spencer obeyed the Gospel in 2007 and a few months later started school with us at Brown Trail. Brother Ross shared what it was like being lost and the love that was shown to him that made his conversion possible.

Rick Popejoy (’84) presented his lesson, “Love for the Truth”. His powerful lesson moved one of the sisters in attendance to tears. He reminded us that even though the world is changing around us, we must continue to have a love for God’s plan for us and to stay strong.

Gregg Knight (’77) closed out our evening with a lesson entitled “Love for the Christian Life.” Gregg reminded us that the Christian life is the best life that you can live. We should embrace the life that God has called us to live and treat it as such. People should see the joy we have in our Christian Walk.

Saturday morning started with a metaphorical bang. Mark Teske (’03) presented a lesson “Love the Word.” So many people who claim to be Christians today may tell the truth but apologize for it a few minutes later. We should not apologize for God’s inspired Word but be ready to stand up for it, defend it, and share it lovingly.

Ernie Christie (’72) followed next with a lesson on “Love the Saved.” We were charged to love our brethren and work diligently to get along and be a family.

The “Love for God/Love for us” Forum was next, chaired by Ken Gardner (’79) with Toby Soechting (’93), Eddie Parrish (’90), and Joe Hancock (’03) participating. These sound brothers covered a great spectrum in God’s love for us in the scheme of redemption, the creation, and our love for God. A few questions were asked pertaining to recent societal events and the men thoroughly answered the questions in scriptural form.

Brother Robert Stapleton handled the Director’s Keynote, “Love in Action” and delivered a powerful message in not only saying that we love, but actually acting on that Godly love in the different facets of our life.

Kenneth Cebrun (’10) delivered a lesson on “loving the difficult” reminding us that even if someone is hard to love they still deserve our love and efforts.

Jim Dubcak (’95) spoke on “Love for Christ” and gave a great view of what our love for Christ should be like.

The next lesson was “Love for Obedience” by Kyndall Aldrich (’11). He did a great job sharing why we should not only obey, but to love obeying.

Jason Sparks (’99) delivered an edifying lesson on “Love for encouraging the brethren” that gave reasons and ways to encourage those around us.

Bill Burk (’93) closed out our lectureship with a powerful message on “Love for Evangelism” and a reminder that we should apply what we have heard and have a love for seeking and saving the lost.

We had a fantastic turnout for this spiritual feast. The men prepared their lessons with diligent studies. We are already anticipating next year’s lectureship and encourage members of the Lord’s church to travel to attend next year.

Barbara has been involved in missions for over 25 years, both in the field and in publishing.

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