Honest Gabe

by Anneliese Wahlman  |  July 19, 2018

The best policy

I’m not a parent, but from watching my sister Catie and her kids, it seems to me that it is a truth universally acknowledged that a mother trying to maintain a semblance of control is in want of a child who will keep her honest.

Enter my nephew Gabriel.

Gabe is six years old and growing up quickly. He proudly showed me his teeth—or lack of them—the other day over FaceTime. It’s hard for me not to feel happy around him, especially when he tells me that my mouth looks like the Amazon logo when I laugh.

The world is shiny and new, simple and golden for Gabe. Maybe that’s why he’s so fun to talk to. Or maybe it’s because, like most kids, he’s rich in the currency of total transparency. He just says stuff how it is, and there’s no reason to pretend you are something you aren’t. There is something renewing to the human spirit when you hang out with someone so very authentic, like their words are growing this beautiful but forgotten thing …
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Anneliese Wahlman Editorial Intern
Light Bearers

Three Keys to a Great Marriage

by Ty Gibson  |  July 5, 2018

Someone has said, “Marriage is like flies on a windowsill. Those on the outside want in, and those on the inside want out.”

Well, I’ve got better news. It’s possible to be on the inside of marriage and want to be there. I’ve been on the inside my entire adult life. As soon as I saw Sue, I thought, “She’s the one for me.” As soon as she saw me, she thought, “He’s really weird,” (in an adorable way, I assume). We were hitched at 18.

Nobody is the oracle of wisdom on marriage, but Sue and I still like each other immensely, so something has gone right. But it’s not because we’re unique. It’s because of the consistent application of principles anybody can apply. Here are three that have kept Sue and me deeply in love.

No force. We allow one another a lot of space to be ourselves. Freedom is the operating system of reality. Freedom is risky, but it’s the only relational dynamic in which love can thrive. Early in our marriage, I tried to control Sue, …
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Ty Gibson Co-Director
Light Bearers

AGE-less

by Risë Rafferty, RDN  |  July 4, 2018

As I turn 50 this month, I have to admit, the concept of being ageless is rather appealing. I would love to know how to age less. One way of minimizing the impact of aging is by decreasing AGEs. Rather than referring to the lapse of time, AGEs are molecules called advanced glycation end products (AGEs). They are also referred to as glycotoxins. Typically, our bodies make them in limited amounts. We also ingest a considerable amount.

Our standard American diet typically contains high levels of AGEs. AGEs are considered toxins that have been linked to cardiovascular, liver, kidney, and Alzheimer’s disease, as well as diabetes. AGEs are naturally present in uncooked animal-derived foods that are high in fat and protein, such as red meat and cheese. Dry cooking—broiling, grilling, frying, searing, and roasting—these foods results in the formation of additional AGEs, raising the levels from 10-100 times over that of uncooked food.

The body can take care of the AGEs that are part of normal metabolism. However, if excessively high levels of AGEs are reached, they can cause diseases. …
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Risë Rafferty, RDN Health Educator
Light Bearers

ARISE and the Youth Revival of Our Church

by David Asscherick  |  July 2, 2018

There is a genuine revival taking place among the youth and young adults of my local church. Read that first sentence again, please. And again.

This is not a hyperbole or exaggeration; it’s the wonderful, God-glorifying truth. Let me tell you the story.

ARISE held its first Australian program at the Kingscliff Church in early 2013, five years ago. Since that inaugural program, there has been an Australian ARISE program every year. These ARISE programs, based on our The Story curriculum, last about 14 weeks. The first year we had 26 students, including several of our local church’s young adults. Every year since 2013 the number of students has increased, until the last two years we’ve reached our maximum capacity which is about 45 students.

This year we had 44 and 23 of them were teenagers.

Teenagers!

This is coming at a time when the church is increasingly and desperately wrestling with the fact that we are losing many of our young people. Estimates vary, but the numbers are sobering and it sure looks like a large percentage of Adventist …
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David Asscherick Speaker
Light Bearers

News Flash: Burkina Faso

by Meiring Pretorius  |  June 1, 2018

“At least 35 people have died and 90 more were injured after a series of attacks in Burkina Faso, believed to have been conducted by Islamic extremists. Seven soldiers were killed in the country’s capital Ouagadougou after gunmen open fired on the French Embassy and army headquarters. Eight of the militants were killed during the attacks in the former French colony and several other people were wounded among the security forces.”

As I am reading and reflecting on this news flash, memories and feelings flash back into my mind. I can still hear the blast of the car bomb. I can still feel the shake of the church building. I can still see the panic on the faces in front of me. I can still hear the gunshots fired in the street around the corner of the Adventist Mission in Burkina Faso. “What is happening?” my mind screamed. I had never been in a situation like this before!

It was Friday morning, March 3. My plane landed in Burkina Faso the previous afternoon. Light Bearers Ministry sent me to the …
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Meiring Pretorius Light Bearers Field Representative

Sour Wine

by Risë Rafferty, RDN  |  May 30, 2018

In the year following her CHIP attendance, Angie lost over 100 pounds. Recently, Angie shared her story with the current CHIP class. Gasps were heard around the room as she told of her weight loss journey. She was flooded with questions like, “What do you eat?” Do you ever eat…?” Was she able to include greatly beloved foods in her weight loss journey? Inherent in their questions was the hope that perhaps there is a way to achieve health goals while still enjoying food.

Food is more than nutrition, more than building blocks that support bodily functions, more than a source of fuel with which we produce energy. It is information that the digestive system processes and relays to the nervous system and brain. Food can make us feel good or bad, and it accomplishes this in various ways.

The foods we typically have great difficulty relinquishing are more than likely the foods we use to feel calm, give ourselves a lift, or provide a sense of reward and heightened pleasure. We know that food is capable of lighting up …
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Risë Rafferty, RDN Health Educator
Light Bearers

Climbing and Hiding

by David Asscherick  |  May 28, 2018

Lately, I’ve been taking my teenage sons, Landon and Jabel, to the climbing gym. I was introduced to rock climbing by two close friends, a young couple named Tim and Tanya, when I was a teenager. On my first day, I had to be essentially rescued by Tanya from the top of an 80-foot granite spire. It was an inauspicious start to what would become a lifelong passion.

What many cannot grasp, though, is that climbing isn’t actually very dangerous. So long as one is skilled in the techniques of rope management, anchor building, and risk management, rock climbing becomes almost pedestrian in terms of danger, as any experienced climber will attest. In fact, in many cities, being a pedestrian would be more hazardous than climbing with proper equipment and technique.

Is there danger? A little, but it can be minimized by responsible behavior and a basic awareness of one’s situation and surroundings.

This is why I’m teaching my sons and have been for years. I want them to know how to face not just a steep cliff but life’s …
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David Asscherick Speaker
Light Bearers

A Feast In July

by Ty Gibson  |  May 4, 2018

Light Bearers Convocation is right around the corner, July 3-7. If you’ve never attended, you’re missing out. “Convocation” is a big, old word. We don’t necessarily like big words, but we do like old words with big meaning. This word basically means, A called assembly for a purpose. The purpose of our convocation is to spend some concentrated time in the Word of God. It’s an annual event best characterized as a spiritual feast, and you are hereby invited to the table. This year, seven on-fire preachers will delve into a segment of Scripture that is rarely considered.

Twelve books, twelve men, one message of hope written over a 400-year period. The Minor Prophets cover the history of Israel from pre-exile in Babylon to the return to Jerusalem (about 800 BC to 400 BC). With the exception of Jonah, Nahum, and Obadiah, these prophets spoke to the tribes of Israel. They brought God’s people messages of judgment, hope, and salvation.

The Minor Prophets spoke not only for God, but of God. Glimpses of Calvary, promises of salvation, and proclamations of …
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Ty Gibson Co-Director
Light Bearers

The CHIP Highway

by Risë Rafferty, RDN  |  May 2, 2018

Carl had the typical cardio metabolic syndrome profile: diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and elevated cholesterol and triglycerides. He approached me after a week into the Complete Health Improvement Program (CHIP) that I was leading at the Adventist Health Medical Center. “I am not going to change the way I eat,” he said. “I have eaten beef and chicken every day of my life. I rarely eat vegetables. I don’t cook and I’m not going to start. This program isn’t going to work for me.”

I assured Carl there was no pressure to stay in the program. He could drop out at any time, but I encouraged him to keep coming. Maybe there would be something worthwhile? We also enjoyed having him in the group.

A couple weeks passed, and I noticed Carl was contributing more and more to the discussions. His attitude had clearly changed. He was interacting with other participants. He began including some fruits and vegetables into his diet. One evening he told the group about the chili and minestrone soup he made and shared the recipes with everyone. …
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Risë Rafferty, RDN Health Educator
Light Bearers

Rescued in Christ—Part 2

by James Rafferty  |  April 30, 2018

Has Jesus given eternal life to every person?  What we can say with biblical clarity is that the life and death of Jesus purchased temporal life for everyone. This is Paul’s argument to the Athenians in Acts chapter 17:

“God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though He be not far from every one of us: For in Him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also His offspring” (Acts 17:24-28, KJV).

…it’s only through Christ …
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James Rafferty Co-Director
Light Bearers