Today's BP Ledger contains items from:
East Texas Baptist University
LifeWay Films releases
True Love Waits documentary
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (LifeWay Films) -- LifeWay Films has released its third new documentary of movements of God. True Love Waits: The Complicated Struggle for Sexual Purity critically examines the success and controversy surrounding the True Love Waits movement.
The documentary traces the True Love Waits story from a concept sketched on a napkin and the unfolding of its first national event in 1994 at the National Mall to the present day relaunch through the True Love Project. Interspersed throughout the documentary are personal stories and testimonials about how the sexual purity movement affected lives the past two decades.
The film, which was directed by Travis Hawkins, also examines the larger issue of teenage abstinence from biblical, personal, cultural, historic and scientific perspectives.
At a launch event for the new film in Nashville, Ben Trueblood, director of student ministry at LifeWay Christian Resources, described the foundation the True Love Waits movement laid for bringing the movement to a new generation of young people who "need to see how the Gospel impacts their purity and how their choices in purity are about more than their sexual decisions."
"A commitment to purity is about God and for God, and it can only be lived out in His grace," Trueblood said.
Clayton King, who with his wife, Sharie, authored the True Love Project curriculum, described the True Love Waits commitment he made at a youth rally -- where he also was a speaker -- and shared how he kept the commitment card in his wallet in the years that followed.
Grace and forgiveness are key themes of the True Love Waits relaunch, he stressed, as is having an honest conversation with teens about the complexity of honoring God with their bodies.
"This generation of young people needs to hear an overdose of God's grace," King said. "My prayer is that people will understand they are image bearers of God."
At the early April launch event, True Love Waits co-founders Jimmy Hester and Richard Ross were presented with framed photos of the 1994 True Love Waits youth rally in Washington, D.C., where 210,000 commitment cards were displayed on the National Mall.
"This was the moment," Hester said, glancing at the photo. "We realized this is a God thing and bigger than we could have imagined."
He reminisced about how the movement grew internationally and the dramatic impact it had in Uganda, a country that had been decimated by AIDS prior to the introduction of True Love Waits. "Here in the U.S. the commitment is often a social issue; there, it is always a life-and-death issue," he said.
Summing up the past 20 years, Hester described the True Love Waits movement as "an indescribable journey in a lot of ways," adding that he is excited about its future "and the direction we're moving."
Ross was quick to agree. "Jimmy and I have been on the ride of our lives," he said, stressing his belief that "God could have used anybody and whispered in their ears" the concept that became True Love Waits.
In affirming the passing of the True Love Waits torch to King as the movement's representative and voice, Ross said, "I love this guy's heart for Jesus and for students."
He closed with a challenge for young people to rediscover the glory and majesty of Jesus. "If you want young people to embrace purity, let them see the King as He is today and say, 'This is for You.'"
Information about the new documentary is available at LifeWay.com/TrueLoveWaitsfilm or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mississippi College table tennis team
earns 2nd Place at 2014 National Championships
CLINTON, Miss. (Mississippi College) -- Mississippi College's table tennis team turned in another strong performance at the national championship games in Monroeville, Pennsylvania to finish in 2nd place.
For the third consecutive year, a strong Mississippi College team, came up a little short. Texas Wesleyan's coed table tennis team captured the national championship on Sunday for the 11th straight year. TWU players exchanged hugs and celebrated at the 2014 TMS College Table Tennis Championships.
"Honestly, it was unexpected," TWU Coach Jasna Rather said. "On paper, MC has two stronger players who are good at doubles, but our players always push themselves beyond their ratings."
The coed championship in Pennsylvania came down to doubles after TWU and Mississippi College players split the first four singles matches (or two wins for each team). In Pittsburg Pirates country, fans on both sides loudly cheered almost every point from the stands.
"I'm extremely happy and proud," Rather said moments after her duo of Emil Santos and Yahao Zhang defeated MC Captain Cheng Li and teammate Yichi Zhang in doubles.
MC coach Ken Qiu and the six members of the Choctaws team were saddened by the loss.
"We did pretty good this year," said Qiu, MC's former captain who launched the squad seven years ago. "I'm pretty proud of the players. I wish we could have gotten the team championship."
A graduate student in sports management, Mississippi College team member Joe Xie tried to stay positive. "There's always hope for next year."
A 23-year-old native of the Dominican Republic, Santos was elated with the Texas Wesleyan triumph. "It's really nice. We worked hard."
At the three-day event near Pittsburgh, Lindenwood University's coed team finished in third place. Next season's National Collegiate Table Tennis Association championship will be played in April 2015 in Eau Clare, Wisconsin.
"ETBU Cares" spreads out to
serve five different needs
By Mike Midkiff
MARSHALL, Texas (East Texas Baptist University) –- Students, faculty, and staff of East Texas Baptist University traveled to different locations in Harrison County to participate in "ETBU Cares" on Saturday, April 5th. "ETBU Cares", sponsored by the ETBU Great Commission Center, exists to help the ETBU community partner with their neighbors through service projects.
"We sent the volunteers to five different locations," said ETBU Director of the Great Commission Center Dr. Lisa Seeley. "This year the Tiger football team is combining their annual volunteer day with 'ETBU Cares.' "
The "ETBU Cares" volunteers rolled up their sleeves and went to work at Love Cemetery in Scottsville, the Habitat for Humanity Marshall build on Doty Street, Dayspring Therapeutic Equestrian Center of Harrision County, located just north of the city limits, Robert E. Lee Elementary and the Food Pantry at Mission Marshall.
Tiger football players and coaches divided into three service teams. One team went to Love Cemetery, another to the Habitat For Humanity Marshall site and the third to the Dayspring Therapeutic Equestrian
Football players joined other students in spreading dirt and sod on the Habitat for Humanity home scheduled to be completed later this month. Clearing brush and debris was the main work at both Love Cemetery and Dayspring.
"I'm so proud of my players to volunteer their time serving a great organization," said Tiger head football coach Joshua Eargle at the Habitat for Humanity location. "ETBU cares about the city of Marshall, and Marshall has already shown they care about ETBU. We are trying to give back to a community that has given so much to our University."
At the Dayspring Therapeutic Equestrian Center the ETBU students cleared a wooded area of underbrush and removed down tree limbs, some small and some large, preparing the area for a sensory trail. Dayspring is scheduled to open in the fall and will be the first of its kind in Harrison County.
"Dayspring, led by Executive Director Sheryl Fogle, seeks to enhance the independence and life skills of individuals with disabilities through multi-level equine programs," Dr. Seeley said.
Sophomore football player Scott Moujalled from Dallas was asked while working at the therapeutic equestrian center , what was harder, football practice or clearing brush?
"I say it is harder to clear out brush," Moujalled said after working with a downed tree covered with vines and roots. "Something you think you can lift up turns out to be very heavy. I never thought a log could be this heavy."
"Nothing brings people together better than physical labor," said senior football player Brandon Pyle of Hallsville.
The Executive Director of Mission Marshall Misty Scott was pleased to see the students. "I love it when the ETBU students come because it is so encouraging to see a legacy continuing to be passed on of servant leadership," shared Scott as students were putting kits together of staple items and serving clients to the food pantry.
"Hopefully, the lesson of contributing to the community in which the students live will follow them wherever God takes them in their journey of life, and they will continue to serve because ETBU chose to encourage and model servant hood for them," shared Scott.
ETBU students joined students from Wiley College, members of the Love Cemetery Burial Association, and the Keepers of Love clearing weeds at the cemetery to make it possible for family members to visit the graveyard. The historic African American cemetery contains graves as early as the 1860's and is the burial ground of many former slaves and their descendants. While at Lee Elementary the "ETBU Cares" volunteers helped with Saturday school providing encouragement to the students.
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