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The President's Circle
(download the President's Circle as a PDF here)
Are you familiar with a kaleidoscope? When I was growing up I would enjoy looking through a kaleidoscope.
“It is an optical instrument in which bits of glass, held loosely at the end of a rotating tube, are sown in continually changing symmetrical forms by reflection in two or more mirrors set at angles to each other.” (Webster Dictionary)
I would always be looking for the master pattern - the pattern that was overarching all the bits and pieces that mirrored disorder or chaos. Change would always be occurring with different colors appearing in my sight. However, I was always looking for the pattern that gives sense, order, and purpose.
Today, what is happening before us is Kaleidoscopic Changefulness. Events, actions, plans, statements of people and much more appear. We try to make sense of it all. We try to draw the lines to each event or “cross the Ts,” but find it very difficult. We attempt to understand the shapes and colors. It does not make sense. What is the purpose? What is the plan? Why did this happen? What does this all mean? How does this fit together?
The great joy and relief is that God knows! He is weaving it all together - all of the happenings into a beautiful tapestry.
To assist you in understanding or exploring the ways and moves of the Lord, the Christmas Story is the perfect model. With centuries of “silence from God,” He breaks into time with the birth of His Son, the Lord Jesus. Read the Bible accounts in Matthew 1-2 and Luke 1-3. Read John 1. Reflect on the responses and activities of people. Feel the concern, excitement, and joy, from Zacharias to the announcement of Gabriel to Mary. Remember the warnings of the Lord to Joseph. Join the study of the Magi as they searched and traveled to the birthplace of the Messiah. Enjoy the evening with the Shepherds and look heavenward. Listen and watch the breathtaking sight. View the presentation of the gifts of the Magi and all the sinister plots that were lurking in the shadows to find the “Babe of Bethlehem” to do away with him.
These events taken by themselves do not “paint” a clear picture. God, the Master Planner, is behind it all. He brings sense to the entire landscape. The closer you move toward Him, the more clarity and mystery will appear, however comfort and assurance will soar in your heart and soul.
The Apostle Paul captures the secret to interpretation within Kaleidoscopic Changefulness:
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28 NKJV
He adds the underpinnings to this magnificent secret in verses 29-30 and then states:
“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31 NKJV
Do you have unexplained happenings in your life? Is there a “bit of mystery” and concern in your life? Why is this happening to me? Simply draw near to Him - He will draw near to You - the answers will come at His choosing!
The Latest Happenings…
▪ Our beloved Campus Chaplain and former missionary in the Christian and Missionary Alliance, Rev. Melvin Carter graduated into the Presence of the Lord October 31, 2013. He leaves a strong legacy with Trinity College of Florida and Toccoa Falls College. Two memorial services were held by the family, one locally in Florida and one in North Carolina. Students and leadership at the College will sorely miss his faithfulness in the things of the Lord, commitment to prayer, and enduring trust in the Lord that radiated from him daily. He is survived by his wife Kathleen, his four children Jené Conklin, Teresa Lea, David Carter, and Carol Ragsdale, their spouses, and seven grandchildren. My personal tribute to this man of God can be read by clicking here.
▪ Sixty-four attended the latest Campus Preview in November. Twenty-four applications were received and shortly after, another twenty-six were received from two local Christian high schools. An alumni gathering was held the day after Campus Preview.
▪ Tribute to Ray Walls, Class of 1959
Ray Milton Walls (1959) passed into the presence of the Lord on December 23, 2012. To honor his life of service and his connection with Trinity College of Florida, his sister, Nadine Walls Mossner, made a gift to the Alumni Association. This gift was used to design the new Alumni Association logo.
Rev. Walls was a native of Iaeger, West Virginia, the son of the late Emick Ray Walls. He was a retired Baptist Minister having served churches in West Virginia, North Carolina, Virginia, Florida and Georgia. Rev. Walls was a member of the Tennille Baptist Church. Ray loved and served the Lord for many years with his wife Lois (Martin, 1960). He was a wonderful individual, Christian, and minister of the Gospel.
Trinity College is grateful for his life of service and the Alumni Association is thankful for the gift made in his honor to help advance the mission of the Alumni Association.
▪ Trinity College’s A Christmas Potpourri is planned for 7:00pm Tuesday, December 3, 2013 at the First Baptist Church of New Port Richey, 6800 Trouble Creek Road, New Port Richey, Florida. Come out and join us for this evening of holiday talent and music that will lift your spirit and fill your heart with joy! Admission is FREE! Directions can be found by clicking here.
▪ Our 2013 Annual Faculty/Staff Christmas Dinner will be Thursday December 5, 2013. Students will minister in music along with a time of fellowship and reflection on the Christmas season. Mr. Steve Phillips, Director of Dining & Hospitality Services, and Mr. Buddy Paynter, Director of Technology, are guiding the evening with a very special menu for all to enjoy.
▪ One hundred ninety-seven attended the C. S. Lewis Luncheon hosted by Dr. Tom Woodward on November 17 in Tampa, a record attendance for this annual event.
▪ Grace Point Community Church began services in the College chapel on November 10, 2013. Rev. Eric Bargerhuff, Ph.D., serves as the lead pastor, teaches at the College, and is giving leadership to enhancing our Honors Program.
▪ The Trinity College of Florida NCCAA men’s basketball team is in full swing and has 4 wins and 1 loss.
▪ The Ladies Volleyball team finished the season with 11 wins and 12 losses overall (9 wins and 7 losses regional). They hosted the 2013 NCCAA Division II South Regional Volleyball Tournament at the New Port Richey Rec Center November 1 and 2.
▪ The last day of classes is December 6. After finals, the winter break will begin December 11. The spring semester will get underway with new student orientation on January 9, 2014, returning student registration on January 10, 2014, and classes beginning January 13, 2014.
▪ Reminder --- to get your tax credit for 2013, be sure to have your donations to Trinity College of Florida postmarked by December 31 or have your online donation made by that date at www.trinitycollege.edu
▪ Trinity College of Florida partnered with Metropolitan Ministries to have its first canned food drive November 6-21. LINK, a student-led leadership group at Trinity, collected over 550 cans and the College campus finished up the drive with an unforgettable Turkey Bowl and pig roast!
Prayer Requests …
▪ Pray that we will all capture the legacy of Mel Carter for our personal lives.
▪ Pray for the remaining gift income need of $116,422.78 by December 31, 2013.
▪ Pray for the additional onsite housing for resident students. A very substantial pledge has been made to encourage others in this pursuit.
▪ Pray for the refreshing of the Faculty and Staff for the new semester.
▪ Pray for Administration as they make decisions for the future.
▪ Pray for the incoming Spring students as they enter the Traditional and Degree Completion programs.
▪ Pray for the health needs of all the staff, administration, and faculty.
We wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Your partnership over this past year has been extremely uplifting and encouraging. God has used you in unique and wonderful ways, building leaders for the future. Thank you for your sacrifice – it is deeply appreciated!!
With a grateful heart,