2018 FALL Chapel Schedule




Dr. Daniel Kawata
 Leadership Academia University - D. R. of Congo
Pastor Mattie Livesey
 Life Changing Ministries - South Africa
Dr. Carlton May
 More Than Conqueror Church
Min. Demetrius Boone 
 SGA Chapel


Pastor Sam Oye
 Transforming Church - Abuja, Nigeria
Pastor Charles Nesbitt
 Providence Baptist Church
Pastor Roy Barrett
 Discover Life Church - Norcross, GA
Apostle LaFayette Scales
 Rhema Church - Columbus, OH
Dr. Joshua Bogunjoko
 SIM Global Missions
Pastor Connie Neal
Leverrett Hill Baptist Church - Warm Springs, GA
Pastor Wilbur Purvis
Destiny World Church - Austell, GA



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BHU team visits Congo teaching site 2017-2018

David Hopewell Testimony

Professor Hopewell

I can only give God the glory for where I am and what I have accomplished at this point in my life.  Success seemed unlikely when I graduated from high school with a 1.15 GPA.  However, it was during this time that the Lord saved me from my sins.   After moving to Atlanta, I met and was mentored by the late Dr. George McCalep.  Dr. McCalep encouraged me to go back to school.  At the time, I could not even write a sentence.  Howeveras a result of their open enrollment policy, Beulah Heights accepted me.  To date, the Lord has allowed me to author eight publications on various topics such evangelism, parenting, and leadership.  In addition, I have a published article in The African American Journal for Southern Baptists 2008. As of June 1, I launched Informed Magazine, a digital publication and platform that explores the issues, people, and events that are impacting the African-American and faith-based communities.   My most recent project is a television show that is currently in development entitled, “An Hour of Hope with Dr. David Hopewell, Sr.” Additional information about my publications and upcoming segments for the television show are available online at www.thejoshuaministry.org

The Beulah Heights Chapel Experience

One of the best decisions a leader can make is to become fully equipped for his/her assignment.  The challenge for a Christian leader is to make sure that as we are making an academic investment we are simultaneously making an investment in our spiritual lives.  At Beulah Heights we want to ensure that each student is not just reading about God but cultivating a relationship with God. The Beulah Heights chapel experience affords students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to draw near to God in worship as well as open our hearts to hear His word.  
We recognize that many who comprise the Beulah Heights family are serving in leadership roles in various places.  Because of the weight of those responsibilities, we endeavor to make the chapel experience a place of refreshing, replenishing, and encouragement.  As we strive to develop relevant Christian leaders for ministry and the market place, we make it our aim not only to cultivate the competency of the leader but also the character of the leader.  That character is forged as we spend time in His presence.
Second Corinthians 3:18 says, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.  We fully recognize that in order to maximize our effectiveness, God must work in us and on us before He works through us.  Because of God’s commitment to complete this good work that He has begun, each chapel experience is uniquely used by God to strengthen our relationship with Him and to bring about His purpose in our lives. 

Billy R. Johnson

Director of Worship

The Dean visits BHU extension site in Congo

I had the opportunity to teach Organizational Change at our extension site in the Democratic Republic of Congo this past July.  I was very impressed with the students in the class, whom were all professionals holding top-level positions in a verity of businesses and government. Although these students were all accomplished professionals, they had a deep desire to learn and grow personally. Personal growth is the key to organizational growth. As leaders of their organizations, I am convinced that these students will apply the principles of Organizational Change, which were taught in class to the companies they serve to foster positive change. As well as teach the materials I left for them to others. As I was traveling back to Atlanta, I reflected on the BHU mission statement, Developing Global Christian Leader for Ministry and Marketplace. I thought   Beulah Heights University continues to fulfill the 95-year old mission of developing others and it is an honor to be a part of that mission.

Israel: Learning a location By Professor Peter Shirokov

Israel: Learning on Location

What passionate student has not dreamed of hands-on, immersive, on location learning? You probably did. Yes, there is nothing better than actually touching the remains of distant history, experiencing the ancient culture, observing enduring customs to make the world of the Bible more real. During the Fall Semester (2013) some Beulah students discovered this kind of learning and found out what it feels like to walk where Bible happened. These students participated in a new extension course “The Journey of Israel: Historical, Cultural and Religious Survey”. Peter Shirokov, who teaches several courses at the University, took students to Israel, visiting several key historical and cultural sites in Israel and lectured on location. 

The students meandered down the slopes of Mt. Olives taking in Jerusalem’s topography. They peeked inside the empty Garden Tomb, sat amidst the remnants of King David’s house, and even walked underneath modern Jerusalem through the underground tunnels built by Herod. They walked on top of Jerusalem’s walls and towers built by Suleiman the Magnificent, listening to the summary of Jerusalem’s 3000 year-long history. They learned about the Second Temple, sitting by the remains of Herod’s grand constructions and heard stories of Jewish revolts against Rome on top of the Masada fortress. The students peered into Qumran caves that preserved the oldest surviving Biblical texts. They waddled in the gentle waters of Jordan River and floated in the Dead Sea. The students roamed the ruins of ancient Capernaum and prayed in the town’s ancient synagogue. They sailed on Sea of Galilee and even feasted on some local catch. At sunset the waves of Mediterranean beat against their feet in the Roman port city of Caesarea, where Paul was held before his journey to Rome. The curvy narrow streets of Jaffa, where Peter stayed in the house of Simon the tanner charmed them late at night.

Most people can only imagine such things. But during this 10 day long journey Beulah students had a chance to touch history and visit places connected with many biblical passages. They learned a lot about modern and ancient Israel. The sights they saw and stories they heard tested their understanding of history and Bible daily. These students experienced Jewish culture and way of life up close and in the process gained a deeper understanding of their own Christian heritage. Perhaps next time such opportunity is made possible, you should stop dreaming and imagining, sign up, and make this kind of learning on location a reality! 

For details about next trip (January 2015) see www.walkisrael.weebly.com

Rollercoaster Lessons

Derrick Barbee

Kingda Ka is a steel accelerator roller coaster located at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, New Jersey. It is the world's tallest roller coaster (456 feet), the world's second fastest roller coaster (128 miles per hour), and it has the world’s longest drop (418 feet). 

There are many parallels between riding a rollercoaster like the Kingda-Ka and riding the rollercoaster of ministry leadership.  Recently I had the opportunity to officiate a funeral and a wedding on the same day.  Below are what I hope to be some edifying insights from that experience for you as a leader.

  • Willingness to Wait:  Every good rollercoaster starts off with the same thing – a long line of people waiting to ride the rollercoaster.  Good leadership tends to start off the same way as well, with a long period of waiting.  That’s actually one of the identifying markers for a good rollercoaster.  The more people waiting in line to ride it means the ride must be worth the wait.  One of the ways that we know that God must be up to something good in our lives as leaders is because He makes us wait.  Leaders are not made in the microwave, but rather they are made in the crockpot – God’s leaders are slow-cooked until they are tender enough to be served to His people.  The waiting process is God’s crockpot.  Our desire to rush to the front of the line is our attempt at microwaving ourselves.  Psalm 37:34 admonishes leaders to “Wait on the LORD, and keep His way.  And He shall exalt you to inherit the land.” (NKJV)
  • Embracing the Extremes:  Rollercoasters take you from one extreme to another, to great heights and tremendous depths, in a matter of seconds.  Leadership can also take you from inspiring heights to tearful lows in moments.  The morning that I had to eulogize the son of church members, it was an emotional valley for me.  However, just a few hours later that evening I officiated a wedding ceremony for a young married couple.  It was a mountain-top experience for me.  F. Scott Fitzgerald said, “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.”  The constitution to expeditiously move from one extreme to another seamlessly is a requirement for efficacious leadership.  Leaders must be able to successfully live in the tension of rollercoaster moments.
  • Participating Partners:  What makes any rollercoaster ride the most enjoyable is when you have other people riding with you who help to make the experience more memorable.  Riding a rollercoaster alone is no fun.  Going through the highs and lows of ministry is much more enjoyable and endurable when you do it with others.  We all need friends to yell with us, to laugh with us, to cry with us.  Jim Collins, in his book “Good to Great,” helps leaders understand that we must put the right people in the right seats on our rollercoaster (bus) to achieve the right results.
  • The End of the Ride:  The greatest lesson that I learned from riding the rollercoaster of a funeral and a wedding that day was this:  God was in it all along.  God was with me through it all.  God was with the family and friends of the deceased church member.  God was with the couple, family, and friends at the wedding.  My final declaration at the end of that day was, “The LORD gave, and the LORD takes away.  Blessed be the name of the LORD.” (Jb. 1:21)
Overcoming Globesity

by Dr. Brenda C. Chand

Obesity is quickly becoming a global epidemic. Globesity is the blend of global and obesity and is the informal term given to this worldwide social problem. It is a chronic disease in individuals of all ages, prevalent in both developed and developing countries, replacing the more traditional public health concerns of under-nutrition and infectious disease. In many developing countries, obesity coexists with under-nutrition and is more prevalent in urban and economically advanced regions than in rural populations. Health problems associated with obesity range on a continuum from non-fatal, debilitating to life-threatening. The obese individual is faced with psychological problems from within, and sociological stigmatism without. The two largest contributing culprits to the epidemic are high-fat, energy-dense diets and an environment that promotes sedentary lifestyles. While the role of genetics in obesity is currently inconclusive and will be for years to come, known risk factors are modifiable making the epidemic largely manageable and preventable (World Health Organization [WHO], 2004, pp. 1-2, 4, 16, 240).

According to the World Health Organization, non-fatal, debilitating health problems associated with obesity include respiratory difficulties, chronic musculoskeletal problems, skin problems, and infertility. WHO also offers four main life-threatening, chronic health problem areas associated with obesity: 1) cardiovascular problems, including hypertension, stroke and coronary heart disease; 2) conditions associated with insulin resistance such as non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus; 3) certain types of cancers, especially the hormonally related and large-bowel cancers; and 4) gallbladder disease (WHO, 2004, pp. 42-43). The American Heart Association echoes the list specifically stating obesity is a major risk factor for coronary heart disease potentially leading to heart attack, and other diseases including breast cancer, colorectal cancer, endometrial cancer, end-stage renal disease, liver disease, low back pain, renal cell cancer, obstructive sleep apnea, arthritis, and urinary incontinence (American Heart Association [AHA] and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2005, p. 14).

Obese or overweight individuals have a lower life expectancy. A study by Peeters and associates (2003) concludes that a “40-year-old nonsmoking male who is overweight will lose 3.1 years of life expectancy; one who is obese will lose 5.8 years. A 40-year-old overweight, nonsmoking female will lose 3.3 years of life expectancy; one who is obese will lose 7.1 years” (A. Peeters, et.al., 2003, as cited in AHA, 2005). Additionally, for “adults with a BMI above 45, life expectancy decreases by up to 20 years” (Kevin R. Fontaine, et. al., 2003, as cited in AHA, 2005)

The AHA also lists the two leading causes of obesity in America as “too much of the wrong foods” and “lack of physical activity” (AHA, 2005, pp. 18-25). Factors contributing to an unhealthy diet include bigger portions, eating foods that do not meet nutritional needs, and eating out frequently. Contributing factors to the lack of physical activity according to the AHA include increased use of technology, sedentary jobs, and de-emphasis of physical activity in schools (AHA, 2005, pp. 18-27).

 Overwhelmingly, those who have been over-comers of this epidemic are those who have the capacity to self-regulate their treatment. Self-efficacy, defined as “the individual’s belief or expectation that he or she can master a situation and bring about desired change” is the determinate of one’s capacity for self-regulation (Corey, 2005, p. 230).According to Bandura self-efficacy is constructed through enactive mastery experiences, vicarious experiences, verbal persuasion, and physiological and affective states; and mediated through cognitive, motivational, affective, and selective processes (Bandura 2002, pp. 79, 98). Increasing self-efficacy can move an individual from an attitude of hopelessness and helplessness to an attitude of confidence. Thus, initializing and increasing self-efficacy can make a contribution to the solution of this epidemic.

According to Corey, a basic assumption of the social learning approach is that “people are capable of self-directed behavior change” (Corey, 2005, p. 230).It becomes clear from a review of the literature that maximal change outcomes as it relates to obesity occur when the individual executes his or her own choices. Results are more effective when the individual makes a decision about the specific behaviors s/he wants to control or change. Cormier and Nurius (as cited in Corey, 2005, p. 249) have identified five characteristics for an effective self-management program. These include:

  1.  A combination of self-management strategies is usually more useful than a single strategy.
  2. Self-management efforts need to be employed regularly over a sustained period or their effectiveness may be too limited to produce any significant change.
  3. It is essential that [individuals] make a self-evaluation and set goals that are personally meaningful to them.
  4. The use of self-reinforcement is an important component of self-management programs.
  5. Some degree of environmental support is necessary to maintain changes that result from a self-management program.

Additionally, Watson and Tharp (2002) offer five basic steps that must be followed in a self-management program to effect change: 1) selecting goals, 2) translating goals into target behaviors, 3) self-monitoring (involves the individual observing his or her own behavior—includes cues and consequences), 4) working out an action plan (includes methods such as punishment, stimulus control, behavioral contracts, and social support), and 5) evaluating an action plan for necessary adjustments (Watson and Tharp as cited in Corey, 2005, pp. 249-250).

 In general, the literature indicates that billions of dollars are spent each year globally in medical care for degenerative diseases caused in large part by poor nutritional habits and lack of exercise. Overweight and obese individuals are stigmatized in certain societies, thus causing such individuals psychological and sociological suffering. Significant concerns are raised relating to the relationship between obesity and mental and physical health, food addiction, children at risk, social stigmatism, and health care costs. Obesity is a disease proven to be significantly manageable and preventable through increased self-efficacy and self-regulation.


 American Heart Association and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (2005). A nation at risk: Obesity in the United States. Dallas, TX: Author.

 Bandura, Albert (2002). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York: Freeman.

 Corey, Gerald (2005). Theory and practice of counseling and psychotherapy (7th ed.). Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole.

 World Health Organization (2004). Obesity: Preventing and Managing the Global Epidemic. WHO Technical Report Series 894. Geneva, Switzerland: Author.


Women In Leadership

Susan Hunt and Peggy Hutcheson have an interesting approach to women and leadership in the church.  They write to help Christian men and women to recognize and use the unique leadership talents of women in the church.  Hunt and Hutcheson also suggest that the church is the most appropriate context for Christian women to be developed as leaders.  According to these women, our definition of the role of “helper” is in need of expansion.  Women should fully embrace their role as “helper,” viewing it as a positive and powerful role.[1]

            Jeanne Porter seeks to add female images to the language of leadership that empower and broaden understanding of leadership.  Traditionally, western language has excluded women from the leadership conversation.  However, transformative leadership models challenge the status quo and the pictures that come to mind when one speaks of a “leader.”[2]  Whereas terms such as director, guide, pilot, shepherd, helmsman, father or commander have been acceptable terms, new terms are being added to the description such as coordinator, collaborative, support, team and communicator which are uniquely female.

            Historical perspectives on women in leadership take us through Greek, Roman, and Jewish societies where women exercised leadership behaviors and responsibilities despite structures of oppression, silence and seclusion.[3]  History of women in the Church reveals the earliest traditions of women in liturgical settings and identifies when some of the oppression, silence and seclusion of women began.  Teresa Berger, a feminist theologian, prepared a gender analysis in liturgical historiography.  In it she discusses ways in which women have traditionally and historically worshipped.  She states:

The earliest Christian communities grew in a cultural context where space was clearly gendered.  Initially, Christian communities met in a space typically associated with women, that is in private homes, and they used that sphere’s language, namely family-centered language, to describe themselves.  “In church” was synonymous with “in the home.”[4]


It seems that as the church began to organize in a more formal way, women were ostracized and no longer welcomed in the public setting.  Women were being distanced from the altar and prohibited to preside in the celebrations.  This move toward a male-dominated style of leadership resulted in a disadvantage for women in public worship spaces.[5]

            Women have come through many eras of oppression from the late-1900s to the present.  Many liturgical and women’s movements emerged in the twentieth century that created shifts in the culture and made themselves known within the Church.  According to Teresa Berger, such movements typified the presence of women into liturgical practice and discourse.[6]  Berger chose the term, “Women’s Liturgical Movement”[7] over and against “Feminist Liturgical Movement,” due to her desire to approach the subject from a broader perspective, including liturgies that are often women-specific in focus.  These movements included men and women and advocate for liturgical gender justice.[8]

Vashti McKenzie, one of the contemporary voices for women in leadership in the twenty-first century, liberates African-American women to explore their ancestry and rich heritage in leadership.  She gives them no choice but to accept their leadership roles and to face the struggles and oppressive structures that women have faced since antiquity.  One of the major ways to develop women in leadership, according to McKenzie, is to “help women develop strategies that are based on expressing their female strengths rather than denying their gender traits.”[9]

As it relates to differences in the genders one must acknowledge that both men and women can fulfill their roles as leaders in the family, church and marketplace.  Gretchen Gaebelein Hull affirms that men and women lead in their own individual ways.  These differences are not designed for disrespect or competition, but rather they are a direct mirror of the unity, equality, harmony and cooperation of the Godhead.[10]


Antoinette G Alvarado, D.Min.
Regent University Dissertation 2008


[1] Susan Hunt and Peggy Hutcheson, 10-11, 27.


[2] Porter, 24-26.


[3] Vashti M. McKenzie, Not Without a Struggle (Cleveland

, OH:  The Pilgrim Press, 1996), 1.


[4] Teresa Berger, Women’s Ways of Worship (Collegeville

, MN:  The Liturgical Press, 1999), 19.


[5] Ibid., 19.


[6] Ibid., 109.


[7] Ibid.


[8] Ibid., 110.


[9] Ibid., 70.


[10] Gretchen Gaebelein-Hull, Equal to Serve (Grand Rapids

, MI:  Baker Books, 1991), 226.


Opportunities that exist in the Nonprofit Sector

The new economy has propelled nonprofit organizations into comprising the newest and fastest growing category of organizations in America, according to the Georgia Center for Nonprofits, (the hallmark organization which leads in providing resources, training and advocacy for nonprofits). What is a nonprofit organization? A nonprofit organization is a legal designation granted to an organization by the State and IRS for charitable purposes, to provide services and social benefits to the public.

A nonprofit organization may apply for and receive tax exemption from federal and some state income taxes and property tax. Other benefits include: Reduced postal rate, liability protection in the event of legalities and legitimization of fundraising efforts.

According the Georgia Center for Nonprofits, the Nonprofit sector impacts the business sector in a number of ways: 1.7 million registered in 2008 (65% growth); 1.4 trillion in revenue from Public Charities; 6% of all corporations are nonprofits and one in 12 citizens are employed by nonprofits. Given the rapid growth of nonprofits, it is expected that this trend will continue for several reasons. The downward economic spiral has created the demise of many governmental social, human and community development programs. Thus, this gap is being shifted to individuals and groups who have created their nonprofits to provide valuable services to the community. As a consultant in the nonprofit sector, I have witnessed a phenomenal growth trend in faith-based nonprofits due to both new awareness and opportunities for empowerment programs. Faith-based organizations are the newcomers to the funding table in accessing governmental and other funding; fortunately, many are ceasing this opportunity to create community development and other social services programs that empower their communities through services and jobs.

There are attractive career opportunities available in the nonprofit sector: CEO, Executive Director, Community Developer, Ministry Leader, Job Developer, Community Organizer, Entrepreneur, International developer, etc. As we lead in these times of uncertainty, we must become creators of both services and job opportunities – the nonprofit sector is posed for both!

Dr. Betty Palmer
Chair for Leadership Studies, Beulah Heights University

A Sure and Strong Foundation

As both a professor at BHU and an alumni member, I can truly say that you are at the right place to build the foundation of your ministry here!   I graduated with my BA in Biblical Education in 1987 and my experience here is what led the way to my future. I eventually obtained a Master’s Degree in Leadership, then went on to receive a Doctoral Degree through ORU (at that time, those degrees were not yet available through Beulah Heights).  If it hadn’t been for the foundation that I received as a student at BHU, I honestly don’t believe I would be where I am today in my ministry.

We all know enough about the business of building that without a sure and strong foundation, a structure will never endure.  One strong storm can come through and destroy it in an instant if the builder doesn’t take the time to pour out and secure the foundation properly.  The word of God tells us in Isaiah 33:6; “He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the LORD is the key to this treasure.”  I will always be grateful for the foundation of my ministry being poured out at BHU.   It was here that I became grounded in the word of God.  I was blessed by instructors who truly cared for me and were willing to assist me in both understanding and following the calling of God on my life.  They saw the gifts that God had instilled within me and helped build my confidence with many of the areas I was unsure of myself in.

Not everyone who attends a Bible College or goes into ministry is going to be successful, because they have not laid a good foundation. I attended college with some young men and women who had so much potential for becoming great in the Kingdom of God, yet they didn’t last any time at all.  They wouldn’t submit to authority, thought they already knew everything, and simply weren’t teachable.   We can all easily name folks who we thought were well on their way in ministry who just suddenly collapsed and even turned away from the Lord completely.  They may have been wise in the word, but lacked a good foundation to keep them strong through the storms of life.

Luke 6: 47-49 states; “As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will show you what they are like.  They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built.  But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”

God has a purpose and plan for your life.  If your desire is to find and follow that plan, let me recommend that you allow BHU to help you pour that foundation of ministry for you.  Through the caring staff, wise counsel of proven leaders, teaching of the word of God and fellowship of fellow students, you will be in position to build a strong future that will not only keep you strong through the storms of life, but to eternal glory!


Dr. Chris Bowen


Forty-eight (48) years ago (August, 1964) the Board of Trustees approached me to accept the position of Academic Dean of Beulah Heights Bible College. After prayer and in consultation with my wife, and agreeing to accept the position, I resigned the church I was pastoring in Midland, Michigan and moved my family to Atlanta to engage in this new area of Kingdom service.

The total student enrollment in the fall semester 1964 was less than 25 students. Having pastured in both Boston, MA and Midland, MI for the past seven years, we embarked on a totally new venture and challenge; that is, we were joining the academic world of Christian higher education.

Arriving on the campus of BHBC in August was a learning curve. The fall semester was scheduled to begin the first week of September and, in the absence my predecessor, I discovered that nothing had been done in scheduling of classes, etc. It became my immediate responsibility to plan the entire semester, assigning classes, etc. in one week.

It has been an exciting adventure to observe the metamorphous that has taken place during these 48 years. We struggled for many years without the benefit of accreditation by a USDE accrediting agency which denied our students access to federal student financial aid funds. It was not until 1992 that we received “Candidacy” with the Transnational Association of Christian Colleges & Schools (TRACS) that students could enjoy this benefit. It was during the tenure of President, Dr. Samuel R. Chand that this was achieved, while we also experienced an amazing growth spurt. The college’s growth placed us as one of the fastest growing Bible colleges in North America. Additionally, within a few short years we achieved accreditation with a second national accrediting agency, namely, the Association for Biblical Higher Education (ABHE), both of which are accredited members of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). This growth is continuing under the able leadership of our present President, Dr. Benson M. Karanja.

From 1964 to present the institution (BHU) has moved from an enrollment of less than 25 students to now more than 850, with anticipated growth continuing. We have gone from being a 4 years Bible College offering one (1) undergraduate degree, to a fully accredited University with a graduate school division offering the M.A., M.B.A., and M.Div; and, beginning this fall 2012, a new doctoral (D.Min) degree program will enter the mix of degree programs offered by the University. Additionally, in the spring 2013 semester, we will begin a new undergraduate degree in Business Administration (B.B.A.).

As we reflect on the what is to come; and, as BHU moves boldly into the future with the development of additional undergraduate and graduate degree programs to meet the needs of our student cliental; it is important that we realize that these developing programs will require us to be bold risk takers as we face the challenges of the future. If is true that the whole purpose of the “Academic Village” is to transform students, we must embrace a commitment to become one of the most dynamic, private, Christian universities in our country; and, this will require a commitment to continuous quality improvement in order to compete successfully in the arena of global Christian higher education. Our challenge is to be bold, creative, and collaborative, in the development of meaningful degree programs that will provide the ultimate learning experience for our students while they are enrolled in our community.

It is with heart felt conviction and firm belief that we boldly declare that BHU in this ever changing academic world will see that “the best is yet to come.” I end this time of brief reflections by quoting Ralph Waldo Emerson who said it so well; “…write it on your heart; every day is the best day in the year.” (Emerson, 2010). Conversely, with deliberate conviction; and, both engaging and embracing change as it occurs, we declare that “every year is promising to be the best year here at BHU!”

James B. Keiller, Th.D., D.D.
Vice Preseident & Dean for Academic Affairs

A Time for New Beginnings

The beginning of a new school year always reminds me that God is the God of beginnings. He is the one who stands at the starting blocks of our lives and sounds the indicator that the race has begun. He is the one who sets the parameters for the race, determines the distance, and prepares the course that you and I must travel. The main consideration that always comes to my mind during this time of year is that “In the beginning, God…”

You may have begun some other things without him before in your life. You may have tried some other endeavors without his presence or sanction. You may even be blissfully unaware of His impetus in the events of your life right now. This state of mind is generally short-lived. Sooner or later you and I will come to recognize that we need him in each of our several beginnings. I have come to discover that endeavors begun without Him are doomed from the start. How many times have we frustrated ourselves, and the plans of God for our lives trying to catalyze our own success? True success is only found in the will of God and the will of God always begins with God.

Life is a series of beginnings. Now that is oxymoronic and in some ways defies logic. One would think that after a thing has begun it has expended the one beginning that it requires. One might posit that no individual, event, organization, or entity can have more than one beginning. While I understand this logic I find it lacking. You see, life is a series of beginnings. The way of life is a cyclical way that leads us from inception through various stages and phases to an apparent end which when we arrive there strangely appears like (you guessed it) a new beginning. This is the nature of human existence as God has created it to be.

My admonition to you in this season is to learn how to begin again! With each new school year we have the opportunity to begin again. If we did not perform in high school as admirably as we would have liked that is fine. We cannot go back and retrieve those years. The only thing that we can do is begin again. Last year was rough and the previous season seemed like it would never end but it has! Here we are at the start of a new school year and all we have to do is make up our minds to begin again.

I have come to discover that if we do not actively and intentionally begin again, we will carry the crises from previous seasons of life into this new season that has begun all around us. I have also discovered that new beginnings foster hope and expectation that energize us for the struggles that we will inevitably face in this new season. Worry about the calamity of the past does not go back in time and repair it. It only goes forward in time and robs our future of the hope, expectation, joy, peace, and strength that is waiting there for us.

We must follow Paul’s admonition to:

  • Forget the past.
  • Reach into the future.
  • Press toward the mark of prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus!

This is your next opportunity. What will you do with it? No matter what you are doing in life and no matter what is going on around you, in order to be successful you and I will have to manage our beginnings.

Grace & Peace

Johnathan E. Alvarado, D.Min.
Dean of the Chapel 

Francis Wanja

Chapel experience is one of the most fulfilling experiences for a Beulah Heights University student. The mere atmosphere of unadulterated praise and worship experience is enough to knock one’s socks off. The unique electrifying atmosphere in the chapel would easily light the candles in your heart and prompt you to give your last and best to the Messiah, which is the way it’s supposed to be anyway. Walking into the chapel, one is always welcomed by a team of dedicated students who will hand you a flyer with a smile that leaves you feeling so much at home that you would have to be quiet stiff not to give them a friendly embrace.

As alumni, coming back to this adorned heaven on earth is always a homecoming. Familiar faces of professors and students and staff always gives you that easy look that says, “You belong here.” The dean of chapel, Dr Alvarado, with a worship dexterity that can only be God given, leads the chapel in such a profound way that the words “Good Leadership is a blessing,” rings very true.

A lot can be said about our President, Dr. Karanja, but trying to go against the urge to be wordy describing our esteemed leader, I can but just say that his proclamation on us claiming the day and the season at the beginning of all his addresses is the most reflective piece of inspiration that anyone can give. Words are powerful tools, sages have long contended that, and these words that our President lovingly and repeatedly speaks are deep beyond imagination. The Idea of God choosing me undeservedly is one of sovereign love, and realizing this can exponentially increase our imagination of what a loving God we serve.

Coming across oceans to study the word of God, and meeting such a wonderful community of believers has not only increased my faith in Christ, but given me the tools needed to evangelize back home and beyond. The chapel experience is like a catalyst that speeds up the rate of my growth in Christ as well as act as a blueprint for leading both at home and beyond.

In conclusion, let’s remember that from the house of Judah (Praise), our savior was born, and in the same way, we need to praise our way through redemption.

Francis Wanja
Undergraduate Student
B. A. Candidate in Community and International Economic Development


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Premier Christian University in Atlanta, Georgia and one of the oldest Christian universities in the Southeast. Fulfilling our mission to develop relevant Christian leaders for ministry and marketplace since 1918.

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