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Big Life-Big Dreams!

June 29, 2017

“You teach a little by what you say.You teach the most by what you are”. This quotation from Henrietta Mears  expresses the true value of autobiographies for Christian growth and development. In the book Teacher: The Henrietta Mears Story by Marcus Brotherton (Regal , 2006) the impact Miss Mears had on her generation and those that follow is displayed  clearly. Henrietta Mears was born in 1890 and lived an unconventional Christ-centered life of big dreams and bigger legacies. She exploded on to the ministry landscape taking the job of Christian Education director at Hollywood Presbyterian Church in 1928 and stayed overseeing the explosive growth of the Sunday School program until her death in 1963. She invited Bill Bright to live in her home as he and his wife were developing Campus Crusade for Christ, Future professors of Fuller Theological Seminary were a part of her college aged Sunday School class. Her Christian Camping programming model at Forest Home is created in impacting Jim Rayburn’s Young Life philosophy, “Jim based much of his camping philosophy on what He learned at Forest home” (P.114). Henrietta’s Sunday School lessons based on her educational training and public school teaching career earlier in her life were so popular that they formed the basis of Gospel Light publishing so they could be shared across the country and internationally. Billy Graham who sought her counsel during a season of wrestling with doubt declared she was “One of the greatest Christians I have even known” (p.81). Reading through the book it was amazing to conclude that Henrietta impacted and continues to have impact through her former students in almost every major evangelical ministry institution even in the 21st century. The book includes a list of life lessons in Chapter 10 that teach well, a great section of pictures (pp.71-80) and a time line of her life increasing the usefulness of the book. The 150 pages are well footnoted and helpful for formal and informal exploration into the history of youth ministry, Christian camping and Christian education. Read this book her story will impact your life and ministry!

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