Shalom Y’all!



We’re three weeks into the craziness of OneLife now and if you can’t tell from the pictures, we’re LOVING it.

This week in class we discussed A LOT. I can only speak for myself, but I’m pretty sure my mind exploded at least five or six times. We started off looking at the big picture of the Bible on Tuesday with Chris White and we talked about how everything in the Bible is connected through God’s idea of shalom-wholeness and prosperity-that was broken when sin entered the world.

This can be seen in the creation story in Genesis 1 in four different relationships:

  • Humans and God
  • Humans and other humans
  • Humans and creation
  • Humans and self

The Fall broke each of these in different ways, and it’s through redemption and restoration that God will purify each relationship again.

One of the areas that we dove a bit deeper into with another speaker we had later in the week (Dave Bindewald) was the creation story itself. We took the ‘big picture’ and zoomed in on a few different aspects. (Creation, The Fall, Redemption, Restoration) Dave started off his time with us by having us read Genesis 1 and observe different pieces of the story. He told us that when it comes to what we believe, if we get the beginning right, we get a whole lot else right. In Genesis 1:28, we receive the cultural mandate. God tells mankind to rule over the earth, and part of that means it’s our job to explore and play in the world God has given up. He wants us to go out into His creation and experience it-stand in awe of everything around us and see His goodness-because everything He’s created is good. That can be seen in the first chapter of Genesis when He says not once, not twice, but six times that what He created was good, and then after looking over everything He’d created, followed it up by saying that it was very good (or as we here in Onelife are saying now, ‘good good’).

So we took it upon ourselves to go out and explore the good good creation. Wednesday we went to see Sight and Sound’s production of Jesus. We looked at how shalom was expressed in the play and talked about different aspects of the show afterwards as a group.

A group of us went to a packing event at GAiN over the weekend and helped pack irrigation kits for people in third world countries so that they have an opportunity to not only farm their own food, but learn the good news of the gospel as well. And in the coming weeks we’ll have the chance to go and see more of God’s workmanship as we begin our experiential learning. But for right now we’re soaking in His goodness in the time spent with each other. The jokes, the laughter, the encouragement, the community that we’re all a part of-it’s all good good creation too!

Below, you’ll see the ways that we see GOOD GOOD in our community! Stay tuned for our experiential learning adventures and have a week as awesome as ours!

– Amara Sherman

Digging Deeper into the Good Good Creation

Brandon Bechtold with Jonathan Dukeman and Logan Griffey

How does reading the Bible properly affect your relationship with God personally?

“Reading the bible properly allows me to actually know and have healthy comprehensions of verses and stories that I wouldn’t have other ways. If I didn’t have a proper understanding of the bible, it would just be used as a self-help aid to take off the shelf when I need to fix something in my life and put it back on when I don’t.” -Jonathan Dukeman (Current Student)

”I think reading the Bible in the SOIA method helps remind me that the Bible is a story about a God who has been faithful to His people and it is a story that is bigger than myself.” -Logan Griffey (Resident Leader)

How have you seen God’s goodness in your own life?

“I don’t deserve anything, because I am a sinner I was sentenced to die, having complete separation from God. But because God has an immeasurable love for us all, God’s goodness is present in my everyday life. I am so very blessed with a Savior who loves me, great family, great health, food, shelter, security, great relationships and taking care of my needs and wants.” – Jonathan Dukeman

“I think that God has been really good to me and he has brought specific people into my life at specific times whose faith have challenged me and whose lives have reflected Jesus.” -Logan Griffey

What has changed your perspective in relation to the Fall?

“The biggest perspective of mine that has changed in relationship to the fall, is how big the redemption process will be. Before the Fall everything God made was good, the world was as God designed it to be. But the second sin entered the world all of creation was infected, changing its designed purpose for something it’s not. Although God promises when he comes back he will make everything back to the way He designed it, with no sin.” – Jonathan

Just realizing that the fall has affected not only humanity but also the created order apart from humanity. Scripture talks about how creation is groaning in anticipation to be restored. (Romans 8:18-25)” – Logan

What has Jesus redeemed in your life?

“Jesus has redeemed countless relationships in my life relating not just to him, but also to other people, his creation, and my relationship with myself.”– Jonathan

“He’s redeemed the way that I see and relate with others. I am beginning to see others the way that God sees them, rather than seeing others for what they can give me. With that, I’m beginning to grow in love for people in a more Christ-like way.” -Logan


“When you can’t see the chords to follow your music in the dark setting of a worship session, just lift up your hands in praise”

— wise words from the Worship Committee

“20 push ups a day will keep the doctor away” ”

— Jon D., Fitco Committee