Vol. #8 Issue #1 Jan-Mar 2003

From Brent and Dina

The Lord has kept us busy this last year. In 2002 Hoops of Hope was involved in sixty-eight ball-handling shows, nineteen basketball clinics, played fourteen exhibition basketball games, directed seven weeks of basketball camp and influenced over 14,000 people for Jesus! 2003 looks to be busy as you can tell by the schedule below, and there are already eight weeks of basketball camp scheduled for the summer in Florida, California and Colorado.

I went to Lubbock, Texas two days ago and read Seven Reasons Why You Can Trust the Bible by Erwin Lutzer (Senior Pastor at Moody Church in Chicago). It was an awesome book and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for the facts behind their faith in Christ.

One thing that jumped out at me was what an amazing book the Bible is. The Bible is a library of sixty-six books with about forty human authors, written over fifteen hundred years, in three languages on three continents. Yet, it is woven together with one theme, to tell about Godís love and mercy for us and how He sent us a Savior. II Timothy 3:16 tells us that the Bible is God-breathed. In other words it is inspired by God and infallible in its original manuscripts.

Lutzer uses historical, scientific, archeological and logical evidence as proof for the accuracy of the Bible and therefore our faith. He looks to nature and tells us that the size of the known universe is unbelievably large and ever expanding. Our Milky Way Galaxy has 100 billion stars and is 100,000 light years in diameter. One light year is the distance light can travel in one year at 186,000 per second. Thatís pretty big but only the beginning. Since there are at least 10 million galaxies, each with millions of stars, this shows the awesomeness of Godís creation. The Bible says that God holds all of this in His hand, that He created all of it by speaking it into existence and holds it all together by the power of His being. Now if that doesnít get your attention, then I donít know what will!

Another reason that the Bible is so important, Lutzer states, is because the Bible sheds light on our self-delusion. Many people often think Iím not so bad compared to say Hitler;. Our goal is not to compare to others but rather to the Word of God. When we do that, we all come up short. If God left us in that state then we would be in terrible trouble but Praise God!, He doesnít. He points us to his grace through nature, the message of the Bible and other Christians. If youíve not accepted His grace and forgiveness in your life, then do it today. Settle that question for all eternity right now by accepting the Lord into your heart.

Remember, the Bible is unique because it can be mysterious to the most learned person yet can be understood by a child.

Kevin's Korner

The truth shall set you free!
Over the past two months we have been in and out of prisons across the state and I have picked up on one common desire of these men. That desire is to be free. The main prayer request that we receive is to pray that the parole board will set these prisoners free. To the prisoner freedom is defined by release from their sentence.

The unfortunate part is that many of these men have ended up returning to prison again and again for the same offense. The parole board let them out of jail, but these men did not really have freedom. True freedom can only come from God. God is the only One who can free us from the sins that control our lives.

The message that Hoops of Hope brings to them is that with Godís help they can actually change the habits and sins that have imprisoned their lives. Jesus said, "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." John 8:32 (NIV) The Ďtruthí is the saving gospel of Jesus Christ. Whether we are in prison or not we can still be held captive by sin in our lives. Allow the truth of Jesus to set you free!

Prayer Requests

  • Kevin and Rachel Boaz as they continue to raise their support and develop new contacts
  • For the health of Dina and our new baby coming in late April
  • Praise the Lord, Debbie Wadleís appeal was approved and she is free on bond
  • Please continue to pray for her and Arnold as they face the possibility of a third trial
  • Pray for all the upcoming events listed below, for safe travel and the Gospel to go forth
  • For the prison team as they play games in March and April
  • Finances to continue to improve

May the Lord Bless and keep you all!!!