ONE SEMESTER AT FAIRWOOD BIBLE INSTITUTE
At the close of first semester last December, students were invited to summarize their personal testimony about what the past months had meant to them. Clearly, hearts are being touched for God.
Joshua, First Year
Coming to Fairwood Bible Institute has been one of the best choices I have ever made. The past three months have been a wonderful time of teaching and growth. I can confidently say that what I have learned here I will not find anywhere else.
To merely say I have enjoyed my time here would be an understatement. There is almost no way to describe the value of the education I’ve received. The classes have opened up the Scriptures and delved deep into their meaning, showing the us students how to apply them to our lives. It takes learning about God to a much more personal level, so that we can see Him for ourselves and develop an intimate relationship with Him.
These classes have been so thought-provoking and greatly encouraging to me that I can say without a doubt that I have drawn much closer to God during this first semester.
Timothy, First Year
First semester has been a great time for me. I’ve really enjoyed the dorm life a lot: it’s wonderful to be able to hang out with people who have great attitudes and who also enjoy the social atmosphere. The group this year at Bible School has been small, but I’ve gotten to know my fellow students a lot better than I might have if there had been a lot of people.
The semester has gone fast, and there have been many highlights. One was during the Psalms class with my Dad teaching, where for the final project we had to prepare and present, or teach, a Psalm for 20 minutes. I was somewhat nervous beforehand, as doing this was not something in my comfort zone. However, afterwards I heard some encouraging comments, and I even got a good grade. It was a good reminder that “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Another highlight was building a miniature temple for a final project. It took quite a while, but it was well worth it in the end.
I’ve also been somewhat able to keep up with running (something I wanted to do this year), and I was able to do my first ever half marathon during free weekend in October. I also have especially enjoyed watching most of “The Chosen,” Season Two, this semester. It’s nice to know that Jesus values me as much as He did any of the twelve disciples.
Unfortunately, I had to go into Covid quarantine for a while, and I’m thankful to God that I did not actually get it. During that period, a highlight for me was watching The Voyage of the Dawn Treader movie. I really liked the part at the end where Reepicheep wants so much to go to Aslan’s country that he is willing to leave his friends. I got very emotional at this scene, and prayed that I would have Reepicheep’s attitude of yearning to go to be with Jesus.
So I have greatly enjoyed this semester, and I’m looking forward to the next.
Gwenivere, Second Year
This year has probably been the most unpredictable year of my life. I lost some friends and gained some friends. I’ve learned about myself mentally, and I’ve grown closer to God.
In the summer, I wasn’t aware that any other girls were coming to Fairwood this year, but then I got an email which mentioned that Terry Hazen was coming! I’m really thankful she did, because I don’t think I would’ve lasted longer than a month, without her here with me in the dorm. Last year I was pretty weighed down with grief over the death of my brother Pierre, but this year has been much better. I think it definitely had to do with being a lot busier than I was last year; I didn’t have time to dwell on it too much.
I really loved the class on the Book of Psalms that we had with Dan Murray. Going through the different emotions and how they were expressed in the Psalms actually helped me process a lot of my own emotions.
Late in this semester, I made the decision not to return to Fairwood after Christmas. I didn’t like the idea of leaving, but I’ve learned I need to make decisions for my own mental benefit, trusting God to bring me through. That’s exactly what I’m doing now.
I’ve loved the classes and the people here at Fairwood, and I’ll miss it all very much.
Caleb, Third Year
This past semester has felt like a whirlwind. If I’ve learned anything practical from the past few months, it’s that life is unpredictable.
My final year at Fairwood Bible institute has challenged me to make God a part of my everyday life. I already knew that in theory, but as I’ve grown spiritually I’ve realized more and more how hard life is if you don’t have Jesus walking by your side. Responsibilities and pressures, expectations and letdowns—they all pile up, and if you try to deal with it on your own, it doesn’t go very well.
These are truths I’ve been taught my whole life, but in the face of the pressure of the world they are easily forgotten. God has impressed it upon my heart that no matter the situation, His truth always remains.
As humans it’s easy to ignore, forget, or discount the ways of God. It usually begins with losing interest in seeking Jesus and proceeds to reduced Bible reading and prayer, with the result that the truth I once believed so strongly fades and seems less important. But I realize that taking less time to meditate on the ways of God doesn’t discount the importance of these things.
We’ve most recently been studying the book of Isaiah, a book full of promises and commands of the Lord. So many promises in that book are forgotten and ignored because they aren’t taken to heart and studied. Isaiah 59:16 states, “He saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no one to intercede; then His own arm brought Him salvation, and His righteousness upheld him.” I want to meditate on the commands and truths of the Lord so when the time comes and He needs a man to stand in the gap and intercede, He can count on me. This starts with the simple act of reading my Bible and doing my part to foster the personal relationship between myself and my Savior.
Gabriel, Second Year
In the first class of the year, I was blessed to be taught by not just one, but two teachers, Mr. Murray and Mr. Adams. Together we went through a select few of Paul’s letters, spending particular time on the book of Romans. I got to do a deep study of the dichotomy between faith and works during the first part of the class, which was very interesting. I came out of the second part with a better grasp of ways to share the Gospel, particularly using the book of Romans, which I felt was very valuable.
Also during this class I experienced a spiritual focusing, where God really helped me to understand and commune with Him at a deeper level than I had before.
During Psalms class, taught by Dan Murray, there was a heavier emphasis on emotions than in any other class I’d had before. I enjoyed learning how to take my emotions to God and let them become something healthy that brings spiritual growth. Even more than that, however, I enjoyed learning how to analyze and break down a Psalm for study and teaching. The highlight of the class was getting a chance to teach a Psalm, an exercise that not only gave me valuable experience in the teaching process, but also helped me to really dig into Psalm 147 in a way that I don’t often take the time to do.
The final class of the semester was the book of Isaiah, with Mr. Murray again. Despite getting a bit hijacked by Covid quarantine, I still was able to take in many great gems of truth that were uncovered in that book. Foremost among these are the example of Isaiah’s call and response, and the idea of letting suffering and hardship turn me into an effective tool for God’s use.
I am very thankful to God for His perfect work in shaping my life, and to each of the teachers that He used as His messengers day by day.
Terry, First Year
Terry was unavailable for writing when these testimonies were turned in, suffering from Covid if memory serves, but she has recovered well and has been an avid student, contributing wise and mature observations from time to time, and shedding good cheer and an eager spirit in the classroom.