By Eddie Wren
ZACHARY, La. (LBM) — I am not a graduate of Louisiana Christian University. But I have served on the board of trustees, two years as president of the Louisiana Baptist Convention and then as an elected member for two terms.
In that time, I have come to love and support our university, and I believe we need LCU more than ever and that we need to support her like never before.
We need LCU because it is a distinctively Christian voice in an increasingly secular society.
There are many state universities that can prepare students for the job market. But none of them emphasize the Christian worldview in every discipline the way that LCU does.
Unfortunately, when many of our Louisiana Baptist children go to state schools, they sit under professors who scoff at Christianity and even try to kill the faith that parents spent years nurturing in their children. Young people have shared with me about the ridicule they endured in classes because of their faith in Christ. Sadly, I have witnessed more than a few leave for school as active members of the body of Christ only to return from college no longer living the faith they once possessed. Regrettably, research shows that 66 percent of Christian students leave their faith during college, and there is a strong argument to make that this dismal statistic reflects the secular ideology that dominates state university classrooms.
We need LCU because it has not caved in to the culture, but instead intentionally holds firmly to the Bible and the Baptist principles we embrace. So, while attending LCU does not guarantee a student’s growth in his or her faith, it does ensure that the student will engage with professors who promote a Christian worldview of the subject matter.
For that matter, LCU lifts high the name of Jesus in every facet of campus life, and a recent social media post makes the case: “It’s midterm week! Studying on my way to class this morning, thanking Jesus for such a wonderful opportunity to attend such a wonderful university that puts Jesus at the center of our education! I’m so grateful for LCU!”
— There are campus revivals and mission opportunities.
— Groups like BCM, FCA and even the sports teams provide support and growth.
— There are seminars with national speakers who equip students to defend their faith.
We need LCU because it is training the next generation of ministers as well as future businessmen and businesswomen, nurses, teachers, engineers and others to serve the Lord faithfully in their respective professions. Each discipline is taught through a biblical worldview, equipping the student to be technically proficient and to be a Christian in the workplace.
We need LCU because our world is in a crisis and LCU graduates are changing others’ lives.
I am thankful for Rick and Jonann Byargeon who graduated from LC in 1980. He went on to become a pastor and seminary professor, and my mentor. He taught me so much about preaching and serving the church. They invited me in and nurtured and encouraged me in faith and ministry. I am grateful for
training they received at LC, and when I look at the students who are there now, I see more “Ricks” and “Jonanns” who soon will be influencing others’ growth in the ministry.
Since 1906, Louisiana Baptists have invested in our university and now we have a campus worth more than $100 million. It is a hidden gem in Pineville.
It is such an important Kingdom asset that I personally invest in LCU. I don’t give to my alma mater, also a Baptist school and worthy of my support. But I see LCU as a jewel and want to see it shine for the cause of Christ.
What’s more, I have invested my son there. In August he began his collegiate career as a Wildcat. I understand that not all students are called to LCU.
But pray about sending your son or daughter there. If you have questions, Dr. Brewer and his team would love to host a personal tour of the campus and introduce you and your student to the professors in any discipline of interest. If you are a pastor, bring your students to Pineville to see the school and consider whether God is calling them to LCU.
Also pray about supporting LCU with your finances.
I know there are lots of organizations and causes competing for your attention and resources. But prayerfully consider giving to support the cause of Christ at Louisiana Christian University. Most Baptists don’t have tens of millions of dollars to give. But all of us can afford to give something to help students grow in Christ while learning to serve Him as a pastor, teacher, nurse or engineer. Your gifts will help young men and women to attend LCU and make a difference in the world today and in the future.
Louisiana Baptists, we need LCU, and LCU deserves your support.
Eddie Wren is pastor of the First Baptist Church in Zachary and a former president of the Louisiana Baptist Convention.