Editor's Note: The following is an excerpt from the Summer 2010 edition of the Southwestern News. To view the magazine online, visit www.swbts.edu/swnews.


I watched as a 6-year-old African girl walked through the gate and over to Retha with her head lowered. This girl had been unusually absent from playtime for several days. I later learned that she had been taken on a trip into the Selous Game Reserve. When she came back, she wore a brand new dress, new earrings, and makeup, but she would not tell anyone exactly what happened. According to locals, this occurs regularly as men force young girls to participate in rituals that include sexual exploitation.

Retha washed the girl’s feet in a bowl of newly poured water. The little girl seemed different. All the other children laughed and played, running in the sand. This girl sat with no expression on her face. Her once-bright eyes seemed to wander off into the darkness of another dimension. As the dirt came off her feet and her wounds were tended to, she began to interact some, but she was not the same.

The depravity of mankind had shown itself through rituals reminiscent of the days of Sodom and Gomorrah, but the light of Jesus Christ can penetrate even darkness this deep.

Too often, the comforts of life make me complacent, and I, like many, cannot fathom that such atrocities still occur. But they do—and not just in a far away country. Child molestation, abortion, rape, and murder all occur within the walls of our “civilized society.”

In this issue of the Southwestern News, we wanted to focus on our students who are daily carrying the light of Jesus Christ into a dark world. Some of them live in Fort Worth—some on the other side of the globe. By focusing on the Great Commission, all of them are making a difference. I hope that, by reading about a few of the greatest students in the world who are sharing the greatest story in the world, you will be encouraged to share your faith more diligently.

One Southwestern student and his family helped a little girl recovering from the torturous effects of her sinful society learn about the One who can cleanse not only her feet but also her heart. All over the world, others need to hear that true hope can be found only in Jesus Christ. How will they hear if we are not faithful to go? (Rom. 10:14-15)

Will you join me in committing to pray for each of these students, and many more, who are traveling to the hard places of the world to share the greatest story ever told?

Will you join me in strengthening our efforts to preach the Word and reach the world?

The eternal destinies of over six billion people depend on it.