Hartland

Stories

Traveling to Hartland

Sep 8, 2014

by Alexi Garcia

After I received the acceptance letter from Hartland and with it the opportunity to become a Missionary Training Fund student, I went to the American Embassy in Venezuela. They told me to talk in English and I did not know much of that language, so most of my answers were “Yes” or “No.” When they asked me to explain my bank account balance and how I would pay, I said, “Let me speak Spanish.” It went well and they approved my visa.

But on the day of my flight I needed to pray hard. I knew my I-20 was not up-to-date due to government problems. It went well until I arrived at Atlanta International Airport and I faced the reality of being in a place where I didn’t know the language. Because of the I-20, they sent me to immigration and I waited there about two hours.

When they finally called me, they checked all my papers and then told me I could not be in the United States. I thought, If God brought me this far, He needs to do something. I smiled and waited and then they asked me, “What are you going to study?” I answered, “Pastoral Evangelism.” The man looked at me and asked, “Is that something religious?” I replied, “Yes, I am a Seventh-day Adventist Christian.” He then said, “I have never heard of that church before, yet because you are a Christian I will let you into the country, but you need to fix your I-20. Welcome to the United States.”

After I finished there, I missed my flight and had no idea how to communicate with the airline assistant. She asked me for money to buy a new ticket. But after she checked my flight itinerary, she said to me, “Go to Dulles International Airport. We have a promotion today that all students get to fly for free, so you don’t need to pay.” I was happy and just thanked the Lord for such an experience.
On March 4, 2013, I arrived at Hartland safely and in really good condition. My journey to Hartland was a real experience of faith for me. God indeed showed me that it was His will for me to be here, and now I’m glad I chose to follow God’s plan for my life.

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Where He Leads, He Provides

Sep 8, 2014

by Jennifer Sarria Cifuentes as told to Kelly Ostrom

My name is Jennifer Sarria Cifuentes. I am a Christian Media major from Colombia, South America. I was not born a Seventh-day Adventist; I came into the message with my family. As we followed the light God gave us, we moved to the country and joined a self-supporting ministry. I became acquainted with Hartland from the interns and graduates who came to share their Bible knowledge and by observing how God was working in their lives.

I worked on the production team for the ministry’s publication. We printed testimonies and other helpful articles. I wasn’t really trained for that work, but I learned from brothers in the ministry and let God use what little knowledge and talent I had. I was motivated by the way people responded and by our increasing print orders. I knew I needed more tools to do a better job, and as I saw the need and prayed about it, I realized that God was leading me to pursue training in media ministry.

My family did not have the finances for me to study at Hartland. Since we went into ministry, God has provided and cared for our needs; so when I was accepted to receive help from the Missionary Training Fund, I knew it was God’s provision for my education.

I would like to share one important testimony about how God has provided since I came to Hartland.

When I started my first school term, it became evident that I needed a computer—but I had no money to buy one. One day I opened my mailbox and saw a slip indicating I had received a package. I didn’t know anyone who would send me anything, but there was a medium-size box with my name on it, and inside was a computer for my schooling and a note saying, “This is from the Lord, who knows all things. ” I was very moved. I knew only God could impress someone to do that.
Likewise, I do not know those of you whom God has used to make my education here possible, but I am very grateful to each of you. No human reward is greater than what God can give for each voluntary effort or sacrifice you make to support us. Your investment helps me and others to develop for better service. Your gift helps me to finish so I can return to my country and provide well-designed spiritual material, especially for youth. Thank you.

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Called to Teach the Bible

Aug 19, 2014

God chose Alexi to fill a great need in Venezuela.
by Kevin Wahl

“I was about to finish my health studies at Las Delicias Institute in Venezuela when the institute’s director told me about Hartland College,” shares sophomore Alexi Garcia. “He wanted me to develop more in the area of Bible, because Las Delicias has a big need for Bible teachers. After I graduated from Las Delicias, I received the acceptance letter from Hartland.”

Alexi chose to major in Pastoral Evangelism. “There is a great work to do in my country—teaching youth how to study the Bible and share it through their personal experience and walk with God. It was not an easy decision because I wanted to further my health studies. But after several prayers, God showed me His will. I received my visa and flew to America.”

What have been Alexi’s most important experiences at Hartland? “I’ve learned the importance of having a deep connection with God and how to have it, which for me is the substance of what being a Christian really is.

“I can say that for a foreign language student it is hard, but worth it. In less than one year I could speak English and understand my classes and the people around me. I appreciate the opportunity God has given me to learn in an intellectual, social, and practical way the lessons that will make me a better servant.

“Also, the testimonies of the staff and students, and how everyone is willing to help you in your spiritual experience, have taught me what being a missionary really is.”

What will Alexi do when he returns home? “I’ll teach Bible classes at Las Delicias, and help with their lifestyle center, farm, and outreach activities.”

When Hartland accepted Alexi, he received the opportunity to be a Missionary Training Fund (MTF) student. Could Alexi have come if it were not for the MTF? “No, because I have no way to pay for my studies since money from my parents wouldn’t be enough, as the currency in my country is much lower than the US dollar.”

Alexi concludes by thanking those who give to the MTF. “I’m very thankful for all the support you give to us, because it helps to spread the gospel around the world. I know that for each student it is a blessing to be here, but without your help we MTF students would not able to reach the high calling God has for us. Thank you so much, and I know God will give back what you have given to us—not just in money, but also in health and spiritual growth.”

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Questions & Answers Regarding Tithe

Aug 19, 2014

By Cody Francis, Dean of the College

On June 6, 2014, Hartland’s Board of Directors voted that beginning July 1, 2014, the institution will no longer accept donations designated as tithe from known Seventh-day Adventist church members. This brief article seeks to answer why Hartland is taking this step of faith.

Why does Hartland no longer accept donations designated as tithe?

Paul stated, “I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.” 1 Corinthians 9:22. Paul’s overarching desire was to lead men and women to our Savior that they may be saved for His kingdom. He was willing to do anything possible without compromising principle to achieve this one great aim. Another time he said, “But if thy brother be grieved with thy meat, now walkest thou not charitably…. It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor any thing whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak.” Romans 14:15, 21.

Paul would give up any right without sacrificing principle in order to not offend others or to increase his ability to minister for the salvation of souls. We have taken this lesson to heart. Our tithe acceptance has built unnecessary barriers between us and our brethren in the denomination. We believe it is our Christian duty to do all in our part to remove these roadblocks.

Is this decision in accordance with the Spirit of Prophecy?

There were times when Sister White gave her tithe and the tithe of others to neglected southern workers, Bible workers, and others. From this we realize that it is not wrong for an individual to take personal responsibility in the giving of their tithe. Yet Sister White does recommend a “better way.”

“You ask if I will accept tithe from you and use it in the cause of God where most needed. In reply I will say that I shall not refuse to do this, but at the same time I will tell you that there is a better way. It is better to put confidence in the ministers of the conference where you live and in the officers of the church where you worship. Draw nigh to your brethren. Love them with a true heart fervently, and encourage them to bear their responsibilities faithfully in the fear of God.”2 Thus there is nothing in the Spirit of Prophecy that Hartland would be violating with this decision.

How will this decision be a blessing to the work of Hartland?

By seeking to be peacemakers and do all in our part while not compromising principle, we gain the blessing of being “called the children of God.” Matthew 5:9. While Hartland cannot unite with those who are promoting false doctrines, there are many faithful brethren that we can unite with in proclaiming the Three Angels’ Messages.

Like-minded believers working together will increase the effectiveness of everyone’s ministry for the Lord. This will open up many more doors for our students and graduates to minister more effectively to souls within and without the Seventh-day Adventist Church. It will help to remove the barrier of prejudice that has hindered the witness within the church of many Hartland staff and students.

It will also open up doors for us to share our unique calling and mission with more potential students, possible lifestyle guests, and others interested in the special work that God has given Hartland to do. We believe that our seeking to unite upon the high standard of present truth with our brethren will be a blessing to God’s work in the church and in the world, ultimately leading to the salvation of more souls for His kingdom! Please pray with us that this will be the case.

How can I continue to support Hartland’s ministry?

There are exciting things happening in God’s work, and we believe that God has called Hartland “for such a time as this.” Esther 4:14. As we look to increase and expand the work at Hartland, we need your fervent prayers and support more than ever before. Our needs are much the same as before and here are some of our main funds:

Where Needed Most donations may be used anywhere in the institute according to the greatest need.

Ministry meets the needs of our Bible teachers and those engaged in various lines of ministry work.

Evangelism covers our many evangelistic projects including Bible studies, health ministry, literature ministry, and so forth.

Our Missionary Training Fund provides scholarships for worthy students to be trained as missionaries.

We greatly appreciate your partnership with us as we strive to train young people to spread the everlasting gospel. Together we can all have a part in preparing others for Jesus’ soon return.

1 White, Ellen G., The Spalding-Magan Collection, p. 215
2 White, Manuscript Releases, vol. 2, p. 101

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Flying Home

May 22, 2014

“My mission trip did not end in Fiji.”
by Matthew Farley

“Hi! How are you doing?” I asked the passenger seated next to me on my long flight home from Fiji.

“I’m fine,” my seatmate answered warily. She was dressed in black, had all kinds of piercings, and looked like a punk.
Smiling, I responded, “My name’s Matthew. It’s a pleasure to meet you!”
She glanced at me with a startled expression. Despite her initial shock, over the next five hours we began to talk. Soon I learned that 21-year-old Sophia was going through a hard time because her family had totally rejected her. They were angry with her because of her lifestyle and her piercings, among other things.

“They treat me that way because I have holes in my body, but they don’t know that they have holes in their own souls,” she stated. I simply listened as she shared the many issues she was facing and her personal beliefs, which were very different from mine. But I just sat there listening, and then said, “Wow! That is interesting.”

I continued, “I know you’ve had negative experiences with Christians, but if I had the time, I would share with you what God has shown me through His Word, and you would have a different perspective on Christianity.”
Then Sophia said, “Trust me, Matthew, I know.”
“What do you mean?” I asked.

She answered, “I can see it in your life. You are the first Christian who has ever talked to me and has ever made me feel like an actual person.”
But as I shared how Jesus changed my life, Sophia shed a tear from each eye. Then I asked, “Can you draw me a picture of Jesus being comforted by an angel?” She said, “Wow. I’ve never drawn anything like that before, but I think I can try.” She drew the picture in 10 minutes, and it impacted her life. She said, “Wow! This is amazing!”

After we talked more, she got my contact information and wanted to stay in touch. I gave her the book Steps to Christ, and she said, “I’m really going to read this book.”

And as we got off the plane, we took a picture together, and Sophia said, “Thank you so much, Matthew! You’re the coolest flight mate I’ve ever had!”
I told her, “It’s only the goodness of the Lord.” And that is just one of the several experiences where I’ve been able to share Jesus in my travels. Do you dare to do the same?

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Evangelism in Fiji

May 22, 2014

Groundwork is being laid for future ministry.
by Viliame Saqusaqu

On November 27, 2013, Matthew Farley and I traveled to my homeland of Fiji, and we were there till January 14, 2014. Although Christians make up 64.5% of Fiji’s population, only 3.9% is Seventh-day Adventist, and the remaining 35.5% of the population is not Christian.1 So missionary work needs to be done in Fiji.

On the island of Kadavu, we conducted classes on conversion and righteousness by faith for the Adventist church members. Then we ran a nine-night evangelistic series, presenting talks based on the Three Angels’ Messages. Before each talk, we delivered a 15-minute health lecture. It amazed us to see the Holy Spirit at work in peoples’ lives.
One night, I met a young man who had been struggling with planting Kava—a plant used to make alcoholic drinks. He told me, “After hearing the messages, I was convicted that now is the time for me to forsake what I’ve been doing and to follow the Lord’s will.”

Five non-Adventists who had never heard the Three Angels’ Messages faithfully attended the meetings. The last night, we appealed to the attendees to stand up if they accepted what they heard as the truth and wanted to learn more. All five stood up, desiring to receive Bible studies.
During the day, we often visited villages, offering free blood pressure checks, glucose level tests, and counseling on how to live a healthy lifestyle. We even entered the village of Kavala, where all the villagers are Methodist, and don’t allow other faiths or denominations to enter and spread their beliefs. But because we explained to the chief that we were doing medical missionary work, he gave us permission!

We began our work with the chief and his family, and then we went to the rest of the villagers. It was wonderful to witness medical ministry being the opening wedge for us to take the gospel to the people. Now we are planning to run an evangelistic series right in that village in the near future.

In Rakiraki, we held a five-day camp meeting, covering topics like conversion and righteousness by faith, and how to study the Bible. Then in Suva City, Fiji’s capital, and on the island of Vanua Levu, we held revival meetings for the Adventist churches. We spoke on individual preparation for the end-times and the importance of seeking God’s righteousness.
We also spent time doing personal evangelism. While traveling in a boat from one of the Yasawa islands to another, I conversed with a young man. We ended up talking about prophecy, and he asked what my opinion is on combining church and state. I did not tell him my own opinion, but what the Bible and history have to say. Then I gave him Amazing Facts’ latest DVD—The Bride, the Beast, and Babylon. The young man accepted and appreciated the gift.
Matthew shares the two things that impacted him the most on this mission trip: “God showed me that missionary work is your entire life. Whether you’re in a grocery store, in a restaurant, on a bus, on a plane, or wherever you are—witness, and just share, and don’t be ashamed to share Jesus.

“The Lord also taught me that the greatest mission field is your own heart. I came to know myself more through this mission trip. I got to search my heart and to see myself for who I really am. The closer we draw to Christ, the more we see ourselves for who we are.”

I also learned that there are always souls to reach and opportunities to give the gospel to anyone who has not heard what we believe. And from all those little witnessing opportunities, God can use us to change peoples’ lives for good and prepare them for the heavenly kingdom.

Finally, I would like to thank all the donors who supported our Fiji mission trip. Through your sacrifice, we were able to reach many people, and only eternity will reveal the results.

1 The World Factbook, www.cia.gov^

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Hartland Offers Shorter Courses!

Apr 2, 2014

Expanding our options for more students

by Cody Francis, Dean of the College

What are these shorter courses?
We are excited to be rolling out some new courses that combine the strengths of our regular four-year curricula with more flexibility. We have developed one-year and two-year courses in Health Ministry and Bible. Another new option is a one-year Gospel Medical Missionary course, which combines elements from the one-year health and Bible courses. We are custom-tailoring shorter courses in Christian Media Management and Childbirth Education, as well.

Why are you offering these courses?
Many people would love to take one of our full four-year programs, but are limited in time or finances. Others feel called to be doctors or work in other professions for which we do not offer courses, but would like to become grounded in the Bible or natural remedies before pursuing professional degrees. In order to provide programs that would benefit those in these categories, we are expanding the options that we offer.

What makes these courses unique?
While there are many other short training courses, few offer a full academic year that combines in-depth study, practical labor, and outreach activities in a wholesome Christian environment. We strive to follow the balanced Spirit of Prophecy counsels regarding a country setting, agriculture, missionary work, and so forth.
For those wanting a balance of gospel and medical ministry, the one-year Gospel Medical Missionary course is an excellent option. You will take the strong Bible classes: Conversion & Righteousness by Faith and Fundamentals of the Christian Faith. Then you could take either Daniel and Revelation or Life & Teachings I and II, spending time studying Jesus’ ministry. For the health segment, you will take the highly practical classes: Principles of Medical Ministry, Massage, and Hydrotherapy. You will also receive opportunities to apply your skills in various outreach classes doing health fairs, conducting cooking classes, or giving personal Bible studies.
For those desiring to focus primarily on health, the one-year Health Ministry program would be an excellent preparation for practical medical missionary work or a foundation to utilize while pursuing other programs. This course includes the foundational Bible classes: Conversion & Righteousness by Faith and Fundamentals of the Christian Faith. You will also have the opportunity to take Massage, Hydrotherapy, and Anatomy & Physiology I and II, along with other advanced health and outreach classes specifically designed to help you do health expos, deliver health lectures, and conduct cooking schools. You will also have the option of taking the CNA certification class!
There are others whose interest lies primarily in advanced Bible studies. In addition to attending the foundational Bible classes, you will have the opportunity to spend a year either studying the New Testament gospels and epistles, plus the book of Acts—or diving more deeply into the Old Testament chronologies and prophetic books, along with Daniel and Revelation. In addition to writing your own commentaries, Bible studies, and sermons, you will take practical classes: Evangelism, Speech & Homiletics, and the Bible outreach classes, in which you will learn how to go door-to-door, prepare a church for evangelism, and many other vital aspects.

What could I do after completing these courses?
After successfully finishing any one-year program, you will receive a certificate of successful completion. There are many calls for Bible workers, and the Lord could certainly open doors in these areas. Medical missionaries with the CNA certification could minister to people individually in their homes or find employment in the medical field, having the added medical missionary knowledge that could not be obtained from a secular course. Others could minister in their local churches and neighborhoods as lay medical missionaries.

Who would benefit from these courses?
All who want more knowledge along biblical or medical ministry lines would be greatly blessed. These could be retired individuals desiring to use their “golden years” in active missionary work, but not knowing where to start. They could be young people who are not sure what their calling is yet, but want to be equipped in these areas, or others who want to become more active in ministry, but do not know how. Students who feel called to pursue professional degrees will greatly benefit by being fortified with biblical and health knowledge first. In short, if you or someone you know wants to work for God—this could be just what you are looking for! Do not hesitate to call our admissions office at 540-672-3100 ext 308, or email admissions@hartland.edu.

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Publishing and Educating

Feb 25, 2014

Johnny and his friends use their unique talents to spread the gospel worldwide.
by Kevin Wahl

“It’s interesting. I really liked what probably most people would dislike about Hartland—the fact that it wasn’t easy,” says 2000 graduate Johnny Suarez.

“I always loved the vocational training that we got working outside in the garden, except when it was really cold, or really hot, or whenever I had to change clothes afterward because I needed to go to work in the office. I also remember living in Log Manor. Three people would be tightly squashed in one room. We slept where there was no heat, no cooling—but we survived.”

What did all that do for Johnny? “Those were unpleasant times, but you learn lessons from doing hard things. You look at hurdles differently after you’ve had to overcome them. Now in my professional life, so to speak, when I face a challenge it’s very little to me because I’ve faced many other challenges. Having to put forth stronger effort to accomplish a task becomes a lot easier. Overcoming adversities is a blessing.”

Did he like anything besides difficulties? “I really liked the spiritual atmosphere. The emphasis on constantly seeking the Lord and His blessing every day was a source of inspiration for me.”

Today Johnny is CEO of Pan de Vida Productions, a multimedia company based in Berrien Springs, Michigan. “We license and distribute audio, video, and printed materials in English and Spanish. We work with a variety of speakers and organizations to produce excellent spiritually uplifting resources.”

What else is he up to? “Just recently, I helped start another company called Sanare Life Corporation. Our job is to establish a publishing branch that can impact the secular realm. We’re trying to make our distinct ‘lifestyle to health’ message available to nonreligious people. We distribute what we call ‘nutritional kitchen resources,’ like the Give Them Something Better cookbook. We’re looking to produce more health resources so we can have a broader means of reaching the masses.”

Johnny and his coworkers also use their media resources “to educate, uplift, and inspire other individuals—religious or nonreligious—to take up the banner of truth. Then we know for a fact that they’ve been blessed by the materials, because now they want to know the spiritual component of our beliefs, which includes our doctrines and our love for Christ. Furthermore, we travel all over the world. We’ve held meetings in 39 countries. Our work does not limit us to one geographic location. So it keeps us busy. And of course, doing business can also mean furthering God’s message in this present world.” Amen!

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Ministry in Midwifery

Feb 25, 2014

Angeline desires to reach her fellow Kenyans for Christ by serving as a midwife.
by Kelly Ostrom

Hartland College will soon graduate its first Midwifery major. Meet Angeline Nyaata, a student from Kenya, Africa, who loves the Lord and ministering to His children. Here she shares about her internship experience in Tennessee:

“God allowed me to stay with a midwife and work closely with her and other midwives in her area. I learned from them how midwifery is a ministry. Apart from prenatal and postpartum visits and delivering babies, we prayed with mothers, visited former clients, and met our clients’ other needs. We cleaned homes, did hydrotherapy treatments, gave advice on other ailments for mothers or their family members, handed out literature, and visited with those who just needed company.”

Not everything about her internship was what Angeline expected. “Delivering babies has always sounded like a beautiful thing to do. However, there have been times when I have felt helpless during births and wondered if I would be able to handle certain situations.

“During these births I have found myself praying harder. I have prayed that God would keep me calm and give me the right words to say to the moms, that I could be of help to the midwife I was working with, for discernment, and for strength. And praise the Lord that His strength is made perfect in weakness! It has been after such hard or seemingly difficult births that mothers have commented on how calm and peaceful I seemed or what peace they felt as I reassured them.”

The training Angeline received at Hartland really helped in the field. “The health classes I took have really come in handy. Many of the mothers prefer natural remedies to allopathic methods. This gave me opportunities to share different natural remedies for complaints they experience during their pregnancy and other common ailments such as the common cold.
“On the other hand, I appreciate the Bible knowledge and the desire that Hartland instills in its students to study the Bible. This has been of great help when I met people who needed encouragement and when I was challenged to explain certain beliefs from the Bible.”

As her internship draws to an end, Angeline says: “I thank God for the many memorable experiences I have had during my internship. Being out in the field has given me a burden to use midwifery to reach out to families in need whether financially, physically, or spiritually. I long, by the grace of God, to go back to Kenya and help the mothers there.”
Please pray for Angeline as she continues to grow and serve in this ministry.

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Knowing Himself Better

Feb 25, 2014

David has learned more about his own needs and the needs of others.
by Kelly Ostrom

“I first heard about Hartland from a friend about a year after coming into the church,” says Pastoral Evangelism major David Symons, who comes from South Africa. “I was still becoming acquainted with the inspired writings of the Spirit of Prophecy. However, despite my ignorance, this school my friend spoke about really intrigued me.”

David is able to study at Hartland because of the Missionary Training Fund (MTF). He says that had it not been for the MTF, he would not have been able to afford to study here.

David has learned more about himself and he’s been drawn closer to God.
“God has used this place to expose my real character weaknesses as never before,” David shares. “This might sound like a bad thing, but it is really a great blessing, for in knowing these weaknesses, I am far more prone to turn to God and ask Him for strength.

“Through my various experiences and interactions here, I have learned the importance of keeping my walk with the Lord simple and to sacredly guard the time that I have with Him in the mornings and evenings. Also, through Hartland’s nursing home outreach, I have learned that the best way to overcome a spiritual decline is to become actively involved in service. Oftentimes I would feel discouraged and want to stay in my room and sulk, or at more serious times, pack up and go home. However, when I would go to the nursing home, I would be encouraged to continue my course and draw closer to Jesus.

“Another important lesson that I have learned is that of balancing mental and physical work. God has lessons for us not only in the Bible and other textbooks, but in nature as well. When I have worked outside, especially on the farm, I have learned many precious lessons, especially regarding the importance of self-denial and our need of the Holy Spirit.

“When I go back home, I would like to train people to be as self-sustaining and independent as possible. I want to teach them how to study the Bible for themselves, make their own natural treatments, and cook their own, healthful, plant-based foods. I want to follow the inspired command, ‘Educate, educate, educate!’”1

To those who give to the MTF, David would like to say how grateful he is for your assistance. “My dream of receiving training here at this wonderful school would have been impossible had it not been for your kind, freewill donations. May God bless you greatly in return for your kindness to me.”

1 White, Ellen G., Tetimonies for the Church, vol. 5, p. 590; vol. 7, p. 132

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