Bottom Line - December 2016
A letter from Stan Bower to the businessmen in the St. Louis region:
When is the last time you were part of a rescue operation? Being on our team will put you on the front lines, as we take a stand for truth. We are intentional about seeing lives restored – one person at a time. One mission in 2002 began quietly during a prayer breakfast … but culminated in a prisoner release.
In 2001, the priorities of my life were upside down. I was on a mission of success, financial security and independence with only secondary regard for my wife and family. Things were going well, which made me full of pride and lacking in compassion. But the more successful I became, the more stress I felt to work additional hours, which meant less time for my family and often too much alcohol to wind down. The breaking point came when my good friend, Steve, died from pancreatic cancer at age 44 - the same age as me.
I attended The Prayer Breakfast for Greater St. Louis in 2002 (an event sponsored by CBMC) and was visited afterward by Jan Spalding, who invited me to a study called Operation Timothy. I’m not sure why, but I decided to give it a try. During our weekly meetings of studying the Bible and its application to life, I realized that I had failed to put my faith in its proper place – as #1. I then made a life-changing decision and accepted Christ as my Savior. My faith was then fostered in discussion groups, CBMC events and my Bible-based church. But, I was still living a double standard by relying on God for my salvation and myself for my financial security and well-being. My lifestyle had not really changed much.
Then, the Great Recession of 2008 hit. I was released from my job. My life plan was dependent on at least another decade in my high-paying position. What now? To make matters worse, my mom had just entered a nursing home with Alzheimer’s disease and my dad had slipped into depression caused by the stress of caring for her. I began earnestly praying for God to open and close doors to my future. One evening as I sat quietly pondering, the Lord spoke to my heart: “Just give 20% of your time and treasure to Me and let Me show you what I can do.” But how could I afford that? Nonetheless, I accepted Matthew 6:33 as my new way: “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” From that time forward the pieces fell into place. I am on a revived career path, a renewed life with my wife and family and a journey back to financial stability. I have hope and peace. I often look back and think … had I not been rescued by Christ through CBMC in 2002, I would have been crushed by the events in 2008.
I continue to face some of my past demons and often I still try to do it ‘my way’. I am imperfect. But thanks to God’s grace through Christ’s death on the cross, and the men of CBMC, I am renewed and refreshed with assurance of life eternal with my King Jesus.
Tony Kalinowski – President – RBF & Co. Wealth Advisors
Countless others, just like Tony, are desperate for mercy and grace. They have learned that the world’s promises are shattered and empty. We unlock the prison door and set them free through the hope found in Jesus.
Our ministry is made possible through faithful givers, like you, who believe in this rescue operation. We value your partnership! Please seek the Lord’s direction in how you can best continue your support throughout 2017.
Investing in Eternity – one life at a time,
Stanley A. Bower