By: Alan Terwilleger|Published: April 14, 2014 8:41 AM
It happens fairly often.
I’ll be at the National Religious Broadcasters convention, or at an off-site meeting, and people will come up to say something like, “You know, even though Chuck Colson is gone, the Colson Center is really doing great things.”
There’s usually a hint of surprise in their voice. And why not? After all, Chuck went home to be with the Lord two years ago this month. It wouldn’t be unreasonable to expect that the organization that bears his name might take a step backwards or might slow its pace.
But it hasn’t.
And, next to the grace of God, the main reason was Chuck himself. Or better yet, Chuck’s understanding of leadership.
Back in 2008, Chuck Colson recorded a BreakPoint commentary to recruit a new class of Centurions. At the end of the broadcast, Chuck said this:
“As long as God gives me breath, I want to continue to pour myself into these men and women who are bringing truth and beauty to every sphere of life.”
This “pouring out” of himself into others was what Chuck did continually, teaching others how to lead, how to live out their faith, how to excite and motivate people to get behind the cause of Christ in the world.
So it’s not difficult to see why, for instance, BreakPoint remains such a powerful voice for Christian worldview across the country. Eric Metaxas and John Stonestreet were mentored by Chuck. They knew how Chuck thought.
And there are folks behind the scenes at the Colson Center, our secret weapons if you will, who did as well. BreakPoint editor David Carlson has been with the ministry for 26 years, 7 of those working daily with Chuck on BreakPoint. In his office, on the white board, are 15 worldview concepts that Chuck hammered into him routinely. And Roberto Rivera, the chief BreakPoint writer, wrote for Chuck at least 15 years.
There’s Martha Anderson, who, under Chuck’s guidance, has directed our Centurions Program since its inception.
Or Alan Eason, our Internet director, who worked with Chuck to build the Colson Center websites, who filmed the extremely popular Two-Minute Warning videos with Chuck for years. Alan has recently converted Chuck’s Doing the Right Thing video series into a successful television program “Worldview from the Colson Center” on the NRB Network.
Our VP for administration and marketing, Steve Bradford, traveled with Chuck for a number of years, networking, organizing, planning. Steve is working with Prison Fellowship Ministries CEO Jim Liske and theologian T. M. Moore to bring to fruition another one of Chuck’s fervent desires: combining the ministries of Prison Fellowship, Justice Fellowship, and the Colson Center in a powerful way. Right now they are laying the foundation for something we are calling the Restorative Church, getting churches and pastors on board for Christian worldview teaching, ministry to the children of prisoners, and working for biblically based justice reform.
All of these men and women and their colleagues have stayed with the ministry Chuck founded. And all of them gladly received what Chuck poured into them: His love for Jesus Christ, his courage, compassion, and his vision for restoring lives and communities caught in the culture of rebellion against God.
Of course, many of you reading this, whether you’ve volunteered in prisons with Prison Fellowship, listened to BreakPoint all these years, or perhaps even met Chuck during the course of his ministry, have had his passion for ministry poured into you.
And again, with God’s grace, that’s the reason the Colson Center is not only surviving without Chuck’s physical presence, but thriving.