As my regular readers already know, I design the t-shirts and gifts for the Team Apologian shop that promotes Alpha and Omega Ministries. Over the last few years I've had more than a few people ask me why I do it. I do not profit financially from this venture at all, and that raises a few eyebrows from time to time. The short answer is: it's a labor of love.
The longer answer is:
This is a ministry that has quite literally changed my life. Were it not for Dr. White's book Drawn by the Father that I read back in 1998, who knows where I'd be theologically or doctrinally? Were it not for Dr. White's consistant emphasis on fellow brothers and sisters being able to give a defense for the hope that lies within, who knows what kind of lukewarm, wishy washy Christian I might be today? It's impossible to guess really, but the fact of the matter is God has used this ministry to change me, challenge me, and cause me to look to the Scriptures in a far more reverant and hopeful way than I ever did before. When I read The Forgotten Trinity I think I took more notes than the book is long. When I read The God Who Justifies my eyes were opened to justification in a brand new way and I actually enjoyed the book so much I sort of felt like a doctrinal geek as I'd settle in every night with my cheetos and coffee (I know, weird!) and slowly read through the next chapter and then spend the entire next day meditating on what I'd read. When I read Pulpit Crimes I was so relieved to read and know that there are others within the body that do in fact see the absolute nonsense being paraded to the world as Christianity. When I read Grieving: Our Path Back to Peace in more than a few places through the book my eyes welled with tears as I nodded and thought "yep, that's exactly how it is".
While Dr. White's focus has been more in ministry to the Muslims in the last few years, God has gifted this brother with very sharp discernment and the very comfortable ability to relate deep doctrinal and social issues (with a Biblical worldview) to the average person not sporting a seminary or college education. I've had the opportunity to meet Dr. White in person a couple of times and my hubby and I have had lunch with him, and he's quite honestly a rather fun person to spend time with. I'm honored to call him friend, and I just appreciate his dedication to ministry and serving the way he does. Even if he does tease me publicly on his webcast from time to time. :o)
The thing is, my expression of gratitude toward this ministry is not at all uncommon. I have met and spoken to so many people over the years that tell very similar stories about how this ministry has in fact changed their lives. Last year when the ministry celebrated it's 25th year, letters of thanks poured in from all around the world, from people who God saw fit to orchestrate their discovery of this ministry and have their lives altered forever, in a most wonderfully profound way. It was so good to read those letters and hear the things God was doing in the lives of others so far away and even locally.
So that's part of the longer answer as to why I design for Team Apologian. It's my way of giving back and doing what I can to support the ministry. Every purchase made through the shop goes directly toward the financial support of aomin.org. Customers get a great product, aomin.org is blessed financially and everyone's happy. It's the ultimate win/win deal for all.
This past year however there have been a lot of changes with the fulfillment company (cafepress) that prints and ships the shirts and gifts and that's affected many other aspects of the shop. For that reason, I've decided to close that shop and reopen with zazzle with a limited number (for now) of designs, but a far greater selection of shirts, hoodies, tote bags, keychains, mugs and more!
The shop is now open, and as an added bonus there's a pretty cool sale on (ends Saturday) for 15% off mugs when you use the coupon code BTSRULE5MUGS at checkout! Now there's a great Christmas gift idea just waiting for you at the new Team Apologian store.