Media and Mission in the Inland Empire

August 01, 2008 | Kathy Marson

Jake had questions about the Sabbath which his Lutheran pastor could not answer. Once ordained to the ministry himself, Jake wanted Bible-based proof for his beliefs. After watching the Spokane, Washington-based, He's Alive Television for a year and a half, Jake walked into the Spokane Valley Adventist Church and asked Byron Corbett, pastor, "Can this church validate what I'm learning on TV?"

The church was able to do that, and Jake was baptized. At the June TV board meeting, Jake attended as a new member. His search for truth came full circle, and now his perspective will help the station reach many more.

TV Brings Seeds of Change

Trapped in a culture of drugs, heavy metal and violence, 17-year-old Michael stumbled onto He's Alive Television. As he was watching, he found God spoke to him through the preaching. "I found myself coming home at 9 p.m. to watch TV rather than partying..." he says.

A seed was planted; his mother noticed. From an attitude of anger and intimidation, Michael became more approachable. "Jesus was growing within my heart, and she was the first one to really notice that change. Once one accepts Christ into their heart, anyone who knew you before can't help but notice there is something different about you," says Michael. "Christian TV is an amazing way to win souls to Christ."

TV Brings Fulfillment

Lloyd and Shirley were living in Arizona, trying different churches, when they discovered Three Angles' Broadcasting Network. "We heard truth we agreed with," says Lloyd. "This made a tremendous difference in our lives." When they moved to Lewiston, Idaho they looked for an Adventist church and got involved with Positive Lifestyle Network. "Richard Steffanson asked for people to help videotape the Lewiston church service," says Lloyd. "So I volunteered and that's how I became involved with Positive Lifestyle Network."

TV Provides Opportunities

Like Jake, these individuals have a common thread in their stories. They know God led and changed them for the better through TV ministry. Jake says "If people have biblical questions, then watching KHBA is an obvious choice. Renewing our minds on a daily basis is vitally important. When I come home and turn on the TV, I get encouragement, scripture—all of it! It encourages, renews and supports you..."

Clinton Schultz, Spokane Countryside and Davenport Church pastor, says "I know people are watching the station." In another district he received a call where the people had watched an evangelistic series and called and said, "We want to be baptized." When Clinton and an elder sat down with them, they were ready.

James Shires, pastor of the Lewiston and Lewiston Orchards churches says, "We have people drop by our church regularly. Four or five have been baptized because of the TV." Positive Lifestyle Network generates a regular stream of people checking out the local churches, and creates community awareness of Adventists.

These stories don't happen by chance. They happen because churches and individuals put media ministry in their budget. They happen because volunteers edit and shoot programs. They happen because of vision and God-inspired forward thinking. In the 1980s Marlo Fralick, then pastor of the Spokane Central Church, had a vision for a television station and now for 15 years this has been a reality. Positive Lifestyle Network began 20 years ago on a small scale. Today it is a ministry that brings local people in touch with and into the church.

Blue Mountain Television

This ministry has been a part of the Walla Walla Valley for a number of years. One couple was so impressed by Blue Mountain Television's first April 1990 broadcast they called the College Place Village Church asking to attend services. Their entire family attended church the following Sabbath and after Bible studies, were baptized into the Adventist Church. From the beginning and throughout its 18 years operating, God has blessed and used it to bring people to a relationship with him.

Debbie was a drug addict. Carlos was a feared gang leader. Doug and Cindy were searching for a solid family foundation. Walt and Maria loved the Lord and sought to strengthen their faith and God's plan for their lives. The common denominator in all of these lives? Television and the Holy Spirit's leading. Today, all are active members of the Adventist Church because Blue Mountain Television was in their homes, broadcasting hope, encouragement and truth from God's word.

Blue Mountain Television and Adventist media like it, exist to lift up Jesus, share his love, and communicate his life, grace, and strength to viewers. That's why scores of volunteers and hundreds of faithful prayer partners and financial supporters keep the station on the air, 24 hours every day, year after year. They simply don't want to imagine living in a community without this life-transforming outreach.