Celebrated Author Builds Community and Character Through Bible Study

by | Jan 31, 2004 | Charisma Archive

Pulitzer Prize nominee Clifton Taulbert hopes his 10-lesson curriculum will motivate people to engage in acts of kindness
As the United States observes Black History Month, the residents of a Mississippi Delta cotton town are again rising to prominence through a native son who has shared their legacy worldwide.


Clifton Taulbert, whose memoirs have been made into a movie (Once Upon a Time When We Were Colored) and nominated for a Pulitzer Prize (Last Train North), has transformed another book into biblically based teaching.


Becoming a Good Samaritan: On Your Road Between Jerusalem and Jericho is based on his Eight Habits of the Heart, originally published in 1997. Designed for groups of up to 20, the 10-lesson curriculum includes a challenge to commit to develop a caring attitude and engage in unselfish acts.


The lessons delve into the eight habits, which include such traits as brotherhood, dependability, friendship and a nurturing attitude. Those are qualities the Tulsa, Okla., author believes are necessary if the church hopes to become a community demonstrating Christ’s character.


Taulbert unveiled the Bible study in August at Victory Christian Center’s annual Word Explosion, which drew 35,000 people to the Mabee Center at Oral Roberts University. Afterward, the audience responded with a standing ovation.


The acclaimed speaker, who credits the Holy Spirit with inspiring him to write the best-selling stories about those who raised and trained him, said he was overwhelmed by the reception. “What I saw was people recognizing difficulties existed during legal segregation, but it also showed them when you yield to God you can do great things in spite of difficulties,” said the native of Glen Allen, Miss.


Ironically, Taulbert is better known in distinguished academic, governmental and professional circles. A guest professor at Harvard University, he has addressed corporate seminars, international forums and a Library of Congress audience hosted by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor.


However, when Victory Christian pastor Billy Joe Daugherty invited Taulbert–a member of an Assemblies of God church–to speak, Taulbert
initially resisted. After first appearing there in March, he accepted Daugherty’s suggestion to transform his “eight habits” seminar into a Bible-based study.


Daugherty said the message is a fresh word, one that is sorely needed in the body of Christ. Daugherty compares Taulbert to figures such as T.D. Jakes and Joyce Meyer, saying they came to prominence long after they started teaching.


“To me, the body of Christ is discovering a treasure with someone who has the ear of the Air Force Academy, whole school systems and Washington departments in our government,” he said.


Those who have used the curriculum say it has already had powerful repercussions. Mickey Gordon has taught two sessions to seniors in her Bible class at Victory Christian Center’s high school. It is also used at Glory House, a church-affiliated residential home for women.


The teacher thinks the study has the potential to create a kinder, gentler nation by emphasizing selflessness. “I’m seeing a calmer class and kids reaching out to teach each other and forming community,” Gordon said. “These are common-sense principles that have become uncommon.”


While Evangel Christian School in Louisville, Ky., is just implementing the curriculum in high school Bible classes, middle school students began reading Once Upon a Time When We Were Colored last fall. Principal Kevin Miller said shocked students wanted to know if the events described in 1950s and ’60s Mississippi really took place.


“We talked about the importance of everyone being created in God’s image and being equal,” said Miller, whose suburban school has doubled the number of African American students–from 7 to 14–this year. “There’s a lot of lessons in there. And I think the curriculum will help with the atmosphere and culture of our school.”


Taulbert hopes Good Samaritan will help stimulate positive actions. And he couldn’t be happier that the characters from Once Upon a Time When We Were Colored–the real people who shielded him from many of segregation’s cruel realities–will help make that happen.


“I find it very exciting that behind the wall of segregation there was Jesus Christ, preparing hearts and stories for another time in history,” Taulbert said. “[God] knew it would be needed in the 21st century.”
Ken Walker

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Charisma Highlights: Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

Charisma Highlights: Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

Following are snippets of the top stories posted on charismamag.com over the past week. We encourage you to visit the links to read the stories in full. Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven? Is it possible that behind the pearly gates of heaven there are...

10 Ways to Practice Gratitude With Your family This Thanksgiving

10 Ways to Practice Gratitude With Your family This Thanksgiving

This month we are entering a season which, in the United States, has been devoted to gratitude and thanksgiving for 400 years! While the Thanksgiving holiday has had a long and varied history within the United States, the practice of devoting sacrificial offerings,...

Don’t Let Ungratefulness Turn You Into a Spoiled American

Don’t Let Ungratefulness Turn You Into a Spoiled American

My frequent trips to developing nations always help me adjust my attitude. Just when I start to feel spoiled and entitled, I meet people from places like Congo, India and Honduras—and I realize just how blessed I am. This happened to me again last week during a trip...

The Power of Being Thankful

The Power of Being Thankful

One of the best ways to show God we love Him is to be thankful. When we express our deep gratitude to Him, it actually invites His presence onto our lives. Being thankful also neutralizes the enemy and brings victory into our situations no matter what the outcome....

Get Off Your Pew!

Get Off Your Pew!

As God’s clock inches closer to the final hour before His return, many people find themselves filled with angst, anxiety and despair. People are not sleeping well, many have fallen into depression and are feeling hopeless. These are the very days that we have been...

The Great Commission Can Set Us Free from Responsibility

The Great Commission Can Set Us Free from Responsibility

Read Time: 4 Minutes 28 Seconds While all of the stories we read in the Torah are meaningful, sometimes the events we read about can seem to hold more relevance, especially for those of us who are followers of Yeshua (Jesus) as Messiah. One such event is the calling...

RECENT ARTICLES

The Church’s Role in Preserving Freedom of Speech in America

Read Time: 3 Minutes 17 Seconds The controversy surrounding Kyrie Irving and his post of a tweet that claims the Jews in Israel are not the real Jews—that Black Africans are the real Jews—raises...
Count Your Blessings, For God Indeed is Good

Count Your Blessings, For God Indeed is Good

Read Time: 4 Minutes 42 Seconds Thanksgiving Day is just a few days away for U.S. Americans. It is a favorite holiday—perhaps only exceeded by Christmas—to gather with family and friends to watch parades, play (American) “football” and eat delicious food—often from...

Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFbfS03JkKY&t=1s Read Time: 3 Minutes, 10 Seconds Is it possible that behind the pearly gates of heaven there are murderers, pedophiles and cannibals walking along the streets of gold? We are taught in the book of Romans, "That if...

Pin It on Pinterest