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Oldham speaks out about being a Christian on a secular campus

By Reanna Young
On April 3, 2014

President Oldham had a lot of wise advice to offer students, faculty, staff and people of the community who attended the "2.17 Faith" event on Tuesday evening. The seminar came to a close with the final question of "Is Jesus Christ the son of God?" Bart Warren and Rolland Pack answered this question, and afterwards Phil Oldham did a brief interview regarding his faith. Even though he is president of Tech he said he is first and foremost a Christian.

Oldham spoke at the University Christian Student Center and Fellowship of Christian Athletes' event "2.17 Faith" on Tuesday night. Each night there were five consistent questions asked to each of the "celebrity" speakers for that particular day.

Before his interview officially started, Oldham stated that each of us wears many hats, but that night he came just as Phil Oldham, the person. He went on to state that each person puts their trust in something weather it be money, friends or their own abilities, however, he likes to puts his trust in something more secure, Jesus Christ.

TTU football player, Luke Woodason, asked the first question of, "In your career or personal life, did you ever question your faith?"

Oldham advised that he feels it is important to make your faith your own and you have to question things to do so. Questioning allows one to become curious and want to know more. Oldham grew up in a Christian home, but he said no one could inherit his or her faith; each person must make it their own.

Senior basketball player, Matt Marseille asked, "How do you remain humble and glorify God even though you have the position that you do today?"

Oldham replied, "I have people in my life that keep me humble. They will take me to task. God put me here in this position and it has little to do with me. It's not about me."

Senior, Sam Witt of FCA asked, "What are some disciplines that help you in your faith?"

 "Patience. It comes natural for me. I can sit and wait for God's timing and trust that where he puts me will be His will. I am just living in the moment and wherever God puts me is where I will end up," said Oldham.

Michael Aubrey, also of FCA asked, "How did you come to have faith in God?"

Oldham's response was, "I was raised in a Christian home. I do not recall a specific moment in time where the Bible and church were not part of my life. My faith has always been part of who I am. My wife however, came to her faith later in life and some times we compare notes and talk about which is better: growing up in a Christian home or coming to your faith later in life. We came to the conclusion that if you don't make your faith your own, it doesn't matter how you grow up."

Oldham advised, "You can be used wherever and in whatever you are doing, if you are willing to allow God to use you."

Junior, Andrew Jones of the UCSC asked Oldham, "Is it difficult being a Christian on a secular campus?"

Oldham said, "There are many challenges since I do represent this university, higher education and in part, the Upper Cumberland. I cannot change who I am. First and foremost I am a Christian and that colors everything for me, whether it is my position as a husband, father or a president."

Oldham continued to say that as long as things are adhering to the law and people are treating one another well.

Oldham concluded with this final statement, "I have come to have peace by knowing the one who does know it all and knowing that he is in control."

The three-day seminar was a great success with around 130 in attendance the final evening for Oldham's interview.


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