Dr. Mike Smith, President - 903.589.7106 -

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

You have probably heard the old saying, "two steps forward, one step back." Have you ever felt as if this is happening to you? On some days, one step forward and two steps back might feel more accurate. Some days we make progress in one area but lose ground in another. The Desert Rose Band recorded similar sentiments in the song “One Step Forward.” The chorus says,

One step forward and two steps back;

Nobody gets too far like that.

One step forward and two steps back;

This kind of dance can never last.

The Apostle Peter's beginning journey with Christ was one step forward and two steps back. Even as his faith matured, and he experienced great victories, he still faced setbacks.

In Matthew 14:28-29, Peter stepped out of the boat to walk on water to Jesus, but he soon took his eyes off Jesus and began to sink (Matthew 14:30).

In John 18:10, Peter bravely cut off the ear of the high priest’s servant, but Jesus told Peter to put away his sword (John 18:11). Then Jesus healed the ear (Luke 22:51).

In Matthew 26:35, Peter boasted that he would never deny Jesus, but in verses 70-74, he denied Jesus three times.

The same Peter who frequently stumbled was the same Peter who preached boldly in Acts 2:14-41. Three thousand souls were saved that day.

Ministry is like that. You make progress; you lose ground. On one Sunday, ten members join the church; on the next Sunday, five members get angry and leave. Jacksonville College has experienced a "two steps forward, one step back" year.

We had 55 students make professions of faith in one Chapel service. We had more ministry students on campus this year than in the previous year. One ministry student was called to pastor a church; one was called to be an assistant pastor. Three were called to serve in youth ministries; one was called to serve as a children’s director. Five were called to work in camps, and one was called to serve with the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention.

Jacksonville’s Mayor Dick Stone declared May 9 as the first Jacksonville College Day, and 142 business leaders joined us on campus for lunch in the Little Cafeteria. These leaders gave JC a generous offering. Giving is up from our churches, giving is up from our associations, and giving is up from our individual supporters. Unfortunately, our expenses are up as well.

Enrollment has increased from last year. Our number of commuter students has increased and so has the number of online students. Our number of resident students has decreased.

We need to replace the old cast iron pipes that are under the cafeteria. This will cost $34,000. So far, $5,000 has been given, but more is needed.

By the grace of God, Jacksonville College is still providing a quality education from a biblical worldview. However, we need your prayers, and we need your financial gifts. We are currently getting ready for our reaccreditation visit from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) next year, and it is very important that we finish this year in a financially strong position. We would appreciate an extra financial gift from all of our supporters by the end of year.

JC alumni and friends put together 80 gift bags filled with goodies and delivered them to the girls on campus as they moved into their dorms. Volunteers also distributed JC backpacks to all students attending Fall 2018 orientation.

First Chapel service of Fall 2018

Upcoming Events

New 8-Week Term

October 15 – December 6

Registration begins October 1

Four courses offered:

Anatomy and Physiology II,

College Algebra,

Intermediate Developmental Algebra, and

Learning Frameworks

31st Annual JC Golf Tournament

Saturday, October 6

Shotgun Start at 7:30 a.m.

Cherokee Ranch Golf Club, Jacksonville Texas

Contact Ken Hamilton at, (903) 589-7130

Manley Distinguished Lecture Series

Wednesday, October 10 at 11:00 a.m. in Buckner Chapel

Speaker: Tara Ross (

Topic: The Faith of George Washington

Homecoming 2019

February 1-2

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