On A Personal Note

A personal note from the troop’s founder:

You’ve heard the buzz, seen the news, or done your own research and have come to the conclusion that Trail Life USA may be the more appropriate path for you or your child.  I champion your decision, and hold that Trail Life USA offers the Christian leadership program that others have always seemed to lack.  When founding Troop 147, I came to the firm realization that the Boy Scouts of America (BSA), while a once great organization, has changed, compromised, and in a sense ‘conformed to this world’.  I am reminded of Paul’s words in the book of Romans:

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. – Romans 12:2 ESV

The exciting thing about Trail Life USA, is that it not only offers that Biblical environment we seek, but also brings something even greater to the table; something that no scouting program to date has achieved, even the BSA. A truly God-infused character building pioneering program for young men.

Many of those who grew up in the BSA, like myself, always assumed that the organization was rooted in the Bible. How did we know, by action? No, simply by word. The scout oath says so. I am again reminded what the Bible says about this:

Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. – 1 John 3:18 ESV

What John means here, is “not merely by word or by the tongue.” He does not condemn kind words which are comforting, but is stressing that warm words should be accompanied by warm deeds to make it real; “in deed and in truth.”  This is a case where actions do speak louder than words.  I spent my childhood time in the BSA reciting the few words that had been placed in the scout oath, “Do my duty to God and my country,” but outside of that weekly recital, the only evidence I saw of God was when it manifested itself in the adult leadership, not in the program material itself.  While I believe the BSA oath was written and originally intended to be Biblical, I believe it is only a starting point; as John implies.  Trail Life USA brings Biblical teaching throughout the program: From words in the oath to incremental achievement requirements, as well as major rank earnings. All along the path, from ages five to 24, young men are shaped, transformed, and molded by God’s teachings. Trail Life USA is not just a reaction to the current events of recent years, but rather a transformation of the scouting program as it has been known for decades.

Do not call to mind the former things, Or ponder things of the past. Behold, I will do something new, Now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert. – Isaiah 43:18-19 NASB

In Troop 147, a young man does not simply say words from a memorized oath or simply work toward the endeavor of scouting.  Instead, the endeavor is to grow in a Christlike manner, to seek God’s will through scouting, and to live in the godly method that is expected of him as a child of God.  Growth in moral character, increased scouting skills, and furthered wisdom are all side-effects of the ultimate goal that Troop 147 seeks; the creation of a Godly man.  Having been a Boy Scout for ten years and achieved the Eagle Rank myself, it is my own belief that Trail Life USA’s program is more rooted in Biblical teachings than the BSA’s curriculum ever was. Claiming that your organization is ‘based’ on the Bible are the words, but I believe those words require action to bring them truth. Troop 147 believes that you must live it; it is our troop’s namesake…

…Train yourself for godliness – 1 Timothy 4:7 ESV

~  Connor Roberts