photo by KENNETH FRY
Sofia Foliart, daughter of guest speaker Josh Foliart, closes her eyes during a prayer Thursday at the Mayor’s Prayer Luncheon sponsored by Kiwanis Club of Van Buren. Sofia is sitting in the lap of her aunt, Darlene Needham, at the annual event held in the Commons Area of Van Buren High School.
During the Mayor’s Prayer Luncheon in Van Buren Thursday, the guest speaker talked about faith and failure as important elements for a successful life.
Josh Foliart, a missionary to Peru and native of Van Buren, spoke at the luncheon, which was held at the Van Buren High School Commons Area and sponsored by Kiwanis Club of Van Buren.
Foliart recalled growing up in Van Buren and spoke about how faith can lead to success when young people have a safety net that allows for failure.
“Foolishness and failure…are such a part of the human condition,” Foliart said, and added that the two things are an important part of innovation.
“At the heart of every great story is a character who can tell you this one thing - failure is not fatal,” Foliart said.
Even more important, he said, is the faith that allows that person to “get up again and again” - both a person’s faith in their ability to achieve their goals, and their Faith in God.
Foliart said that a majority of the world’s current population is under 25, and called this new generation of youth “powerful.”
But he noted that it is the responsibility of the generations above them, the people who “represent Christ in their life,” to allow them to fail in a safe environment, such as Kiwanis Club. He related these young people to the Biblical story of Peter the fisherman.
“They want to walk on water like Peter,” Foliart said. “Peter didn’t wait for Jesus to invite him to come out on to the water; he asked Jesus if he could come out, and Jesus said one word - ‘Come.’”
Foliart stressed the importance of teaching kids about a life of Faith, and said that the motto in his home is “Why not?”
“Without Faith, the Bible says it’s impossible to please God; without Faith, I don’t think life’s worth living,” Foliart said.
Foliart ended the talk with a quote written in a Bible given to him by a friend.
“A little faith in Jesus will bring your soul to Heaven, but much faith in Jesus will bring Heaven to your soul.”
Foliart played football for the Pointers and Arkansas Razorbacks, then went on to work for Arkansas Athletes Outreach. He started a ministry in Fayetteville called “The Link” for young adults and in 2010, he founded Kairos, a college student leadership program.
Foliart is certified to train the leadership programs P.E.P. by Laurie Beth Jones and “HABITUDE” by Dr. Tim Elmore, a former student of John Maxwell. This past fall, his first book, “Rooted: Reach Deep, Burn Bright, Stand Strong” was published.
In January, Foliart moved with his family to Lima, Peru, to begin work planting churches and growing others to lead ministries. His company, Multipli International, cultivates Leadership Culture, Assistance Culture, Marketplace Culture and Praying Culture.
Proceeds from the event will assist Kiwanis Club with its K-Kids Club events.