This past week, we were thrilled and honored to host current CEF President, Reese Kauffman, in Durham NC. Reese joined us Monday at a business after-hours event and was the featured speaker during a Tuesday luncheon at Croasdaile Country Club.
On Monday, Kauffman spoke to a packed room at the University Club in Durham. He detailed his history growing up in Indianapolis, as he started cleaning bathrooms of Best Lock Company on weekends at the age of 16, to being promoted to be Vice President of the same company at 21. At 24, he then went on to start his own business in the steel industry. As he spoke on several of his spiritual and career success with the crowd, he notes that as he became involved with the ministry of CEF, business soon seemed less important. He spoke of the CEF mission as a much needed cause, as over 80% of children will never step in a church once. He referenced Charles Spurgeon when he shared that most children who have reached 5 years of age, can come to a knowledge of God much like an adult. By the age of 13 many worldly influences soon affect the children, making them more difficult to reach. That difficult adolescent age is where many form the beliefs that stay with them a lifetime, including their views on God and a relationship with him.
That’s where CEF comes in. On Tuesday, Kauffman focused his message to the need for CEF in the world. To Kauffman, “CEF is a group of people who love children and are ministering to them”. He states that even the gospel message was designed primarily to reach children, not adults , as you “must become child-like to receive Christ”. Children, naturally humble and eager to learn about what is new, are not as hardened by the world and past experiences, and open up more to the Word of God. CEF’s trained volunteers and teachers learn to teach the gospel to children in a way that shows them that “God’s plan is for everyone”, that regardless of their home life, financial status, or what they may look like, God loves them and treats them as a father should. In many ways, CEF is a “fence building ministry, stopping the children from falling off the cliffs of spiritual destruction and death”. And CEF is reaching its goal worldwide. The ministry is currently in 195 countries, with 12 more to go, including North Korea. Each day, Kauffman prays for volunteers in all countries, as well as those seeking entrance in the 12 countries without ministry. He asks all volunteers, friends and supporters of the ministry to pray for volunteers and missionaries across the globe.