finding boise bible – marcus omdahl

author: david davolt
published on: november 26, 2020

i was called to ministry to help people understand how god’s word works and how to read it well alongside them, knowing that what it asks of them, it asks of me.

marcus omdahl

boise bible college was not marcus omdahl’s first choice. he grew up with a strong christian influence, was taken to church regularly, and learned some of god’s word growing up. still, it took the encouragement of several people to finally decide to let god lead him and attend bible college.

in high school, marcus had various interests but wasn’t sure what he wanted for a vocation. he spent time with his pastor in grants pass, or, learning from hands-on experience about caring for people as well as improving his golf game. it may have been the time on the golf course that he was challenged to consider something deeper in life.

he attended community college for a year and said,

“i was floundering and somewhat lost in a variety of ways. i wasn’t going off the deep end, but i can see how god’s call to boise bible was one of the many ways that god led me away from people and situations that over time could have been very bad for me.”

his pastor took him across oregon to boise bible college, where marcus could sit in classes and get a feel for the campus atmosphere. what he saw and later experienced was the personal nature of the academic environment and the depth of scholarship in the faculty. he learned quickly that bbc cared deeply about the truth of the bible. he learned a lot, which produced many questions that were answered by knowledgeable, caring professors.

the professors impacted marcus both personally and academically. john whittaker took the time to help him feel more comfortable in his “own skin as someone following christ and, in turn, pursuing ministry as a lifestyle.” chuck faber impacted marcus by his hard work and attention to detail.

one of the best things to happen at boise bible was meeting his wife, carrie. he tells how carrie would wait each evening listening for the sound of his ‘89 toyota supra pulling into the parking lot after work. then she would head down to the cafeteria for supper. marcus is thankful for god, allowing him to take his dad’s car to college that year in order to win his soon-to-be-wife’s heart! he got the girl, but the car went back to dad.

john whittaker shared a story of how marcus was having a hard time deciding when to officially ask carrie to marry him. marcus likes to have all the details figured out and was dragging his feet. john and louise had been asked to spend the summer in australia and were looking for someone to house sit for them. john told marcus they would have a place to stay and time to look for a place of their own. she must have said yes!

while still a student, marcus started serving as a youth minister and then became the preaching minister at new beginnings christian church in kuna, id, where he served nearly twelve years. during that time, he and carrie felt a tug to return to their home state of oregon. they have been serving at alvadore christian church just west of eugene for the last four years. they followed a couple that had recently retired after 35 years of serving the church. there was plenty of work to do to “freshen” things up, and it took much discernment to figure out what to retain and nurture from the previous ministry. they have settled in well, and the lord is blessing their efforts.

the small village-like community of alvadore, a part of junction city, has been great for their family. they enjoy living on a beautiful acre and a half with fruit trees, gardens, and a lovely little pool. the children are growing up with a home and church-centered life. ada (12), rowan (10), and gavin (6) enjoy their dogs and chickens. the family spends much time playing and working together. they enjoy as many camping trips to the beach in their little pop-up trailer as they can get in each year and take long walks in the woods and meadows around their home.

marcus had this to say about his bbc experience:

“i resonate with bbc’s emphasis on scholarship and humility. these two tend to work against each other in academia and in the ministry.  it is very easy to be a “sage on the stage” rather than a “guide alongside” because you have your abd (advanced bible doctrine) binder with all the answers.  i’m continually reminded that i am called to have lots of books on my shelves, to constantly be studying god’s word because i love him, and to love his people.  i was not called to the ministry to answer everyone’s questions (boy, do they have a lot of them!).  i was called to ministry to help people understand how god’s word works and how to read it well alongside them, knowing that what it asks of them, it asks of me.” 

marcus encourages students to consider bbc because it provides an excellent foundation for our walk with christ.  bbc is set up to get as much out of it as you want. if you want one year, it’s going to be a solid one year.  if you want 2 years or 4 years, it will last a lifetime!

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2020-2021 school year at boise bible college learn more here