We Had to Ask: Travis Miller
InsideOut: How do you like your eggs cooked?
Travis Miller: Over a Bunsen Burner.
IO: Vanilla or chocolate ice cream?
TM: Chocolate! I can’t believe anyone would even consider vanilla.
IO: Would you rather eat Burger King, McDonald’s, or Wendy’s?
TM: McDonald’s. As a previous employee, I once cooked 400 Big Macs in one shift. I still love Big Macs.
IO: Would you rather have microscopic vision or super hearing? Why and what would you do with it?
TM: Super hearing so I could listen to all the cheesy lines guys use when attempting to hit on my daughters.
IO: If the issue of evolution/creation comes up in a class, would your advice be to lay low to avert attention or speak up at the risk of conflict?
TM: “Laying low” is for folks who aren’t convinced of their beliefs. If what we believe is true, then there is no fear in presenting it. If it is false, then we need to know the truth anyway. In other words, truth will always prevail in the arena of argument and discussion. As such, we can, and I believe must, present the truth. I don’t think we should pursue conflict, but neither should we run from it.
IO: What year were you voted in as youth secretary?
TM: I was appointed as the director of promotion for the GYD in 1998 by Nathan Reever. At the General Conference in 1999 I was first elected as the general youth secretary and was re-elected to that position until I was too old to serve. Thus, my time as a youth official ended in 2004. In the course of my service, I was privileged to work with presidents Nathan Reever, Scott Graham, and Todd Gaddy.
IO: Do you think our generation has changed at all? If yes, how so?
TM: Of course! The explosive use of the Internet via high-speed wireless access has made huge amounts of information readily available. It has also generated peer-2-peer connections that were completely unknown to previous generations. Further, the connections available via cell phones are extraordinary and multiplying all the time. Along with the incredible advantages all of this communication/information brings, I also see it as a potential challenge for today’s Pentecostal youth. I think that sins that were previously offered to those 19-21 years of age are now marketed to those 12-14 years of age. The church must respond accordingly with means to address this challenge.
IO: If there’s anything you would have done differently as youth secretary, what would it be?
TM: Nothing. Those were some of the best years of my life, and I’m thankful for every minute.
IO: You’re now the general secretary of Home Missions, but you still do your part helping out SFC. Tell us how.
TM: One of the many things that Sheaves for Christ supports is providing property grants to Home Missions churches. Since I am an avid recreational cyclist, the past two years I’ve been able to combine my hobby with supporting SFC and, in turn, home missionaries. In 2007, I joined a bike tour organized by the Ohio Youth Department, rode 200 miles in 2 days, and raised $2,400.00 for SFC. This year, I participated in another tour that included 320 miles in 4 days. Thanks to willing sponsors, I was able to raise $3,000.00 for SFC this year. I think it’s a neat opportunity.
IO: This issue of Inside Out is on creation vs. evolution, but that’s not the only issue we have in our schools. How do we take a stand to the teachers and professors that are anti-God?
TM: First, study to show yourself approved. I’m not sure that a poor student carries much respect when they question teachers. In my opinion, the first thing we can do to represent biblical truth in an educational environment is be the very best students we can be. Second, we live in a culture of tolerance. Yes, this has some very negative aspects; however, it also has some positive aspects. One is that if the teachers/professors are going to tolerate other beliefs, then they also have to tolerate ours. Thus, our thoughts, beliefs, and convictions are just as valid as others. With this in mind, students should participate in discussions and presentations with confidence. Yes, many educational establishments are calling our beliefs into question. However, we need to exercise our right to call their beliefs into question. Finally, share the truth in love. Our attitude when presenting truth must be right. I don’t believe we accomplish anything by acting arrogant, or being angry, or, God forbid, being mean. The academic environment dictates an academic response. With a smile on our faces, we can present the truths of Scripture in a loving, matter-of-fact manner.