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Confession of a The Power of 3 Things Parents Should Never Careless Woman Vision Compromise with Children A First Church of God Publication | Summer - 2016



Making Ready a People Prepared to Meet the Lord.

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Missed the Winter or Spring issues of Empowerment? Just click on one of front covers below and BE EMPOWERED! The Blessing of Being a Disciple of Serving a Great Pastor Jesus

The Seductive Nature of Spiritual Warefare

Spring Forward! An Open Letter

Inspiration from the Heart: Fully Persuaded

What My Mother Means to Me!

A First Church of God Publication | Winter - 2016 A First Church of God Publication | Spring - 2016

The Power of Prayer from a

Righteous Believer Making Ready a People Prepared to Meet the Lord.

Saving Our SONS

Making Ready a People Prepared to Meet the Lord.

Greetings! While Bishop Clarke takes a much needed vacation during the month of August, the staff of Empowerment would like to thank everyone for your support. From those who contribute articles to each of our readers, the vision of having an online magazine represents one of the many branches of First Church ministry and would not be possible without your support! You may have noticed small creatures chasing small people around the magazine. We apologize for this mishap. Esther Brandon’s article titled “Dealing with Difficult People”, shares how we tend to avoid individuals that bring problems and issues into our lives (just ask the little people running throughout this issue)! When was the last time that we took a moment to reflect on the actions of those we view as “difficult”? There is a possibility that we may realize for some individuals, this is a cry for help. We hope that you take time to read her exceptional article, it’s truly a blessing.

He If you are interested in submitting an article or joining our team, please reach out to Edmund Davidson at Regards, The Empowerment Staff


Summer 2016

ello ...and THANK YOU!


Featured Articles

Dealing with Difficult People by Sister Esther Brandon PG




3 Things Parents should Never Compromise with their Children


by Minister Brian Holland Jones

Inspiration from the Heart The Lesson in a Pause





PG 1



Summer 2016


by Sister Alethea Gaddis

Confession of a Careless Woman by Deacon Rosie Dowdy

The Power of Vision How the Unseen Becomes Reality By Brother Ted Murdaugh

In This Issue







Why I Serve Read why members of FCOG serve the Lord and their fellow church members.


Seasonal Updates

Measles, Influenza, and Chickenpox, OH MY!




From the Kitchen

Summer is coming to a close. But don't let it leave without trying this simple recipe!


Empowerment Article and Interview Contributors

Summer 2016

Empowerment Staff Bishop Timothy J. Clarke Executive Publisher & Chief Executive Officer


Sister Esther Brandon

Sister Alethea Gaddis

Minister Brian Holland

Brother Edmund Davidson


Sister Deborah Thompson


Sister Tanya Word


Sister Lisa Jones Brother Ted Murdaugh

Deacon Rosie Dowdy

Sister Lisa Jones

Senior Advisor

Sister Villia Davidson

Liaison Manager Sister Pamela Clarke

Attention Brother Dave Ellis


Summer 2016

Brother Bruce Coleman

Want to EMPOWER others? We are looking for writers, reporters, editors, and graphic artists to spread the Word! Please contact brother Edmund Davidson at for more information.

Spread the



Introduce your friends and loved ones to Empowerment, an online publication from First Church of God. Published quarterly, Empowerment delivers words of wisdom, inspirational stories, and advice from members of First Church of God in one life-changing and easy to read publication. Just share the link

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E O P 9

Summer 2016


by Esther Brandon

As we headed east on Route 104, a west bound vehicle caught our attention. The driver slowed to well below the posted speed limit and was straddling the dotted line that divided the two lane roadway. They were inhibiting the natural flow of traffic and the honking horns of the inconvenienced motorists’ did nothing to change the situation. I started assessing what was really going on. The driver appeared to be disoriented. Were those tears, was the driver crying? Was this erratic driving an early sign of dementia? Maybe they just received heartbreaking news, like a death of a loved one? Was there a misbehaving child in the back seat? Could someone be experiencing an urgent medical concern? Innocently distracted? New to driving? As my imagination explored the seemingly endless possibilities I realized I was doing it again. I was shifting the paradigm.


• Paradigm - an example serving as a model; pattern. • Shift - a slight change in position, direction, or tendency. • Paradigm shift - a fundamental change in approach or underlying assumptions. Shifting the paradigm has become my way of looking at situations. As a result of working in a call center environment, I learned to explore what was driving the often negative and escalated emotions of the caller. Doing so helped me avoid making an already bad situation, worse. Instead, by shifting the paradigm, I facilitated positive and healthy problem resolution.

ple at home, at work and sometimes at church. There are too many different types to address in this article; however, the most common are the Downers, Better Thans, Passives, and Aggressives. What if I told you there is a way to nearly eliminate the impact of difficult people. While it may take effort to get a steady state of Shalom a formula that has helped me is: Supplication Prayers: A simple prayer can often be the most effective. Identify the situation and ask God for help and direction.

It’s true; we encounter a variety of difficult peo-

Downers are the people we encounter who always have something bad to say. Rarely can they be pleased and they are often found complaining, critiquing and judging people and situations.

Better Thans spend their time trying to impress others by name-dropping and comparing what they know or have.


Summer 2016

Passives don’t contribute much one way or the other. They accept or allow what happens or what others do, without active response or resistance.

Aggressives want their way and will do anything to get it usually through explosive, controlling, and overbearing behaviors.

Dear God, Please help me properly deal with ____. You see the situation of _____ and you know their heart as well as mine. I desire to Love others through the mind, eyes, and heart of Jesus. Should I be doing anything to provoke this behavior please fix me. I am calling out to you to help us find a place of resolve that is pleasing to you and your will. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

cific situation go to the Internet and search “scripture about _______.” Fill in the blank with the difficult matter with which you are experiencing. For example, “scripture about dealing with difficult people,” or “scripture about complaining,” or “scripture about controlling personalities.” Shifting the paradigm: It was like finding gold when I read Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of For we wrestle not against flesh and this world, against wickedblood, but against principalities, spiritual ness in high placagainst powers, against the rulers of es. This scripture the darkness of this world, against pulled my attention back to the spiritual wickedness in high places. need to shift the paradigm.

Scriptural Pursuits: Through trial and error I’ve yet to experience a difficult person or situation that the Holy Bible hasn’t provided explicit instruction on how to navigate. Regardless of the type of difficulty being encountered, nuEphesians 6:12 merous scriptures help us When people behave know how to be more than a conqueror. badly, I no longer look at the person, instead I consider the possible reasons for their There are times when people are unaware of behavior. I question, what nasty ol’ gremlin their behaviors or impact. Sharing your perspec- could be the root cause for the Downers to tive as indicated in Matthew 18:15 has proven complain, critique and judge everything? to rectify many downward spiraling situations. What life experiences drive the Better Thans to need to show off or one-up? What words A contemporary adage is, “when you know have been spoken over the Passives causbetter you do better.” As followers of Christ and ing them to portray attributes of perceived as directed in Galatians 6:1 it is important to weakness or as a pushover? How did the gently approach all contentious matters without Aggressives land at behaviors that are often a sense of superiority or self-righteousness. explosive, bossy, and overbearing? I metNo matter the circumstance, being wise in aphorically filter their behavior through a our thoughts and actions will garner favorable mesh of their potential thoughts, feelings, results. The book of Proverbs is full of ways and experiences. In doing so, I find freedom. to apply wisdom. God highly regards those who pursue wisdom and exhorts us to do so in Not all difficult people or situations need meekness, as stated in James 3:13. to be explored at such a deep level. Think about the time when you harshly responded If you don’t already have a few scriptures to ref- to someone immediately after stubbing your erence how God would have you handle a spetoe. You weren’t mad at them, the corner of


the furniture inflicting the pain was your sole target. Consider the time at work when you had more tasks to complete than time on the clock. You focused and secluded yourself. You had no time to participate in the normal office banter. You didn’t have an attitude, as perceived by others, you had work to do.






More often than not, by praying, searching the scriptures and shifting our paradigm we can overcome the difficult people and situations in our lives!


Matthew 18:15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. James 3:13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.


Summer 2016

When people behave badly, I no longer look at the person, instead I consider the possible reasons for their behavior.

Around the



Sunday, October 30th, 2016


09/16 - Bishop I.V. Hilliard (Guest Speaker) 09/24 - College and Job Application Workshop (for college bound students )Room BG1012


10/05 - 10-7 - Berean Conference 10/14 - Hallelujah Harvest 10/23 - Worship in Pink, Breast Cancer Awareness Sunday 10/30 - First On Fifth Sunday


11/08 - Election Day - Presidential (GET OUT AND VOTE!) 11/24 - Thanksgiving 11/25 - 11/26 - Building is closed


12/09 - College Scholarship Information Seminar 12/09 - Volunteer Appreciation Night 12/24 - Christmas Eve Service - 7:00 pm 12/25 - Christmas Service - 12:00 pm For more information go to



Summer 2016










things parents should


compromise with their by Minister Brian Holland



So I have to admit when it comes to children I am pretty old school. I won't go as far as to say that children should be seen and not heard. However, I do believe that children should do what they are told, not only by their parents, but by any adult. It could be a relative, neighbor, or the ever important school teacher! I know, I know, times are changing and we have to give our children freedom to explore and make their own decisions. Children need freedom to feel what they feel and express those feelings in a positive and safe environment. In others words, some compromises have to be made, but at the same time there are three things that parents should never compromise with their children. Three things that there are no "ifs, ands, or buts" about. Three things that if you don't compromise on, your children will respect you more and be the better for it.


The first thing that parents should never compromise with their children is friendship. You are not your child's friend. Let me say it again, you are not your child's friend! You are their parent. You are their father or their mother, but you are not their friend. When you become friends with your children you are no longer their parent or the authority figure in their life. Now I am not saying that you cannot have fun with your children or laugh and let the good times roll with your children, but there has to be a line drawn somewhere. The minute you become your child's friend is the moment you lose authority in his or her life. Can your friends tell you what to do? How often do you follow your friends' unsolicited advice? Exactly! That is why you need to be your children's parent and not their friend. Proverbs 22:6 states, "Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is older he will not depart from it." The second thing that parents should not compromise with their children is family. Your children should know that next to God and your spouse that they are the most important people in the world to you! They need to know that your family is your number one priority and it should be their number one priority as well. According to Bishop Timothy J. Clarke, "Everything is based on the family from creation, to civilization, to the church." That is why Satan has always attacked the family because if he destroys the family he destroys creation, civilization, and the church. Therefore we cannot compromise on the issue of family with our children. Joshua 24:15 states, "As for me and my family we will serve The Lord." The third thing parents should not compromise with their children is faith. Deuteronomy 6:4-7 states, "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord. 5 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up." Your faith in God should always be the center and the focal point of your family. Your children must know beyond a doubt that they belong to a Christian family. This does not mean that you beat them over the head with the bible, religion, and church services, but they understand that you have a relationship with the true and living God. They must see you walk the walk and talk the talk. You must strive to be the parent that God has called you to be and then your children will know that there is no compromise when it comes to faith in your house.


Summer 2016

In this twenty first century world that we live in, with all of its technology and opportunity to do whatever, whenever, as parents we are going to have to make some compromises in the raising of our children. BUT in the areas of friendship, family, and faith I truly believe that there can be no compromise. Your children need to know that when it comes to friendship, family, and faith that you mean what you say and say what you mean. I believe with all of my heart that if you do not compromise in these three areas your children and your children's children will be blessed!




I am not a morning person. Methodically, as part of my bedtime routine, I consider my schedule for the following day, then set the alarm on my phone in preparation for rising in a timely manner. Inevitably though, after being startled by the alarm I will scramble to hit the snooze button multiple times, hoping each brief pause before the next alarm, will allow me to squeeze in just a little more rest. by Alethea Eunice Gaddis


Summer 2016

Another page from my pause button chronicles is with the television remote. While watching a movie I sometimes need an intermission. At any moment I simply reach for the remote and press the pause button. When I return to my seat. I simply release the pause button and the movie continues as if I had never vacated my seat. This next scenario brings me to the doorstep of my grandparents’ home. While growing up, Mama would halt our care-free summer play and insist that my brother Randal and cousins Cynthia and Jolynn come in the house for lunch. Afterwards we were sent to take that dreaded n-a-p! Nap time then meant lay down, rest, be still, and no talking for at least an hour before we were released to resume playing. It is difficult for us to press the pause button in our lives. We are busy with a myriad of obligations and commitments: work, family, church, community service. So, because of the hectic schedules we juggle, it is absolutely imperative to pause and rest. The rest is not just for the body, but it is a balm for the mind and spirit as well. Through the years though, I have grown to appreciate and embrace those times when it is necessary to pause and cease all activity, even if ever so briefly. In the spirit of full transparency, I confess that I now appreciate a nap on those rare occasions when I can fit it in. However rest for me now is more than physical repose. Rest is also contentment of heart and mind. It’s a peace that surpasses my understanding. I remember well taking piano lessons as a child. I learned to read music and Mrs. Gertrude Canty taught me to observe the musical symbols strategically placed throughout out the composition. She would say, “Observe the rests. The composer use

the rest to add a certain element to the musical tune.” It journalism it is like when a writer wills to grasp your attention by placing emphasis on a certain word or phrases with punctuation marks. The end goal is to make you pause and reflect on what you’ve read. In sports the coach or player will call for a time out to pause and regain focus and discuss strategy. In the courtroom a judge will grant a recess or a brief interval or pause during which all business is suspended until a later time. I’m sure you can think of other examples where a pause and rest is necessary. To take a page from the sports world consider this: Most athletes know that getting enough rest after a workout is essential to high-level performance. Just like the body repairs and strengthens itself in the time between workouts, to pause and rest is also an opportunity for the mind and spirit to be revived and rejuvenated. God gave us an example by resting on the seventh day, not because He was tired, but as a reminder of the crucial necessity of rest. The lesson we learn from a pause, is that no matter how busy life is, we must position ourselves to function at maximum potential to achieve the greatest results in all of our endeavors. Often, when we are jump into life’s tasks and assignments without the proper rest, we may have to retrace our steps and begin again. It remind me of a game we played during recess at Eastwood Elementary and Mifflin Elementary where I attended. It was called, “Red Light, Green Light.” Everyone stood along the starting line. When the leader yelled 'Green Light' everyone would move towards the finish line. When the leader yelled 'Red Light' everyone had to immediately stop. Players still in motion when 'Red Light' was called had to go back to the starting line. What a great illustration about the value of taking a pause so we can be prepared for the “Green Light!”


Confession of a


I confess that acting my life. Those includ health, family relatio

In the past I have tri hear me roar.� After Maybe I just need to right? I’ve got this, r

WOMAN by Rosie Dowdy


Summer 2016

g independently I have been unsuccessful in dealing with the cares, stressors, suffering and worries in de the death of loved ones, divorce, unemployment, money, media overload, physical and emotional onships, church ministry, irritating people, etc.

ied to solve things by myself. It brings to mind the lyrics in an old song by Helen Reddy, “I am woman, r all God doesn't need to be bothered with my petty cares, does he? He has a whole world to deal with. o work harder, smarter and longer! He has given me the ability to work these things out all by myself, right? Dead wrong. Proverbs 3:5 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path.” I confess that I have complained to friends first about my cares. Most are kind and generous, initially. Call or text too much though and they get tired of hearing about your issues. After a while when they see your number on caller identification, even your best friend forever may not pick up. 1 Peter 5:7 says “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” I don't always want to act on that scripture. I plow on using my old ways (complaining, sleeplessness, hollow distractions, eating chocolate) of dealing with things and meet with the same result – failure to handle the stressors in my life. While reading and studying my Bible, memorizing scripture and watching the unnamed birds living in their lovely, newly built rent-free condo nest on my front porch, I confess, I am becoming a careless woman. I will tell you why. The birds take no care about my irritation at their living arrangements, or how they will deal with my attempts to evict them or how they will eat. No stress, no fuss. God provides for them. Like the squatter birds, I am becoming careless because God cares for me and I am dependent on him. He handles all my stuff, big, small and in between. Memorizing and recalling scripture is the key to becoming careless. Philippians 4:6-13 especially gives me simple but powerful directions for dealing with stress, worry, suffering and cares of this life. • • • •

Worry about nothing (absolutely nothing). Pray about everything! Tell God what I need. Thank Him in all things. Think about good things. Fix my thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right and pure and lovely and admirable. • Learn to be content in all situations. These directions are not easy, and at times, they are really difficult. Through it all I know if I do these things I am guaranteed to experience God’s peace, which surpasses all human understanding. The same guarantee is available to you. This is my confession and I am sticking to it.






5 How the Unseen Becomes Reality

By Ted Murdough


Summer 2016

I once worked at a company where I was a participant in a management development group that was designed to foster creativity and discovery in order to generate new ideas and new strategic initiatives. The team was assembled and dubbed as “an unstructured management development group”, meaning that our initiatives and discoveries had no boundaries and could take off in any direction that the group (or strongest team member) could take it. The group was given the name “The Visionaries”, which in itself created a conflicting set of ideals (when put up against “unstructured”), as it is difficult to have “vision” in an “unstructured” setting. The former (vision) is basically a simple but specific and clearly stated picture of future success. While on the other hand, “unstructured” is synonymous with absence of vision and therefore does not lend itself to anything or any situation being clearly stated or clearly defined. Moreso, the definition of vision, while many and varied, for our purpose here is to create a future success based upon a clearly defined picture of that future outcome. In order for any of us to achieve any type of success or to realize any of our desires, regardless of what aspect of our life that we consider, we must have a vision for it; we must be able to see it even before it actually exists. In addition, our vision must be clearly stated or clearly defined. Whether it involves our job, our family, our finances or our relationships (with God or with man), it all requires having a vision for it. Just think about the word itself – vision; it is literally having sight, being able to see. The opposite or lack of vision is having no sight, not being able to see. It is difficult (if not impossible) to obtain that which you cannot see as you are literally proceeding blindly towards your goal or objective. In order to obtain or attain anything

you must be able to see it, to visualize it. Because once you can see it, it then becomes real thereby making it attainable. We are all familiar with this part of a verse from the Bible: “evidence of things not seen.” Evidence is a real and convicting set of data that proves the existence of some thing or some situation. “Not seen” is just what is says it is – you cannot see it, or you cannot visualize it. If you substituted “evidence” for “vision”, in the partial verse above it would read “Vision of things not seen.” In other words if you want to see the “not seen” it first must be visualized – which leads to the casting (putting forth / putting it out there / articulating it) of vision. To change or realize something in your life that is not “being seen” you must reject the “not seen” and replace it with being able to visualize it. And after you visualize it, you must write it down. Most of us have the ability to recall things that we have written down primarily because we actually saw it (we visualized or witnessed it). The next step is to speak it! Similar to writing something down, hearing it has an equal impact. We have a tendency to remember the things we say, even if we don’t recall what we have said verbatim, the context of it will remain with us. And after we speak it, then we must speak it again and again as repetition begins to brand something within us that leads us to incorporating it into some part of our daily life. This all leads to the making of a vision for some part of your life (regardless of how specific or far reaching it may be) and begins to bring into focus that which you are seeking to make real or bring into existence. Here’s a brief example: My grandfather (Henry Murdaugh) for many years worked as a sharecropper on a 200+ acre farm in South Carolina. He finished


the 3rd grade in 1898 and challenge everyone in his family started on a journey that to “Be Somebody”. seemingly would end the way that it began, that of being He successfully rejected the “not a sharecropper for his entire seen” and saw a more perfect life. He (with seemingly no future for himself and his family. other choice before him) He worked diligently towards left school to work with his this, articulated it daily and father who was, you guessed it, a sharecropper. When he anything you must believed it to no end. It drove him to the achievement of his got married in 1910, he was be able to see it, to dream and during the height of a sharecropper. From the the depression he purchased time of his first child being the very same 200-acre farm born in 1912 to the last of on which he had sharecropped his 14 children (my dad) being born in 1934, he was still a sharecropper. for some 40 years. His vision had become a reality; the unseen had been revealed because His existence during this time was not that of what he visualized, wrote down and spoke far removed from that of his father and his (over and over again) to many, up until the grandfather before him who labored under day he left. I heard it all the time (sometimes the pre-emancipation institution of slavery. growing tired of hearing it) but it even placed In essence he was still in slavery, although a similar passion and desire within me as well somewhat to a lesser degree. as in my father before me.

In order to


or attain visualize it.

However, at some point in his life, likely in the early 1920’s, he began to tell everyone that he was going to “Be Somebody”, that he was not going to be a sharecropper for his entire life. This became his vision: to “Be Somebody”. He then began to tell everyone who would listen that he was going to “Be Somebody” and not be relegated to a life of barely existing. He then challenged his children and all of his relatives to “Be Somebody”. Even before all of his kids were born (and while he was yet laboring in the cotton fields of the deep south, both during and after the Great Depression of the late 1920’s and early 1930’s) his vision for everyone who would be born into the family, was that they would “Be Somebody”. Of all the great things and of all the great stories that he communicated during his 102 year journey on this earth, the one that everyone who knew him will remember is that he would always


Summer 2016

I challenge you to cast your vision, write it down, speak it over and over again and then witness it as it becomes a reality. You never know, it may influence and save a generation.

are you ready for the

goodlife YOUTH

Sundays at 11:00 AM

Why I Serve

Bruce Coleman • Mighty Men of Valor • Usher Ministry In 2004, I began a true and honest relationship with God. Prior to that I went to church every Sunday and knew about God but 2004 was the year that I got to KNOW him. It was an eventful year and I had miraculously recovered from a medical emergency. The doctors had no scientific explanation for my recovery but I knew that it was nothing but grace and mercy.

The reason I serve on Ministries: It’s my opportunity to demonstrate to the Lord and myself that I can be reliable, punctual, competent, and content to do a task without the expectation of receiving compensation for the work that I do…………. Amen!

Dave Ellis • Usher Ministry • Might Men of Valor • Men's Choir

Like the prophet Jonah, God gave me a 2nd chance. When I think how I could’ve died, I am grateful. I am grateful for His undying love, His forgiveness and His grace. I give thanks every single day for it. I have no choice but to recommit my life to Him. A 2nd chance at life makes me want to serve. My service is not out of obligation but is rooted in love. I see it as a blessed opportunity to express my own love and to thank Him for loving me first. I have an assignment to finish the things that He has called me to do, and I want to fulfill HIS will for MY life. Through the Foundations class, I learned that one of my spiritual gifts is to serve others and I am proud and happy to do it. I hope that I can also be a role model to other men who want to serve. I am currently active in several ministries including Men of Valor, Through his Eyes, Men’s Choir and Usher ministry. In the past I have also served with the van ministry and helped out with the senior distribution of baskets. So on those days when I grow weary …I pray for strength and say “Not my will but Thy will be done”.


Summer 2016

First Church of God Christian Education Ministry Fall 2016 Quarter Class Schedule Want to increase your relationship with God? Want to get a better handle on your finances? Maybe you want to understand the Bible like you have never done before. Then come to one of our Christian Education Ministry Classes. Each class is centered around four purposes:

Discipleship Studying God's Word Fellowship Connecting in Relationship With Others Servant Leadership Finding Your Place to Serve Ministry Evangelism Inviting Others to Belong

Classes and Location Financial Peace A 13-week program that helps people dump their debt, get control of their money, and learn new behaviors around money that are founded on commitment and accountability. Every Monday beginning September 12th 2016 – Monday, November 14th 2016, Room BG 1017/1018, 6:30 pm – 8 pm

Foundations Class 101 An introduction to our church family that explains who and what our church is about. Class 102 – Focuses on several Christian Disciplines that every Christian will need in order to grow into spiritual maturity. Class 103 – Finding your spiritual gift (s) and ministry The Second Saturday of the Month, Tech Room A&B, 9 am –12:30 pm

How to Study the Bible Prepare for a life-changing way of understanding and exploring Scripture, reveals the Bible's message, and helps you live boldly and confidently in God's truths. Every Thursday beginning Thursday, October 13th 2016 – Thursday November 10th 2016, Room to be announced, 6:30 pm – 8 pm

MasterLife Discipleship Series A series to help believers make discipleship a way of life. Christian discipleship is developing a personal, lifelong, obedient relationship with Jesus Christ in which He transforms our character into Christlikeness, changes our values into Kingdom values; and involves us in His mission in home, the church, and the world. Every Monday beginning Monday, October 10th 2016 November 14th 2016, Room BG 1015/1016, 6:30 pm – 8 pm To register contact; Bro. Ricardo & Sis. Marie Penn at

Adult Sunday School Adult Sunday School – The Sovereignty of God studies in Isaiah, Hebrews, and Revelation.

We look forward to seeing you in class soon!

Every Sunday beginning September 11th from 9:15 am – 10:30 am in Room Y-111 beginning Sunday September 11th 2016 Please register at the Christian Education Ministry Table in the Narthex on Sunday morning or by contacting Minister Fabienne Fisher at the church office at 614-338-8338 ext. 325.

Seasonal Updates Vaccine-Preventable Adult Diseases

Each year in the United States, 1 million people get shingles and some will have severe pain that can continue even long after their rash clears up (called post-herpetic neuralgia) or they may suffer from other painful complications that could persist for years. In the United States: Each year, on average, more than 200,000 people are hospitalized due to influenza and between 3,000 and 49,000 people die of influenza and its complications, the majority are among adults. About 900,000 people get pneumococcal pneumonia every year, leading to as many as 400,000 hospitalizations and 19,000 deaths. 700,000 to 1.4 million people suffer from chronic hepatitis B, with complications such as liver cancer. HPV causes over 27,000 cancers in women and men each year. About 4,000 women die each year from cervical cancer. Chickenpox What it is: Chickenpox is a disease caused by the varicella zoster virus. How it can affect you: Chickenpox causes an itchy rash with blisters, tiredness, headache and fever. Chickenpox is usually mild, but it can lead to severe skin infections, pneumonia, encephalitis (brain swelling), or even death. Vaccine for Protection: Varicella


What it is: Diphtheria is a very contagious bacterial disease that affects the respiratory system, including the lungs. How it can affect you: Diphtheria produces a toxin (poison) in the body that can cause weakness, sore throat, low-grade fever, and swollen glands in the neck. Effects from this toxin can also lead to swelling of the heart muscle and, in some cases, heart failure. In severe cases, the illness can cause coma, paralysis, and even death. Vaccine for Protection: Tdap, Td


What it is: Influenza is a contagious viral infection of the nose, throat, and lungs. Older adults and those with certain health conditions are at high risk for serious complications. How it can affect you: Influenza virus can cause a sudden high fever, chills, a dry cough, headache, runny nose, sore throat, and muscle and joint pain. Extreme fatigue can last from several days to weeks. Influenza may lead to hospitalization or even death. Vaccine for Protection: Annual Flu


Summer 2016

Human papillomavirus

What it is: Human papillomavirus is a common virus, especially among people in their teens and early 20s. Many people don’t know they have this for years until cancer appears. How it can affect you: HPV is the major cause of cervical cancer in women, as well as anal cancer and genital warts in both women and men. Some types of HPV can cause cancers of the penis, anus, or oropharynx (back of the throat, including base of the tongue and tonsils). Vaccine for Protection: HPV


What it is: Measles is respiratory disease caused by a very contagious virus. More and more cases are coming into the US, usually from international travelers. How it can affect you: Measles can cause persistent fever, rash lasting up to a week, and coughing that can last about 10 days. Measles can also cause pneumonia, seizures, brain damage, or death. Vaccine for Protection: MMR


What it is: Shingles is a painful skin rash that is caused by the varicella zoster virus, the same virus that causes chickenpox. How it can affect you: Shingles causes a painful rash on one side of the face or body, which blisters and then typically scabs over in 7-10 days and clears up within 2-4 weeks. Other symptoms of shingles can include fever, headache, chills, and upset stomach. Shingles can affect the eye and cause loss of vision. Vaccine for Protection: Zoster


What it is: Tetanus is a serious bacterial disease that causes painful tightening of muscles. You can get this from a cut or wound, even a needle prick. How it can affect you: The bacteria causing Tetanus produce a toxin (poison) in the body that causes serious, painful spasms and stiffness of all muscles in the body. This can lead to “locking” of the jaw so a person cannot open his or her mouth, swallow, or breathe. Three out of ten people who get tetanus die from the disease. Vaccine for Protection: Tdap, Td


What it is: Rubella is a viral disease that causes fever and rash. How it can affect you: Rubella usually causes a mild illness with fever, swollen glands, and a rash that lasts about 3 days. In some cases, it can lead to encephalitis (brain infection) in adults. If a pregnant woman is infected with rubella, it can result in miscarriage or serious birth defects such as mental retardation, heart defects, and loss of hearing and eye sight. Vaccine for Protection: MMR


Seasonal Updates Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

What it is: Whooping coughis a highly contagious respiratory tract infection caused by bacteria. Since the 1980s, there has been an increase in the number of reported cases of pertussis in the United States. Babies too young to get vaccinated are most at risk of severe illness. How it can affect you: Whooping cough can cause prolonged cold symptoms, leading to spells of violent coughing and choking, making it hard to breathe, drink, or eat. This cough can last for weeks. Whooping cough is most severe for babies, leading to hospitalization and sometimes death. Babies often get the disease from a parent, caregiver, or relative. Vaccine for Protection: Tdap

Hepatitis A

What it is: Hepatitis A is an infection in the liver caused by hepatitis A virus. This disease is often spread through contaminated food. How it can affect you: Hepatitis A can cause fever, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal discomfort, dark urine, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes). An infected person may have no symptoms, may have mild illness for a week or two, or may have severe illness for several months that requires hospitalization. Vaccine for Protection: HepatitisA

Hepatitis B

What it is: Hepatitis B is an infection of the liver caused by hepatitis B virus. This is a blood-borne disease and can be very serious. How it can affect you: Hepatitis B causes a flu-like illness with loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, rashes, joint pain, and jaundice. The virus stays in the liver of some people for the rest of their lives and can result in severe liver diseases, including fatal cancer. Vaccine for Protection: Adults who are at risk for hepatitis B infection, such as healthcare workers, and adults who have certain chronic health conditions like diabetes, renal disease, chronic liver disease, or HIV infection and adults who are at risk of sexually transmitted infections, should get three doses of HepB vaccine.

Meningococcal Disease

What it is: Meningococcal disease is caused by bacteria and is a leading cause of bacterial meningitis (infection around the brain and spinal cord). How it can affect you: Meningococcal disease can cause nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, confusion and sleepiness. Meningococcal disease also causes blood infections. About one out of every ten people who get the disease dies from it. Survivors of meningococcal disease may lose their arms or legs, become deaf, have problems with their nervous systems, become developmentally disabled, or suffer seizures or strokes. Vaccines for Protection: MenACWY, MenB



Summer 2016

From the Kitchen Sassy Ham and Cheese Sandwiches

by Karen Richardson

Ingredients • • • • • • • • • •

1 container (8 ounces) cream cheese 2 teaspoons chopped fresh chives 1 pinch dried thyme 1 stick unsalted butter, melted 2 tablespoons freshly grated onion 2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 1 package (12 count) Hawaiian rolls 8 ounces Black Forest deli ham, thinly sliced 8 ounces gruyere, grated


• Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. • In a small bowl, combine the cream cheese, chives and thyme. Mix until well combined and set aside. • In a separate bowl, mix together the butter, onions, Parmesan and Worcestershire sauce. Set aside in a warm spot to keep the butter from solidifying. • Cut all 12 rolls in half. Place the roll bottoms in a 9- by 13-inch pan. Place equal amounts of ham (about 3 slices) on each roll. Top with the gruyere. Spread a generous amount of the chive and cream cheese on the roll tops. Place the tops on top of each sandwich bottom. • Pour the butter mixture over the top of the sandwiches. Cover with foil and bake until the cheese is melted, about 20 minutes. Then remove the foil and bake an additional 5 minutes to toast the buns.


First Church of God

A CITY OF REFUGE Cities of refuge in the Bible were designated places where someone who had accidentally done wrong could go to escape and could safely wait until trial. The church serves the same purpose, it is a refuge for you and I, sinners, to go to and be protected from the avenger of blood, to avoid making the payment of sin ourselves and take on God as our Lord and Savior and offer up his payment to the cost of sin being death, all the while waiting for Judgment Day. “Making Ready a People, Prepared for the Lord” Is one taken directly from scripture Luke 1:17 and refers to the ministry of John the Baptist, who was the forerunner of Jesus. His mission was to go before the Messiah and prepare the people for His coming. We believe that we as a church are sent and commissioned to prepare people not only for the coming of the King, but also to live full, meaningful and purpose filled lives here on earth as well.

Our Purpose

By now, you have probably either seen or heard the phrase, “Making Ready A People Prepared For The Lord.” This statement comes from Luke 1:17, a passage that deals with the mission of John the Baptist in preparing the way for the ministry of Jesus. “And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” (Luke 1:17 emphasis added) At First Church we have adopted this as our mission statement. The Bible teaches us that “it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27) and that “every one of us shall give account of himself to God” (Romans 14:10). It is the mission of First Church of God to prepare persons for their ultimate and great appointment, namely standing before the Lord. Everything we do then is done through the lens of this mission statement.

Our Mission

The purpose of the First Church of God is three-fold. To EXHALT Christ - We are called to raise or to lift up the name of Jesus as the way to salvation, the Son of God and the Savior of the world. {John 3:14-18; John 12:32; 1 Corinthians 1:23-24} To EVANGELIZE The Lost - We are called to spread the Gospel message to all of the world and make disciples of those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. {Matthew 28:18-20} To EDIFY The Body - We are called to “build up” the Body of Christ through the discovery and exercising of the spiritual gifts placed in us by the Holy Spirit of God. {Ephesians 4:7-16} At First Church, we do this in a number of ways. We do this through our worship and praise, preaching and teaching, through Christian Education and fellowship with one another and other assemblies of faith.


Summer 2016

Come and Worship with Us!

I invite you to visit us for one of our church services when you are in the Columbus area. You will feel right at home!

Affirmation We are building a City of Refuge Making ready a people prepared to meet the Lord. We do this through our witness, through our worship, and though our wok. The end result will be that we shall stand before His throne, fully matured, in Jesus Christ. We know this will be because we have been faithful, we have been fruitful, and we have been focused. To this end, we commit ourselves, we commit our lives, and we commit our resources. In Christ’s name, Amen.

Service Times Sunday

7:00 AM 9:00 AM 11:00 AM

Streaming Portal

Radio/internet portal


Tuesday 6:30am - Men’s Fellowship


12:00pm - Noon Day Bible Study 7:00pm - Evening Bible Study First Church of God 3480 Refugee Road Columbus, OH 43232 Phone: (614) 338-8338 Fax: (614) 338-8008

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First Church of God 3480 Refugee Road Columbus, OH 43232 Phone: (614) 338-8338 Fax: (614) 338-8008

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Empowerment Summer 2016  

Empowerment Summer 2016