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A First Church of God Publication | Winter 2018

Trusting god in


The Blessing of Being a Disciple of The Seductive Nature Serving a Great Pastor Jesus of Spiritual Warefare A First Church of God Publication | Winter - 2016

Spring Forward! An Open Letter

Inspiration from the Heart: Fully Persuaded

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.

What My Mother Means to Me!

Saving Our SONS

Making Ready a People Prepared to Meet the Lord.

...slightly different look

same vision...

Our great church has been hit with an excellent retrofit! So to be more inline with the vision, Empowerment is also changing its color and design (be sure to check the new mobile layout on your phone or tablet)! In the meantime, if you have missed any of our previous SIX (yes s.i.x.) issues, just click on any of the magazine covers to be enlightened, uplifted and...



The Bishop Speaks Bishop Timothy J. Clarke


I pray this ar new year an 2018 affords

In Phil. 3, Th determinati in order to d the things th

I can think o forward in t look ahead, the things G

So, in light o are holding Is there anyt new levels a

If you are lik today to sho strength to future and y

I love you an


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rticle finds you well and that you are maximizing the nd making the most of the gift and opportunity that s us.

he Apostle Paul talks about his commitment and ion to possess all that God has for him and he says that do that there are two things he has to do: 1) Forgetting hat are behind; and 2) Press forward to what lies ahead.

of no advice more compelling or needed as we move this new year. Like Paul we have to commit to let go and to release and reach, to give up somethings to go on to God has for us.

of that let me ask you a question, is there anything you on to that God might to challenging you to let go of? thing you need to release so that you might realize the and life that God has for you?

ke most of us there is indeed and so why not ask God ow you what those things are and then give you the move onward and forward into the bright days of your your promise.

nd I am praying for you.

- Bishop



3 / The Bishop Speaks by Bishop Timothy J Clarke

When change comes, how we respond to it is often times more important than the change itself..

9 / first church of god; 2017 in review

by Terreece Clarke Let's face it; we were so blessed in the year 2017 here at First Church. Take a look back at just SOME of our accomplishments!

15 / TRUSTING GOD in 2018

by Pastor Herbert Banks What can we do to assure a solid pathway as we move forward? How can we trust God in 2018.

21 / your personal jesus

by Brother Edmund Davidson Who or what is your personal "fix"?


23 / 5 things Christians should do in preparation for 2018

by JB Cachila When everything needs to be "perfect", you'll soon find that nothing is!

25 / inspiration from the heart; lessons from a cell phone


by Sister Alethea Gaddis Let me remind you that we are positioned to enjoy two-way communication with the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. winter 2018

2018 27 / Q&A with terreece clarke Meet the V.I.P. of marketing!

31/ Seasonal Updates: perfectionism

by Haley Overlandr Imperfection—and the acknowledgment of it—is actually a good thing.

33 / Seasonal Updates: Winter hair As the season change, so should your hair maintenance routine.

mpowerme 35 / From the Kitchen

Is old man Winter making you hibernate? Try out these two tasty recipes while keeping warm!

Philippians 4:6-7 (KJV)

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."


Empowerment Article and Interview Contributors

Winter 2018

Empowerment Staff Bishop Timothy J. Clarke

Pastor Herbert Banks

Executive Publisher & Chief Executive Officer

Brother Edmund Davidson Publisher

Sister Felicia Hence Editor

Sister Alethea Gaddis

Sister Deborah Thompson Editor

Sister Villia Davidson Senior Advisor

Sister Pamela Clarke Liaison Manager

Sister Terreece Clarke Brother Edmund Davidson Brother JB Cachila Sister Haley Overlandr


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Attention 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


N ews

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 lifechanging and easy to read publication. Just share the link www.empowerment.1stchurch. net

...and let others be


Empowering a people ready to meet the LORD!



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# W E A R E F I R S T C H U R C H

2017 A19 Y summer E A2017R I N T H E L I F E O F F I R S T C H U R C H O F G O D

THE YEAR OF DETERMINATION by Terreece M. Clarke 2017 was marked by First Church with celebration, growth and reflection. Declared the Year of Determination by Bishop Timothy J. Clarke, the church embraced the theme with gusto as new teams - marketing, media and creative - worked together with experienced staff and volunteers to increase access, reach and participation in the milestones, events and mission of the church. The year kicked off with Jersey Day followed by Determination T-Shirt day where everyone present took to the walls of the sanctuary to write down their goals, prayers and opportunities for the new year. Those papers were then rolled up and placed in Bishop's office where he prayed over them weekly throughout the year.


Love week encouraged First Church members to take part in raising money for an adopted school and commit 5,000 acts of love throughout the city.


RETROFITTED & RENEWED After months of construction, the newly renovated sanctuary opened the first Sunday in September with a march from GoodLife Youth Sanctuary, special guest artist Casey J and a packed house of members and guests. 

ANNIVERSARY! Bishop & Sis "C" celebrated a milestone 35th pastoral anniversary and First Church celebrated 79 years!

SATURDAY SERVICE! During the renovation First Church added a Saturday service to adjust for the smaller sanctuary in GoodLife. The time adjustment was so well received the time change became permanent! Saturday Night Life Service is now a popular service.

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REMEMBER THAT TIME GOODLIFE WENT VIRAL? In September GoodLife Youth Church led by Pastor George Fultz and a small army of volunteers gave away 1,000 book bags filled with school supplies. The video of the team stuffing the bookbags went viral (for First Church) reaching more than 100,000 views on Facebook!  The day of the event lines were wrapped around the parking lot as families got the supplies they needed for a successful school year.





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CHURCH ANYWHERE Live streaming outside of our website launched in the fall bringing even more viewers to church. Facebook LIVE serves thousands of viewers every week in dozens of countries.

INSPIRATION ANYWHERE Throughout 2017 First Church's social media channels became a source of information and inspiration. Prayer challenges, Bishop Notes, sermon recaps and photos from services and events helped make First Church home to anyone on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. 


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HURTS by Pastor Herbert Banks

Trusting God in the midst of trial or tribulation does not mean everything will work out. It means that by trusting in God we find peace, purpose, and power, even if the worst-case scenario happens.


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Trusting God in


by pastor hubert banks National turmoil, public display of hatred, and downright mean spiritedness are just a few of the reasons why many say 2017 is one of the most difficult years in recent history. What confidence do we have in these difficult times? Many of our institutions of trust have let us down. Many have lost trust in our government, political system, and financial institutions. What can we do to assure a solid pathway as we move forward? How can we trust God in 2018?


I believe trusting God in the year 2018 starts with trusting God in 2017. We are people accustomed to trust. Our buildings are built around truss beams to withstand inclement weather. Many are fortunate to have trust accounts to provide financial assistance for them through tough times or retirement. Our interaction with the medical profession is an example of our ability


difficult times will come as a part of life's journey, but we can depend on god's grace to take us through. " to trust.

1. We depend on doctors whose degrees we have never verified. 2. They provide us with prescriptions we cannot read. 3. We take it to a pharmacist we have never met. 4. They dispense a chemical compound we do not understand. 5. Then we go home and take the medication according to the instructions on the bottle. We do all of this in trust and sincere faith. Of course trusting the doctors are optional and of our free will. However, God gives us a command


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with a conditional promise in Proverbs 3:5,6 (NKJV) Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. If we trust Him as He asks and acknowledge Him as reliable, He will navigate our journey through 2018. His leading may not be through the path you would take nor meet your definition of straight but He is a reliable guide. DO WE TRUST THE LORD? Trust in the Hebrew language means, “to lean with the full body,” “to lay upon,” “to rest the full weight upon.” We lean on God because we are not strong enough to stand on our own. Three things must happen for us to trust God in 2018: First, we must believe He is worthy of our trust. Can we be certain that God will do what He said He would do? a. God has proven Himself to be faithful and trustworthy in any and all situations. He parted the Red Sea allowing the children of Israel to walk across on dry land. (Exodus 14:21) He protected Daniel in a lion’s den. (Daniel 6) He did not allow the Hebrew Boys to be burned in the fiery furnace. (Daniel 3:23) a. God has shown Himself to be able and willing to do the impossible on our behalf. Remember Elisha who

lost a borrowed axe head in the water and God caused it to float to the top. (2 Kings 6:6) Peter walked on water to reach Christ only to sink out of fear. Yet the Lord saved him. (Matthew 14) What about Abraham and Sarah having a baby at 90 years of age? (Genesis 21) a. God loves us and knows what is best for our lives. Paul the apostle was given a thorn in his flesh. He asked that it be removed three times. God’s answer to him was that “my grace is sufficient.” (2 Corinthians 12:9) Everything God does for us is done with wisdom and love. God never fails to fulfill His promises. The more we see Him fulfilling His promises the more we can trust Him. Secondly, we must be willing to lean and rely on Him. Lean on Him with our whole heart. Rely on Him with our whole heart for the entire year not just part of the year. Rely upon Him at all times not just sometimes, knowing that God’s way is best. It is critical that we lean upon God’s word for instructions. His word is more important than our natural food. (Job 23:12) Difficult times will come as a part of life’s journey but we can depend on God’s grace to take us through. He proved in the life of Paul the apostle that His grace is sufficient. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

tells us to always pray! (Luke 18:1) Prayer is committing a matter to the Lord, knowing He will bring it to the best conclusion. (Psalm 37:5) This is placing your confidence in God. Paul encourages us to go with complete trust to the throne of God. We will receive His loving-kindness and have His loving-favor to help us whenever we need it. (Hebrew 4:16 NIV) Finally, we do not have another source we can depend on. Man is unreliable and does not have full control of his own life. He has good intentions but can only accomplish what God allows. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man (Psalm 118:8 NKJV). Man has a tendency to change, lie and fail but God cannot (Hebrew 13:8 NKJV). God is sovereign, doing what he said He would do, when He said He would do it and how He said He would do it. Let me encourage you while we being 2018, declare your intentions to trust God today. Create a habit of trusting God by consistently reading His word and spending time in prayer. Choose to trust God in 2018 and don’t allow your heart to be troubled (John 14:1). God wants us to Trust Him. Can you trust Him in 2018? Yes! The greater question is will you trust Him?

We often hear, and it is true, that prayer works. If we believe prayer works we would pray more. Jesus


Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus, Just to take Him at His Word Just to rest upon His promise, Just to know, "Thus saith the Lord!" Dr. Banks has served as the Lead Pastor of the New Creation Church of God in Flint, MI since 2004. He is a strong supporter of the Revive Flint Initiative in an effort to Evangelize the city of Flint. He also advises and serves other non-profit organizations. Dr. Banks earned his Doctorate of Ministry at Andersonville Theological Seminary in Camilla, GA. His ministerial affiliation is with the National Association Church of God at West Middlesex, PA and the Church of God Anderson, IN. Dr. Banks is a devoted husband, father and proud grandfather who values spending quality time with his family.


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are you ready for the

goodlife YOUTH

Sundays at 11:00 AM

your personal

jesus by Brother Edmund Davidson


winter 2018

As I sit hear typing, and listening to music playing in the background, I’m taken back to my high school days. Music was different back then, especially for what is considered to be popular and politically correct. One group that I admired was a European rock group called Depeche Mode. They produced songs that had, to a certain extent, messages and meaning to social issues, relationships, and the like. There was one song however that had a catchy beat, and was a personal favorite in my younger years. I didn’t pay attention to what the lyrics were back then, but this all changed earlier this year when the song suddenly started playing on my Spotify account, while I was designing a website and managing some social media accounts. The song is titled “Personal Jesus”. For the first time, I started to listen to what Depeche Mode had to say with this particular song. I stopped typing, and started to reflect on the meaning of the song for the first time.

to give us that special feeling; that feeling that says we are important and belong. Why? It’s because we can physically see it or them. There is no faith and belief involved. Or as one person puts it, there is no spookiness, what I see is real, therefore I believe. We can touch money, spend and save it, believing it brings comfort and security to our lives. We watch our favorite actors on television to bring

"For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Matthew (6:21)

us joy and hope, and if we’re lucky, one day we may meet them. We join thousands of others and cheer for The lyrics include these words “ . . . our favorite sports teams, spending your own personal Jesus . . . Someone hours upon hours following them on to hear your prayers . . . Someone who various media outlets. We believe, cares”. The words caught my ear, and spend time with, and follow our own for a minute I started to think; not just Personal Jesus because they bring as a Christian, but as a human being. instant gratification. The problem Who do we turn to for understanding, with this type of thinking is that it's peace, guidance, and purpose? Is it only for a moment. Will they be there alcohol, money, job, pornography, or for you from this moment until your even a particular person? In the book time on earth has ceased? of Matthew (6:21) the scripture reads “For where your treasure is, there Think about it. The person you idolize your heart will be also.” We look to and religiously watch on television our work, sports, and other people, every week, can be cut down in a


matter of moments. That car you gave a nickname to gets totaled in a car accident. That job where you spent 25 years to build your career, while ignoring your family and friends, is now being taken away from you by a person who will work for half your pay, take three days of vacation per year, and doesn’t arrive with an attitude. And then what? Your world starts to crumble? What happens if your favorite team or sports figure decides to pack their bags and move to another town? Do you get angry, knowing they have no idea who you are and could care less what you think? When events like those happen, do you have another outlet to turn to because the source of your “fix” is now in shambles? Did your own Personal Jesus let you down? I’m not trying to tell you how to live your life, but it’s my hope that you will take a few moments to reflect on these things, recognizing that your reliance on a Personal Jesus will only take you so far. Is that where you want to be or do you desire all that Jesus Christ has for you and trust Him in all that you do.

2018 5 things Christians should do in preparation for

by Brother JB Cachila

2018! Doesn't that excite you? I know it excites me, and so I would like to share something important with you: We need to prepare for it.

A new leaf I know, it's just another year you might say, but for me, I believe that God is preparing good things for us this coming year: "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him." (see 1 Corinthians 2:9). That said, we should get ready for the surprising and amazing things that God is preparing, and has already prepared, for us. Here are some ways we can and should prepare for 2018. 1) Take time to seek God and pray If we want to make the most of 2018, then we should ask the Lord for guidance and direction before it ever comes in.


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2) Forget the former things I'm sure we all have faced good and bad experiences in 2017, but there's no point in keeping it all and carrying it with us next year. In Isaiah 43:1819, God commands us to forget the former things because He will do, and is already doing, a new thing. Unless we learn to let go of and forget

"Let go of old and outdated ideas. Allow God to give you fresh ideas for the new year..� the former things, we won't be able to step into the new things of God. 3) Let go of the old wine We're all familiar with what the Lord Jesus said about wineskins. In Matthew 9:17, He said new wine cannot be poured into old wineskins, or else they will break. We should all strive to be a new wineskin. However, many of us find this hard or even

frustrating to do, because we focus on just being a new wineskin without letting go of the old wine. In Luke 5:39, the Lord said "no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, 'The old is better.'" We should stop drinking the old wine, then. Let go of old and outdated ideas. Allow God to give you fresh ideas for the coming year. 4) Revisit prayer lists Do you keep a list of answered prayers? If you do, then revisit them. If you don't, then now's the perfect time to start making lists. Revisit prayer lists and see what God has answered. Bring unanswered prayers into the next year so you can keep praying until the answer comes. 5) Start off with a clean slate Forgive. Let go of all offenses and hurts and offer it to God. Repent of any unconfessed sin and don't condemn yourself if God has already forgiven you. Release any disappointments and charge them all to experience. You've got to start the coming year fresh and with a clean plate. Friends, I leave you with this exhortation. I hope and pray that we'd all follow this.


heart cell phone

lessons from a

inspiration from the

25 17

by Sister Alethea Gaddis winter 2018

“Can you hear me now?” Does this phrase sound familiar? If you’re like me, it brings to mind a cell phone television commercial featuring a man trying to have a conversation on his mobile phone. Scenario conveys to the viewer that there is a poor connection and the sound is distorted. The suggestion is that another cell phone company has a greater capacity to offer superior service, which allegedly eliminates or minimizes connection issues. Just about everyone has experienced the frustration of using the cell phone for an important call and having the signal suddenly drop. We change positions, check the volume, cock our head to the side, and plug one ear with the index finger. Even then, there’s still minimal chance that one or more of these actions will remedy the connection issue. If you drive and chat, like me, you can be cruising the outer belt and collide with a dead zone that kills your signal and drops the call. A cellular network is composed of many different cellular towers that our phone communicates with in order to make a phone call. Our phone automatically connects to the nearest tower when we’re making a call and continues to communicate with that tower as long as it remains the closest one in range. If we’re on the move though, whether walking, or driving, then we are more likely to move out of the range of your closest tower and a handoff will occur to move your call to the new closest tower. During the handoff the call

drops. Well, let me remind you that we are positioned to enjoy two-way communication with the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. Think about the issues that cause our cell phone to be unreliable. Then, examine and compare those same components and see why God is totally reliable: Access - He has the whole world in his Hands, yet, if every single human being occupying space on the globe called out to him at the same time, He can hear and answer each of us. Tower - Our access can’t be interrupted because of our proximity to a cell tower. No matter where we find ourselves, He is near. Proximity - He sits high, yet looks low, and His arm is long enough to reach us at any given point in time. Connection - There’s no man made software glitch that can hamper our access. Handoff – He will handle our petitions Himself. There’s no chance of Him passing us off to anyone else. He simply dispatches a human vessel to be the conduit of His promise. So, when we want to shower Him with love and adoration, know that He hears you. And, if it’s storming in your life, fear not. He controls the storm and it’s not possible for weather conditions to interfere with His plan and purpose for your life.



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terreece clarke • What is your favorite color? I love all colors so it's hard for me to chose. It depends on my mood and what it is. In general I love bright colors, except I wear black in the winter time almost exclusively. • In your spare time what do you do for fun? Spare time? What's that? LOL! I love to read, dance, craft and watch British period films and shows. Family time is important, we try to have family movie night every week where we all cuddle on the couch and laugh. In the summer I love to camp. • ...and for that matter what things do you not like to do? Fight. Clean the toilet. Repeat myself. • What is your hobby? I paint when I have a chance.

• What is your favorite food? Anything chocolate and Indian food. • You are a V.I.P. in marketing ministry! What motivates you to be so dedicated? It sounds cliche' but I really do it first for the glory of God. If I can use what God has given me to help shine a light on what First Church is doing in His name then I'm doing the right thing. It isn't a church can't be done with a strategy and process only approach because it's not a product, you are literally helping to reach and keep souls connected to each other, First Church and to God. We talk about brand loyalty in my profession, when you market a church your brand is the Word and your client is God. It's a heavy thing and it's also oddly easy to


lose sight of that, so that keeps me in prayer. The desire to do good, make a difference and wanting to be a good daughter to the Father keeps me motivated. Secondly, on a deeply personal level, Bishop, and he knows this, is very much a second dad to me. I know I'm one of many who feel that way which is part of the anointing he has on his life. That can't be easy on him, but I'm grateful he represents and fulfills parts of my life that my own father, largely through no fault of his own could not. And so I work to make him proud too. And finally, I am motivated by the opportunities to help people form the heart connections I have made at First Church. People are longing to get to closer to God even if they can't put to words that God is what they are looking for. Marketing helps me put the work that First Church does in the community, the teaching Word they need and the community foundation in front of people. We aren't selling anything, we just want to get the word out "there is a place for you here."

affect you and it sucks when it happens, but how you respond to it is up to you. Get angry, then do something intelligent about it. • What is your favorite scripture? Matthew 5:14 -16 helps me with my shyness and Zephaniah 3:17 reminds me just how loved I am by God. • What career did you dream of having as a teen? This is going to sound both silly and corny -- First a Solid Gold Dancer, then a Hammer Dancer but would have settled for video dancer (back when they were actually dancing and not well...for those who haven't always been saved know what they do now LOL! I then wanted to be a broadcast journalist like Jane Kennedy and later Oprah, I found freelance journalist was more my fit.

• If there was one thing you would like to change about the world, what would it be? I'm going to cheat and say two - I would get rid of the demonization • As a highly respected sister at First of poverty and eradicate loneliness. Church, if there was any advice Poverty will never be eradicated you would give to a young woman until we stop making it a morality trying to make it in this world, issue where the moral winners what would it be? are those with the most cash. The Embrace what makes you different. demonization of poverty affects God delights in you and that policy, decision public opinion, matters more than any naysayers. how we treat the poor and one Don't wait for someone to give you another and affects our economic permission to be who God wants philosophies, drives our definition you to be. Sexism, classism, racism, of success and failures and allows anti-intellectualism exists, it will humanity to turn a blind eye to


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those in need. A second trigger of so many of the issues I see is loneliness, a disconnection from society that is so acute it fosters resentment, mental illness, hatred, miscommunication etc., we are connected to one another in ways we'd never imagine a few years ago, but so many people are isolated and lonely behind their computer and phone screens. Especially our youth. They can make a friend online in China they'll never see, which is awesome, but they can't find a friend on their block to play with and forge a tactile human connection. • Tell us something about yourself that you want the world to know. Talking about yourself is tough - at least for me. I am pretty excited about my first children's book Olivia's Potty Adventures being a #1 Amazon New Release. It is in pre-order status on Amazon until February, and keeps ringing that #1 bell in different categories. *Psst, buy the book*. People should know I'm passionate about women and children's issues, and diversity in media and tech which prompted me to write the book. Diversity in children's media including books is dismal. Black and brown babies don't have much of any selection when it comes to potty training stories. They have more choices for animals and Muppets than for children that look like them.

"Don't wait for someone to give you permission to be who God wants you to be� 30

Seasonal Updates

how to avoid perfectionism and still be productive

by Haley overlandr today's parent

When everything needs to be "perfect", you'll soon find that

nothing ever actually is. 31

winter 2018

Perfectionism doesn’t sound so bad at first. What’s wrong with having high standards, after all? Here’s what: Perfectionism is usually rooted in poor self-esteem and can keep you stuck—personally and professionally. Dr. Brene Brown, renowned researcher, speaker, and author, agrees: “Perfectionism is not the same thing as striving to be your best . . . [It] is the belief that if we live perfect, look perfect, and act perfect, we can minimize or avoid the pain of blame, judgment, and shame. It’s a shield.” When everything needs to be “perfect,” you’ll soon find that nothing actually is. Perfectionism actually keeps you from being productive, because there is no such thing as perfect—there is no way to ever actually reach that goal. But imperfection—and the acknowledgment of it—is actually a good thing; it relieves a lot of the pressure that many of us put on ourselves every single day. And accepting it can help you actually start to get stuff done. Here’s how you can start to do just that:

What will happen if you don’t do it perfectly? More often than not, a quick reality check will show that you’re putting way too much pressure on yourself. Take a deep breath, give yourself some grace, and get started.

Start by relieving some of the pressure. When you’re feeling the pull of perfectionism, it’s often helpful to pause, presence yourself, and reflect on reality. While there’s no doubt some tasks or activities are incredibly important, it’s easy to overwhelm ourselves by making things seem more significant than they need to be. Is this situation life-or-death?

Make well-done lists in addition to to-do lists. We love to-do lists, and we bet you do too. But they can be a little frustrating when you don’t get to cross everything off. (Just us? We didn’t think so.) So why not make a list of what you have gotten done? Celebrate what you’ve accomplished!

Just finish it. Speaking of getting started, in our blog post on the 30-Minute Start, we offered you tips for when you’re feeling stuck. But often, the bigger obstacle for a perfectionist is actually finishing something. So do as the great innovators and entrepreneurs do and practice iterating rapidly—in other words, finish and share quickly. Then get feedback, implement it, finish and share all over again. For you, this could be anything from cleaning the kitchen every day or sharing an early draft of a presentation with your boss. The point is you’re putting something out there when it’s “good enough,” knowing it may not be perfect, but also knowing there is greater value (and room for improvement) after you just get it done.


Seasonal Updates Perfectionists often focus on what isn’t being done, and certainly on what isn’t being done well—and to a perfectionist, that’s near everything. Start to rewrite that narrative by keeping a list of what you’ve done well, feedback that’s been positive, love notes (both personally and professionally) that have popped up in your inbox or on your social media channels—and revisit that whenever you need a reminder of what you’re truly capable of, no matter how imperfect you may feel. Forgive yourself—and everyone else. This is a generally good golden rule in life, but it’s especially important if you struggle with the desire to be perfect. We all fall short—every single one of us. What really matters is that you keep moving forward when you make a mistake or when your output is less-than-perfect. Hold that space for yourself, and for everyone around you. When you can accept, and also forgive, your own imperfection, you’ll start being a lot more productive. And happy. We promise.


As the season change, so should your hair maintenance routine. While you might wear your hair out much more often in the summer and rely on carefree styles when it’s warm outside, your hair care routine will change during winter if you want to maintain healthy locks. Here are some winter hair care tips that will keep your hair in great shape: Wash n Go Less Often It is okay to wear a wash and go during the Spring and the Summer months, but it is no fun leaving the house on a frosty chilly morning with wet or damp hair. This is especially true if you live in a very cold climate because your hair can actually freeze and break if you go outside in the


winter 2018

cold with wet hair. Deep Condition Frequently Heated homes and work spaces can dry out your hair, so combat this dryness with extra deep conditioning. Look for products which hold in moisture and use a good deep conditioner about once a week. Sticking to natural oils is a better bet for holding in the moisture that you get from water. If possible, deep condition every time you cleanse your hair whether you choose to use shampoo or co-wash. This is a first step to maintaining the moisture level in your hair. You can add heat by using a heating cap or steam condition your hair for additional penetration of the ingredients into your hair.

one that contains water, humectants, emollients and occlusive ingredients. After you have deep conditioned and moisturized, protective styling is the final step. Keep Your Hair Covered Not only should you keep your hair protected at night when you sleep, but you should also make sure to keep it covered when you go outside in the cold air. Wear a hat or hood, but make sure that the hat or hood is lined with satin to avoid snagging and breaking due to the harshness of wool and cotton.

Avoid Using Heat Indoor heating is going to suck some of the moisture from your hair. Don’t help it along with flat irons, blow dryers and curling irons. Winter is an ideal season to practice setting techniques like wet sets, pin curls and wraps, none of which require heat to style your hair. Use an Effective Moisturizer A good moisturizer will hydrate and nourish the hair deeply within the hair shaft. Water-based products are necessary. Use any moisturizer which has water as one if its primary ingredient. Be sure to wash and moisturizer your hair the night before, so that you hair will be dry in the morning. An effective moisturizer is


From the Kitchen Take a look at these Winter meals that are sure to keep you warm!

Chicken Marsala

Ingredients • 4 skinless, boneless, chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds) • All-purpose flour, for dredging • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil • 4 ounces prosciutto, thinly sliced • 8 ounces crimini or porcini mushrooms, stemmed and halved • 1/2 cup sweet Marsala wine • 1/2 cup chicken stock • 2 tablespoon unsalted butter • 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley Directions • Put the chicken breasts side by side on a cutting board and lay a piece of plastic wrap over them; pound with a flat meat mallet, until they are about 1/4-inch thick. Put some flour in a shallow platter and season with a fair amount of salt and pepper; mix with a fork to distribute evenly. • Heat the oil over medium-high flame in a large skillet. When the


winter 2018

oil is nice and hot, dredge both sides of the chicken cutlets in the seasoned flour, shaking off the excess. Slip the cutlets into the pan and fry for 5 minutes on each side until golden, turning once – do this in batches if the pieces don't fit comfortably in the pan. Remove the chicken to a large platter in a single layer to keep warm. • Lower the heat to medium and add the prosciutto to the drippings in the pan, saute for 1 minute to render out some of the fat. Now, add the mushrooms and saute until they are nicely browned and their moisture has evaporated, about 5 minutes; season with salt and pepper. Pour the Marsala in the pan and boil down for a few seconds to cook out the alcohol. Add the chicken stock and simmer for a minute to reduce the sauce slightly. Stir in the butter and return the chicken to the pan; simmer gently for 1 minute to heat the chicken through. Season with salt and pepper and garnish with chopped parsley before serving

Slow Cooker Chicken Paprikash Directions • Step 1 Add the butter, oil, and onion to a microwave-safe bowl; cover and microwave on high for 1 minute. Stir, recover, and microwave on high for another minute or until the onions are transparent. Stir in the garlic; cover and microwave on high for 30 seconds. Add to the slow cooker. Note: If you prefer not to cook with wine, replace it with an equal amount of chicken broth. You can also substitute an equal amount of drained plain yogurt for the sour cream. Ingredients • 1 Tbsp. butter • 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil • 1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced • 3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces • ¼ tsp. salt • ⅛ tsp. ground black pepper • 2 Tbsp. Hungarian paprika • ½ cup chicken broth • ¼ cup dry white wine • 1 container (16 oz.) sour cream • 4 cups cooked pasta • ½ tsp. minced parsley

• Step 2 Add the chicken to the slow cooker, and stir fry for 5 minutes. Stir in the salt, pepper, paprika, broth, and wine; cover and cook on low for 8 hours. • Step 3 Stir in the sour cream; cover and continue to cook long enough to bring the sour cream sauce to temperature, or for about 30 minutes. Serve over cooked pasta. Sprinkle each serving with parsley


First Church of God


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.


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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!


Get Social @FirstChurchohio

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


TIMES weekend services Saturday 6:00 PM Sunday 8:00 AM 10:00AM weekDay services Men's fellowship tuesdaY at 6:30 AM bible study wednesday 12:00 PM and 7:00 pm

watch online anywhere! Sunday: 8:00 am Sunday: 10:00am Wednesday: 7:00pm click here 38

Empowerment Winter 2018  

With so much turmoil and hate in 2017, be sure to check out the Winter issue of Empowerment for spiritual inspiration as we continue our jou...

Empowerment Winter 2018  

With so much turmoil and hate in 2017, be sure to check out the Winter issue of Empowerment for spiritual inspiration as we continue our jou...