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MAY 2015

contents on the cover: Bishop Gregory and Lady Tonya Dennis Kingdom Worship Center

6419 York Road Baltimore, MD 21212 410-377-3500 www.kingdomworshipcenter.org

Special Feature pgs 8-9 Q&A Interview with Bishop Gregory Dennis pgs 10 Bishop Gregory Dennis - Pastor Bio

Feature Articles 11 FROM THE PASTOR’S DESK Bishop Gregory Dennis

33 TEEN CONNECT

20 SINGLE LIFE

Dr. Monique Flemings

Beautiful You!

www.rainn.org

How Can I Protect My Child From Sexual Assault

26 EDUCATION DIGEST 18 WOMAN’S PERSPECTIVE Tiffany Bethea

Virtuous Motherhood

30 BODY BASICS

www.everydayfamily.com

Workout Tips for Busy Moms

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Dr. Tim Tooten

Basic Training

38 MAN TALK

28 BOOK SHELF

Brandie Manigault

The Time Keeper (Mitch Albom)

Healthy Body

Dr. Charles Barrett

Mighty Is Our God

32 NUTRITION & YOU

Herline A. Knights, RD, LD

May Calendar for Family Health


Healthy Mind 16 TO YOUR GOOD HEALTH

Carla J. Debnam, (Founder, Renaissance Christian Counseling Center)

Take Care of Yourself

Healthy Soul 34 WORD OF ENCOURAGEMENT

Entertainment 36 GOSPEL INDUSTRY NEWS

Ericka Johnson

In Every Issue Contributors............................................ 6

In Trust Ministries dwilliamsross@aol.com nistries

Donna Williams-Ross

From the Editor....................................... 7

He Say She Say- What Does God’s Word Say?

Scripture Page...................................... 14

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For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly. Psalm 84:11

Contributors PUBLISHER/ Jackie Epps EDITOR-IN-CHIEF EDITORIAL

Dr. Kenneth O. Robinson Harold A. Carter, Jr. Cassandra Vaughn-Fox Herline A. Knights Pastors Gregory and Tonya Dennis Carla J. Debnam Donna Williams-Ross Ericka Johnson Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake Rev. Tim Tooten Brandie Manigault Tiffany Bethea Dr. Monique Flemings

PHOTOGRAPHY Mark L. Dennis, Alan L. Jones GRAPHIC ARTIST Claire Lesesne-Nalley www.JandCDesigns.com WEB ADMINISTRATOR Andre Felipe for Arts Period www.artsperiod.com PRINTING Roebuck & Son Printing www.hgroebuck.com Grace & Glory Magazine is published monthly by JE Media, LLC, a Baltimore based, independent publisher. Copyright 2015. All rights reserved. Reproduction without expressed permission is prohibited.

GREAT CLASSIFIED AD RATES! Rates: $9.00 for the first 10 words and under. 50 cents for each additional word. Add $2.00 for any bold words. $5.00 for each uploaded photo. Payment: We accept PAYPAL, VISA, MASTERCARD, and DISCOVER. Deadlines: The 23rd of every month at 8:00 pm Categories: Help Wanted, For Sale, Rentals, Business Opportunities, Classes, Child Care, Services, Announcements, etc. To set up a classified go online at www.gracenglorymagazine.org 6   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

Advisory Board

Chairman — Dr. A.C. D. Vaughn Sr. Pastor, Sharon Baptist Church, MD Vice-Chairman — Dr. Frank M. Reid III Sr. Pastor, Bethel A.M.E. Church, MD Dr. Michael A. Battle Sr., U.S. Ambassador President, ITC Seminary, Atlanta, GA Dr. Timothy Boddie Friendship Baptist Church, Atlanta, GA Bishop John R. Bryant Presiding Prelate of the 5th Episcopal District Dr. Harold A. Carter, Jr. Pastor, New Shiloh Baptist Church, MD Dr. Suzan Johnson Cook, U.S. Ambassador Dr. WIlliam H. Curtis Mt. Ararat Baptist Church, Pittsburgh, PA Bishop Ralph L. Dennis Sr. Pastor, Kingdom Worship Center, MD Wanda Q. Draper/Media Executive Michele J.K. Epps/Health Sciences Cassandra Vaughn/Media Executive Dr. Donte’ L. Hickman, Sr. Pastor, Southern Baptist Church, MD Pastor Timothy V. Manigault Healing Voices Ministries Dr. Kenneth O. Robinson Pastor, Dream Life Worship Center Word on Finances Bishop Walter Scott Thomas, Sr. Pastor, New Psalmist Baptist Church, MD Dr. Timothy Tooten, Sr. Pastor, Harvest Christian Ministries, MD

Grace & Glory Magazine By Mail!

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M

other's ay! D

from the editor

This month’s issue is dedicated to the hardest working woman on the planet . . . our Moms! There is none like a Mother. For starters everyone would argue that they have the Best Mother (me included). We can all share in that fact, we do have the best. This woman that we call Mother is by far God’s greatest creation. The thing that sets her apart is her everlasting love for her children and her intent that they lead normal, welladjusted lives. Her attributes are so much like the attributes of God; she can be all things at once which is totally awesome. Whatever her children need her to be at the time; she can be that at the drop of a hat. In fact this woman can wear multiple hats all at the same time. Although overworked and underpaid, Mother never complains. She will work her fingers to the bone for her children. She will come to their rescue, no matter what the cause. These are, after all, her God-given ‘talents’ to take and use for the glory of God. He expects Mother to raise and nurture her ‘charges’ to become the best they can be in this world, and equip them for what is needed to get to the other side! Not until we become adults, do we really begin to appreciate who Mother really is. She has nurtured us through our childhood, put up with our sassy ways and times of being lazy during our teenage years, and cried through our becoming an adult. But Mother was always there to encourage us when we made a mistake, although sometimes it may have been hard for her not to show disappointment. As we grow older and have our own children, we realize that Mother was a very strong person. We also realize just what it takes to fill her shoes. In our eyes our mothers will never grow old and we are never too old to need her. On Mother’s Day, we will go all out to celebrate this woman God created; and she deserves it all and then some! Mother will always hold a place deep in our hearts.

I am so grateful to God for my mother. I know that it is God’s Grace upon her life that is keeping her. To God be the Glory! I wish for all of you incredible women a wonderful and Happy Mother’s Day!

– Jackie Epps

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Q&A

QA &

Interview with

Bishop Gregory Dennis

Leadercast is a one-day leadership symposium featuring a diverse lineup of, 21st century leaders who will share their knowledge and wisdom. This year’s renowned speakers include: Andy Stanley, Rudy Guliani, Malala Yousafzai, Seth Godin, Ed Catmull, and Aja Brown. The conference will be simulcast live from the Atlanta Dome on Friday, May 8th from 8:30 am - 4:30 pm at The Synergy Center, 6419 York Road, hosted by Bishop Gregory and Lady Tonya Dennis. It is a one-day intensive symposium designed to provide development and resources to Individuals who are interested in developing as competent and impactful leaders, in their professional and personal lives. For more information contact Lois Anderson site coordinator at 410-377-3500 or visit www.leadercasttowson.com. G&G: Bishop Dennis, the last time we spoke your father (Bishop Ralph Dennis) was getting ready to retire as pastor of Kingdom Worship Center and pass the baton to you. How has it been since then and how are you doing? Bishop Dennis: Yes, it will be two years in September and it has been extremely busy but we are excited about our future and continued growth. I have a new way of learning to balance my family, ministry, work and school. It's called one day at a time. G&G: Now that you are the pastor of Kingdom Worship Center, has anything changed since your father retired? What is your vision for the future of Kingdom Worship Center? Bishop Dennis: Look for Kingdom Worship Center to be more

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than just a church but representation of the kingdom of God. Our influence as a leadership hub in Baltimore is growing. We want to impact people spiritually, socially, educationally, economically, politically and in the areas of health and wellness. We are all about maturing people and growing them in every area of their lives. We received a mandate from the Lord to build His "church", the people. Our efforts are not primarily focused on programming but people building. We believe we are called to help develop and empower people to realize who God has created them to be. G&G: Understanding your influence, what are some of the things that Kingdom Worship Center is doing to cultivate leaders?


Q&A

Bishop Dennis: We have been given an awesome opportunity to host a premier event called LeaderCast 2015. This is our second year hosting it and we are looking for area pastors, CEO's, Entrepreneurs, Supervisors, Teachers, College Students (CEU’s offered) and anyone who is or has the desire to be best leader they can be. G&G: So would you share with us what is LeaderCast and what makes this leadership conference different from any other leadership conference? Bishop Dennis: LeaderCast is an International conference that trains leaders to get the most out of the population they serve. LeaderCast is recognized by secular and sacred institutions as a great vehicle for motivating and inspiring forward mobility and personal leadership growth. G&G: This year’s Leadercast theme is called “The Brave Ones”, please explain. Bishop Dennis: To lead today takes courage. It takes courage to determine the direction of the corporation or the church. It takes even more courage to change that direction and to lead people through change. Only “The Brave Ones” are ready to lead in this era.

G&G: Bishop Dennis, as a leader how do you become a better leader? What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader? Bishop Dennis: Leaders must continue to grow, I use LeaderCast as one of my opportunities for growth. I also make sure that I am not the smartest person in my circles, I do not have to be right, I have mentors and mentees. Lastly, I’m in school… I love learning! Leading is so much more than being anointed to preach a message. G&G: Can you name a person who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader? Maybe someone who has been a mentor to you? Why and how did this person impact your life? Bishop Dennis: The greatest leader impacting my life without a doubt has been my father Bishop Ralph Dennis in too many ways to name… other than him; I would have to go with Dr. Brian Berry who is a professor of Ethics. He taught me the importance of prudence and tenacity. G&G: What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess? Bishop Dennis: Every leader must have faith. Faith that the plan is from God, faith in the people to execute, faith in your own ability. I know we normally use faith towards God, however, for this Leadership discussion effective leaders must be people of faith.

G&G: Tell us about the speakers for Leadercast 2015 and why they were Bishop Gregory and Lady Tonya Dennis selected for this year’s conference. Bishop Dennis: The speakers selected are always those who are “at the top of their game” and G&G: As a leader what do you believe is more important for world renowned. The line-up is diverse and these leaders an organization – mission, vision, or core values? Why? have cutting edge knowledge and wisdom to understand the Bishop Dennis: All three are extremely important, but shifts in our culture and best practices to move forward. I would have to say the vision. Without a vision clearly expressed you never know if you are reaching your goals. G&G: I understand there are business leaders who invest in The scriptures teach without a vision people perish. Leadercast, how does this work? Bishop Dennis: There are several packages and levels of G&G: Bishop Dennis, lastly what do you believe is the sponsorship for LeaderCast. Each level of Sponsorship biggest challenge facing leaders today? comes with different benefits and levels of exposure to the Bishop Dennis: Today’s leader must see beyond today’s many leaders that attend LeaderCast. The exposure and challenges and plan for future victories! Leaders who are networking possibilities in this collaborative environment only leading people past their current challenge instead are tremendous. There is also an option for people who cannot physically attend this year, businesses/individuals can of motivating them for their future will find fewer persons following their lead. register for our "on-demand" option.

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bio

Bishop Gregory Dennis Bishop Gregory Dennis is a fifth generational minister, maintaining the legacy of servitude, by doing all that he can so that the 21st century Church will move into a place of maturity. He has become one of his generations’ prophetic voices. After working nearly 15 years in corporate America, he assisted his parents, Bishop Ralph L. and Elder Deborah S. Dennis in serving as the Executive Pastor of Kingdom Worship Center in Towson, Maryland. He served for 10 years as Youth Pastor. In 2012 he was consecrated to the office of Bishop overseeing the Youth and Young Adult Ministries for Kingdom Fellowship Covenant Ministries. He was appointed the Senior Pastor of Kingdom Worship Center succeeding his father in ministry in 2013. As a community organizer, he has infiltrated areas that seemingly would be considered barriers and has impacted the community at large. Gregory has completed extensive training in physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health. He is a member and the former Vice President of the Towson Area Ministerial Alliance. Gregory also serves on the Board of Spiritual Advisors at Greater Baltimore Medical Center (GBMC), BaHari Sisters and board member for Araminta Freedom Initiative. He is also an Honorary Member of Alpha Nu Omega Fraternity, Inc. He is a Religious Studies major in pursuit of a Masters in Theology. Gregory is a contributing writer to and member of the editorial staff of Grace and Glory magazine. He is a much sought after mentor, lecturer and preacher. He has ministered to children and seniors alike in venues ranging from after school programs to international conferences. Gregory’s humor and demonstrations in his presentation of the Gospel allow for all to hear what the Spirit is saying to the Church. His anointing lies in understanding the times that we are in and causing change by speaking truth in power. The recognized pattern in his life is to serve God with all of his heart, mind and soul. Married since July 1994, he and his college sweetheart Tonya, desire to be an example to other married couples when it relates to commitment, love and friendship. They together enjoy teaching and challenging believers in their growth.

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Kingdom Worship Center

Kingdom Worship Center is located in the neighborly area of Towson, Maryland and is dedicated to promoting and strengthening the community through its programs and services to individuals, groups and families. The multi-purpose complex focuses on five (5) aspects of holistic living. These five aspects are derived from core values associated with the ministries of Kingdom Worship Center primarily from the definition of synergy. They are social, health, economic, education and political (SHEEP). As a connector to one church in two locations, Kingdom is committed to enhancing the general welfare of the total community. The center currently houses Kingdom Worship Center-Towson Campus, Synergy Studios, Little Blessings Childcare and Development Center and Dominion Leadership University. The Columbia Campus is located in the Oakland Ridge Industrial Park-Equus Court Columbia, Maryland. The mission is to foster closer family relationships by providing assistance and resources in several key areas that affect their quality of living. Kingdom’s existence is to strengthen, equip and help mobilize churches, ministries, business, and Saints at large. For more information visit the website at www.kingdomworshipcenter.org

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pastor's desk

It is important that God is first in our lives. Having God situated first must be more than rhetoric. There are many competing factors to God today. There are several things that threaten our love of God, like self-preservation, positioning of family and lastly (where we will focus) God’s love. Our loving God must precede the love of God. God’s love must be valued, interpreted and appropriately positioned. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son.” (John 3:16) God’s love is so amazing that the object of His love is not a select group of people. His love has the entire world as its focus. “Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down His life for his friends.” (John 15:13) What Christ does is for the world (His friends) and the limited responsibility for believers to respond to God’s love, is nothing short of amazing. We should never underestimate the value of God’s love in one’s life. God’s love is not static! God’s love is a dynamic force that impacts the life of the believer. God’s love takes into consideration the moving parts and missing links. God’s love is destined to fulfill the plan and purpose of God. It is imperative that we understand God’s purpose to be greater than our will. In order for the believer to remain focused on God and not solely the love of God means, that our souls should echo the words of Jesus, “Nevertheless not as I will.” (Matthew 26:39) It really goes without saying that God’s love is more than amazing! Today, we must make sure that our response to God’s love goes back to God and not what God’s love produces. If we fall in love with that which the love of God produces we lower the object of our affection. The object of 12   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

our affection now becomes what God can do and not who God IS. Our faith, trust, confidence and belief are in God and not what the love of God may allow to interact with our lives. God’s love is unconditional. Yet without conditions, God is permitted to perform however necessary to fulfill purpose and meet destiny. God’s love is not restricted to produce only what we enjoy. When God’s love allows hardship, lack, weakness, oppression (all in scripture) to become the resident of the believer’s life, one must continue to love God. A careless lover of God reflects on life and becomes frustrated and disappointed at all that God’s love has allowed. Everything that comes into our lives will be interpreted. Unfortunately, it has become the custom of our interpretation to determine what is “good” by how it feels. God’s love is not limited to comfortable situations. In fact, God’s love when misunderstood may not fit into the human model of what love is. So we must understand wholly the often quoted scripture, that all things working together is not limited to “good things.” Paul would tell the church at Philippi, “That the things which happen unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel.” (Philippians 1:12) Life for the believer does not have the promise of an easy road. Remember, there is a whole book in the Bible named “Lamentations” so you know you will go through something. In conclusion, going beyond God’s love for us is ensuring that we love Him regardless! Please do not allow what you go through to change how you love God. It is one way of drawing you closer. When our ideas become primary we have replaced God as first. When only loving God’s love, we lose the true object of our affection. Let’s challenge ourselves to love God just because He IS!


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scripture scripturepage page

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

1

I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

2

Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

3

He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

4

Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; 5

Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

6

A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee. 7

Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

8

Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

9

There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

10

11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

12

Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

13

14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him. 15

With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation. 16

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to your good health

TakeCARE

of Yourself

It is time to start thinking about your future. You may have decided to make heaven your home but what are you doing to preserve your earthly temple. Some of us make changes for a period of time but nothing substantial ever takes hold. We all need to do a better job at self-care. Have you checked your vitals lately? What’s your weight, blood pressure or glucose level? Are you exercising, eating more fresh foods and less processed food? What does your physical, spiritual and mental health look like? We hear about these issues regularly and yet diseases of all kinds adversely affect African-Americans. Everyday we see and hear of people we know and love not making the best choices. They are killing themselves on the installment plan by neglecting their spiritual, mental and physical health. We are more likely to perish from treatable diseases because we often delay going to the doctor or dentist, refuse to take prescribed medications or follow suggested healthy nutritional advice or make lifestyle changes. As the people of God we are to be an example in every area of our lives. Taking care of yourself requires attention to your mind, body and soul. Too many of us take our health for granted. Get to know your family history. Be proactive and start following through with the following healthy habits as suggested by Dr. Mehmet Oz: move more, eat less and manage stress. Include practicing the spiritual disciplines for increased spiritual and mental health benefits. As we strive to be more like Jesus, staying true to the teaching of stewardship includes all of our resources including ourselves. We can’t give ourselves away to serve the Lord if we are in poor health or compromised because we have not taken our health concerns seriously. It is time to change because not only are our lives on the line but also the next generation is facing difficulties with their physical, spiritual and emotional health. We must get it together so we can help them. It’s never too late to make better choices for yourself and others. Take care of yourself because it is not just about you but your family, friends and your faith. Carla J. Debnam, MS, LCPC Founder, Renaissance Christian Counseling Center 16   16    May May 2015 2015 || Grace&Glory Grace&Glory


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woman’s perspective

Virtuous

MOTHERHOOD

April Showers have truly brought May flowers! Isn’t it absolutely beautiful outside? This time of year we see things coming into full bloom and it always causes me to reflect on things that are blossoming in my life. My heart is always grateful to see what God is doing and how He stands by His word. This month we also honor and celebrate mothers. We will resume our discussion on Virtuous Women Principles and look at Virtuous Motherhood. “Her children rise up and call her blessed…” Proverbs 31:28. You’ve heard the saying that you don’t know people until you live with them. I don’t know about you but I have found that to be so incredibly true. It is one thing for those who know us casually to think well of us. It is another thing entirely for those who know us intimately to speak well of us; there is another level of credibility and validation present. When I see this passage of scripture I think of the intimacy of the mother and child relationship. How special it must be for a woman’s children to speak up on her behalf and proclaim that she is indeed blessed. Motherhood is no easy task and it certainly does not come with an instruction manual. Don’t get me wrong, the Word is a wonderful guide to align our motherhood with God’s heart. However I’m sure I’m not the only mom out there who has found moments where you still have questions and/or doubts. Even still, we give our children our best and share our heart with them daily hoping that it is sufficient. What a joy and a reward it must be for our offspring to actually appreciate, love, respect and admire us! As we take time to celebrate and give honor to the blessed women who are mothers, whether it is by birth or by simply loving and nurturing, let’s be reminded of what it takes to be a virtuous mother and what we must ensure we do for our children we love. There are two things in particular that I want to highlight. 1. LEAD BY EXAMPLE: Parents always talk about how their children arrived with no instruction manual; but we forget that the same is true for both. Our children show up and they are depending on us solely for guidance and direction. We must ensure that we show a balanced and complete example for them to navigate the maze that is life. It is particularly important to ensure that we show them not only 18   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

our joys and triumphs but are transparent with our difficulties and challenges. One of the best things we can do is arm them with the tools to handle the various seasons that life will bring them. It can be hard for us especially as moms to expose our children to pain. Somehow we feel our protection is better for them. Of course in certain cases this is true however, we cannot shield them from it completely. We must walk them through life’s ups and downs with us so that they will know how to face life’s seasons and be victorious in them all. 2. PRACTICE SELF-CARE: Mommy needs a break too! Yes I said it. You my dear MUST take a break consistently. It is not optional, it is a requirement. One of my mentors always says, “You can’t serve from an empty cup.” Many times we are physically present with our children, but we are spiritually, mentally, and emotionally exhausted. What is it that we are really giving to them in those moments? How much more could we be to them and give if we were more spiritually, mentally and emotionally refreshed. Self-care is for your benefit and theirs. When we renew our minds and truly understand this, we make it more of a priority. Even though my son is young, I share with him in a very age appropriate way that mommy needs a break sometimes so that I can be the best mommy he can possibly have. I’m sure he doesn’t fully comprehend this just yet, but we are drawing healthy boundaries that will be immensely beneficial for both of us during the continuation of our mother/child relationship. Mommy please take a break, regularly! Mothers we celebrate you! We need you, love you, appreciate you and thank you! I can’t imagine what the world would be without you. In those moments when you feel like you don’t make a difference just remember the world has been birthed from your Tiffany Bethea precious womb. Happy Author | Speaker | Mompreneur Mother’s Day ladies! Founder & CEO/ The L.I.V.E. Circle Let’s continue to be the Virtuous Women we are www.tiffanybethea called to be! www.tiffanybethea.com


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single life

We are His workmanship, His handiwork . . . Do you realize how special and how significant you are to God? Do you know that He values you and loves you and calls you His “handiwork? Have you grasped the depth of His love, the magnitude of His grace and just the way He continues to shower you with His goodness and mercy!! Our Daddy God is so wise that He has numbered every hair upon your head! What a beautiful love! We are overwhelmed by the grace of God and His daily provision. Each and every day we are given a new set of mercies. I like knowing that I have a new set of mercies for surely I have used up all the mercies from the previous day, and I know I am in need of new mercies! It is through His grace and mercy that we come to understand His incredible passion for us and just how he sees us. God views us as beautiful, His handiwork!! God’s beautiful daughters come in all shapes and sizes, ethnicities and marital status. Some of His handiwork is packaged in the marital status as single, in this season. Single- unmarried, never married, divorced, widowed… single. The single woman is significant, has value and brings glory to God! Since we are His workmanship, my status as a single woman is a part of His workmanship which means “I am not broken”. His workmanship is divine and full of purpose and single. His workmanship is beautiful –standing alone- not lonely….but a display of His divine workmanship. His workmanship has value now and does not require marriage to be considered valuable. We must begin to celebrate our beautiful single women and their significance. Here are a few suggestions for single ladies during this month of May. 1. Establish a value compass. Recognize your value. When you begin to value yourself, others will value you. Do not seek for others to value you, when you have not established a value compass. A compass gives direction. People are looking for your compass, your direction on how to value you. Failure to establish value may result in misuse and abuse because you have not established a value compass. 20   May May 2015 2015 || Grace&Glory Grace&Glory 20  

2. Celebrate your uniqueness. Every woman has a uniqueness that they carry as a part of who they are as a woman. Single women this applies to you as well. Do not think that all of the pizazz belongs to the married woman. You are a workmanship now, so celebrate your uniqueness. 3. Create a support system. On purpose create a support system of a mentor, a cheerleader and confidant (a person that will keep you accountable and one that you can talk to about everything). A mentor is needed to share wisdom and insight for your journey. A cheerleader is great to keep your spirits high and a confidant is one that will keep you grounded. As you create a support system, you will begin to build a protection around you of people that value you. 4. Create laughter – Actively create laughter in your space over the next 30 days. Laughter and happiness drives out negativity and drama. You will be amazed on how this will lift your mood. 5. Date yourself – Spend some time this month taking yourself on a date. It can be a lunch date or movie, but spend some quality time alone with yourself. For some you may want to start with a “dessert date”. A dessert date is just that, you treat yourself to dessert relaxing and enjoying your company and then work your way up to a lunch or movie. Dating yourself allows for you to become comfortable with the beautiful workmanship that God has created. Learn to enjoy your own company. As you begin to embrace the beautiful, workmanship that God has created, you will begin the journey of recognizing the YOU that is BEAUTIFUL!

Happy Mother’s Day!!

Dr. Monique Flemings

Monique Flemings Ministries, Chicago, Illinois


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education digest

The images were heartbreaking. The results were heart wrenching. Answers seemed hard to come by. What was taking place on April 27th in Baltimore City? It was a city in the international spotlight. At the root of the unrest was the death of 25-year old Freddie Gray. Gray was arrested and apparently injured while in police custody. Initially, Gray’s death set off a series of peaceful protests throughout the city. They were also protests that suddenly turned violent. The violence continued a few days later on the day Freddie Gray was eulogized. That’s when a series of riots broke out in the city’s northwest communities. Police say that many of the people initially involved in the rioting were students from a local high school and from across the city. As a result of youth hurling rocks, stones and debris at police, law enforcement members were injured. Property was destroyed by fire. There was looting of area businesses by youth and adults. As I watched the scenes playing out before the world, I searched for a response that would be appropriate to discuss as a journalist and a member of the clergy. The scripture passage recorded in the book of Proverbs came to mind. “Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6).

Dr. Tim Tooten, Sr.

Dr. Tim Tooten, Sr. is a veteran Emmy-Award winning television journalist with WBALTV(NBC) in Baltimore, Maryland. He’s also the pastor and founder of Harvest Christian Ministries in Baltimore County, Maryland.

26   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

My thoughts were centered on the need to practice personal responsibility. I believe parents are charged with training their children in the way that they should go. In other words, parents should help them make positive and spiritual life decisions. I am convinced that it is the role of parents to model a life or lay a foundation for their children to emulate. Since there were a good number of the city’s youth taking part in the rioting, it is worth exploring what may have been at the root of their involvement. There is not a guarantee that if a child grows up in a spiritually nurtured home that they will not go astray or that they won’t make bad decisions. The passage does seem to suggest that they can choose a right or wrong path, but that they would not depart from positive examples. Clearly, there are challenges in many of our homes. There are also a far greater number of parents committed to overcoming distractions. One of them appeared on national television during the Baltimore riots disciplining her son. She was striking him over his head with her hands as he was being led away from the riot scene. Even though it was not clear what she said to him, her actions seem to show her disappointment. It seemed to suggest that seeing her son in the midst of the disturbance was not a part of his home training. I’ve heard the saying for years that “home is where the heart is.” That said, home must continue to be a training ground with its foundation sitting firmly on Christian principles. I contend training starts at home. This training has to start with parents who themselves are the recipients of a caring and nurturing family; if not from members of their immediate families, at least from a caring and concerned community.


www.gracenglorymagazine.org  27


bookshelf

Book Shelf

by Brandie Manigault

Mitch Albom skillfully desperation, and their hope by intertwines the paralleling their events with those By Mitch Albom character’s lives that I have experienced. through divine I was scrolling through social My favorite line in the book “chance” meetings. media and saw a comment says this, “…Man alone suffers There’s Dor- an that someone made about a a paralyzing fear that no other awkward family book they had just finished creature endures. A fear of running man turned Father that they thoroughly out of time.” So often we spend Time, the inventor enjoyed. It had been a so much time thinking about how of time keeping while since I had read a much time we don’t have that we items; Sarah- a fiction book so I took their don’t maximize the moment we are teenage girl dealing unknown recommendation and in. The Time Keeper is definitely a with boy issues, self-esteem downloaded The Time Keeper book to entertain you but will also issues and all things that go by Mitch Albom. With a vacation hit home if you are open to seeing along with being a teenager; and and some down time coming up yourself in it. Victor- a middle aged, self-made I saved the book for a few weeks I would recommend The Time and opened it up on my trip. A few millionaire man who is battling Keeper to anyone looking for a an incurable disease. They all pages in and I was hooked. Three want for time to stretch out or to new, good book to read. Whether days later I was done! they are wanting to just break stop all together. One thing that The Time Keeper is a book that away from the nonfiction into I loved about The Time Keeper will make you pause to reflect a fictional story or if they are is that through the lives of these your own life and how much interested in getting lost in three characters on paper I was value you place on each individual someone else's story only to find able to see myself. I could feel component of it. It is a look at themselves. their joy, their sadness, their man’s desire for the need for more time or the desire for time to end About the Author all dating back to the beginning MITCH ALBOM of mankind all the way through today. The Time Keeper is an Mitch Albom is an internationally renowned and besteasy, fictional read that will keep selling author, journalist, screenwriter, playwright, radio and television broadcaster and musician. His books have you interested in the story line as collectively sold more than 35 million copies worldwide; you follow the lives of three main have been published in forty-nine territories and in fortycharacters on three different paths, five languages around the world; and have been made but all who battle with the same into Emmy Award-winning and critically-acclaimed television movies. thing… time.

The Time Keeper

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body basics

The demands and time constraints working mothers face sometimes make it nearly impossible to find time for fitness. Using the following strategies, working mothers can find the time to sneak fitness into their daily routine: 1. Determine ahead of time which day and times you can exercise, then schedule it on your calendar. This may mean getting in exercise in the early mornings or late evenings. One of the best times to squeeze in a workout is in the morning. “Do your workout first thing in the AM before ‘mom-duties’ begin and before your hectic schedule starts,” says Jeff Wooten, Certified Fitness Trainer and president of The Body Mechanic. 2. Make exercise a priority. In order to take care of your family you must first take care of yourself. “Fitness must be on the same level as brushing your teeth or showering, otherwise it won’t get done and you will make excuses. Decide that you must exercise as much for mental health as well as physical health,” says celebrity trainer and co-founder of Itrain.com, Grace Lazenby. 3. Find exercises that can be done in the home because they are more convenient. Purchase exercise videos, such as in-home walking, yoga, Pilates, strength training, and cardio kick boxing. Most routines require very little equipment and if you keep several videos in rotation, you will keep your workout routine interesting and varied. 4. Discover workout routines that involve your baby. There are many workouts, including yoga for mothers and infants that will allow for participation of both mother and child. Many gyms offer mommy and me classes.

30   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

5. Your lunch break provides a good opportunity to squeeze in a workout. If you don’t have the time to get to the gym, put your sneakers on and take a brisk walk after lunch. 6. Get your family involved in fitness. Plan hikes, bike rides, or play sports with the entire family on the weekends. Working out on the weekends also allows you to get in longer workouts. 7. If you can’t find a block of 30 to 40 minutes of uninterrupted time to work out, work out in spurts. Two or three 10 minute blasts of cardio are just as effective as one 30 minute workout. It all adds up. 8. Stroller fitness (walking or jogging with your child in a fitness stroller) is a great option for working mothers. This is a workout which allows you to spend time with your child while still carrying out your jogging or walking program. Fitness does not have to take a backseat to motherhood or work obligations. With a little creativity and time-saving tricks, you can take advantage of the little time you have to incorporate fitness and wellbeing.


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nutrition & you

MAY CALENDAR By Herline A. Knights, RD, LD

Sunday

Monday

FOR FAMILY HEALTH Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Go buy or pick 1 some strawberries while they are in season! Enjoy them by themselves or in a smoothie.

Substitute quinoa 2 for pasta. Quinoa is a complete protein suitable for vegetarians.

Buy boneless, 3 skinless chicken for a barbeque. If there is any left over, freeze in meal-sized portions for easy defrosting.

Try going sugar 4 free for breakfast. Oatmeal with fruit is a great choice.

Know that you 5 do not always need to avoid the inner aisles of the grocery store. Look for nutritious staples, such as high-fiber cereal, dried beans and lentils, and nuts.

Choose whole 6 foods over junk foods. Enjoy a peach instead of peach ice cream.

Eat a food you 7 have not tried before. Consider choosing something such as edamame, hemp seeds, or salmon jerky.

Explore fun ways 8 to get the kids to eat their vegetables. Cut peppers into the shape of a star or create cucumber ribbons with a peeler.

Have it your way 9 by buying only what you need at the grocery store. Split up a bunch of bananas, buy a quart of milk instead of a gallon, or purchase nuts in 1-ounce packages.

Stay hydrated 10 this summer with healthy beverage choices. Try herbal iced tea!

Want to add sea 11 vegetables to your diet? Place kombu in the water when cooking rice or soup. You will get all of the benefits without actually having to eat it.

Enjoy a new 12 recipe to keep variety in your diet. Plan to try a new one today!

Visit the 13 supermarket with a friend, so you can split large packages of food and take advantage of buyone, get-one-free deals. The buddy system never fails!

Enjoy at least 14 one of your meals today in a calm and relaxed environment. This will help you reap the benefits of proper digestion and absorption.

Make healthy 15 fajitas at home! Purchase wholegrain tortillas, low-fat meats, vegetables, salsa, guacamole, and beans for a delicious fiesta. If you have the time, make your own salsa and guacamole.

Buy a peanut 16 butter that is made with just peanuts no palm oil or sugar needed!

Take an evening 17 stroll with the family. Enjoy some quality time and exercise!

Ask your 18 employer or health insurance company if they offer gym discounts.

Consider using 19 coconut water to stay hydrated. It is a great choice and has more potassium than a banana.

Volunteer as a 20 family at a local animal shelter to walk a dog several times a week. It is great exercise for you and the dog!

Make sure the 21 family gets at least 7 hours of sleep tonight.

Store eggs and 22 dairy inside the refrigerator, which is the coolest part, not on the door, which is the warmest part.

Serve Greek 23 frozen yogurt for a delicious sweet treat that is high in protein. Just watch the sugar content.

Get outdoors 24 today. Sweep and weed your sidewalk regularly. Check in with your neighbors. Enjoy some healthy exercise. Work in the garden.

Purchase a 25 Keep your 26 food safe. Is your pluot today. It is drive to the beach a delicious cross more than 1 between a plum and hour? If so, make sure to put your an apricot. food in a cooler to keep it fresh.

Fire up the grill 27 and enjoy chicken or turkey burgers tonight. Add diced onions for extra flavor.

Turn everyone’s 28 Do not forget to

Grill some fish 31 tonight. The ones highest in hearthealthy omega-3s are trout, salmon, and herring.

32   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

sandwiches inside out by spreading mustard on slices of deli turkey and wrapping them around wholegrain breadsticks.

29

toss reusable grocery bags into the laundry to get rid of unwanted bacteria.

Take the family 30 out for a game of miniature golf.


teen connect

Even with a steadily declining adolescent birth rate, two in five young women will become pregnant before age twenty, and four out of five of those pregnancies will be unintended, including about half of those among married teenage girls. Whatever their circumstances the news that they are pregnant usually comes as a shock, and often not a welcome one. The unforeseen development typically throws young lives into turmoil, at least for a time, forcing the girl to make perhaps the most agonizing decision of her life. Does she carry the baby to term, as 50 percent of pregnant teenagers elect to do? Or does she terminate the pregnancy? It is hoped she knows she can count on her mother and father for guidance and support as she confronts these choices. Youngsters who fear meeting with rejection or abuse at home may try to keep the pregnancy a secret as long as possible. As a result, they often don’t receive adequate prenatal care and counseling during the crucial early months of fetal development. One-third of girls aged fifteen to nineteen, and one-half of girls under fifteen receive no prenatal care at all during their first trimester. The lack of medical attention can lead to problems later on. If they go forward with the pregnancy, the pregnancy could be complicated with an increased risk for mother and baby. However, anxiety over Mom and Dad’s reaction isn’t the only reason a girl may hide the fact that she is pregnant. “Young women can be in terrible denial,” explains Dr. Claire Brindis, “simply refusing to accept the reality of their condition.” Psychologists call this dissociation. Since today’s baggy fashions make it easier for a girl to go for months, or perhaps through her entire pregnancy without anyone noticing her expanding abdomen, don’t go by appearances alone. If you suspect that your daughter might be pregnant but is trying to hide it, act on your intuition—but tactfully, perhaps with words like these: “Honey, you’ve been complaining of feeling tired and nauseous the last week or so, and you’re going to the bathroom a lot. Are you all right? You remind me of what I felt like when I was pregnant.” Parents’ Common Reactions A tearful “I’m pregnant!” isn’t easy for any mother or father to hear. Worry, disappointment, anger—all are understandable responses. Most likely this isn’t what you had in mind for your daughter. Meanwhile, a similar scene is probably being played out at the home of the boy involved (if the boy even tells his parents). Give yourself and your spouse permission to be upset for a day or two. Talk things over together. If you blurt out an incredulous “What on earth were you thinking?!” or “How could you be so

irresponsible?!” so be it; you’re human. But then shut the door on anger and lock it away. Hurling blame at your teenager isn’t going to change anything; it’s time to sit down as a family and calmly discuss what to do next. “A parent’s most important role is to listen to the young woman or the young couple as they sort through their options,” says Denver pediatrician Dr. Roberta Beach. “We know that in the long run teenagers usually feel satisfied with whatever choice they made, as long as they feel that the decision was theirs and that their family supported them.” First Things First: Verify the Diagnosis A skipped period and a positive result on a home pregnancy test are usually what prompt a young woman to believe she’s pregnant. The home test, while generally accurate, isn’t as reliable as the laboratory test the doctors do to confirm a pregnancy. So the first step is to make an appointment with your daughter’s pediatrician or gynecologist. Next Step: Reaching a Decision The doctor’s office just called: The pregnancy test came back positive. Now where do we go from here? Parents certainly have a right to voice their opinions; if circumstances allow, the young man and his family should be invited to take part in the decision-making process too. But legally, the ultimate verdict belongs to the expectant mother. For some young women, the decision about what to do is never in doubt. If you and your daughter feel that you might benefit from hearing an objective viewpoint, arrange a consultation with the pediatrician. In a nonjudgmental fashion, he or she can help you to evaluate the pros and cons of each option. Once the young woman has made up her mind, most pediatricians can refer her to health-care practitioners or to an obstetrician or adolescent clinic to begin prenatal care.

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word of encouragement

Donna Williams-Ross In Trust Ministries dwilliamsross@aol.com

As Jesus went into Capernaum, a centurion came up to Him, begging Him, and saying, Lord, my servant boy is lying at the house paralyzed and distressed with intense pains. And Jesus said to him, I will come and restore him. But the centurion replied to Him, Lord, I am not worthy or fit to have You come under my roof; but only speak the word, and my servant boy will be cured. For I also am a man subject to authority, with soldiers subject to me, and I say to one, Go, and he goes; and to another, Come, and he comes; and to my slave, Do this, and he does it. Matthew 8:5-8. [Amplified Bible] Lately I have noticed the trend where people are quoting what this preacher said, what this motivational speaker said and what this TV personality said. Yes and even what the high priestess said and what the dog, cat and rat said. I am not hearing as much of what JESUS said. In John 1:1-4 of the Amplified version of the Bible it states – "In the beginning [before all time] was the Word (Christ), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God Himself. He was present originally with God. All things were made and came into existence through Him; and without Him was not even one thing made that has come into being. In Him was Life, and the Life was the Light of men." If Jesus is the Word, (and He is) then why are we quoting all of the He Say/She Say if it doesn't line up with what God said or is saying to the Body of Christ? DEFINITION OF A CENTURION: A centurion is an officer in the army of ancient Rome. They got their name because they commanded 100 men. The centurion had a crisis, his servant boy was sick – lying at the house paralyzed and distressed with intense pains. He didn't wait for Jesus to come to him, he knew he needed his servant boy to be out of that intense pain and he had heard about Jesus the Healer. His decision to go to Jesus more than likely can be based on the fact that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. He definitely had heard about the miracles that Jesus had done because He requested Jesus' help in healing his servant boy. Jesus consented to go to his house to restore the boy. The 34   34   May May2015 2015| |Grace&Glory Grace&Glory

centurion obviously knew about power and authority and how well they work hand-in-hand. He knew that Jesus did not have to come to his house to heal his servant. He basically told Jesus – "I understand how power and authority works because I have officers above me in rank and below me in rank also. I just need you to speak the word only Jesus and my servant will be cured." With power and authority the centurion knew that from wherever Jesus was He could just speak and it is really a done deal. Why do we continue to listen to all of the "He say/She say" from those who are saying and twisting God's word, instead of looking at what God says? We are living in a time when we are going to hear a lot more "He say/She say" that we need to be very protective of what we hear – remember that "faith comes by hearing". There are people ready to whisper in our ears things that we want to hear instead of what God's word is really saying to us. Whose report are you going to believe? I choose to believe the report of the Lord. Don't be moved by everything that you hear on Television. Remember television is telling you a vision – their vision – not necessarily God's vision for your life or the lives of your loved ones. Remember signs, wonders and miracles followed what Jesus said. The whispers are already being used on television to tell us how much to send them and how sympathetic we should be to other groups of individuals. I encourage you today to listen to and for the voice of God. Jesus made it very clear in John 10:27 – "The sheep that are My own hear and are listening to My voice; and I know them, and they follow Me." Don't just listen for a voice; I encourage you to listen for the voice of God. Prayer: Father, in the name of Jesus, "Thank You" for reminding me about the many voices that have gone out into the world. Help me to not desire the things of this world so desperately that I am willing to listen to the voices of those who were not sent of you. Help me Father, also to remember the power and authority of Your word and to use it for the good of your people, amen.


www.gracenglorymagazine.org  35


Andrae Crouch

Gospel Industry News Ted Winn The contemporary melodic voice of Ted Winn is making noise on Billboard with his newest single ‘More’. He's always given us an authentic sound with Donald Lawrence, and then with his duo project with Sherri Moffett … loved me some Ted & Sherri! He’s back with a new single from his sophomore solo project "More"; go to your digital media outlets and grab it!! I Breath Melody, Lesley Neely Accomplished DMV vocalist Lesley Neely is bringing an awesome opportunity to DMV vocalists and aspiring vocalists. She had an unfavorable experience so she thought; she went to audition for a major artist and wasn't chosen. She was deeply hurt by the disappointment that she was not selected, "So I wanted to create an environment to help get over and process the hurtles of the industry, and be able to deal with situations like that and others. People in the industry won't tell you certain things but I'm prepared to tell vocalists what they won't, to help them." 36   36   May May1015 2015||Grace&Glory Grace&Glory

IN Session Vocal Workshops will consist of giving vocalists tools to further their careers. They will be writing their creative resumes. They will learn vocal empowerment with Sunday’s Best finalist, Clifton Ross. The amazing and incomparable Melanie Daniels along with vocal veteran Cheryl Pepsi Riley has teamed up to do mentoring workshops; this will be their début on their venture to collaboratively work with vocalists. They will share experiences, give advice, as well as participate in panel discussions with other DMV vocalists including James Murphy, and Jeremiah Hicks. For more info and registration go to www.ibreathemelody.com. I admonish every person that reads this article or hears about this event that is aspiring to be an artist to go to this, get the education and tools to be able to execute and brand yourself. IBreathe Melody In Session Vocal Workshop, Saturday, May 16th at the Synergy Center, 6419 York Road, Baltimore, MD. For more information and to register go to www.ibreathemelody.com. Andrae Crouch Last month Rock & Roll Hall of Fame honored the late great Andrae Crouch. Present that evening were Pastor Marvin Winans, Donnie McClurkin, and Cece Winans. His sister Sandra Crouch had this to say about this awesome celebration commemorating her brother, "I am honored that the Rock Hall Rock Soul Concert celebrated my best


gospel industry news friend, my twin brother. Andrae's music has always had a global reach, so to be celebrated by such a distinguished organization is a blessing." Amos Saint Jean I had an opportunity to support my friend and brother Amos Saint Jean's CD Release in Washington, DC at the Ebenezer Coffee House. I enjoyed every minute of it!!! His latest project is absolutely great!! Amos has been on a semi hiatus having a beautiful daughter, doing the daddy/family thing, and just working at The Evangel Cathedral in Largo, MD serving on their music staff; he was overdue to come out with this sophomore project available now at your digital media outlets. Danton Whitley Since November 2014, Danton Whitley has been in Harford County making musical waves. He constructed a 35 voice choir that he has personally put in his vocal boot camp. Danton has put together a musical aggregation of singers he has trained vocally, individually and collectively, called Levitical Priesthood. Danton's group Mosaic Sounds has been "Wowing" the music scene for quite some time

Top 5 Gospel Songs

now and he's determined to let the world know he's not stopping. His choir Levitical Priesthood will be making its début, May 9, 2015 at Emmanuel Ministries COGIC, 4839 Hazelwood Ave, Baltimore, MD 21206. He's planned a full day of education and celebration. There will be workshops in the morning, taught by some of DMV's finest, and the special guest presenter is none other than the Professor James Hall, who will be teaching on choir decorum, vocal, etc. The evening will include a début concert featuring Levitical Priesthood, a 100 voice choir including the participants of the workshops; special guest artists featured to sing that evening include April Hall, Khare Hawkins, and Brittney Wright. Danton has written, arranged, and composed some awesome music for the evening including contemporary, classical, and traditional music. In the next 5 years he plans to stock his label that he's in the process of establishing to be a world recognized label. I think it's safe to say he's well on his way, he's done 2 albums thus far, his group Mosaic Sound has a project out and a compilation project with some of the artists he's worked with; both are available at your digital media outlets.

Go to www.dantonwhitleymusic.com to get more info, register yourself or your choir, get your tickets to the concert, registration for workshops etc. ◆◆◆ Wishing ALL Mothers Happy Mother’s Day! Some of you may not be mothers that gave birth, but please know you deserve to be celebrated as well; the love women Ericka J.

nurture our children is not an easy job, but one that is rewarding nonetheless. I thank God for my son Taj, that makes being Mommy worth every sacrifice. I want to send a special shout out of love and honor to my mom Pastor Sandy Johnson, and my grandmother Mother Vena Jackson, thanks for always loving me, caring, supporting, encouraging, and being the true definition of the wind beneath my wings!! I love u both with all my heart!! – Ericka

Til next month www.facebook.com/ ErickaJohnson like my fan page on Facebook “Miss Ericka J” www.instagram.con/ MissErickaJ www.twitter.com@MissErickaJ

Top 5 Gospel Albums

1. "I Am" – Jason Nelson

1. Help 2.0. – Erica Campbell

2. "Fill Me Up" – Casey J

2. WOW 2015. – Various Artists

3. "Amazing" – Ricky Dillard & New G

3. Any Given Sunday – Charles Fellowship & Fellowship Chicago 4. Best Days – Tamela Mann 5. Grace – Tasha Cobb

4. "This Place" – Tamela Mann 5. "For Your Glory" – Tasha Dobbs

give to care for and

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man talk

What else can be said on the heels of commemorating and celebrating the death, burial, and triumphant resurrection of Christ from the grave? Everything seems to pale in comparison to this central event that is the cornerstone of our faith. By dying on the cross, Christ was the once-and-for-all propitiation for our sin. And, by rising early on the third day morning, he unequivocally showed that nothing—not even death—could contain his everlasting and mighty power. While Mother’s Day and the graduation and wedding seasons will soon be upon us, it is fitting to highlight this simple truth: MIGHTY IS OUR GOD! And because we serve a mighty God, A GREAT GOD DESERVES GREAT PRAISE! Brothers, because God is great, our praise should be a demonstration of his power. Because God is great, our praise should be a statement of faith. Because God is great, our praise should be a weapon of mass destruction. POINT ONE: GREAT PRAISE IS A DEMONSTRATION OF GOD’S POWER As the Israelite army was facing the Moabites and Ammonites in 2 Chronicles 20:15-17 contain the following prophetic proclamation: …This is what the LORD says to you: Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s… You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you… Following in verses 18 and 19, Jehoshaphat bowed with his face to the ground, and all the people of Judah and Jerusalem fell down in worship before the LORD. Then some Levites… stood up and praised the LORD, the God of Israel, with a very loud voice. Such praise was based on knowing that because God was with them they did not have to fear—anything. And knowing this, the most appropriate response was to say thank you or praise [God]: Thank you for what you have already done! Thank you for your promises to do more! Thank you for being God, which makes you able to do anything! POINT TWO: GREAT PRAISE IS A STATEMENT OF FAITH Verses 20 and 21: …As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the LORD your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful… Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the LORD and to praise him for the splendor of his holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: Give thanks to the LORD, for his love endures forever. Every situation that we experience is to ultimately bring glory to God. But not only is God getting the glory out of our lives through situations both good and bad, at the same time, our faith muscles are exercised and continue to develop. Because faith is absolutely necessary in the life of the believer 38   38   May May 2015 2015 || Grace&Glory Grace&Glory

(see Hebrews 11:6), everything we do must be rooted in, and supported by, faith. Praise is no exception. It is a statement of faith. It is a declaration of what we believe and in whom we trust. Knowing that The Lord was with them, the praise demonstrated in 2 Chronicles chapter 20 was a testament of the victory, though not yet actualized, but spiritually prophesied. POINT THREE: GREAT PRAISE IS A WEAPON OF MASS DESTRUCTION Verses 22 through 24: As they began to sing and praise, the LORD set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated. The men of Ammon and Moab rose up against the men from Mount Seir to destroy and annihilate them. After they finished slaughtering the men from Seir, they helped to destroy one another. When the men of Judah came to the place that overlooks the desert and looked toward the vast army, they saw only dead bodies lying on the ground; no one had escaped. Everything that we encounter in life is fundamentally spiritual. For this reason, gentlemen, when conflicts seemingly arise between you and your spouse, children, coworkers, or even other believers, the truth is that we are engaged in a spiritual battle against principalities, powers, and spiritual wickedness in high places (see Ephesians 6:12). Therefore, it is impossible to win a spiritual battle with carnal weapons. The spiritual war will only be won with spiritual weapons and according to spiritual principles. The battle recorded in 2 Chronicles chapter 20 was much more than a war between nations. Spiritually, it was a lesson that God is greater. But in order to show this truth to the world, The Lord could not use military techniques and strategy. If so, people (you and me) would likely confuse the victory with some brilliantly orchestrated manmade scheme. Instead, God used the weapon of praise to cause mass destruction and bring freedom and deliverance to his people. Brothers, regardless of life’s season, because of Christ’s victory over death, know that we serve a mighty God. And because He’s a mighty God, a great God deserves great praise. Dr. Charles Barrett is a school psychologist with Loudoun County Public Schools. He also serves as Ministry Leader for Worship Ministries at Heritage Fellowship Church in Reston, VA.

Charles Barrett


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40   May 2015 | Grace&Glory

Grace & Glory May 2015  

Grace & Glory is the Go To Magazine for your Spiritual, Physical and Emotional needs. It is an up and coming contemporary Faith-Based magazi...

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