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EASTER SUNDAY Sunrise Worship at Blount Cultural Park Amphitheater 6 a.m. Sanctuary and Contemporary Worship at Frazer 8, 9:30 & 11 a.m.

O t h e r Ho l y We e k Eve n t s Eggstravaganza Family Fun Day Saturday, March 23 Stations of the Cross Prayer Journey Wednesday - Friday, March 27-29 Good Friday Worship Service Friday, March 29 at 7 p.m.

6000 Atlanta Highway | 334.272.8622

FRA Z ERUMC .O R G


Volume 14, Issue 10

Feature Articles

MARCH 2 0 1 3 Columns page 2

Publisher’s Note

page 18

Freedom Through Forgiveness

by Carmen Falcione There is a disease in the body of Christ...unforgiveness. Learn why it so badly corrupts and how the cross and resurrection gives us the power to overcome.

Jason Watson

page 4

Pastor's Perspective Andy Hepburn, Taylor Road Baptist Church

page 14

Dave $ays Dave Ramsey

page 16

page 22

2013 Easter Listing

Find Easter egg hunts, musicals, worship services and more throughout the River Region for this Easter season.

Shine Kim Hendrix

page 20

Family Teams for Christ Lisa and Mike Conn

page 25

Counselor’s Corner Pamela Boswell

page 28

page 26

Hope Inspired Ministries

Bob Crittenden

The Intersection

by Rachel Fisher Discover how this local ministry is helping the River Region’s chronically unemployed through breaking the cycle of dependency.

page 34

Grace to You John MacArthur

page 42

Get the Point? Elaine Britt

On Our Cover . . .

In Every Issue

The Directors and Spring 2013 Students of Hope Inspired Ministries:

page 6

On the Bookshelf page 8

Around Our Community

L to R/F to B: Mark Redden, Kenyatta Thornton, Leanne Armstrong, Michael Coleman, Wilferdo Coleman, Eric Ezell, Kiesha Thornton, and Regina Watson.

page 36

Event Calendar page 44

Movie Reviews 1

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River Region’s Journey


Our Mission... We believe the Good News concerning the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is worth sharing with our friends and neighbors in the River Region. Each month we deliver this life-changing message to the centers of activity across our community in a user-friendly and relevant way to empower and equip all those seeking to grow closer to God. Join us in this mission by sharing a copy with your neighbor or by becoming an advertising partner starting next month.

Editor DeAnne Watson deanne@readjourneymagazine.com

Publisher

Jason Watson jason@readjourneymagazine.com

Research Editor Wendy McCollum

Contributing Writers Pamela Boswell Elaine Britt Lisa and Mike Conn Bob Crittenden Carmen Falcione Rachel Fisher Kim Hendrix Andy Hepburn John MacArthur Dave Ramsey Gail Welborn

Advertising Opportunities ads@readjourneymagazine.com (334) 213-7940 ext 703

Cover Photography Lori Mercer Photography

Ad Design

Tim Welch, Welch Designs

Distribution Team Kristy Brennan Wendy McCollum Chris Mitchell Manzie Moore Richard Ward Lesa Youngblood

River Region’s Journey is published monthly by Keep Sharing, P.O. Box 230367, Montgomery, AL 36123. For information, call 334-213-7940. River Region’s Journey is copyrighted 2013 by KeepSharing. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without written permission is prohibited.

From the Publisher The other day my oldest daughter and I were driving down the road listening to Christian music on the radio when I got the urge to express to her the joy that I have in the Lord. I shared with her the amazing freedom that I’ve come to know from being God’s child, secure in His love, the Son’s atonement and the Spirit’s sealing. I let her know that the world promises you so much, but in the end, they’re all empty and leave you burdened as you try to create an identity outside of being one made and loved by God. Even in suffering and hardship, God offers me peace and hope that He is with me, faithfully leading me to greener pastures in this life or for sure in the one to come. As the Word says, “If God is for me, then who can be against me?” A new life in Christ, what we celebrated together that day riding down the road, should cause Christians to view all of mankind in a hopeful light. No matter what we’ve been through we can be set free and given a new lease on life we we’re redeemed by Christ. I saw a church sign recently that said, “There’s more mercy in God than sin in you.” That’s the truth and it should make us run into the town square to announce God’s victory over the enemy within us all. One place here in the River Region that is sharing this good news is Hope Inspired Ministries. You see some of those involved with their ministry on this month’s cover. H.I.M. works with the poor, ex-convicts and others who are struggling to get back on their feet by teaching them life skills and job skills that break the cycle of dependency and make them more employable. These are people that have heard their share of nay-sayers, but who are now finding Hope in Christ. Turn to page 28 to be inspired by the work H.I.M. is doing and how you can get involved. Are you connected with a church right now? Easter is March 31. Can I encourage you to make sure you’re in a church by then? I’m not one who believes you have to attend church if you want to be saved, but I’m old enough now to know that God gave us the church as a gift and blessing. Being involved in a church body allows you to be equipped and built up in your faith. It also allows you to use the spiritual gifts God has given you to bless other believers. Together, church brothers and sisters spur one another on as we wait on Christ’s return to redeem this fallen world. A close friend of mine recently found out his son was ill and he shared that one regret he and his wife had was that they weren’t well connected with a church family. Easter is the perfect time to make that connection. On page 22 we have a listing of Easter activities and worship services. Several of the churches listed there also have advertisements that you can view for more information. March is a month for new beginnings. When it has passed I hope you will have a better understanding of God’s love for you. Each of the articles we share can encourage you to that end. But don’t stop there. Each day celebrate the joy and freedom you have in Christ by celebrating it with others.

The opinions expressed in River Region’s Journey are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the owners, nor do they constitute an endorsement of products or services herein. River Region’s Journey has the right to refuse any content that is not consistent with its statement of faith.

River Region’s Journey

March 2013

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Pastor’s Perspective

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Andy Hepburn, Taylor Road Baptist Church

The Need for Intimacy What do people really need? In working with people and searching the Scriptures for the past 42 years, I’ve learned that humans are looking for something. Perhaps this something is not what you might expect. If high priced commercials and the various forms of immorality that are made available throughout the electronic world and especially America are indicative, you might think what people are looking for is a neurotic pleasure. This is what the world is selling, but is it what we really desire? I believe what we desire is described in Josh McDowell’s blog title, “Searching for Intimacy.” Intimacy is a tricky word and has been applied primarily to the physical relationships that humans have with one another. I do not believe that is the basis for intimacy as we find it in God’s Word. God’s desire is an intimate relationship with us and we are given an innate desire to have an intimate relationship with Him, as well as in our human relationships. When people experience various forms of chosen sin, they do so looking for intimacy. This can lead to bad choices in relationships, and it often progresses into neurotic behavior. If we are not careful, our mind drifts into all kinds of inappropriate behavior attempting to bring us pleasure. The real pleasure, the real intimacy, the real “soul mate” that we are looking for is found in God becoming man. In doing so, He provides a relationship between man and Himself. That is much more intimate and fulfilling than any other relationship on the face of the earth. In March you will be reading, searching, and researching all types of materials that have to do with what we have come to know as “Easter.” However, I believe this should be called Resurrection Sunday as we celebrate the raising of Jesus Christ from the dead. Before the resurrection, there is the crucifixion, and before the crucifixion there is the birth and life of the God Man, Jesus, coming to earth in order to make the payment necessary for forgiveness and deliverance from our sin. Our nature is seeking frantically for pleasure to bring meaning, instead of looking to God to River Region’s Journey

March 2013

fulfill our lives with meaning and purpose through intimacy with Him. Intimacy with God also provides us with tremendous security. Insecurity begins with little children and their basic need for security. My thoughts go immediately to little Ethan, who was held captive in the bunker in Midland City, Alabama, in February. All children in their formative preschool years are searching for security that is brought about with intimacy between parents and children. In order for that intimacy between parent and child to be significant, fulfilling and meaningful, there must also be a significant relationship that is intimate between husband and wife and God. The type of security that comes from intimacy with God is provided for every man and woman through a personal relationship with His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. The preschool years are the most formative years of an individual’s life and how those children are reared is important from the time that they are conceived until the time that they are set free to live on their own as young adults. Intimacy, the close bonding relationship we are searching for, is found first in God. Then it is shared by God through us to our spouses, and then through us to our children, and to their children, and to the generations to come. I think we have lost our understanding and recognition for our need for intimacy. We have chased it away with our so called dreams and visions and opportunities that have come before us by way of the media or the world’s system in many fashions. We have chosen to follow the world’s ideas rather than the biblical direction that God has given us to live the abundant life. What we need is to be found by God, and if we are already found, what we need is to be revitalized in our intimate relationship with our wonderful and personal God. The last day in March, we will celebrate, not “Easter,” but Resurrection Day. Easter has a pagan, worldly holiday foundation that we have come to use as Christians to identify something that is far more important. Resurrection day is the day when we remember God’s enabling 4

us to establish a meaningful purposeful existence of intimacy with Him. His tremendous power has been given to us through the gift of raising His Son, Jesus Christ, from the dead. That gift is given to all who will believe in and on Jesus as the God Man being raised from the dead. Our relationship with Jesus gives us bonding and a connection that allows us to know purpose and significance and meaning and security for life abundant and eternal. I have often thought of it like this...a couple of guys are in the military serving beside each other and in serving beside each other they realize their lives are dependent upon one another. They develop an emotional bond that makes them a brotherhood and it fills them with brotherly (Philia) love. As they fight the enemy they love each other and they have each other’s backs, protecting each other from harm, they bond together to serve our country and to live their lives with intimacy that is something far beyond any type of physical relationship. When we as individuals have that kind of bond and even more with a loving and gracious and merciful God, we find ourselves in the middle of intimacy and in the bond of security in fulfillment of life’s greatest needs. As we search for and find intimacy in a right relationship with God, then we can move on to an intimate relationship with our spouses, our children, and our brothers and sisters in Christ, and have a good testimony of intimacy with the people who are outside the faith. In our search for intimacy we take many paths, but the one that is significant, purposeful, meaningful, and secure is first found in being loved by and loving Almighty God. Andy Hepburn is pastor of Taylor Road Baptist Church, 1685 Taylor Road, in Montgomery. Visit them on Sunday or check out www.taylorroad.org.

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Our Statement of Faith In keeping with Protestant theology, we believe that the Bible, as contained in the 66 books of the Old and New Testaments, is fully inspired by God and therefore inerrant in the original manuscripts. The Bible is the only essential and infallible record of God’s self-disclosure to mankind. The Scriptures are the authoritative and normative rule and guide of all Christian life, practice, and doctrine. They are totally sufficient and must not be added to, superseded, or changed by later tradition, extra-biblical revelation, or worldly wisdom. The Bible is perfect in every way and shows us how to become and live as Christians. The way of becoming a Christian is by faith alone in Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, who came to us, born of a virgin, in full human form while remaining fully God. Jesus was, and is, perfect, and was crucified so that others could live. Three days later He rose from the dead, never to die again. He ascended into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God the Father, where He, the only mediator between God and man, continually makes intercession for His own. Those who have faith in Jesus as their Lord in this life, and Savior from damnation in the next life, now live by the guidance of the Holy Spirit, becoming more like Jesus everyday. We believe that God is one God. The one God has three persons: the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Just as God is one, so also, all believers are to be one. We believe in the unity and fellowship of all those that have faith in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. We are one in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church, His Body, which is composed of all men, living and dead, who have been joined to Him through saving faith. *All editorial content published must be in agreement with our Statement of Faith

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March 2013

River Region’s Journey


On The Bookshelf

by Gail Welborn

The Ultimate Conversation: Talking with God through Prayer

by Dr. Charles F. Stanley, Howard Books, Hardcover, 2012, 288 Pages, 978-1451668605, $24.99

Dr. Stanley draws on a lifetime study of prayer to pen this practical how-to prayer guide that teaches God “wants to talk with you” because He loves you, knows all about you and wants you to know Him, too. In addition to prayers for guidance, comfort and wisdom, he writes, “The most important things to the Father are strengthening our bond with Him and enjoying profoundly satisfying and transformational fellowship.” That kind of intimacy with God is rooted in prayer. That’s why he wrote The Ultimate Conversation, to teach God wants to communicate, be known and have personal relationship with His Creation. He considers communication and relationship foundational prayer principles while the third ingredient involves active “listening,” perhaps the hardest to do—to learn to “be still” (Psalm 46:10) and wait on the Lord. The Ultimate Conversation is vintage Stanley, a book to savor and return to again and again. The writing is biblical and scripturally rich, as well as a practical prayer guide for those who want a more vibrant prayer life and greater intimacy with the Lord.

Still Standing: 8 Winning Strategies for Facing Tough Times by James Merritt, Harvest House Publishers, 2012, 160 Pages, 978-0736943383, $12.99

James Merritt, television host, pastor and author has something for everyone in Still Standing. Whether readers are among the 2.6 million Americans who lost their jobs, their homes or their middleclass way of life, Pastor Merritt’s powerful principles offer hope and encouragement. He begins with When Life Knocks You Down where he learned, “Life’s greatest lessons are learned in the midst of life’s greatest struggles.” He experienced this first hand when called to pastor a new church that soon challenged him to a “showdown on Sunday” he compares to Wyatt Earp’s gunfight at the Okay Corral. However, Pastor Merritt used the Bible and prayer instead of guns. He calls these Bible-based principles “winning strategies” that equip readers to face “…tough times head on” where they find freedom, joy, victory and renewed faith. The stories of Joseph, Daniel and Esther among others illustrate faith based responses to stress and unfair treatment. Yet, it’s from such tests that unwavering faith is built. Although short and easy-to-read, the larger message is that “when tough times come God will fight with you” if you are willing to “share the load” with Jesus.

Joy Boosters

by Missy Buchanan, Upper Room Books, 2013, 63 Pages, 978-0835811927, $12.00

Missy Buchanan, well known author, speaker and advocate for seniors, inspires readers with “120 ways to encourage older adults.” Easy-to-use, similar size as a pocket guide and filled with creative ideas that encourage joy in the lives of older adults and their loved ones. With the greying of our nation, many are concerned with parents and grandparents who display physical limitations and losses that compromise once taken-for-granted abilities, such as the ability to walk without considering distance, stand without assistance or cook meals without help. Those compromises require decisions be made that result in difficult adjustments, and sometimes loneliness that leads to “barren and dry” lives. Missy’s creative ideas inspire joy and laughter while they equip “families, churches, and caregivers” to meet seniors’ needs with sensitivity. For example, you’ll find how to encourage smiles in a frail, wheelchair bound individual or when someone moves to an assisted living facility or how to encourage spouses whose partners move into “memory care facilities.” Divided into 12 segments the book is chock-full of topics, ideas and conversation starters that teach how to “connect through questions and conversations…encourage from a distance…find laughter…celebrate holidays…blend families…” and much more. River Region’s Journey book reviewer Gail Welborn lives in Sedro-Woolley, Washington. River Region’s Journey

March 2013

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March 2013 River Region’s Journey 334.273.4444 I baptistfirst.org/facilities


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Basketball with Common Ground

Impoverished and neglected neighborhoods follow a trend of fatherless homes, lack of male leadership, and male role modeling of destructive patterns, and youth are looking for mentors at every turn. Common Ground Montgomery (CGM) seeks to fill this void in many ways. One of which is through providing godly men of good character as coaches in a basketball youth program. Every year CGM forms a minimum of 4 youth teams that compete in the YMCA basketball league. Each team is comprised of at least 10 boys that reside in the neighborhood that CGM ministers to, and they are paired with a coach that understands the importance of hard work, but more importantly, a coach that understands the importance of a relationship with the Lord. Our coaches not only encourage effort on the court, but also a lifestyle of prayer and submission to God. Recently we have started an in-house league for high school youth 18 and under with the same goals in mind. If you or someone you know would like more information on how you could support or volunteer in this ministry, please contact Justin Hampton at (334) 557-3690 or log onto www.cgmlife.org/contact and use the contact form.

The Good, The Bad and The Forgiven...Live with Michael Franzese (former mob boss, now Christian author/speaker) & Warren Barfield (special musical guest) March 16, Eastmont Baptist Church, 4505 Atlanta Highway, in Montgomery. Begins at 6 pm, doors open at 5 pm Call 277-6300 or visit www.itickets.com.

WHAT IF THERE IS MORE TO CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY THAN THE WHITE PICKET FENCE OF ALL THAT YOU THOUGHT IT SHOULD BE?

UNSAFE.CC

A CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY CONFERENCE SERIES BEGINNING MAY 4, 2013

Limited space available, register online at: WWW.UNSAFE.CC

1516 MOBILE ROAD, MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA 36102 COST: $15 In association with House to House at Washington Park and Common Ground Montgomery River Region’s Journey

March 2013

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Needs for Reality and Truth Ministries

Ministering to the Homeless in the River Region

Prayer: Please pray without ceasing for our ministry. We also have a daily time of prayer that you are welcome to join either in person or set your alarm for 12:30 Monday through Friday and pray with us for the ministry. Work Projects: We are in the process of building and remodeling our new building at 506 Montgomery Street and hope to move to that new location soon. If you would like to help paint, build, or clean please let us know. We are working every Saturday to get the new building ready for our move and would welcome anyone who wants to come. Other times are also available, so please call ahead. Day Warriors: We are composing a list of people who may want to donate a day of service. This may include taking someone to the social security office, moving donated furniture, picking up building supplies or food and delivering to the mission. Or just come and spend time by playing cards or checkers. Clothing and Food: We are always in need of clothes and food. We have organized suppers every night from 5-6 (with all slots being filled at present). If you would like to be put on a waiting list or as a sub let us know. If you have leftovers from your church or group dinner you can always bring food by from 1-6 Monday through Friday. We are always in need of coffee, sugar, creamer, cups, plates, silverware or hygiene items. Please prayerfully look over this list and see if you or your group can help. Please don’t hesitate to call Debby or text at 334-224-1460 or email atgetdebby@ yahoo.com with any questions. Follow us on our blog at http://realityandtruthministries.blogspot.com/ Thank you in advance for partnering with us.

Email your ministry’s news to deanne@readjourney magazine.com by the 15th of the month! 9

March 2013

River Region’s Journey


“Bee A Bloomer” Women’s Seminar

Saturday, March 16, 2013 River City Church, 301 Dexter Avenue, Montgomery 9:00 am - 4:00 pm “Bee A Bloomer” Women’s Seminar will help you find: JOY, HOPE & PURPOSE based on Scripture & practical life strategies such as knowing your personality and temperament type. Join Paula Price, owner of Liberty Counseling in Iowa, for a day of laughter, tears, pep talks, crafts, prizes, books, lunch and friendship. Paula Price, a licensed mental health counselor and graduate of Liberty University, specializes in the integration of psychology and theology as well as women’s issues. She is experienced in helping men, women, children, parents, couples and families successfully overcome problems that have otherwise kept them discouraged and unproductive in their private and public lives. Paula is also a 5-time melanoma cancer survivor and will share her secrets to blooming no matter the circumstances in life. For each woman who pre-registers for this FREE conference, Paula will send you home with her “Christian Woman’s Survival Kit!” Please RSVP to Phone: 334-2630549 or email: info@rivercityumc.com.

Women’s Retreat – A Time of Refreshing March 22-23

The first quarter of 2013 is almost gone and most women are as busy as ever. Ladies, it is Your Time to Refresh, to Revitalize, and to Reinvigorate as you receive a fresh infusion from the Spirit of God. Join the hundreds of women as they travel to Camp Sumatanga in Gallant, Alabama, away from their daily activities to spend time in God’s presence, in prayer, worship, communion and the Word, as well as times of personal ministry. For more information contact Fresh Anointing International Church at 334613-3363 or visit www.anointedchurch.org.

Extraordinary Women Conference

with Julie Clinton, Michael O’Brien, Third Day, Margaret Feinberg, Michelle McKinney Hammond, Kasey Van Norman and Tim Hawkins Birmingham Jefferson Civic Center, April 12-13. For more info, visit www.itickets.com or call 205-458-8400.

No Man Left Behind Conference

April 5th-6th in Montgomery, Alabama Learn how to disciple every man in your church! Friday: 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. ~ Saturday: 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Hosted at Frazer United Methodist Church, 6000 Atlanta Hwy; Trainer David Delk: David Delk is President of Man in the Mirror and Co-Author of the book No Man Left Behind, Dad in the Mirror, The Marriage Prayer, and more. He has a talent for helping people remember vital truths from God’s Word and his use of humor and illustrations help men apply Biblical principles to their lives. He has a degree in Mathematics from Furman University and his Master of Divinity from Reformed Theological Seminary. Call Ministry Consultant Roddey Roberts to reserve your team’s NMLB Courseware: 407-472-2110. River Region’s Journey

March 2013

“Men of Promise”

On Saturday March 16th, Men of Promise will be having a Men’s Conference at Church at the Brook, Millbrook, Al. The theme for the conference is “Destined to Win”. The keynote speaker in the morning is former UA Football star & former NFL star Siran Stacey. The afternoon speaker is DR. Raymond Cullpepper. The conference is open to ALL denominations. Cost is $10.00 per person. Make checks payable to Church at the Brook. Put [Men’s Conference] on the memo line. Mail them to [Men’s Conference, 510 Mossy Oak Ridge, Prattville, Al 36066]. Call Allen Clark 334-313-2969. Doors open at 9:30am.

“Man on Fire” – Free Men’s Conference

Fresh Anointing House of Worship presents the conference that every man has been hungry for. The Fire, a symbol of God’s holiness and purification, promises to set men free to fulfill their purpose in this generation and leave a lasting legacy of righteousness, boldness and courage. The mighty men of God will rise to new levels as husbands, fathers, community leaders, mentors, and entrepreneurs as they receive the Word, the Wisdom, and the Spirit of this conference. Hosted by Apostle Kyle Searcy, and speakers are Pastors Eddie Lawrence, Coley Chestnut, Fred Adetunji, and Terry Millender. Anointed worship will prepare you to receive abundantly from God. There is no admission charge. Teens are welcome. Friday, March 8. For more information contact Fresh Anointing International Church at 334-613-3363 or visit www.anointedchurch.org. 10

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Guy Penrod in Concert March 14

Gospel recording artist Guy Penrod will be in concert at Eastern Hills Baptist Church on March 14 at 7 pm. Ticket prices are $25

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Inner City Evangelism Outreach Volunteers Needed

Inner City Evangelism served in Smiley Court where we always serve a large and eager group! On a cool, cloudy January morning, ICE kicked off the outreach with the popular Bible Bingo for adults while the kids enjoyed spending time playing all kinds of games with volunteers. Thanks to a few male volunteers, a big football game with the younger boys was started in no time. And they had a blast! Though a game is never without a few fights, the Lord used one of the altercations to bring one of our faithful volunteers and a young boy involved in the altercation together to talk. The one-on-one time allowed her to talk to him about Jesus and he began to ask questions about Jesus and what it meant to be like Him. What a blessing! No matter what your role is in these outreaches, the Lord will use it to better His kingdom. If you are interested in volunteering for an ICE outreach, contact Layne Ballard at layne@innercityevangelism.com.

for artist circle seating, $18 for advance general admission and $20 for the night of the show. Call 272.0604 ext. 210 for tickets or purchase tickets at Lifeway, Family Christian Stores or online at itickets.com.

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Centerpoint’s Half Marathon & 5K

Begins at Prattville YMCA, March 16, 2013 Half Marathon starts at 7 am, 5K starts at 7:30 am, Fun Run at 10 am. The registration fee for the Half Marathon is $50 by February 1st, $60 by March 1st, $75 by March 8th and at packet pick up on Friday, March 15th. There is NO race day registration. The registration fee for the 5K is $15 by February 1st, $20 after February 1st. There WILL be race day registration available for the 5K. The registration fee for the Kids Mile is $15 at all times. There WILL be race day registration available for the Kids Mile. Registration is available online at Active.com or you can print out a form here. We HIGHLY encourage (and prefer) online registration! Additionally, for inquires about Centerpoint Fellowship Church or any other inquires not addressed above, please contact the Centerpoint Office at (334) 356-3070.

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March 2013

Secret Church Simulcast

Capitol Heights Baptist Church will have the privilege of hosting the Simulcast of Secret Church this spring. This event is the simulcast of the live event taking place at The Church at Brook Hills on Friday, March 29 which is Good Friday. The time of the event is 6:00 PM until Midnight. The Secret Church Simulcast is six intense hours of biblical teaching and prayer for the persecuted church led by David Platt. David is the pastor of The Church at Brook Hills in Birmingham, Alabama and the author of The New York Times bestseller Radical and the Radical Small Group Study. He is also founder of Radical, a resource ministry dedicated to serving the church in making disciples of all nations. This upcoming Secret Church will cover the topics: Heaven, Hell, and The End of the World. There is no cost to register or attend. Registering for a reservation is not required but it is requested and highly encouraged. Those registering will receive a printed ticket for entrance to guarantee materials and a seat. Childcare is not provided. To register call the church office at 2646461 or send an email to chbccherie@capitolheights.org. Doors will open at 5:30 PM on March 29th.

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Q.

I’m divorced and have a teenager who will be driving soon. What would be the best way to set up insurance for the child?

A.

I suppose a break-up does change the dynamic somewhat, but with my kids I simply left the car in my name and paid the extra insurance cost for a little while. For me, still being in control of the car as a dad outweighed the additional money I was paying in premiums. Having a minor child running around in the world with his or her name on a car title is not a good plan. Then, when they turned 18, I put each of their cars into their names. This, of

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March 2013

course, was dependent on them behaving and acting responsibly. They were legally liable at that age, too. I’m sure the insurance costs went up, but at that point the financial risk and liability factors were on them, not me. In this kind of situation, especially because there’s more of a potential for disagreements, I think I’d do it that way. Just put it in your name for now, especially if you’re putting money toward the purchase of a vehicle.

Q. My mother-in-law has a serious credit card problem. She can’t afford stuff, but she shops anyway, acquires more and

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more credit and thinks she’ll pay for it all later somehow. Her husband has bailed her out a few times, but he’s unwilling to do it anymore. My wife and I, and her sister, want to address this issue, but where do we start?

A.

First of all, you need to stay out of the discussion. This is something for her daughters to handle, and her husband needs to be part of it, too. He’s closer to this and feels the effects more than anyone else in the family. They need to sit down with her in a closed setting, where there are no interruptions, no television and no one else. Start with the fact that they love her and care about her deeply. This part is really important. But they also have to walk through what’s going on, and let her know they’re tired of watching her destroy herself and her marriage with this immature and irresponsible behavior. Everyone involved should understand going in that they’re likely to receive a volatile, angry reaction from this lady. Sometimes people get ticked off when they hear the truth, especially when it’s connected to their own misbehavior. It may even be a good idea for your wife, her sister and your father-in-law to get some advice from a family counselor beforehand. What we’re really talking about here is an intervention. If she were a drunk, you’d want to try and make her see how alcohol was hurting her and the relationships she has with her family. Basically, she has a credit card addiction, and it’s wreaking havoc on her marriage and their financial well-being. Show as much love and understanding as possible, but someone has to say something and draw a line in the sand. Otherwise, this behavior will eat everyone alive!


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March 2013

River Region’s Journey


SHINE!

dis cha tha cle or yo and thi and

by Kim Hendrix

“Clean Up!” John 15: 1-3: “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.” If you’ve watched WSFA-12-News at all over the last several years, you’ve no doubt seen and heard anchor Mark Bullock yell out “Clean Up!” when talking about the latest restaurant reviews from the health department. When a restaurant violates a cleanliness rule, it gets a low score and warrants the familiar cry of “CLEAN UP!” over the television airwaves. So when a restaurant isn’t clean, it’s in trouble. The same is true for you and me.

As we enter the spring season, many people do some spring cleaning. We dig through closets and cabinets, sift through garages—all for a fresh start, a new beginning. After doing some major cleaning out, you often feel lighter and more focused. There’s proven evidence that removing clutter on the outside also removes “clutter” on the inside. So maybe it’s time to “clean up” externally and internally. The first few verses of John 15 are referring to faithful followers of Christ and those who turn away. The fruitful branches are true believers, while the branches bearing no fruit represent those who are turning their back on our Lord and Savior. Consider these words even more personally— verse 2 reads, “He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit…” When I read this recently I wondered what in my life

Questions, contact Jennifer @481-0735 OR JEN@SJLIFE.COM River Region’s Journey

March 2013

I should let go because it’s proven to be unfruitful? Negative thinking--Worldly desires--The attempt to please people-Holding onto comfort zones? It’s getting a little more personal isn’t it? What’s on your list? The 2nd verse of John 15 goes on to say, “…while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful”. In other words, fruitful branches are cutback to promote growth--my Bible concordance interprets this as God must sometimes

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discipline faithful followers to strengthen our character and faith. It’s interesting to note that the Greek word for prunes, also means cleans. If you’re in the middle of adversity or what feels like a difficult situation, maybe you’re just being pruned or cleaned up a bit and a fruitful season is ahead. You can trust this is true when you keep your focus, eyes and heart on Jesus. John 15: 3-4: “You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you.” Many of us are probably cleaning up our lives a bit during this season of Lent. In these weeks leading up to Easter, many people give up certain things or give of themselves in ways that feel sacrificial— something we haven’t normally taken the time to do. My family often gives up sodas, but I try to always add something more, something that involves character rather than just will power. This year I’m choosing to be more thankful. Instead of bringing my “to-do” list to God each morning, I’m bringing Him my praise. I’m saying thank you for the easy and the difficult, and in the process, the difficult is becoming lighter and at times joyful. I guess you could say I’m thankful God is taking the time to clean me up a bit. Lent is described as a time of selfexamination and reflection. What better time than now to take a closer look at the “branches” in our lives—those nurtured by God and those we’ve allowed to hang around far too long. Whether it’s a relationship, habit, thought or action—if it’s weighing you down and taking the light out of your day, lay it down, clean up and get ready… your harvest is coming. Dear Lord, How thankful we are to know you are the vine and the gardener and that you handle us with tender, loving care. May we abide in you and respond to any pruning with a deep trust that more meaningful and fruitful days are ahead. We love you, sweet Jesus, and pray every day will be a celebration of Easter. In the name of Jesus Christ we pray, Amen. Kim Hendrix is the Director of Development at Saint James School in Montgomery. She leads the Shine Your Light ministry at Frazer Memorial U.M.C. and recently ended a 26 year career in television news. Kim and her husband Scott, have a 12 year old daughter, Annie, who brings them great joy. 17

March 2013

River Region’s Journey


Freedom Through

Forgiveness Amazing Benefit of the Cross and Resurrection by Carmen Falcione

Jesus states in Luke 4:18 that the Spirit of the Lord was upon Him to proclaim liberty (freedom) to the captive and set the distressed, downcast, and downtrodden free. This verse states Jesus’ work on the cross (His obedience in taking on our sins and the wrath of God); His resurrection procured for us healing and deliverance spiritually, physically, mentally, and emotionally. The unbelievers are unaware of this, but sadly some of God’s children are either ignorant or negligent in embracing the totality of the work that Jesus purchased for us. An area that many believers do not appropriate the victory that Jesus purchased for us is forgiveness. Unfortunately, unforgiveness is a prevalent insidious disease in the body…of Christ! It produces resentment and bitterness and sometimes hatred. It really is devastating to human beings. It starts like a small seed between spouses, siblings, parents, children, and extended family members. It also happens in relationships with friends, at work, socially, and most disturbing, church members. River Region’s Journey

March 2013

If you think I am being too dramatic or emphatic about this, let us see what the expert says. Jesus, in the Lord’s Prayer says, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us...for if you forgive those who transgressed against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. BUT if you do not forgive others, then your heavenly Father will not forgive you. (Matt. 6:12, 14-15) Wow! How serious and sobering. But wait, if you think those words are strong, listen to what Jesus says in Matthew 18:33-35 when speaking of the wicked slave and his benevolent master. “Should you not also have mercy on your fellow slave, even as I had mercy on you? And his lord, moved with anger, handed him over to the torturers until he should repay all that was owed him. So shall My heavenly Father also do to you, if each of you does not forgive his brother from your heart.” Wait, did I hear that correctly? That my heavenly Papa who loves me dearly would turn me over to tormenting and torture if I didn’t forgive? Yes. Why? Because He loves us so much! Let me explain. 18

Sin is never good! It always has consequences. It is called sowing and reaping. Unforgiveness is SIN. It has much negative fruit attached to it. Throughout years of counseling and reviewing many medical and psychological studies we’ve discovered how devastating unforgiveness can be and how it affects all areas of our lives. Some common symptoms are bitterness, resentment, anguish, headaches, arthritis, ulcers, and the list goes on and on. Hebrew 12:15 says it causes much trouble and defiles those around you. It affects the atmosphere or tone in our homes, offices, and the church. Now, I do want to clarify that just because someone may have one or more of these symptoms do not necessarily mean that they are engaging in unforgiveness. Some people may not even realize they are harboring unforgiveness toward someone. The root of unforgiveness is PRIDE. The seed is planted when someone has said or done something offensive to us whether accurate or not, and we immediately are wounded or angry. Sometimes we don’t even realize it happens until after a couple of

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days when that moment comes back into our minds. These personal attacks by word or deed happen many times in life, sometimes by a number of people and other times it’s the same person over and over again. So, how many times are we going to let them get away with it? How many times are we supposed to forgive them? Jesus, who is Truth, says 70 times 7. Oh, I know that can be so frustrating and UNFAIR, right? After all we must get back at them; we must retaliate because it hurts so much. When we keep an aught we think we are punishing them and holding them captive. WRONG! They are going about their daily lives, happy-golucky, and we are just miserable. Sadly, we think by forgiving the individual that makes them right and us wrong. Not true, it just makes us FREE! For those who won’t forgive, it is like taking a little arsenic everyday. Let me give you a biblical example from the insect kingdom that God used in the Old Testament to punish His people. In Joel 1:4 it talks about the locust in its different stages that attacks the land. In the KJV the locusts are called palmerworm, cankerworm, caterpillar, and locust. Here is the focus of the text...these insects gnaw, devour, consume and reproduce. They even-

An area that many believers do not appropriate the victory that Jesus purchased for us is forgiveness. Unfortunately, unforgiveness is a prevalent insidious disease in the body…of Christ!

tually destroy all that is around them. That is what happens with unforgiveness. It starts out as a seed or larva in the belly of a bitter person and reproduces the poison into our system. Unforgiveness can be so consuming and continually gnaws at us. It is so destructive! That is why our loving Father will allow us to be tortured and tormented so that we would finally relent and obey Him and forgive. It is the best thing for us and the body of Christ. I’ve had saints tell me, “I just can’t forgive. I don’t feel it. I don’t want to think about it anymore.” There is the misunderstanding. The Lord never asked us to feel or analyze it. He just wants us to obey. You see, in our natural man we do not have the capacity or power to forgive, but Jesus and the Holy Spirit in us empowers us to forgive. That is why the Cross of Calvary is so powerful. JESUS took on all of our sins and the wrath of God. The Son of man said, “Father, forgive them for they know not what they

do.” The Holy Spirit, the power that raised Jesus from the dead, quickens us to do the same. With Christ in us, the Hope of Glory, all things are possible. Let us celebrate the work of the cross and the resurrection by embracing and enjoying our freedom in Christ. Rev. Carmen Falcione is the founder and director of The Gathering, an interracial and interdenominational ministry committed to foster unity in the body of Christ. He is a member of the International Reconciliation Coalition. He is also the leader of John 17 Pastors Fellowship and associate director of the Montgomery House of Prayer. He is also a host of the “Praise the Lord” program on TBN, Channel 45. Carmen and his wife Elaine reside in Montgomery with their children and grandchildren. Visit www. thegathering.ws.

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River Region’s Journey


Family Teams for Christ

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by Lisa and Mike Conn

Even a Lab is Known By Her Actions Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right. Proverbs 20:11 While entertaining a young newlywed Air Force couple in our home recently, we experienced an unforgettable lesson on discipline and training. After polishing off a delicious homemade dinner followed by some yummy chocolate brownies, we had retired to the living room to relax and talk. Our two black labs, Gracie and Chloe, had spent a quiet evening in their kennels listening to our conversation, but unable to meet our guests until now that the meal was finished. They were overjoyed as only two-year-old labs can be when released from their confines and finally able to

say a friendly hello to our friends who, fortunately, enjoy dogs! We adopted Gracie and Chloe from the Montgomery County Humane Shelter as cute little black pups who could sit in the palm of your hand at eight weeks of age. Of course, that lasted only a few days as they rapidly grew into the large Labradors they were bred to be, each with her own unique personality and characteristics. Litter mates and life-long buddies, Gracie and Chloe have proved to be quite different in looks and temperament. We call Gracie “the gazelle” because of her exuberant leaping when she dashes out the door and into the back yard! She is also “a rascal” because she steals food when you’re not looking. Gracie is very loving and very intelligent. She listens carefully and has

learned many phrases, such as, “Where’s Aimee?”, “Let’s go get Aimee!” and “Get in your bed!” Chloe is also loving and smart, yet more quiet and serious. Chloe is more obedient and mindful of our instruction, while willful Gracie pushes the limits and obeys only when she’s ready. But, let’s return to our peaceful evening with our friends! As they visited with the dogs, Chloe wedged herself on the couch between the husband and wife (newlyweds of 4 weeks) and rested her head lovingly on the husband’s lap, and Gracie,

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after her initial greeting, well, went off to do her thing. When our company was ready to leave, I remembered their brownies-almost a full pan was left since we had eaten only three--and yes, the pan was right where I had left it in the kitchen, only empty. I glanced around to see if perhaps Mike had wrapped them up. No brownies. Only the empty container still sitting in the middle of the table. I had always heard that chocolate was poisonous to dogs and had been careful to avoid any encounters that would prove or disprove the theory. As I ushered our friends out the door and stood pondering my next step, both dogs faced me with bright eyes and wagging tails. I took a minute to gather information on Google and was quickly convicted that prompt action had to be taken. I re-entered the kitchen at that point and caught Gracie with her front paws on the counter, licking at the leftover chicken. That’s when I knew beyond any doubt that she was the culprit--I could hear in my mind Steve Green singing from our children’s DVDs, “Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right!” Because Gracie is known to be willful and disobedient and because I had just caught her, once again, I knew which dog to take to the emergency vet clinic. There were no tale-tale crumbs on the muzzle, no retching or sickness, only knowing her character cued me to pick her as the guilty one. We are all known by the choices we make when we think no one is looking, by our habits, and by our actions. We are known by our parents, our spouses, our friends and co-workers and even our children. Most of all, we are known by our Creator and Father. This experience has given me good reason to ask myself, “How am I known by those who know me best?” And it has made me remember how important discipline is in the rearing of our little ones. If I had disciplined Gracie earlier, teaching her to not steal food, she could have been spared the consequences she unwillingly faced at the vet clinic. And, if you’re wondering about the rest of the story, well, let’s just say it was confirmed that she was guilty of eating the entire pan of brownies. Untreated, it could have been a fatal mistake. Now, I am lying in wait with a rolled up magazine to create another “significant emotional event” in Gracie’s young life the next time she is tempted to sample some of our food. That discipline just may save her life.

March 8–24; May 12–18

By Christopher Sergel, Adapted from the novel by Harper Lee

Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death. Proverbs 19:18

An American Classic The play that Alabama is most proud to call its own comes to inspired life on ASF’s stage. Set in Depression-era Monroeville, and told through the voice of the beloved tomboy Scout, this Pulitzer Prize-winning tale embodies the life-long lessons of childhood, fairness and the courage to stand up for what is right, no matter the cost.

God also disciplines us in love and for our own good. That’s the attitude He wants us to have with our children. Need Godly wisdom on how to raise righteous children? Start with the book of Proverbs, which is full of godly wisdom, instruction about discipline, fools and their folly, and the consequences of our decisions. Proverbs consists of 30 short chapters, perfect for reading aloud as a family 30 days each month! The lessons on discipline and child-rearing will be invaluable as you raise the next generation of godly offspring!

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Lt. Col Mike Conn and wife, Lisa, founded Covenant Family Ministries when Mike retired from the Air Force in 1997. CFM is an independent marriage and family education ministry committed to partnering with churches, organizations, and individuals in Montgomery and across Alabama to build Family Teams for Christ. Married for over 30 years, Mike and Lisa have three wonderful daughters, two great sons-in-law, and two precious grandchildren.

ALABAmA SHAkeSpeAre FeStivAL

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1-800-841-4273

www.ASF.net

/alabamashakes

/alabamashakes

March 2013

River Region’s Journey


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Worship Services, Egg Hunts and More! Aldersgate UMC

(See their ad on page 19) 6610 Vaughn Road, 334.272.6152 Easter Breakfast Saturday, March 31 Admission is non-perishable food pantry donations, 8 a.m. Easter Egg Hunt 1:00 P.M. March 24 Covered dish luncheon at 12:15 3 years old through 12 years Please call 272-6152 for reservations. Palm Sunday, March 24 The Risen Christ Easter Musical at the 11:00 service. Maundy Thursday, Passover Haggadah Service 7:00 P.M. Thursday, March 28 Good Friday Tenebrae Worship Service 7:00 P.M. Friday, March 29 Easter Son Rise Service 7:30 A.M. Sunday, March 31 led by the Aldersgate Youth Easter Celebration Worship Services Sunday, March 31 8:45 A.M. Contemporary; 11:00 A.M. Traditional

Beacon of Hope Church of God

1045 Coliseum Boulevard, 334.274.0932 Easter Celebration Musical Sunday, March 31 at 11:00 a.m. Nursery Available Community Son Rise Service 6:30 a.m.

Blue Ridge Baptist Church

4471 Jasmine Hill Road, just off Hwy. 231 334.567.4325 Easter Musical and Egg Hunt March 24 at 11 a.m. Easter musical by children Easter Worship Celebration Courtyard Service, March 31 at 9 a.m. Special music, Easter message and comRiver Region’s Journey

March 2013

munion. Breakfast following. Also morning Easter worship at 11 a.m. With music and Easter message

First Baptist Church Prattville

2514 Madison Avenue, 334.264.6461 Musical Presentation March 24 at 10:30 p.m. Easter Worship Service Sunday, March 31, 10:30 a.m.

(See their ad on page 34) 138 S. Washington Street, 334.365.0606 Easter Egg-citement Saturday, March 30, 10 a.m. to 12 noon For children ages Preschool to 2nd Grade Easter Services Sunday, March 31, Traditional 8:15 a.m., Contemporary 9:45 a.m., Traditional 11 a.m.

Christ Community Church

First Presbyterian Church

Capitol Heights Baptist Church

2890 Highway 14, Millbrook 334.285.5783 Easter Services Sunday, March 31, at 10:30 a.m.

Church of the Brook

9299 Vaughn Rd. (corner of Vaughn and Chantilly), 334.279.1372 March 31, Easter Sunday Sunrise Prayer Service – 6:30 Fellowship Breakfast – 7:45-9:00 Morning Worship – 9:30 and 10:45 Sunday School – 11:15 Please visit us at www.firstchurchmontgomery.com.

Eastmont Baptist Church

First UMC, Montgomery

8285 Ryan Road, 334.273.8110 Easter Sunday Services March 31, 10 a.m.

4505 Atlanta Highway, 334.277.6300 Easter Morning Worship March 31, 8:10 and 10:30

Evangel Church

3975 Vaughn Road, 334.272.4882 Easter Sunday March 31, Worship Service 9 a.m. and 11 a.m.

First Baptist Church Montgomery

(See their ad on the back cover) 305 S. Perry Street, 334.834.6310 Easter Communion March 27, 6:15 p.m. Good Friday Service Friday, March 29, 12 p.m. Easter Sunday Worship Services Sunday, March 31, at 8:30 & and 11 a.m. 22

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(See their ad on page 11) 2416 West Cloverdale Park, 334.834.8990 Palm Sunday March 24, 8:45 and 11 a.m. 10:00 a.m. Children’s Re-enactment The Last Supper, Maundy Thursday March 28, 5:00 and 7:00 Good Friday Tenebrae Service March 29, 7:00 p.m. Easter Carnival March 30 from 11 a.m. Easter Sunday March 31, 7:00 a.m. Sunrise Service 8:30, 9:45 and 11:00 a.m. Worship Services

Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church

(See their ad on inside front cover) 6000 Atlanta Highway, 334.272.8622

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Easter Eggstravaganza Saturday, March 23 from 9:00 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. Children’s activities and egg hunt. This community wide event featuring inflatables, games, egg hunts, music and puppets. Palm Sunday, March 24 Evening worship at 6 p.m. in Wesley Hall Stations of the Cross in Wesley Hall March 27-29 Weds. 5 p.m.-8 p.m.; Thurs. 9 a.m.-8 p.m.; Fri. 9a.m.-7 p.m. An interactive prayer journey through the last steps of Christ to the Cross. Open three days to allow you to come and go at your own pace. Tenebrae Service Good Friday, March 29 at 7 p.m. In Main Sanctuary Easter Services Sunday, March 31, Sunrise Service at 6 a.m. at Winton Blount Cultural Park. Traditional and Contemporary at 8:00, 9:30, and 11 a.m., Main Sanctuary and Wesley Hall. Hispanic Worship at 10 a.m. on 3711 Eastern Blvd. Asbury Campus: Traditional Worship at 10 a.m. on Narrow Lane Rd.

10:15 a.m. Easter Worship Services Sunday, March 31, 10:15 a.m.

Gateway Baptist Church

(See their ad on 35) 3300 Bell Road, 334.272.9494 Good Friday March 29, Seder Meal at 6 p.m. Service at 7 p.m. Easter Service March 31 Easter Sunrise Service, 6:30 a.m. In conjunction with Grace @ Bell Road. Regular service, 10:30 a.m back at Gateway.

Glynwood Baptist Church

376 N. McQueen Smith Road, Prattville 334.361.9180 Easter Sunday, March 31 Sunday School 9 a.m., Regular Morning Worship Service 10:15 a.m.

Grace @ Bell Road

5 Bell Road at Atlanta Hwy, 334.272.4930 Easter Sunrise Service Sunday, March 31, 6:30 with breakfast following Worship Service, 10:30 a.m.

GracePointe

1565 Ray Thorington Road, 334.271.2525 Palm Sunday, March 24

Heritage Baptist Church

Saturday, April 6 Beginning at 11:30 Join us for Rise Up 2013 Heritage members and community friends dance their shoes off at the Shoppes at Eastchase across from Lifeway. Hundreds of dancers will celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and then donate new shoes to ministries Bring a pair of shoes and watch the celebration! For more details or to register check our website, hbcm.net.

Holy Comforter Episcopal Church

2911 Woodley Road, 334.281.1337 Palm Sunday, March 24 at 10:00 am Monday, March 25, Holy Eucharist - 6 pm Wednesday, March 27 Stations of the Cross at 6 p.m. Maundy Thursday, March 28 Holy Eucharist - 6:00 pm Good Friday, March 29 Community Service at McGehee Road Baptist at Noon

“Train a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not turn from it.”

EVANGEL CHRISTIAN ACADEMY

Proverbs 22:6

C hallenging a CademiC a tmosphere in a C hristian e nvironment

90

Accredited AISA Blue Ribbon School Evangel Christian Academy is a ministry of Evangel Church in Montgomery, Alabama.

334-272-3882 ecalions.org Evangel Christian Academy admits students of any race, color, gender and national or ethnic origin.

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River Region’s Journey


Good Friday Holy Eucharist – 6:00 pm Easter Vigil, March 30, Holy Eucharist – 7:30 pm EASTER SUNDAY, March 31 10 am Family Service w/Holy Eucharist & Flowering of the Cross

Lakeview Baptist Church

(See their ads on pages 8 & 42) 9225 Atlanta Highway, 334.213.3080 Sunrise Service Sunday, March 31, 7 a.m. (on the corner of Atlanta Hwy. and Tech. Center Dr.) Easter Worship Service Sunday, March 31, 10:45 a.m. Choir will be performing a musical.

Morningview Baptist Church 125 Calhoun Road, 334.272.2304 Maundy Thursday Service Thursday, March 28, 7 p.m. Easter Services Sunday, March 31, 10:30 a.m.

Perry Hill UMC

910 Perry Hill Road, 334.272.3174 Maundy Thursday Community Service March 28 at 6:30 p.m. Tenebrae Service March 29 at 6:30 Sunrise Service with breakfast following

Sunday, March 31, 6:30 a.m. Easter Worship Service Sunday, March 31, 10:30 a.m.

Contemporary and Traditional Services, 9:30 a.m. & 11 a.m.

Ridgecrest Baptist Church

(See their ad on page 15) 1685 Taylor Rd., 334.271.3363 The Living Lord’s Supper March 24 at 10:30 a.m. The Passover Guest – Seder Meal March 24 at 6:30 Easter Service March 31, 10:30 a.m.

5260 Vaughn Road, 334.277.0011 Easter Festival Saturday, March 30, Time TBA On Ridgecrest Campus Games, Crafts and Easter Egg Hunt for babies to 4th grade. Easter Cantata Easter Sunday, March 31, 10:45 a.m.

Saint James UMC

(See their ad on page 16) 9045 Vaughn Road, 334.277.3037 Palm Sunday, March 24 Traditional Cantata, “Alone on the Alter – Calvary’s Lamb” 11 a.m., Traditional worship Maundy Thursday Communion Service, March 28; 6 p.m. Come and go service Good Friday, March 29 The Sanctuary will be open for prayer all day Egg-streme Egg Hunt, March 30 3:00 - 4:30 a.m Easter Sunday, March 31 We will celebrate the Resurrection in our Worship Center and our Sanctuary.

Taylor Road Baptist Church

Thorington Road Baptist Church 450 Ray Thorington Road, 334.396.9376 Good Friday March 29 at 6:30 Easter Egg Hunt Saturday, March 30 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. For children and their parents. There will be games, prizes, and a quick message. Easter Service Sunday, March 31 at 10:30 a.m.

Vaughn Forest Baptist Church

8660 Vaughn Rd., 334.279.5433 Resurrection Run April 6, Please visit www.VaughnForest. com for details. Resurrection Sunday Service March 31, 10:30

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March 2013

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Counselor’s Corner

by Pamela Boswell, Eastwood Counseling Center

A Valid Reason for Hope In the counseling office we often encounter people with hopeless thoughts. As we face disappointments, losses, and fatigue in our day to day lives, we may occasionally lose sight of hope. It’s a miserable condition to be in, but one that “is common to man.” In Psalm 6:6 the writer said, “I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping.” Sounds wretched doesn’t it? So how do we restore hope? As brothers and sisters in Christ how can we encourage those around us with real and lasting hope? Using the Bible as our source here are a few suggested steps to follow:

Turn your focus to God---who He is and what He has done in the past.

God is wise, He makes no mistakes. God is sovereign, ruling all of creation with perfect knowledge and absolute power. “Are there any among the false gods of the nations that can bring rain? Or can the heavens give showers? Are you not He, O Lord our God? We set our hope on you, for you do all these things.” (Jeremiah 14:22) God is holy and just, but merciful as well. “Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” (Romans 5:2) He satisfied all His justice for His people in the sacrificial life and death of Jesus. He has redeemed His people. “In hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began.” (Titus 1:2) God is faithful. “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:23) Make a list of a dozen ways God has been faithful to you in the past. Begin with remembering those circumstances he delivered you from that are similar to the one you are now facing. Praise God

for His character and pray with thanksgiving. “Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” (Romans 12:12)

Remind yourself of God’s promises for the present and the future. “You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in your word.” (Psalm 119:114) It amazes me how many people that come for Christian counseling have gotten out of the habit of daily spending time in God’s word. To renew our minds with truth, to counter the messages we are bombarded with daily, and to be continuously filled by the Spirit, we must read His word regularly! “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” (Romans 15:4) However dire the moment may seem God’s plans have not changed and promises have not been rescinded. Imagine the thoughts of the disciples when the man they loved and followed and served for three years was taken captive, crucified and buried. By the world’s standards they had every reason to be hopeless, yet God’s plan of eternal hope was actually being accomplished. He arose from the grave. “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice. You will be sorrowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy.” (John 16:20)

Remember that you are not alone or in a unique situation.

Others have been in this situation before and come through and so can you. We are here to help find the way out. It is written, “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13) 25

Obey God, even when you don’t feel like it.

Sometimes you become so discouraged it is hard to continue in your daily responsibilities. Not doing them can lead to guilt and more discouragement. “Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?” (Romans 6:16) Obedience will lead to better thoughts and feelings. “So that they should set their hope in God and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments.” (Psalm 78:7) Spring is such a beautiful time in our area. New leaves appear on the trees, flowers are in bloom, fresh green grass is growing and birds are singing and active. Use this season as a reminder that the God of all creation promises to make all things new again. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” (Romans 15) **If you would like to get in touch with this counselor, call the Eastwood Counseling Center at 334-386-2384. Pamela Boswell is a native of Montgomery, Alabama. After receiving her undergraduate degree in Horticulture Business in 1980, she and her husband moved to Orlando, Florida where she worked and they started their family. Moving back to Montgomery in 1995 she pursued a Master’s degree in Counseling from Auburn University Montgomery, which she received in 2001. She has 8 years experience in a non-profit organization obtaining extensive experience with troubled children and their families. She has recently received certification from the National Association of Nouthetic Counselors having been supervised by Lou Priolo. Pamela currently leads a small group Bible study at Trinity Presbyterian Church finally accepting that she is an “older women” according to Titus 2. March 2013

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The Intersection:

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Christian Cultural Commentary by Bob Crittenden

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Fountain of Life/ Fountain of Youth Recently, my wife and kids and I journeyed to the house in which I grew up, in the Atlanta area, to throw a 90th birthday party for my mother. My wife, Beth, who has an incredible gift of hospitality, organized the food and décor and designed the invitations; my preparatory role was to handle the printing and mailing. On a windy, cold, rainy December afternoon, dozens came together to honor my mother… Just before the party started at 2:00, one of my mom’s long-time friends, 92 years young, drove up in her car. There are a number of my mom’s friends who are close to 90 or even above. Some

have departed and some, while quite infirmed, are still around. At the party, Beth and I were in a conversation about some of those ladies who have been in my mom’s Sunday School class and prayer group. To the leader of the prayer group, who was present, I remarked that there must have been “something in the water” at First Baptist Church of Marietta, my parents’ home church. There did seem to be a “fountain of youth”, but it really didn’t have to do with the water fountain. The Bible says in Psalm 36: How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men

put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures. For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light. (NKJV) I thought about some of the common attributes of the ladies in this group. I can’t scientifically say that these factors contributed to their longevity, but these

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New friends are now best friends. New experiences are now the best times ever. No wonder it’s so easy to tell others about it and include them in the fun.

Welcome to Riverview Camp for Girls!

We’ve do put Itogether everything you’re looking for in a perfect“I saw camp onemy of Why choose Riverview each summer? mysetting! first river Recognized on a mountain,as I rode Golf,times Dance, Dance, Outdoor Sports, Soccer,use Beach Volleyball, Basketball, “As go,Stomp it was one of the BEST.”Skills AndClass, what child couldn’t some of that these days?

Riverview Refinement, Program, Campfires night,Recognized optional trips and more! We’ve put together everythingCIT you’re looking for in a perfect every camp setting! as one of the Southeast’s best all-around summer camps for girls, Riverview is an oasis of fun, friends and happiness. Spring and Fall &available 2 week Sessions ages to 16... Mother-Daughter Weekends1are also! Registeredfor Nurses and6 Physician on Staff. Entire full-summer staff is First Aid andand CPRFall Certified. Camper/Counselor Ratio 5:1 Spring Mother-Daughter Weekends...

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Only 1 /Mountain 2 hours from Huntsville Located on top of Lookout in Mentone, AL. Only a 3 hr drive.

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Dr. Larry & Susan Hooks, Owners/Directors • Donna Bares,Asst. Director

1 & 2Week Sessions for Ages 6-16

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first I had campfires every night. Icamps felt close to God. giggled a lot is with friends and counselors. time flew by! thehorse. Southeast’s best all-around for girls,IRiverview annew oasis of fun, friends andThe happiness... I Exciting felt safe and secure. Iinclude: gained confidence in myselfPool,Tennis, through the world around me.” activities Riding, Heated Canoeing, Ropes Course, Climbing Tower,

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FLAG TWIRLING • CHEERLEADING • RIFLERY • ARCHERY • TRIP DAY • GOLF

We don’t wonder anymore how it happened, that one summer could bring such happy memories.

B ASKETBALL • S OCCER • A RTS

• H ORSEBACK R IDING • S WIMMING • T ENNIS • C ANOEING • D ANCE • A EROBICS • G YMNASTICS • B EACH V OLLEYBALL •

• R OPES C OURSE • C LIMBING T OWER • O UTDOOR L IVING S KILLS • C AMPFIRE F UN • C OUNSELOR -I N -T RAINING •

River Region’s Journey

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are some guiding principles that can actually be beneficial to all of us in our spiritual lives. First of all, they received Christ. I know that my mother has a relationship with Jesus, and she and my father raised me in the church and exposed me to the principles of the Scriptures – Jesus is the Lord of her life, and these ladies were dedicated to Him. They were related to church. Growing up, our family was regularly in church, and their Sunday School classes were a huge part of their lives and their circle of friends. My mom was part of the Phebean class, many times serving as the class president. Even though my mom has some mobility issues now and cannot attend faithfully, one of the men in the media ministry, who was at the party and lives closeby, weekly brings a CD from the church service. At Christmas time last year, one of the church deacons came by and shared communion with our family at my mom’s house. My parents have demonstrated the importance of allowing a significant portion of our lives to revolve around a relationship with the church.

They revered community. The church became a great source for a sense of community. Even to this day, my mom stays connected to people – she is very plugged in, and has developed a reputation as being a very caring person. You get a great sense of that by talking with people whose lives she has touched. Community continues to be important to her, when it could be very easy to become isolated as a senior. These ladies care, and they really seem to keep up with each other. They regularly communicate. My mom doesn’t have an Internet connection at the house; she doesn’t do social media or e-mail! The phone suffices (using a mouth and not a keyboard!), with an occasional visit or card. Intentionally reaching out to others is an important component. Finally, some in the group have rejected complacency. This is huge! I remember when my dad retired, my parents didn’t just settle into a sedentary lifestyle. They traveled – they bought a timeshare in Gatlinburg; they had friends with whom they would take trips. And, they had those regular visits

to Montgomery to see the grandchildren. After my dad passed away, my mom had a travelling companion and they would go places together – it was very special at the party to see the two of them talking and commenting about the memorable times they’ve had. My mom was in a rehab facility for three months last year, and it was a bit disconcerting for me to think about her being in that room 24/7 with very little interaction or activity…for the first week, she didn’t even have a phone! It is important to stay active and engaged. Again, these are not scientific conclusions about the length of life demonstrated by these ladies. I do think these represent some time-honored principles that can be helpful for all of us as we desire to have an extended period of usefulness to Christ.

Bob Crittenden is host of “The Meeting House”, heard weekday afternoons from 4-6pm on Faith Radio, 89.1FM in Montgomery. Described as “the intersection of faith and culture”, the program features Christian music and conversation about a variety of topics. Learn more by visiting www. meetinghouseonline.info.

B ASKETBALL • S OCCER • A RTS

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C RAFTS • C HORUS

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D RAMA

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March 2013

River Region’s Journey


Hope Inspired Ministries

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Breaking the Cycle of Dependency by Rachel Fisher

Jesus told his disciples, “The poor will always be among you” (Matthew 26:11). This same sentiment was also expressed in the Old Testament in Deuteronomy when the Lord spoke through Moses, “There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brother and sister and toward the poor and the needy in your land” (Deuteronomy 15:11). These words, spoken by God are still River Region’s Journey

March 2013

true today, thousands of years later. The poor are among us. And it’s not just in a remote village in Africa. The poor are right here in Montgomery, Alabama and the River Region. And the question about who will be “openhanded” toward them and how to do it is one that is often times overwhelming and difficult to answer. Michael Coleman and Leanne Armstrong and the ministry they are spearheading, Hope Inspired Ministries (HIM), is working 28

to be another, “piece of the pie” as they say, to help bring restoration and redemption to the poor, and more specifically, the chronically unemployed in our city. They do this through offering a 13-week rigorous course that includes life skills and personal development curriculum and an internship with an emphasis on the spiritual realities they believe are at the core of each student’s development. HIM, which began just over a year ago, seeks to prepare its students to obtain and

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maintain employment in a manner that develops individual worth, encourages personal responsibility and promotes the value and honor of work. Each student, whose backgrounds range from former prisoners to high school dropouts, is guided in the achievement of their chosen career through specialized and on-the-job training with the intent of inviting them into a new way of life that promotes the development of the emotional, physical and spiritual maturity in each student. Aside from the lessons and the training, Michael and Leanne believe there is another aspect that sets HIM a part. “We believe no change can happen in any one student’s life without a significant relationship,” says Michael. “Many of the students who come through the program have never had anyone help them that actually has a relationship with them that isn’t about an agenda. We come and talk about our vulnerabilities, our struggles and we share our story with our students. We don’t come at them like we have this thing figured out and are here to help them come to where we are. We simply tell them we have been redeemed by a loving God and so our purpose is to love them in an undeserved way like we’ve been loved in an undeserved way,” Michael explains. “This involves a lot of taking on of junk,” says Leanne. “It’s easy to think we can just give them the education and then send them on their way, but our goal is to make them successful and that doesn’t just happen through an academic process. It has to be about being with them. And when they get to the hard places we won’t forsake them or send them away without a conversation. We want to let them each know they have worth and a sense of dignity.” Even with all of the love and support Michael and Leanne pour out on their students, they have high standards and bring account-

ability to the process. Volunteers are Needed “We understand that their 1. Become a Faith Encourager (mentor). We challenge each paces will be different,” of our students to make significant changes to their lives, says Michael, “and we both physically and spiritually. A Faith Encourager helps the can tolerate that, but not students successfully make that transition. We ask our Faith dependency and a “do for Encouragers to eat lunch one time each week with their asme” attitude. Every day signed student. During this time they share life experiences, is about chipping away at pray together, and build a relationship that extends well beyond this faulty foundation.” an academic environment. As a Faith Encourager, you will have Michael and Leanne the opportunity to bless someone's life as well as be blessed by understand that you can’t our students. go in and just fix the foundation these students 2. Clerical Staff. If your talent is rooted in strong organizational are living on, you have to skills, we could put you to use. We are in need of volunteers break it down all the way. who can do any of the following: computer processing, filThey do this by giving ing, sorting, copying, answer phones, and help out wherever needed. them the tools they need, teaching them how to use 3. Lunch Providers/Servers. Most of our students do not posthem and sticking it out sess the means to buy their lunch each day. We need volunteers with them even when it to prepare a meal each day and bring it to our facilities. If you gets tough by offering a could better serve by setting up and breaking down the lunch top notch curriculum. meal, we need you as well. This meal will allow the staff, volunThe curriculum teers, and students to share our lives with each other and build HIM uses is from a simieverlasting kindgom relationships. lar program in Memphis, TN called Hope Works. 4. Computer Lab. Part of our instruction is computer based. The staff at Hope Works Students will learn to write resumes and conduct career met with Michael and searches over the internet. We need someone to help maintain Leanne and shared their and monitor our computer lab and all of the equipment. proven curriculum with them. The curriculum is 5. Fundraising Event Planner. We will be hosting several fundbased on life skills, job raisers throughout this year. If you would like to help organize a fundraiser or be involved in any way, we need your help. skills and social skills. Michael says these are Michael Coleman, Executive Director personal career developmichael@hopeinspiredministries.org, (334) 649-4330 ext. 202 ment and life skills that everyone needs. Leanne Armstrong, Program Director “It’s not as easy as leanne@hopeinspiredministries.org, (334) 649-4330 ext. 201 people think,” says Michael. “To tell someone while one person may easily adapt to accept to just “go get a job” the idea of personal responsibility, someone is impossible if they don’t have these basic else might completely refuse to take a hold of life skills. It’s impossible to survive or work that idea. “This is where relationships become in middle class so important,” says Leanne. “We talk through America without them. This program their difficulties with them, break down all the we offer is a bridge parts and get them to think about why they respond and react the way they do when proto the middle class culture where most voked in these different areas. They will let us dig deep with them and push them because of the jobs are.” As they work they know we are trying to help them. They trust our relationship. They know we just through each part don’t want them to be a number in a line of of the curriculum, success stories.” each student will “If we are just a teacher or authority figstruggle to grasp ure without a relationship, the minute we try different skills to push them they are out of here. They need based on their us to be for them, and most importantly with unique past. Lethem in this process,” says Michael. anne explains that 29

March 2013

River Region’s Journey


R

It devastated Michael and Leanne in their last class when one of their students who almost made it through the program decided to get up and walk away simply because she was not willing to accept personal responsibility. “However, we have people who get so distraught and begin to really work on themselves as they confront their personal issues and experience huge shifts in their journey toward wholeness and relationship with Christ,” Michael explains. Michael and Leanne know that in order to see the transformation that happens with these students you have to be willing to accept the pain and the rejection that comes with the messiness of relationships. “We can’t just enjoy the good, but be willing to share their lives and experience their brokenness, too,” says Michael. “That’s the hardest part.” “Bearing one another’s burdens is messy and hard and at the heart of the gospel. Bearing these students’ burdens is part of the process. Some people might say, ‘This is just too much and I go home depressed.’ Well, yes you do. But God blesses you with watching this transformation happen inside a person and uses you in some degree. And that’s the reward and fulfillment that is a part of living life alongside others.” “We don’t care if we graduate only one

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person,” says Leanne. “Because that is one more person who is going to leave a different legacy for their kids and begin to walk a different path.” At the end of the day, Michael and Leanne believe the issues that affect the poor and chronically unemployed are not money issues. “We can throw millions of dollars at the problem, but that will never fully solve the problem. What can begin to make a dent is Christians who care enough to get their hands dirty and mesh From the Students: their lives with broken people.” "HIM is helping me to set realistic goals for myself. “This is not to say that This program has given me the tools I need to be contributions and financial a successful member of society and to know that I assistance isn’t important,” can anything if I put my mind to it." --Kiesha says Leanne “but the bottom line is Jesus has called us to "HIM has gone in depth in helping to smooth out something so much greater. my rough edges and help me be able to better Jesus came to be with us in our understand and function in society. Actually broken state and we are called meeting and getting to know people for who they to be with others in theirs... are has done a great deal in helping me overcome and at the end of the day that is personal issues." --Wilferdo what we are about.”

"HIM has helped me to recognize my strengths and weaknesses and to understand where I am going and where I need to be going. They have helped me clarify my goals. They encourage me on how to turn a negative into a positive. They help me to learn to respect and appreciate other people's opinions." --Regina River Region’s Journey

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Rachel Fisher loves learning about what God is doing in the world around her and writing about it. She and her husband, Chase, live in Montgomery where they are a part of Strong Tower at Washington Park, a church plant of Common Ground Montgomery. ***Photos by Lori Mercer Photography.

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River Region Support Groups Adoption

Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy APAC- Alabama Pre/Post Adoption Connection Support Group meets the 3rd Thursday from 6:007:30pm in room 8253 at Frazer Memorial UMC. Provides education and social interaction for adoptive families. For information, call A. Kai Mumpfield, 409-9477 or call the church office at 272-8622. Location: Landmark Church, 1800 Halcyon Blvd. Leaders: Chad & Betsy Emerson (334) 201-5241 Wednesday, 6:30pm in Rm. 116. The Orphan Care Group will focus on God’s call to help orphans through adoption, foster care, and missions work. The group will share experiences, study and Biblical themes regarding orphan care, and provide a support and interest network for individuals who want to support orphans.

Alcoholic / Addict

Location: Caring Center of FBC, 52 Adams Avenue CrossRoads Support Group is for addicts/alcoholics and family members. Meets at 6 p.m. Tuesdays and follows a Christ-centered 12-step program. Call 264-4949. Location: Centerpoint Fellowship, 2050 Commerce St., Millbrook. We are located one block east of I-65 just off Cobbs Ford Road. Celebrate Recovery meeting every Tuesday night at 6 pm. Call (334) 356-3076. Location: Cloverdale Baptist, 608 E. Fairview Celebrate Recovery, a Bible-based Christ centered approach to recovery from hurts, habits and hangups, meets Friday nights, beginning with dinner at 5:30 p.m., Praise and worship, 6:30, Open Share Small Groups, 7:30, and Solid Rock Cafe, at 8:30. Call 265-9223. Location: Dalraida UMC, 3817 Atlanta Highway Alcoholics Anonymous meets at 6 p.m. on Tuesdays. 272.2190. Alanon meets at 6 p.m. on Wednesdays. Location: Grace @ Bell Road, Corner of Bell Road and Atlanta Hwy. Alcoholics Anonymous and Alanon meetings are held Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, at 6 p.m. An Open AA Speaker meeting is held on Saturday at 6 p.m. An Alanon & AA held on Sundays at 2 p.m. Location: Grace Point Community Church, 78223 Tallassee Hwy (Hwy 14), Wetumpka Celebrate Recovery- every Tuesday night- 6:15pm. All are welcome! These meetings are a safe and loving environment for individuals seeking to conquer their hurts, habits and hang-ups! gracepoint.info. Location: Journey Church, group meets in Fellowship Hall at Coosada Baptist Church, Millbrook Celebrate Recovery - Christ-centered 12-step for anyone struggling with addiction or life-challenging issues. Mondays at 6pm (meal), 7pm (large group), 8pm (small group). Childcare available. Call Chuck at 850-723-9705.

Location: Santuck Baptist Church, 7250 Central Plank Rd. (Hwy 9), Wetumpka. Celebrate Recovery meets each Thursday evening at 6:15 in the Fellowship Hall. This is a Chrsit centered 12 step-program for anyone struggling with hurts, habits, and hangups. Call 567-2364. Location: Landmark Church, 1800 Halcyon Blvd. RSVP- This is a 12 step spiritual recovery program for overcoming addictions. Using the steps and Bible we help build self-esteem, responsible behavior, the making of amends for our destructive actions, and to fill the void in our hearts in a loving relationship with God. Wednesday @ 6:30pm in Rm. 121 of the Life Center. Location: St. James UMC, 9045 Vaughn Road Celebrate Recovery meets every Thursday night from 6-8 pm in the Youth Room. This is a Christ-centered 12-step group for anyone struggling with an “addiction or life-challenging issues.” For information, call Chris Henderson at 334-215-0427. Location: Trinity Episcopal, Wetumpka (Across from Winn Dixie on HWY 231) Gamblers Anonymous-Saturdays at 7 p.m.

Alzheimer’s / Dementia

Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy An Alzheimer’s and Dementia Caregivers’ Support Group meets on the first Thursday of each month at 11 a.m. in Room 3103. Call 272.8622. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy 31

A Dementia Daycare is held each Thursday in Rm. 3101 from 9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. Each participant may bring a sack lunch. There is no charge. REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. For info, call the LifeCare office at 272-8622. Location: Memorial Presbyterian, 2130 Bell Road A Dementia Morning Out for caregivers is offered each Tuesday from 8:45-noon. There is no charge. Each participant may bring a sack lunch (juice provided). Registration is required by calling 274-1018.

Cancer

Location: Dalraida Baptist, 3838 Wares Ferry Road. Just for Men -- Montgomery’s first and only faith based cancer support group for men is intent on providing information, Christian fellowship, and helping turn adversity into prosperity. Meetings are held the third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. in the fellowship hall. Please call 272-2412 email cancerpatient@ bellsouth.net. Location: ChristChurch, 8800 Vaughn Road Cancer Support Group for general cancer. Tuesday afternoons at 1 pm. For more info, please call Christy Holding at 531-1390 or Debbie at 467-4578. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy Women of Hope Breast Cancer Support Group, providing education, awareness, and mentoring for breast cancer patients/survivors, family, friends or anyone interested in becoming a part of this compassionate journey, meets the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. in Rm 8253. Call 272-8622 or womenofhope@charter.net. March 2013

River Region’s Journey


Depression

Location: Landmark Church, 1800 Halcyon Blvd. Leaders: Mike & Suzanne Greene (334-271-3331) Every other Tuesday, 6:30pm in Rm. 117. Goal is to create an atmosphere of acceptance and trust, where people can feel free and safe to discuss their feelings and thoughts without shame or embarrassment. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy A Depression/Bipolar Support Group meets on the 1st Thursday of each month from 7:00-8:30pm in Room 3101. This group also meets on the 3rd Saturday afternoon, 12-2 pm, Dalraida UMC, 3817 Atlanta Highway in Church Annex. For more info, call 334.652.1431 or email dbsamontgomery@yahoo.com.

Gambling

Location: Trinity Episcopal Church, 5375 US HWY 231 (Across from the Winn-Dixie shopping center) Wetumpka. Saturdays @ 7pm. 334-567-7534 Location: Mental Health Association, 1116 South Hull Street, Montgomery. Sundays @ 5 pm. Location: St Paul’s Lutheran Church, 4475 Atlanta Hwy, Mondays @ 6pm. Gamblers Anonymous Hotline number: 334-541-5420

Grief

Location: First Baptist Church, 305 S. Perry Street Divorce Care and Divorce Care 4 Kids, Wednesdays starting August 22, 6:30 pm. Cost $15.00 (scholarships available) Contact Kathy Cooper at kcooper@montgomeryfbc.org or 334-241-5125.

Location: Eastmont Baptist, 4505 Atlanta Hwy. Compassionate Friends is a national self-help support organization for families grieving the death of a child meeting first Tuesdays at 7 pm. We have an annual special event on Tuesday, Dec. 4. We will hold a Candlelight Ceremony in memory of our children at 7 p.m. at Eastmont Baptist Church. Registration is encouraged and may be made by calling (334) 284-2721. We will also collect Toys for Tots.

Location: First UMC, 100 E. Fourth Street, Prattville Divorce Recovery meets Wednesdays at 6:15 p.m., Bldg. 101. Call 365.5977.

Location: First UMC, 100 E. Fourth St, Prattville Grief Recovery, Thursday nights at 7 p.m., in Wesley Hall Room 104. Call 365.5977.

Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy A Divorce Recovery Support Group meets each Tuesday, at 5:30 p.m., in Fellowship Hall Lobby. 272-8622.

Location: Frazer UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy Grief Recovery Support Group meets Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m., Rm 3105, in Fellowship Hall Lobby. 272.8622.

Location: Heritage Baptist Church, 1849 Perry Hill Divorce Care Support Group meetings are held Sundays at 6:15 p.m. Divorce Care for Children also at this time. Call 279.9976. Grief Share groups are held each Sunday at 5 p.m. Call 279.9976.

Location: Pilgrim Rest Missionary Baptist Church 1550 E. Washington Street Grief Ministry is a grief recovery support group that meets every Monday at 6:00 P.M. The ministry is designed to help anyone through the hurt of losing a loved

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A Christ centered peer based support group for those struggling with unwanted same sex attractions and family members or loved support and encouragement are available. Meets 1st, 3rd, & 5th Tuesdays @ 6:30 PM - Landmark Church More information: call (334) 277.5800 OR email barnabas@landmarkchurch.net Landmark Church is a member of the Exodus International network of churches that welcomes those who struggle with unwanted same sex attractions. a ministry of Church River Region’s Journey

March 2013

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one by successfully traveling the journey from mourning to joy. Alicia Glover is the coordinator. For more information contact Glover at 334-281-2754.

Homosexuality

Location: Landmark Church, 1800 Halcyon Blvd. The Barnabas Group, created to address the needs of those in conflict with homosexual thoughts and feelings meets first, third and fifth Tuesday evenings at 6:30 p.m., in the library at the Life Center. 277.5800.

Mental Illness

Location: Dalraida UMC, 3817 Atlanta Highway 1. Beginning January 28, 2013, NAMI Montgomery will host General Membership meetings on the 4th Monday of the month at the Dalraida UMC annex building. Meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. This meeting is open to anyone who is interested in issues concerning mental health. 2. The NAMI Montgomery Family Member Support Group continues to meet on the 2nd Monday of the month, starting at 6:30 p.m. at the Dalraida UMC annex building. Call Mary Jo Logan (271-2280) for directions/details. 3. Beginning in February, 2013 NAMI Montgomery will offer the 12 week NAMI FAMILY TO FAMILY education program (free) on Thursdays from 6-8 p.m. at the Bell Road Lowder Regional Library. Call Mary Jo Logan (271-2280) to register for the course.

Parenting

Location: First Baptist Prattville, 138 S. Washington Moms LIFE (living in faith everyday) Meets twice monthly from 8:30 - 11:45 am in the chapel at the Church from Aug - May. We offer a time

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of fellowship, Bible study, musical guest, special guest speakers and a lot of fun!! Cost is $5 per meeting. For moms of all stages and ages of life. Childcare provided by reservation. For more info and to reserve your spot, call Kelley Manning at 361-7919. Location: Vaughn Forest Church, 8660 Vaughn Road Are you in need of a time-out? MOPS joins mothers together by a common bond, to be better wives, moms, and friends along this journey in the trenches of motherhood. We meet the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of each month from 9:30—11:30 a.m. Childcare is provided. For information e-mail VFCMOPS@ gmail.com. Location: First Baptist Church, Montgomery 305 S. Perry Street MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) If you are a woman who is pregnant or has a child birth through kindergarten, desires to make new friends, wants to share the challenges and joys of motherhood, is looking for opportunities for personal growth through trusted resources,then MOPS is for you. Call Kristi Gay at (334) 233-8989 for more information.

Physical Challenges

Location: Aldersgate UMC, 6610 Vaughn Road Visually Impaired Support Group – Meets monthly on second Thursday 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. The group is called Outward Sight - Inward Vision and is for those with vision loss and their caregivers. Our mission is to assist those experiencing vision loss to maintain their independence by providing access to valuable information and spiritual support. Call Aldersgate UMC 272-6152.

Location: Cloverdale School Bldg. (First UMC) Parkinson’s Support Group of Montgomery meets the fourth Sunday of the month in Room 103 at 2:00pm. More information, contact Nathan Attwood at First United Methodist Church (334-8348990). Location: First UMC, 2416 W. Cloverdale Park Montgomery Hearing Loss Support Group meets every second Thursday in Wesley Hall at 4 pm. The entrance is on Park Avenue. Informative speakers are present, refreshments are served and no reservations are required. The public is welcome. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy A Fibromyaligia Support Group meets the 3rd Tuesday of each month from 6-8pm in room 8114. Call 272-8622. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy An MDA/ALS Support Group will meet Tuesday August 10 6:00p.m. – 8:00 p.m. in room 3101. Anyone who is affected by a neuromuscular disease or family members of those affected are encouraged to attend. To receive information, please call 396-4534. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy A Parkinson’s Support Group will meet the 4th Thursday at 6 p.m., in room 8114 at Frazer UMC. This group is for those who have Parkinson’s disease and the family members. 272-8622. (No Meeting in December) Location: Taylor Road Baptist Church, 1785 Taylor Rd., Montgomery Gluten Intolerance Group of Montgomery meets

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on 2nd Thursdays from 6-7 p.m. Check the blog for special “alternate site” meetings and other info at www.glutenfreemontgomery.blogspot.com.

Pregnancy Loss / Infertility

Location: First UMC, 100 E. Fourth Street, Prattville Hannah’s Prayer--for women dealing with pregnancy loss/infertility issues. Meeting 2nd Thursday and 3rd Sunday of each month. Call 365.5977.

Singlehood

Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy Singles’ Small Groups meet each Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall Lobby. Call 272-8622. Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy T.N.T. (Tuesday Night Together) for Singles meets Tuesdays from 7-8 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall, bldg. 7000. A meal ($5.00) and program are provided. For reservations, call the Singles office at 272-8622. Location: Cornerstone Christian, 301 Dalraida Rd. Unavoidably Single Again (USA) Fellowship, a support group for widows and widowers. Informal meetings for fellowship and fun are held on the third Saturday of each month starting at 10 AM. Contact Lynda at farauthor@aol.com or 354-8869.

Veterans

Location: Frazer Memorial UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy Veterans OEF/OIF Caregivers Support Group meets on the 3rd Wednesday from 11am-1pm in Room 3108. Contact LaQuana Edwards, Caregiver Support Coordinator at CAVHCS (334) 727-0550 ext. 5350.

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Grace to You

an th en Fo Lo Je on ge

by John MacArthur

The Empty Confession Not everyone who says to Me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?” And then I will declare to them, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.” (Matthew 7:21–23) A Jew could use the term lord simply as a title of respect and honor, given to any political, military, or religious leader, including teachers. But for those people to say, Lord, Lord, suggests much more than human respect, as their

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following comments make clear. That they claimed to have prophesied, cast out demons, and performed miracles in Jesus’ name indicates they acknowledged Him as Lord in a supernatural way. Lord was a common Jewish substitute title for Jehovah, or Yahweh, which name they considered too holy to utter. Therefore to address Jesus as Lord was to address Him as the one true God. To address Him as Lord, Lord was to add a spirit of intense zeal to demonstrate strength of devotion and dedication. In verse 22, the three references to your name are emphatic and convey the significance of who He is. Jesus is therefore talking about those who make a profession of faith in Him.

Saturday, March 30 10 a.m. - 12 noon

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138 South Washington Drive March 2013

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These people claim to be followers of the God of Israel, the Creator and Lord of all earth. Not only that, but they acknowledge Jesus Himself to be divine, because they will say to Me [that is, to Jesus] on that day, “Lord, Lord.” And the fact that they have claimed so many outstanding works in His name tells us they are especially fervent religious workers. That some of the ones Jesus is talking about here are true believers is shown by His saying, Not everyone

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and many. The same many who entered the wide gate (v. 13) are now at the end of the broad way facing the Judge. For some people, however, the claim Lord, Lord will be legitimate, because Jesus will have indeed been their Lord on earth and they will have served Him genuinely. If Jesus is speaking about the great white throne judgment, many professing believers who are not genuine will already have spent centuries in hell awaiting their final judgment (see Luke 16:23–26; Acts 1:25). Because they were so zealous and active and diligent in religious work-in the Lord’s own name-they are incredulous that they are even standing before Christ to be judged. Even at that time they will address Christ as Lord and speak to Him in desperation with the greatest respect and sincerity. Their words and their works will seem impressive to them, but their lives will not support the claim of their lips. In Luke 6:46 Jesus said, “Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say?” It is not the one who simply claims the Lord, but the one who does the will of My Father who is in heaven who is saved. The issue is obedience to the Word of God. “If you abide in My Word, then you are truly disciples of Mine,” Jesus said (John 8:31; cf. 6:66–69; Matt. 24:13; Col. 1:22–23; 1 Tim. 4:16; Heb. 3:14; 10:38–39; 1 John 2:19). Salvation and obedience to the will of God are inseparable, as the writer of Hebrews makes clear: “He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation” (5:9; cf. Rom. 1:5; 6:16; 15:18; 16:19, 26; 1 Pet. 1:2, 22). Jesus’ word to the disobedient claimers will be, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness. All their words of respect and honor and all their works of dedication and devotion will be declared empty and worthless. They may have had God’s name in their mouths, but rebellion was in their hearts.

Coming This Month!

A New Indoor Facility Offering 2 Private Party rooms!

Widely known for his thorough, candid approach to teaching God’s Word, John MacArthur is a fifthgeneration pastor, a popular author and conference speaker, and has served as pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California since 1969. John and his wife, Patricia, have four grown children and fifteen grandchildren. John’s pulpit ministry has been extended around the globe through his media ministry, Grace to You. 35

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Community Calendar Christian Community Calendar Christian Ongoing Happenings

AGLOW International meets every third Thursday, 9:30 at the Montgomery House of Prayer. All women welcome to join together for praise, prayer and an anointed message. Contact mboudousquie@yahoo.com. Bridge of Life Assembly of God, 9000 Vaughn Road, Montgomery, holds Sunday morning worship at 10:30 a.m. each week. Sunday school classes meet at 9:30 a.m. We offer classes for all age groups and childcare is provided. Our goal is to build bridges...not walls. We invite you to come join us if you need to learn how to build those bridges. For directions or information call 334-396-0208. Email jon@bridgeoflife.tv or visit www. bridgeoflife.tv. Capitol Heights UMC, 2000 Winona Ave., Montgomery offers Parenting Classes beginning at 7:00 p.m. on Thursdays. 2642464. Christchurch, 8800 Vaughn Road, Montgomery, offers a Women’s Enrichment Bible Study led by Jeanne Dean on Thursdays, 9:30-11:30 a.m., in Canterbury Hall. All women are welcome. Childcare for ages birth-4 years is provided. Call 387-0566 x 201 for more info. Christchurch offers a men’s Bible study led by Fr. John-Michael van Dyke, on Thursday mornings on the 11th floor of Goode Medical Bldg, Jackson Hospital. Breakfast is served beginning at 6:45 a.m. and teaching begins at 7:15 a.m. Call 387-0566 x 201. Church of the Highlands meets each Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. downtown Montgomery in the MPAC theater located in the Renaissance Hotel, 201 Tallapoosa Street. Visit churchofthehighlands.com or call 1-205980-5577. Chisholm Baptist Church, 2938 Lower Wetumpka Road, Montgomery, holds Sunday morning Bible study (9:30), Morning worship (10:45), Tuesday prayer breakfast (8:30) Wednesday evening prayer service (6 pm) and Senior Body and Soul Group (every 1st Tuesday at 1 pm). Email jbass9784@charter. net or call 262-6437. First Presbyterian Church, 9299 Vaughn Road, hosts Family Night every Wednesday beginning at 5:20 p.m. with supper, followed by a study on prayer. Everyone is welcome. For more information call (279-1372). First Presbyterian Church, 9299 Vaughn Road, hosts a Men’s Prayer Breakfast every Friday morning, 6 a.m. The Youth of First United Methodist Church, Montgomery every Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. for Wednesday Night Live, a time of praise and worship in “the attic”. Also, every Sunday night at 6:00 p.m. is MYF which includes a snack supper $3.00 followed by activities, small groups and lots of fun! Visit www.fumcmontgomery.org or call 334834-8990. First United Methodist Church will host River Region’s Journey

March 2013

Terrific Tuesdays. Please come and join us for fellowship, a program and lunch. Terrific Tuesdays will meet each Tuesday in room 204 of Wesley Hall. Fellowship time will begin at 10:00 a.m. followed by a program at 10:30 a.m. and lunch at 11:30 a.m. The cost of lunch is $2.00. Every fourth Tuesday the time will extend until 3:00 p.m. for bridge, games, and other activities in room 203 in Wesley Hall. For additional information please contact NeeNee Webb at 834-8990. Good News @ Noon is an interdenominational Bible study, held at the First Baptist Community Ministries Building on Adams Street, Thursdays, at noon. Small cost for hot lunch. Call 272.1133. Hall Memorial CME Church, 541 Seibles Road, Montgomery, offers Bible Study Tuesdays at 5:30 P.M. and Wednesdays at 6: 30 P.M. For directions or information call 334-288-0577. Email HallMemorialCME1@ aol.com or visit www.HallMemorialCME. blogspot.com. Hall Memorial CME Church says: VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! Tutors, prayer-warriors, and office/clerical volunteers needed for the Montgomery City Jail Ministry & G.E.D program. Opportunities are ongoing. No experience or certification necessary. Contact Pastor Anderson T. Graves II, at hallmemorialcme1@aol.com. Call 334-288-0577. The City Jail ministry is an in-reach ministry of Hall Memorial CME Church, 541 Seibles Road, Montgomery. www.hallmemorialcme.blogspot.com. iConnect.coffeehouse provides a place for women to experience meaningful fellowship with women seeking genuine connection. Meetings will be held in the Atrium at Frazer UMC 3rd Tuesdays from 9-11 a.m. For more info, call Frazer’s Women’s Ministry at 4956391. Macedonia Miracle Kingdom & Worship Center (MMKWC), 3070 Selma Highway, Montgomery, services are Sunday School and New Members Class, 9:00 a.m., Morning Worship, 10:45 a.m.; Tuesday Night Bible Class, 7:00 p.m. and Friday Night Prayer, 6:00 p.m. (BOTH at The Pattern-Mt Meigs Road) Messiah Lutheran Church, 6670 Vaughn Road, invites all to Wonderful Wednesdays starting with a $3.00 meal at 5:30 pm (RSVP 277-4213 by Monday noon), worship with eucharist 6:15-7:00 pm, and adult choir rehearsal and Catechism class for 7th-9th graders at 7:00 pm. Please call for Wednesday schedule due to seasonal breaks. For information, call 277-4213. Mt. Gillard Missionary Baptist Church, 3323 Day Street, holds Wednesday Bible Study in the church Fellowship Hall and lasts for one hour. Please come and participate in roaming the Bible learning God’s word through teaching. The Rev. Henry M. Carnegie, Jr. is the teacher and pastor. Midday Bible Study begins each Wednesday at 36

11:30 a.m. Evening Bible Study begins each Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. Call 233-8750. New Freedom Worship Center, 6004 –A East Shirley Lane, Apostle T. Briggs~ Pastor; Sunday Worship Service 10:30 a.m. and Wednesday Night Bible Study 7:30 p.m. Open Door Christian Faith Church, 1601 Dewey St. Montgomery, offers Women’s Prayer Mondays at 5:00, Men’s prayer Wednesday at 5:00, followed by bible study at 6:00. Couples ministry held every 1st Wednesday of the month at 7:00. Pastor William Cromblin, and the Open Door Church family invites you to “come experience the move of God. For more info, call the church at 334-269-6498. Perry Hill UMC, 910 Perry Hill Rd, sponsors a Bluegrass Jam in the Church Fellowship Hall on the third Saturday of each month from 9AM - 12AM. All Bluegrass Artist plus Fans are invited to attend. Attendance is FREE. For information call Kathy@ 272-3174. Perry Hill UMC, 910 Perry Hill Rd, hosts a Wednesday Night Supper and Revive! program each week from 5:30pm til 7:00pm. Reservations are required by noon on the Monday prior to the supper. Cost is $4 per person or $12 per family. Call 334-272-3174 for more information. River City Church, 301 Dexter Avenue, offers a Friday Christian Night Club with Ballroom Dancing every Friday at 6:30 P.M. Cost is $7 for a one hour lesson, devotional, and 3 hours of DJ music. People of all denominations are welcome. The River of Life Church, located at 116 County Road 40 E (in the Pine Level Community Center) Prattville. Pastor Nick Edwards invites you to a “Place of New Beginnings”, where families come and grow together. Church Service Schedule: Sunday 10:30 a.m. Sunday School; 11:00 a.m. Morning Worship; 5:00 p.m. Evening Worship. Wednesday 6:00 p.m. Adult Bible Study, Teens (Genesis Project), Jr. High (Limitless), Royal Rangers, MPact Girls, Rainbow’s/Noah’s Zoo Club. Thursday 9:00 a.m.Women of Grace Bible Study. Nursery provided. We invite you to”come experience God in a personal way, feel loved by all and know that you belong”. Office 334-657-0392 or visit www.theriveroflifechurch.net. Saint James UMC, 9045 Vaughn Road, offers S.N.A.G. (Sunday Nights About God!) This program starts at 5:00p.m. and ends at 6:30p.m. Childcare is provided for small groups until 7:00p.m. Don’t forget this program is available for all children! Saint James UMC, 9045 Vaughn Road, offers Wild & Wacky Wednesdays! Wednesday night supper starts at 5:15p.m. We will start checking children in at 6:00p.m. This program ends at 7:30p.m. and childcare is provided until 8:00p.m. for small group participants. Call 277.3037 for more info. Saint Paul African Methodist Episcopal

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Church, 706 E. Patton Avenue, “Clothes Closet” is open to the public each Thursday morning from 10 a.m. – Noon. The Men of Saint Paul host a free Men’s Prayer Breakfast the Third Saturday of each month at 8 a.m. in the Church Fellowship Hall. The Men’s Prayer Breakfast is open to all men of all ages. Come and share your concerns and needs of our Men of today. For more information, please contact (334) 354-1897. Bible Study is held each Wednesday, 6-7 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. Pastor Farrell J. Duncombe is the teacher and Senior Pastor of the church. Come and join us for Sunday School each Sunday at 9 a.m. and Morning Worship at 10 a.m. Need transportation, call (334) 264-7618. For info call 286.8577 or www. saintpaulamemontgomery.com. S-STOP, a commUNITY Bible study for Singles. Souls Strengthened Together for One Purpose. Psalm 46:10 “BE STILL and know that I am God.” Meets at Prattville Christian Academy on Sunday nights at 6 p.m. For info email sstop04@gmail.com. Vision Full Gospel Ministries, 163 Rifle Range Road, Montgomery, holds Bible Study Tues. Night 7:00 p.m., Pray & Praise 2nd & 4th Thurs. Night 7:00 p.m., Sunday School 9:30 am, Sunday Worship Service 10:45

a.m., Internet radio-homecominggospel.com Sunday 3:00p.m. Central & 4:00 p.m. Eastern. and Satellite Radio -wlsg 1340am Sunday 3:00p.m. Women at The Well Ministry meet at Remnant Worship Center on Endover Street off of Court Street behind the Feed and Seed Store at 1:00pm every 1st and 3rd Saturday. We are women who desire and have a heart to see broken, crushed, hurting women be transformed through the one man who can fulfill their every need...JESUS...THE POTTER. All women of all denominations are welcome to come and share the Word of God together....to encourage, and build one another up through the words of our testimonies. Evangelist Linda McCall, 334-220-1924. Young Meadows Presbyterian Church, 5780 Vaughn Road, invites you to attend its Sunday Respite Care Program on 1st Sundays from 4-6 pm. Children with physical and cognitive disabilities (and their siblings) ages 6-18 are invited for a time of activities and a light dinner so parents can have a night out. Call Susan Clements at 301-0355 for information and to make a reservation, or rooftopfriends@gmail.com.

This Month February 28-March 2

The Landmark Missions Consignment Sale is for everyone! Items sold include kids clothing and toys, home decor, sports equipment, electronics, furniture of all kinds and more! Proceeds from this sale contribute to the Landmark Church short term mission teams fundraising. The sale begins on Thursday, February 28 at 4pm for consignors and guests with passes. The public is welcome to begin shopping at 6pm. The sale continues on Friday and Saturday all items are half off unless marked no discount. The sale ends at noon on Saturday, March 2. Visit landmarkchurch.net for info.

Saturday, March 2

A Toxic Charity Seminar will be held from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall at Frazer Memorial UMC. If you work or volunteer in any ministry, nonprofit, or government agency that seeks to provide lasting change for people in

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Building the lives of young people on Jesus Christ, the chief cornerstone.

NOW REGISTERING K5 THRU 12TH GRADES At Cornerstone Classical Christian Academy, our goal is to equip students with the knowledge, skill and vision necessary to be effective leaders and servants for our Lord Jesus Christ.

MORNINGVIEW BAPTIST CHURCH 125 Calhoun Road • (334) 356.7788 • www.ccamontgomery.org 37

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Community Calendar Christian Community Calendar Christian poverty, this one-day seminar is your place to start to discover a whole new way to think about community building that truly makes a difference. Call 2728622 for info.

Friday, March 8

Fresh Anointing House of Worship presents Man on Fire, the conference that every man has been hungry for. Hosted by Apostle Kyle Searcy, and speakers are Pastors Eddie Lawrence, Coley Chestnut, Fred Adetunji, and Terry Millender. Anointed worship will prepare you to receive abundantly from God. There is no admission charge. Teens are welcome. For more information contact 334-6133363 or visit www.anointedchurch.org.

Thursday, March 14

Guy Penrod will be in concert at Eastern Hills Baptist Church, 3604 Pleasant Ridge Road in Montgomery. Call 2720604.

Saturday, March 16

The Good, the Bad and the Forgiven... Live with Michael Franzese (former mob boss, now Christian author/speaker) & Warren Barfield (special musical guest) at Eastmont Baptist Church, 4505 Atlanta Highway, in Montgomery. Begins at 6 pm, doors open at 5 pm. Call 277-6300 or visit www.itickets.com. Men of Promise will be having a Men’s Conference at Church at the Brook, Millbrook, Al. The theme for the conference is “Destined to Win”. The keynote speaker in the morning is former UA Football star & former NFL star Siran Stacey. The afternoon speaker is DR. Raymond Cullpepper. The conference is open to ALL Denominations. Call Allen Clark 334-313-2969. Doors open at 9:30am. Centerpoint Fellowship Church’s Half Marathon and 5K begins at Prattville YMCA. Half Marathon starts at 7 am, 5K starts at 7:30 am, Fun Run at 10 am. Registration is available online at Active.

com or you can print out a form here. We HIGHLY encourage (and prefer) online registration! Additionally, for inquires about Centerpoint Fellowship Church or any other inquires not addressed above, contact the Centerpoint Office at (334) 356-3070. “Bee A Bloomer” Women’s Seminar at River City Church, 301 Dexter Avenue, Montgomery, 9:00 am - 4:00 pm, will help you find: JOY, HOPE & PURPOSE based on Scripture & practical life strategies such as knowing your personality and temperament type. Join Paula Price, owner of Liberty Counseling in Iowa, for a day of laughter, tears, pep talks, crafts, prizes, books, lunch and friendship. Please RSVP to Phone: 334-263-0549 or email: info@rivercityumc.com.

Sunday, March 17

Macedonia Miracle Kingdom and Worship Center, 3070 Selma Highway, Montgomery, is celebrating their 35th

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LET YOUR BODY RaisE YOUR sPiRiT EasT YMCa aND BELL ROaD YMCa

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At the Y, there is a group of neighbors getting together this week to enjoy a cup of coffee and a stretch or two! Yes, they are exercising together! The Y has saved a spot just for you in their water and group exercise classes! Sign up today! MakE THE Y’s CHOiCE JOiN ONE LOCaTiON aND ENJOY aLL 13. FOR MORE iNFORMaTiON CONTaCT East YMCa p 334 272 3390 Bell Road YMCa p 334 271 4343 ymcamontgomery.org

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Community Calendar Christian Community Calendar Christian Church Anniversary along with Family and Friends Day, at 10:45 a.m. For information, contact the church 334-284-8535.

March 22-23

Women’s Retreat-A Time of Refreshing Ladies, it is Your Time to Refresh, to Revitalize, and to Reinvigorate as you receive a fresh infusion from the Spirit of God. Join the hundreds of women as they travel to Camp Sumatanga in Gallant, Alabama, away from their daily activities to spend time in God’s presence, in prayer, worship, communion and the Word, as well as times of personal ministry. For more information contact Fresh Anointing International Church at 334-613-3363 or visit www. anointedchurch.org.

Friday, March 29

Capitol Heights Baptist Church will have the privilege of hosting the Simulcast of Secret Church. This event is the

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simulcast of the live event taking place at The Church at Brook Hills. The time of the event is 6:00 PM until Midnight. The Secret Church Simulcast is six intense hours of biblical teaching and prayer for the persecuted church led by David Platt. David is the pastor of The Church at Brook Hills in Birmingham, Alabama and the author of The New York Times bestseller Radical. Childcare is not provided. To register call the church office at 2646461 or send an email to chbccherie@ capitolheights.org.

April 5-6

No Man Left Behind Conference Learn how to disciple every man in your church! Friday: 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. ~ Saturday: 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Hosted at Frazer United Methodist Church, 6000 Atlanta Hwy; Trainer David Delk: David Delk is President of Man in the Mirror and Co-Author of the book No Man Left Behind, Dad in the Mirror,

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The Marriage Prayer and more. Call Ministry Consultant Roddey Roberts to reserve your team’s NMLB Courseware: 407-472-2110.

April 12-13

Extraordinary Women Conference 2013 with Julie Clinton, Michael O’Brien, Third Day, Margaret Feinberg, Michelle McKinney Hammond, Kasey Van Norman and Tim Hawkins. Birmingham Jefferson Civic Center. For more info, visit www.itickets.com or call 205-458-8400.

Please send your calendar events to deanne@ readjourneymagazine.com by the 12th of the month for FREE print.


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Get the Point?

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by Elaine Britt

The Point of the Passage:

Deliberate Delight Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the LORD, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers. Not so the wicked! They are like chaff that the wind blows away… For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked leads to destruction. (Psalm 1)

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(Psalm 1)

Close your eyes…what is the first thought that comes to mind when you hear the word ‘delight?’ A kid’s idea of delight might be Disney World while a teen’s may include several friends and a beach. Now, describe what a perfectly ‘delightful’ day would look like for you. Would you be alone or with others? Would you find yourself close to home or in a faraway place? The writer of Psalm 1 above begins with three ‘does not’s’ before arriving at the ‘but.’ We are indeed blessed when we avoid the wicked, sinners, and mockers… and the sentence could have ended there, having clarified things to avoid. Instead, it unfolds further, disclosing a benefit

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resulting from intentionally internalizing God’s law. Ponder the commercials that, after their initial spiel, pause briefly before imploring, “BUT WAIT!!!”, then offering an additional product ABSOLUTELY FREE. The Bible provides a perfect ‘life map,’ never failing to instruct, but wait! We also receive in Psalm 1, as is often the case in Scripture, not only instruction but also an added bonus – in this case, delight. Vines Bible Dictionary defines delight as, “to delight with oneself

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inwardly in a thing.” The apostle Paul struggled with the concept of delight as he explains, “So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me… Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Romans 7:21-25) In both Psalm 1 and Romans 7, we are exposed to sources of inner conflict - keeping bad company and the ever present evil that assails us among them. The ‘deliberate’ part of deliberate delight comes into play as we choose to engage in prayer, Bible study, Christian fellowship, and all other thoughts and activities that serve to enhance and strengthen our faith. Personal encounters resulting in this type of delight also strengthen our faith. While shopping recently in a store frequented by those of us who are ‘glutenrather than care-’ free, I experienced an Ah-ha moment when the checkout person

asked if I was the one who had ‘that article in that magazine’ each month, further sharing that she gets a lot from it. Knowing that she meant Journey and replying in the positive, I was momentarily overwhelmed with a feeling that was indescribable – until now – as I learn the definition of delight. At once thankful that the words given to me when I write are used for His Glory, surprised that anyone would recognize me from the small picture attached to the article, wowed and amazed at how God works and grateful to be included in that work, a spontaneous ‘Praise and thank you, Lord’ burst forth within my spirit. Exhilarated by catching this glimpse of divine delight, I am beholden to the Lord for the mental ‘snapshot’ of that experience and for the privilege of sharing it. Our gift of delight is realized as we embrace God’s words and ways and our Lord, who originated the concept, also ‘delights’ in us. Peter Lord provides wisdom in his book Our Father Speaks Through Hebrews as he writes, “But there is something better than My promises and that is My person. There is nothing that delights My heart more than the

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confession of My Fatherhood and your sonship. This confession includes all of My promises.” Prioritizing our time and mental energies to include dwelling in His person, we deliberately and continually close the gap between us and God, creating a win/win situation When we reach the point where our idea of ‘delight’ is inextricably linked to the Lord, we will at last begin to grasp the full, unabridged meaning and significance of the word. As we immerse ourselves in Scripture and in Christian fellowship, we join, “everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made,” (Isaiah 43:7), in declaring the brilliance, grandeur, and majesty of our omnipotent God.

Elaine Britt and her husband, Tim, reside in Montgomery, with son Bryan at UAH in Huntsville and son Kevin at the University of Montevallo. She counts her family as a great blessing. By profession, Elaine is a 33 year veteran Interior Decorator and owner of Carriage House Interiors, now freelancing from home. By God’s calling and to her great joy, she is a writer, whose published works include stories in A Cup of Comfort Devotionals; Lord, I Was Happy Shallow; and Heavenly Patchwork; one book, Messages, as well as various e-zine and magazine articles.

March 2013

River Region’s Journey


Movie Reviews Reviews provided by MovieGuide: A Family Guide to Movies and Entertainment Ratings are based on production quality and moral acceptability. See details below. ***Reviews do not necessarily reflect views of the publishers of River Region’s Journey.

Safe Haven

Escape From Planet Earth

Quality: **** Moral Acceptability: -3 (Excessive) Starring: Julianne Hough, Josh Duhamel, Cobie Smulders, David Lyons, Mimi Kirkland, Noah Lomax Genre: Romantic Drama Audience: Teenagers and adults Rating: PG-13 Content: Eight obscenities, three strong profanities, and six light profanities; strong, slightly disturbing violence as husband hits wife and throws her around, man stabbed, man shot after struggle for gun, fire threatens little girl, arson, man tries to strangle woman; strong bedroom scene with fornication and implied intercourse between unmarried couple, but with lengthy depicted passionate kissing, plus technical adultery with extenuating circumstances because husband had abused woman physically; upper male nudity and bare back of woman seen in bedroom scene with implied full nudity, but nothing sexually explicit shown visually; alcohol use and man has a drinking problem, which makes him violent toward his supposed wife; no smoking or drugs; and, lying, policeman has a drinking and rage problem but gets his comeuppance. SAFE HAVEN opens with a distraught woman running away from a house and hopping on a bus. A man’s arm can be seen lying on the floor in the house. The woman, calling herself Katie, sets up residence in a seaside town in North Carolina. She’s eventually drawn to Alex, the town’s widowed grocery store owner and his two young children, especially Alex’s cute daughter, Lexie. As they fall in love, a detective with an ulterior motive comes to town to find Katie. The danger increases a hundredfold for Katie. It threatens to destroy Alex and his family in its wake. SAFE HAVEN is an excellently developed romance and mystery. The characters are well defined, and the performances of the two leads are appealing. The ending is very suspenseful. Sadly, there’s a bedroom scene between Katie and Alex that reveals too much. The movie’s strong moral elements are also undercut by a revelation that the ghost of Alex’s wife has influenced some of the events and some of the two lovers’ actions. The combination of these negative elements makes SAFE HAVEN unacceptable.

Quality: ** Moral Acceptability: -1 (Caution) Starring: The Voices of Brendan Fraser, Rob Corddry, Ricky Gervais, Jonathan Morgan Heit, Jessica Alba, Sofia Vergara, Paul Sheer, Sarah Jessica Parker, Steve Zahn Genre: Animated/Comedy Audience: Older children to adults Rating: PG Content: Strong pro family message with moral, redemptive themes of heroism, self-sacrifice, and even a short anti-communist reference; one light profanity and one “darn”; light animated action violence with aliens fighting humans and humans shooting tranquilizers; no sexual content but some light kissing and woman alien stares longingly at a male alien; no nudity; character drinks wine; no smoking; and, boy talks back to his father disrespectfully, aliens have a food fight, brothers bicker with each other. ESCAPE FROM PLANET EARTH is an animated movie about an alien race on the planet Baab. Scorch Supernova is a daring rescuer who travels the universe saving those who need help. Even though Scorch is a national hero, his older brother Gary is the brains that assists him from mission control. After finishing another successful mission, they’re informed by their boss, Lena, that a rescue mission is needed from the deadly planet Earth. Gary knows that no alien leaves Earth. He says it’s too dangerous, but Scorch goes anyway and is captured. So, it’s up to the timid brainiac Gary to save the day. ESCAPE FROM PLANET EARTH lacks skillful writing. Also, the A-list actors involved in the animated movie do little to help the stale dialogue. Even though the movie has some good themes like family and heroism, there are a lot of liberal political undertones that parents should note. For example, all of the humans are bad guys who like weapons of mass destruction. Global warming and evolution are also mentioned. Parents should exercise caution regarding ESCAPE FROM PLANET EARTH.

The previous reviews are a selected sample of informative reviews from MOVIEGUIDE: A FAMILY GUIDE TO MOVIES AND ENTERTAINMENT, a syndicated feature of Good News Communications, Inc. To subscribe to MOVIEGUIDE which includes a complete set of at least 10 reviews of the latest movies as well as many informative articles, please visit our web site at www.movieguide.org or write or call:”MOVIEGUIDE,” P.O. Box 190010, Atlanta, GA 31119 (800) 899-6684. What the ratings mean: Production Quality: (1 to 4 stars) Moral Acceptability: -4 (Abhorrent), -3 (Excessive), -2 (Extreme Caution), -1 (Caution), +1 (Wholesome), +2 (Good), +3 (Moral), +4 (Exemplary) River Region’s Journey

March 2013

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BABBIE MASON SPORTS SPECTRUM

NICOLE C. MULLEN

JEREMY CAMP

TONY EVANS

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MATT REDMAN CHRIS TOMLIN

RAVI ZACHARIAS

ALISTAIR BEGG

BEBO NORMAN

MAX LUCADO KUTLESS

CASTING CROWNS FOCUS ON THE FAMILY

JESUS CHRIST

through Christian PROGRAMS and MUSIC. ADRIAN ROGERS LARNELLE HARRIS

CHUCK SWINDOLL

ADVENTURES IN ODYSSEY KARI JOBE

NANCY CHRIS AUGUST LEIGH DEMOSS

LAURA STORY FAMILYLIFE TODAY

MARK SCHULTZ JIMMY DEYOUNG

MERCYME RANDY CARLSON

HILLSONG

89

.1 FM

WLBF

MISSION NETWORK NEWS

SELAH RON HUTCHCRAFT

MATTHEW WEST

CHIP INGRAM

KEITH & KRISTYN GETTY

JAMES MACDONALD

STEVEN CURTIS CHAPMAN

MANDISA CHARLES STANLEY

Proclaiming

SRN NEWS

JONI EARECKSON TADA

BREAKPOINT

POINT OF GRACE

BIG DADDY WEAVE

PHILLIPS, CRAIG & DEAN

NATALIE GRANT

SARA GROVES

DAVID JEREMIAH

KAY ARTHUR

February 2013 Journey Ad_Layout 1 1/23/13 10:43 AM Page 1

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Wednesday, March 27 6:15 pm

Easter Communion Worship

Friday, March 29

12:00 pm Good Friday Worship

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River Region's Journey March 2013