Volume 14, Issue 11
APRIL 20 1 3 Columns page 2
Medical Outreach Ministries
by Rachel Fisher Learn all out about this long-time River Region ministry serving the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the medically under served. Also, discover how you can help through volunteering, financial giving or simply donating supplies.
Pastor's Perspective Allen Newton, Saint James United Methodist Church
Dave $ays Dave Ramsey
Family Teams for Christ Lisa and Mike Conn
Shine Kim Hendrix
The Intersection page 26
by Candy Arrington Find how to better manage your time each day, for your benefit and to God’s glory.
Grace to You John MacArthur
Counselor’s Corner Brenda Payne
On Our Cover . . .
Get the Point? Elaine Britt
Three members of the Medical Outreach Ministries volunteer staff:
In Every Issue page 6
On the Bookshelf page 8
From left to right:
Around Our Community
Chris Anderson, RN
(Volunteer & President of the Board) Dr. Jack Evans and
Event Calendar page 40
(Executive Director) 1
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 email@example.com
Jason Watson firstname.lastname@example.org
Research Editor Wendy McCollum
Contributing Writers Candy Arrington Elaine Britt Lisa and Mike Conn Bob Crittenden Rachel Fisher Kim Hendrix John MacArthur Allen Newton Brenda Payne Dave Ramsey Gail Welborn
Advertising Opportunities email@example.com (334) 213-7940 ext 703
Cover Photography Lori Mercer Photography
Tim Welch, Welch Designs
Distribution Team Kristy Brennan Wendy McCollum Chris Mitchell Manzie Moore Richard Ward Lesa Youngblood
From the Publisher Last month, if you remember, we all pushed our clocks forward one hour. I don’t know about you, but that next morning when my alarm went off and I reached for the snooze button, I clearly knew I had lost an hour of sleep. Some of you may still be looking for that hour you lost. As much as I didn’t enjoy losing that sleep, that afternoon as our family played in the backyard and talked on our patio, I felt like I got that hour back - and maybe even a little extra. It’s often been said that “time is precious”. We all have the same amount every day, but the clock keeps ticking, and when it’s gone it’s gone. I’m more aware of those fleeting seconds after reading our feature story “Redeeming Time,” on page 26. Our son turned 16 last month; we all know what a milestone that is. It’s a marker we use in society that tells us our child is closer to becoming an adult and moving out on his own. When I see my son hop in his car and take off with his friends I can’t help but feel like my time with him is slipping away. It makes me want to make the most of the time we have left together. It also makes me question how well I’ve used the 16 years I’ve had him. Yes, time is precious. Are we using the time God has allotted us to benefit others and to glorify Him? This issue is full of inspiration for how you can make the most of your days. Consider this month’s cover story about Medical Outreach Ministries where local doctors, nurses and other volunteers decided to meet the needs of a group of people who were medically under served with their talents and passions. Brenda Payne, in the Counselor’s Corner, helps us see how our own suffering can help us bring comfort to others in the future. Allen Newton, pastor at Saint James UMC, challenges us in his Pastor’s Perspective to learn how to feed ourselves spiritually rather than solely depending on others. These are just a few of the highlights from this month’s Journey . Opportunities for making the most of our time are all around us. As you turn each page let me ask you to keep your heart and eyes open to where God is leading you to invest in yourself and others. Tomorrow is a new day, and I’m thankful for fresh starts, but make the most of where God has you right here and now!
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. 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.
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On The Bookshelf
by Gail Welborn
Change Your Words, Change Your Life
by Joyce Meyer, FaithWords, 2012, Hardcover, 320 Pages, 978-0446538572, $22.99
Joyce Meyer examines the power, energy and influences of words in Change Your Words, Change Your Life, similar to Power Thoughts and Living Beyond Your Feelings. She quotes Proverb 18:21, “… the power of life and death are in the tongue” to support her teachings. She likens “…our words to a movie screen that exposes…” a person’s thoughts and attitudes to the world that reveals what that person “…thinks, wants and feels.” She says readers learn about themselves when they pay attention to their words because they reveal constructive or destructive attitudes. She wants readers to realize and understand the power of their words. When they do, they can transform their lives because “where the mind goes, the mouth follows” ...one of the author’s favorite “Joyce-isms.” Besides the power of words, readers learn how to tame the tongue, “fast” their words, speak faith and not fear, complete with teachings on encouragement, complaining and how not to let Satan speak through you. Joyce’s teaching is important because the words we sow are powerful “spiritual seeds” harvested in the lives, souls and spirits of others, as well as ourselves.
Holman Christian Standard Study Bible
Holman Bible Publishers, 2010, Holman Bible Editorial Staff, 2336 Pages, 978-1586405069, $49.99
Holman Christian Standard Study Bible won the ECPA Bible of the year in 2011. With the new translation, to the Hebrew and Greek word studies, footnotes, time lines, full color maps and more, there is a lot to like. While most Bibles are revisions of previous translations, “…the HCSB is a new translation for today’s generation” that reflects the “information age” of Biblical research. Instead of interpreting original texts “word-for-word” or “thought-for-thought,” the HCSB uses both methods with footnotes for additional explanation if needed. Gilt edged pages feature pages with Bible text on top and study notes on the bottom and section headings, chapter and verse numbers in blue. Denser brown toned pages are used for essays, section introductions and overviews of time lines, author, surrounding circumstances, purpose and events. I especially liked Old Testament quotes printed in bold black in the New Testament that easily sets them apart. The stunning full-color photographs, illustrations and maps add rich visual meaning and texture. Center-page cross-references, inset text box word studies and sidebars make the HCSB Bible a rich and valuable resource for all Bible readers.
Wondrous Works of God: A Family Bible Story Book by Starr Meade, illustrated by Tim O’Connor, Hardcover, Crossway, 2012, 978-1433531583, $24.99
Starr Meade believes God uses Bible stories to reveal who He is and what He has done. Because God can’t be seen, attributes of His character, love for His children and creation are easier to understand for children using stories and there’s no better author to pen them. She also believes “…Bible stories must be read in context and not as isolated units…” with Bible stories told in light of the “… wonderful salvation story…” The collection of stories includes fifty-five Old Testament and thirty-five New Testament stories that teach about God’s character. Many stories from Job, Ezekiel and Revelation have not been characterized for children before. Stories begin with the creation of Adam and Eve and end with Jesus and the dragon in Revelation 12. Ninety exciting narratives, penned in lively, easy-to-understand language contain summary statements of Christian truth and faith highlighted in red from a reformed perspective. Most stories are three pages, with an illustration, Scripture reference, questions and suggestions for personal application. Wondrous Acts of God would make a good choice for family devotions. River Region’s Journey book reviewer Gail Welborn lives in Sedro-Woolley, Washington. River Region’s Journey
Allen Newton, Saint James United Methodist Church
Learning to Feed Yourself Parenting is quite an adventure and the Lord teaches me a lot through our children. Every morning we get up before daylight to feed our five month old a bottle of formula. Typically I will hold his bottle while he eats. This week, he reached up to actually hold the bottle with his own two hands. This step was a small but important milestone on his journey to care for himself and it gave me great joy to see! We also have a son who is a freshman at Auburn. Lately he has been exploring how to cook his own meals and it has apparently been quite an adventure. He calls regularly to ask advice on how to prepare his daily cuisine. He must be doing pretty good with it because all of his friends show up when he cooks. It is exciting as a parent to see him mature and grow as well.
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Our spiritual lives are much like our physical ones. Over time we must learn how to feed and nurture ourselves. If we don’t, we cannot become the healthy, strong people that our Heavenly Father has created us to be. We are blessed to live in a time and place that has so many options to help us grow in our relationship with God. Excellent Christian radio stations, publications like this one, wonderful church families, internet access to the best preaching in the world. But sometimes I wonder how well are we doing at learning to feed ourselves. Don’t get me wrong…learning from good preaching and teaching is important, having a church family is absolutely imperative, but we must truly learn to nourish ourselves spiritually. Are we spending time reading and studying the scriptures? Are we lingering in the presence of God in prayer? Are we walking with the Spirit and seeking his guidance in our daily living? In our culture I fear it is too easy to simply let others feed us and we never grow to the full maturity that God intended. The apostle Paul reminds us in Hebrews 5:12-14: “In fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not 4
acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.” There are so many great resources out there that can help us in this endeavor. I highly recommend Rick Warren’s book, “How to Study the Bible”, Wayne Codeiro’s “Life Journal”, and the App, youversion.com. These resources are wonderful tools to move us from being spoon-fed by others to a mature place of sustaining ourselves. The word of God is rich and flavorful, yet too many followers have not yet begun to sample the abundance of His faithfulness and goodness on their own. This doesn’t happen overnight, but like an infant who grows into a fully grown adult, it is an everyday process of maturity. Like my son in his apartment kitchen, we learn to prepare a Godly gourmet meal to feed on. As we draw our daily nourishment from the Spirit’s smorgasbord we come to realize the wonderful words of the Psalmist who said, “Taste and see that the Lord is good.” (Psalm 34:8) This understanding doesn’t happen accidentally, but rather, through intentional time with the Master chef we learn the secrets of His grace and love that bring flavor and beauty to life. So when is the last time you really tasted the goodness of God’s word? Are you tired of a steady diet of preprocessed formula? Are you hungry for something more hardy and lasting? Then set aside time this week to sit down with the Master and dig into the goodness of His word. Allen Newton is senior pastor of Saint James United Methodist Church on Vaughn Road. Visit them this Sunday or check out their website at www.sjlife.com.
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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 Godâ€™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.
Coming This Month!
A New Indoor Facility Offering 2 Private Party rooms!
*All editorial content published must be in agreement with our Statement of Faith
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No Man Left Behind Conference
Worship Nights at CCM Open to Community
Christ Community Church has been hosting worship nights for the community once a month during 2013. They plan to continue this throughout the year and want to invite you to their next gathering on Friday, April 26 at 7:00pm. This night is going to be very special as they will be recording the service for a live album that will be out sometime in late summer/ early fall 2013. For more information about how you can get involved please contact Jeff Bush at 334.273.8110.
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.
April 5th-6th in Montgomery. 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.
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Montgomery Chorale Spring Concert at FBC
Gloria! Montgomery Chorale Spring Concert, Sunday, April 21, 2:30 pm, Stakely Sanctuary, First Baptist Church. The Montgomery Chorale will be joined by the Montgomery Youth Chorale and a professional orchestra to present settings of the Gloria, an ancient hymn of worship and praise of God. The Youth Chorale will sing Vivaldi’s beloved Gloria, with men from the Chorale, and the Chorale will present several settings of the Gloria, including the opening chorus from the Gloria of Bach’s B Minor Mass. The featured work of the concert will be Francis Poulenc’s animated and exciting setting of the text. Tickets are $15/$10 and may be reserved and purchased online at montgomerychorale.org, from Chorale members or by calling (334) 265-3737.
Comedian Tim Hawkins Returns to Frazer June 23
Who says you can’t have good, clean family entertainment that’s roll-on-the-floor funny? Not Tim Hawkins. Whether he’s ranting on aging Rock Stars, questioning life on Noah’s Ark, or singing his famous “ChickFil-A Song,” you’ll be laughing along and loving every minute. Mark your calendar for Sunday, June 23 at 7 p.m. in Wesley Hall. Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door, $18 advanced group rate (6+). VIP tickets are $40 advance only / $38 advance only group rate (6+). VIP Event starts at 5:30 PM and includes: Hors d’oeuvres and refreshments, VIP tour laminate, Pre-show Q&A with Tim, and preferred seating section for the 7:00 PM concert. Only 300 VIP tickets will be sold. A portion of all proceeds goes to benefit Frazer missions. Go to frazerumc.org and click the ‘Events’ tab and then Tim Hawkins for a link to order tickets online. For more info, videos and testimonies about Tim Hawkins, visit his website at www.timhawkins.net 9
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Screen Printing T-Shirts for a Cause!
Huntingdon Receives National Recognition for Community Service
Urban Seed Exchange, a ministry of Common Ground Montgomery, has started a screen printing business that is about more than just t-shirts. USX is a relationship-based entrepreneur and mentorship program that focuses on character, social and life skills development for at-risk youth in the neighborhood Common Ground serves. The goal is to empower those they serve to break free from generational cycles and allow them to see they are capable of being more than they can imagine. Screen printing has become the means to accomplish this end. The funds generated from the sale of t-shirts are re-invested into USX and used to provide jobs for the kids, and ultimately, allow them to do more! If you are interested in using USX to print t-shirts for your next event contact them at 334-324-3424 or e-mail Rachel@cgmlife.org.
Stadium Fest 2013 in Birmingham
For the third consecutive year, Huntingdon College has been selected to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll by the Corporation for National and Community Service. The awards program cited more than 9,300 reported service hours in a wide range of programs and activities undertaken by Huntingdon students, faculty and staff during the 2011–2012 academic year, including service to Common Ground Ministries, Family Sunshine Center, Floyd Elementary School, Friendship Mission, Habitat for Humanity, Montgomery Area Food Bank, Montgomery Zoo, Montgomery Area Non-traditional Equestrians (MANE), the Arthritis Foundation, Children’s Hospital, Make-A-Wish Foundation, American Cancer Society, SaveFirst, and in support of special needs populations and other organizations.
Gridiron Men’s Conference 2013
Join us, April 12-13, at Spain Park in Birmingham. This free, biannual event features Christian music artists and speakers including: Rhett Walker Band, Bill “Bubba” Bussy and Rick Burgess, Jamie Grace, SwitchFoot, Bello, KJ-52, Britt Nicole, Building 429, Crowder, Scott Dawson, Newsboys and more! Children’s Playtime in Bronner Burgess Playground with inflatables, face painting, games and James Spann. Firework finale. Visit www. stadiumfest.com.
Featuring Tim Tebow, Fred Luter, Phil Waldrep and more! Birmingham-Jefferson Civic Center (BJCC) Arena, June 14-15 Gridiron is more than a gathering, or a concert. It is a worship experience created by men, for men. At Gridiron Men’s conference we are committed to your spiritual growth through discipleship, accountability, and worship. We believe that when many men come together seeking the one true God, great things can happen. For more info call: 800-374-1550 or visit itickets.com.
Email your community or ministry news to firstname.lastname@example.org by the 15th of the month! We will share it with our readers for FREE! River Region’s Journey
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Volunteers Tend ‘Garden’, Transform a Neighborhood
On Thursday mornings, you can usually find Charlie Kendall in his garden, or rather God’s “Garden.” Since Frazer UMC launched its initiative to transform a neighborhod in north Montgomery last year, Charlie, who serves as Frazer’s Community Impact Pastor, along with many volunteers and other Frazer staff, have put in hundreds of hours in their efforts to restore homes in the Garden Square community and breathe new life back into the area. Volunteers from Frazer, including individuals as well as Sunday School and Bible study groups, all have lent their strength, their skills and their sweat on various home renovation and repair projects to the houses Frazer has acquired as part of its Transform Montgomery project. Outside groups, from schools and other local organizations have also stepped in to help in the rebuilding efforts. From ripping out old flooring and ceiling tiles to painting to repairing windows to clearing debris, God has provided the people and the tools and resources to see His will be done in this Montgomery neighborhood. Every Thursday, volunteers gather in the ‘garden’ to complete whatever project needs to be done that day. Several teams meet on Saturdays as well to work on the houses that Frazer has purchased as well as the commercial building that will be transformed into a community center. As the external transformation efforts continue on the houses and the neighborhood, the internal facet of the project is also moving forward. Peggy Spaeth is currently leading training sessions for the Circles to Transformation program. Charlie said, “Transforming our mind and heart requires a paradigm shift in our understandings and beliefs. Peggy is working diligently to provide the instruction and rational side of transformation. When we add the experiential element of transformation we will encounter ownership of the shift of Biblical understanding of empowering needy to change rather enabling them to remain the same.” While much progress has been made in transforming Garden Square, more work is still head and many hands are needed to help fulfill God’s plan for this neighborhood. If you are interested in serving in any capacity with this project, call Charlie Kendall at 549-2175. Volunteers are working in the “Garden” most Thursdays from 8:30 a.m.- noon, and many Saturdays as well, but Charlie can schedule a specific time or project for you or your group. “Come and help transform others and be transformed yourself by experiencing the movement of God in your heart,” Charlie said. Keep track of weekly updates on the Transformation Montgomery project at transform.frazerumc.org/montgomery.
Trinity Presbyterian School is one of four schools in the State of Alabama recognized as an Apple Distinguished School for the 2012-2013 school year for its implementation of 21st century learning methodologies in the classroom and throughout the school. Trinity is blazing new trails and changing the way students are learning. Championing the “flipped classroom” concept throughout the school, our students are taking a bite out of the future every day.
Apples aren’t just for teachers anymore.
TrinityWildcats . com
Contact Monica Lott 334.213.2137 Trinity admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origins to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. Trinity does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, national or ethnic origins in any of the educational policies, scholarship programs and athletics, and other school-administered programs.
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In B Agape Run For a Mom 5K and Fun Run
The 3rdAnnual Agape Run For A Mom 5k and Fun Run will be Saturday, May 11, Mother’s Day weekend. Proceeds from the run benefit women facing crisis-pregnancies, foster children, domestic adoptions and soon to be added international adoptions. Dedicate your run to your mom, birthmother, adoptive mom, foster mom, or any special woman in your life. For information and registration for this year’s run, please visit www.runforamom.org.
Montgomery Prayer Breakfast
The 2013 Montgomery Prayer Breakfast for the City of Montgomery is scheduled for May 2, at 7 am, in downtown Montgomery. Mayor Todd Strange invites the citizens of the City to join him on this day in a spirit of humility and pray. The purpose of the prayer breakfast has always been and continues to be to bring together the local citizens of Montgomery to pray for all those in authority over the City. It is an opportunity to pray and give thanks for the goodness the community experiences. A devoted time of prayer will be offered on this morning as well as special music. The breakfast will be held at the Alabama Activity Center, located at 201 Dexter Avenue, downtown Montgomery, from 7 am to 8:15 am. A full buffet breakfast will be served. Tickets for the breakfast are $12.00 per person. Individuals may purchase tickets at His Vessel® Ministries, Union Station, 300 Water Street, Suite 100, Montgomery. Seating is limited and will be available on a first come first served bases. For questions or more information call 334-356-4478.
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 email@example.com 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
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Inner City Evangelism Announces New Bible Studies For All Ages in Paterson Court, Seeks Volunteers
Inner City Evangelism served in Paterson Court where we always have smiling faces waiting for us. On a cloudy Saturday morning, ICE kicked off the outreach with the popular Bible Bingo for adults while the kids had the opportunity to learn a Bible story, a Bible verse and sing and dance to praise and worship songs. How wonderful it is to see kids singing and dancing for Jesus! ICE is also excited to announce that a new weekly Bible study for adults, teens and kids will be held in Paterson Court every Tuesday night starting Tuesday, April 2. If you are interested in becoming a weekly volunteer at Paterson Court, contact Bob Passmore at firstname.lastname@example.org, or if you’re volunteering for an ICE outreach, contact Layne Ballard at email@example.com. ICE is looking forward to what the Lord will do in the lives of those we serve in all of the inner city communities!
Finished Roof Completes Church of Hope in Haiti
Despite some setbacks, the Church of Hope in Leveque, Haiti is finally complete, thanks to the addition of a roof in February. Work to add a roof to the new church for the deaf community in Leveque, Haiti began in January, in hopes that it will be completed in time for the church dedication service planned for Feb. 1. Some delays prevented the roof from being completed at that time but the new roof was finally finished by Feb. 19. Margaret Spratlin of 410 Bridge, Frazer UMC’s partner in the Transform Haiti project, wrote last month, “ This is an exciting time because the church will become a gathering place for both deaf and hearing. They will have separate worship services on Sundays, but many joint prayer services and Bible study groups in the years to comeall thanks to Frazer families!” Ground broke on the church project last June, funded by a special Christmas Eve 2011 offering collected by the Frazer family. Construction has been ongoing since last summer and the addition of the roof is one of the final pieces to complete the new worship center.
“Train a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not turn from it.”
EVANGEL CHRISTIAN ACADEMY
C hallenging a CademiC a tmosphere in a C hristian e nvironment
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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Q. I’m 27 and married, and we have two kids. I make $90,000 a year, but we have $80,000 in consumer debt—$48,000 of which is in car loans. The rest is credit card debt. My wife’s parents have offered to let us move in with them so we can get out of debt faster. Do you think this is a good idea? A.
If I were in your situation, I would not move in with the in-laws. You’ve got an absurd amount of money wrapped up in those cars. I’d sell the stupid things, start living on a budget and paying down debt, and keep my dignity.
In my mind there are only two scenarios where you’d even consider taking the in-laws up on their offer. One is where they’re absolutely wonderful people and you have a great, non-toxic relationship with them, where everyone involved knows their boundaries. Even then, I’d only consider this if it were for a very short, agreed-upon amount of time. The second scenario would be if moving in with the in-laws were the only way to accomplish your goal. And you don’t pass that test. You guys can get out of debt pretty quickly if you’ll just lose these ridiculous cars! Think about it. If
you had two little paid-for beaters, your lives would be so much different. You could even save a little money on the side while you were paying down debt and buy a better car as soon as the debt was gone. If you can’t tell, I’m pretty big on maintaining dignity. You might love your cars so much that you’re unwilling to make the sacrifice. Not me. The money going into your automobiles is insane, and that’s your biggest problem!
Q. What do you think about the HARP program, and what exactly is it? A. The Home Affordable Refinance
Program is designed for people who have made their payments on time but are underwater on their mortgages. Being “underwater” means they owe more on their homes than the homes are worth. So basically it gives them the opportunity to refinance their home loans. The HARP program is the only part of the Making Home Affordable program that actually worked. And to be honest, it has worked well. In contrast, the recent Home Loan Modification program is a piece of junk and all about political posturing. About 93 percent of the people who applied for a home loan modification didn’t get one. It was just another case of the government pretending to do something. I’d advise looking into the HARP program if you’ve got a good credit history and you’re underwater on your current home. Lots of HARP program applications are being approved, and the deals are closing. That’s what really matters when you find yourself in a situation like this.
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Family Teams for Christ
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by Lisa and Mike Conn
Defending the Military Marriage Bill and Susan came to Maxwell AFB for a two-month training program after a week-long drive from the west coast with their two preschoolers. Just days before, Bill arrived home from a one-year deployment. Adding to their stress, the family has been assigned to a new base as soon as they leave Montgomery. Saying goodbye to their friends and home, they loaded the car with enough clothes, books, and toys to last eight weeks and drove across the country to begin anew in our fair city--but only for eight weeks. Then, they drive back to the west coast to a new base, a new house, new job, new schools, and hopefully, a welcoming church and new friends. Sound crazy? Sound stressful? Absolutely! But every detail is true. We met Bill and Susan when they began attending
a class Mike and I teach on Wednesday nights at the base chapel. I don’t think they realized it was a Bible study at first, but by the time they did, they were enjoying the food, fellowship, and childcare as well as the study, “The Art of Marriage”. When Susan asked if we could talk, I invited her to our home. I learned she had recently become a Christian while her husband was deployed. A friend had mentored Susan--inviting her and the children to church and Bible study and sharing with Susan her love of Christ and God’s word. Susan’s eyes teared up as she described her new relationship with Jesus and her fears concerning her marriage. Her husband didn’t understand the changes in his wife. Now, they were facing many obstacles as he tried to reintegrate into the family. God
gave me the opportunity to pick up where Susan’s mentor left off by praying with her and sharing scripture, such as Colossians 3:12-15: Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
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Susan and Bill continued to attend our weekly Bible study and other events Mike and I offered during their eight weeks here. I had a bread baking class in our home, where ladies enjoyed a homecooked meal while learning to make yeast bread. Cheryl, who has helped our ministry for 14 years, served the ladies her homemade soups and entertained their young children, along with my husband, Mike, while I integrated a lesson on loving your husband into the yeast bread demonstration. Weeks later, Mike grilled steaks for the husbands and showed the movie, “Sgt. York”, the true story of WW1’s most decorated hero, Alvin York. The movie depicts York’s spiritual
April 19–MAy 19 The Ultimate Amazing Race!
m of of
journey from a lost drunk to a follower of Christ who learns to assimilate his Christian values into choices he makes at home and in battle. Along with Susan and Bill, 13 couples participated in our classes, along with one extraordinary single officer who was “in a relationship”, but not engaged yet, and wanted to soak up as much as he could about marriage before entering into a commitment! The FamilyLife “Weekend to Remember” marriage getaway was coming to Destin, and ten of our couples registered to attend. Here are some of their comments: “Please continue what you are doing. This ministry may very well have saved our marriage and I’m sure ours will not be the only one. Thank you!” “This is an amazing program. God is using you in a HUGE way. Keep it up!” We begin again this week with a new group of young couples. We’ve been praying that God will bring them to the Bible study and give us the strength and wisdom to help fortify their marriages and families during their brief stay. This new class will have the opportunity to attend the “Weekend to Remember” on April 26-28 in Birmingham (www.familylife.com/events). We’ll be doing everything in our power to get them there before they are sent out into all the world. Please pray for us! Our faith-based ministry is in its 15th year and is dependent upon our service and the giving of others who want to help strengthen marriages, both civilian and military. You can help make an impact in the lives of young military families with a tax-deductible gift to our ministry! Our address is: Mike and Lisa Conn, Covenant Family Ministries, P.O. Box 242283, Montgomery, AL 36124-2283.
April 18–MAy 19
A gleefully witty slugfest about adults behaving badly.
Tony Award Winner!
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.
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River Region’s Journey
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by Kim Hendrix
Which One Do You Know Better--
Your Religion or Your Jesus? Matthew 22:37-39: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” I’ll never forget a story told to me by the late Carolyn Blount. It was during an interview with Winton and Carolyn Blount in their beautiful home about a year before Mr. Blount died. They were sharing the details of a trip to Saudi Arabia when Blount International was building King Saud University. This project happened in the early 80’s and Mr. Blount recalled how the Saudi Arabian leaders didn’t want Mrs. Blount to make the trip simply because she was
a woman. To that Mr. Blount responded, “Fine, the deal is off!” The Saudi leaders quickly changed their minds, saying, “Okay bring your wife but tell her not to discuss two things while she’s here--the women’s movement and God.” Mrs. Blount said she felt badly for the women she passed on the street, noting they kept their eyes down and their heads completely covered in traditional dress... moving along as if not to be seen. That image changed when the President of the University invited the Blounts to his home for dinner. Mrs. Blount told me the President’s wife opened the door dressed beautifully looking her directly in the eye as she could do in her home--and then the part of the story that stays with me. As soon as the
door closed, the President’s wife looked at Mrs. Blount and said, “Tell me about your Jesus!” Mrs Blount replied, “Oh, I love my Jesus.” And this Saudi Arabian woman who could be killed for even discussing this said, “We love your Jesus, too!” How badly do you want to know Jesus? This woman was willing to risk her life, and because she couldn’t openly worship our Lord and Savior, there were no aspects of religion standing between her and God.
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• River Region’s Journey
1 John 4:8: “Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.”
I once heard a speaker talking about the good and bad of program-driven churches. He asked how many times we had met someone who shared their troubles and we directed them to a program at our church-- “Try this support group, it’s geared for exactly what you’re going through!” He said that can be of assistance, but what they really need from you right then and there is Jesus. We want to give them a program when what they really crave and need is Jesus. If we know Him well enough, they’ll feel His presence through us and He will give us the words to comfort and encourage anyone in our path. What a blessing that in America we can openly worship our Lord and Savior, we can read the Bible and pray without any fear of persecution, and it’s through these practices that we truly get to know Jesus. That Saudi Arabian woman had to do these things in private, secretly, all the while probably fearing for her life...and yet she had a burning desire to know Jesus. In a way it breaks my heart that she said tell me about your Jesus. I pray through her personal time of nurturing this relationship she grew to understand that He’s her Jesus, too.
John 14:6: “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Every religion and every church has to examine the “how”, but I pray that we never let it get bigger than the “why”. Why are we here? Why do we gather for worship? Why do we reach out to all generations? So we can all come to know, love and share our personal Lord and Savior--our Jesus. Our Heavenly Father, Thank you for teaching us how to know you. May we stay in prayer, your word and worship with our eyes focused only on you and our hearts surrendered to your will. We praise you for the gift of the Holy Spirit and the freedom to worship you. May those who are oppressed around the world come to know you as their personal Savior. In the mighty name of your son 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.
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 •
We don’t wonder anymore how it happened, that one summer could bring such happy memories.
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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Dr. Larry & Susan Hooks, Owners/Directors • Donna Bares,Asst. Director
1 & 2Week Sessions for Ages 6-16
C RAFTS • C HORUS
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,
Only 1 /Mountain 2 hours from Huntsville Located on top of Lookout in Mentone, AL. Only a 3 hr drive. 1
FLAG TWIRLING • CHEERLEADING • RIFLERY • ARCHERY • TRIP DAY • GOLF
I know many people find peace and closeness to God through the rituals and practices of their religion. Whether it’s in the way a congregation or parish takes communion or how a church celebrates Easter or even how a religion views the social issues of the world--all matters to understand and respect--sometimes the “ways of the church” become bigger than your relationship with our Savior. If you’ve been a member of a church for more than a year or two, there’s a real good chance you’ve been asked to serve on a committee. While I’m not a fan of the committee, I know at times they’re necessary and I’ve sat, and sit, on my share. At times the “how” takes over the “why”. How should we organize our worship services, how do we reach the younger generation while continuing to serve our seniors, how do we communicate our mission? Again all important and worthy of discussion, but also points that can grow larger than your time and love for Jesus.
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• R OPES C OURSE • C LIMBING T OWER • O UTDOOR L IVING S KILLS • C AMPFIRE F UN • C OUNSELOR -I N -T RAINING • 19
River Region’s Journey
Medical Outreach Ministries
Meeting the Physical & Spiritual Needs of the Medically Under Served by Rachel Fisher
Health care has become a much debated issue in our country, especially over the past five years. And while there are many different voices and programs offering their best efforts to help curb this growing issue, Medical Outreach Ministries in Montgomery is working to help those affected by the poverty that keeps them from getting the medical assistance they need right here in the River Region. Since beginning in 1993 with Dr. Thomas Goodman of Montgomery and volunteers from Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church providing health care at Bell Street Church, Medical Outreach Ministries has been committed to bringing “healing hope for the uninsured.” While the poorest of the poor may be eligible for Medicaid or other public assistance, there are many uninsured persons in our community who fall through the cracks of the healthcare system, explains Executive Director Nancy Hogan. “Currently, there are 42,000 people in our patient population,” says M.O.M. President of the Board, Chris Anderson. River Region’s Journey
“These are individuals in Montgomery, Autauga, and Elmore counties between the ages of 19 and 64 without health insurance and with income up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level.” For these individuals, their only access to a physician for even the most common illnesses is often through the local emergency rooms. Through financial and volunteer contributions, Medical Outreach Ministries is able to improve access to medical care for these needy members of our community at no cost to their patients. “People may hear this number of people, 42,000, and think, “Well, Obamacare is going to take care of all those people.” Chris explains that what most people do not realize is that Medicaid is going up to cover only 138 percent of the federal poverty level. This still leaves a significant gap of individuals without access to affordable healthcare. “We see patients up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level,” says Executive Director Nancy Hogan. “This means these patients are making around 20,000 a year in annual income.” 20
For this reason, Nancy, Chris and the several volunteers and doctors who serve at M.O.M. believe there will always be a reason for this ministry to exist. “There will never not be people to serve,” says Chris. “We will need Medical Outreach until Jesus comes back.” Last year, M.O.M. provided medical care for more than 6,000 patients with the consistent support of nearly 70 on-site volunteers, including RNs, pharmaceutical workers, clerical volunteers, and ten doctors, who volunteer their services each week to care for the patients. M.O.M. runs off of five paid staff and a plethora of volunteers. Harold Faulkner, who has been volunteering at M.O.M. for many years says he loves volunteering because he sees this ministry making a real difference in the lives of many people. “What people get here is a medical home,” says Nancy. “We treat them just like we would treat anyone else. When they come to Medical Outreach, they receive quality care.” When a patient comes to M.O.M., Nancy explains they are required to go
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through a financial screening to become a patient. This screening not only helps M.O.M. be certain they are serving people who truly need their help, but enables the ministry to receive a large portion of free medications from pharmaceutical companies. “And we want to be sure we are seeing the people who really need help the most,” says Chris. “Once someone becomes a patient they have their own doctor they see every time they come in. We are blessed to have some of the best doctors that have ever come through Montgomery.” “Because most of our patients cannot afford the cost of buying their own prescriptions, our drug assistance program is equally vital – typically providing $150,000 in free medications monthly,” explains Nancy. Drugs are donated through the indigent drug programs of major pharmaceutical companies such as Johnson and Johnson, Merck and Lily, while M.O.M. also purchases many medications. Last year, M.O.M. spent $100,000 in medications alone. Medical supplies and medications are the main expense of M.O.M. “We are always willing to take unexpired and unopened medications,” says Nancy. “Medical equipment like canes and walkers, band aids, bandages
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and any kind of medical supplies are always welcome.” Currently, M.O.M. has 10 volunteer doctors who donate their time and services each week. Dr. Jack Evans, one of the doctors on site, says they could handle up to six more doctors to enable them to serve more people in the patient population. Along with their in-house doctors, many area physicians donate their spe-
cialty services as well. “We have 100 doctors we can refer our patients out to,” says Nancy. This allows the patients at M.O.M. to receive further free care from specialty doctors in the area without cost to them. In addition, Baptist Health Systems provide labs free of charge and largely subsidizes diagnostic tests to enable us to provide comprehensive health care beyond their primary setting. Baptist has been a vital partner for M.O.M. since its official incorporation in 1998. “We couldn’t exist without Baptist,” says Chris. “We are thought of as a Baptist entity.” In 1998, the CEO of Baptist found an opportunity where he felt they needed to join forces and agreed to a five-year commitment from Baptist to fund Medical Outreach.. During that time, they began looking for funding sources to be self-sufficient. Today, M.O.M. is donor based. While M.O.M. is still in the process of beginning to host an annual fundraising event, they have found support from local churches, Sunday schools, civic groups, individual donors, small grants and the joint public charities hospital boards, health department and more. “We have renewed effort to be community supported,” says Chris. “When people come here, they are ready to give to us, and we want the community to know more about who we are and what we do because we think there would be so many more opportunities for us to serve more of the 42,000 without health insurance.” 21
And the needs are not only financial. “We could see more patients if we had more volunteer doctors and volunteer nurses and data entry people.” According to Nancy and Chris, the number of patients they serve is at the most they can handle. “We are limited only by the number of doctors,” says Chris. One thing, M.O.M. is not limited by is the fact they are all about Jesus. “We see the work of God in our patients every single day,” says Chris. “There is such a sweet spirit in this place that reflects in all of the ways we see God taking care of our patients and of our needs. “Every day when I come in to work I feel like I am heading to the mission field,” says Chris. “Not everyone can get on a plane and fly to Africa to go on a medical mission trip, but anyone can come down the street and help serve those in our area that need it most,” says Chris. M.O.M. is always looking for volunteers to help with data entry, patient check-in and other needs. From organizing medications to helping assist the doctors there are several ways for anyone to be involved. Even nurses who are retired are welcome to come and use their gifts as they seek to minister to the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the medically under served. If you are interested in learning more about how you can donate your time or finances to help Medical Outreach Ministries, contact them at (334) 281-8008 or visit www.momclinic.org. Rachel Fisher loves learning what God is doing in the world around her and writing about it. She and her husband Chase are members at Strong Tower at Washington Park, a church plant of Common Ground Montgomery. **Photos by Lori Mercer Photography April 2013
River Region’s Journey
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Christian Cultural Commentary by Bob Crittenden
Shake It Up! I think that people are watching us, especially if they know that we call upon the name of the Lord. They may be observing in a cynical way, hoping to see us stumble or fall. They may be looking to us for hope in their lives. We may be the person that points them to an answer in their lives, or someone through whom God brings an answer to prayer. We are called to readiness - for God to use us in whatever circumstances He pleases, in order to bring honor to Him, to make Him famous. In 2nd Corinthians 2:14-15, we read about the power of influence, which is something we can demonstrate through Christ:
Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. I was recently introduced to the concept of the “Harlem Shake”, which can be likened to the “flash mob” phenomenon. It’s built around a song from an artist named “Baauer.” Here’s the drill: one person, presumably dressed up in some kind of costume, is videotaped doing some sort of dance or movement, then the video is cut abruptly, and the
next scene features a whole lot of people doing lots of dance moves. The most effective “shakes” include plenty of costuming. A school might even throw in a mascot or two. YouTube is full of these demonstrations - some creative, others pretty random. I think these types of activities, like the “Call Me Maybe” videos from last summer that were done on a variety of school buses or the flash mobs that
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continue to be quite popular, indicate the desire of people to express themselves in creative ways. In the Middle East, the “Harlem Shake” is being used as a peaceful protest tool, as recently hundreds of protesters, instead of throwing objects and inflicting damage, have been taking to the streets with dancing. You may not agree with the method or even the cause, but you have to appreciate the creativity and the devotion to non-violence. Sometimes, I think a good message is enhanced - or damaged - by the way that it’s communicated. We have to pay careful attention to not only basic content, but also how we try to get our point across. If we’re creative rather than combative, seeking to build a bridge rather than dig in dogmatically, we can be more influential with people. We can call on the God of creativity to give us fresh ideas for sharing messages consistent with His heart. There are two creative instances to which I want to call attention that show how we can communicate Biblical principles and to influence culture in a Christ-honoring ways. One involves a concept I referred to earlier - the “flash mob”. Perhaps you’ve seen the video that the Second Baptist Church of Houston did a few years ago, where church members and people from the community gathered in a park and performed a dance to music that shared the story of the resurrection. The participants then left the park, but left shoes behind, to be distributed by charities. Montgomery’s Heritage Baptist Church seized on the concept, and did the “Dance Your Shoes Off” event in a field adjacent to their church last year. This year, they’ve decided to take it to EastChase in Montgomery! Another instance involves EQUIP, the leadership training organization that was founded by John Maxwell, which has trained some six million leaders in scores of countries around the world. They are devoted to not only training leaders to do church ministry, but to be transformational leaders - influencing culture for good, consistent with the character of Christ. One country in which they have been particularly active and successful is Guatemala. And, currently, EQUIP President John Hull is leading a 2,400-mile relay from Atlanta to Guatemala City to call attention to their work. Again, here is a compelling message, communicated in an “out of the box” fashion. There are so many ways that God’s people are using fresh ideas and leveraging creativity to glorify Him. Do you have an idea, a concept that you want to get across? Do you sense a need to communicate truth in a different way? Maybe you need to diffuse a potentially difficult situation in your family or workplace – there may be a way to communicate your position in a way that wins rather than repels, that promotes peace rather than dissension. You can rely on our creator God to lead you by His Spirit so that you can be a person of influence on the people with whom you come in contact.
2416 W. Cloverdale Park Montgomery, AL 36106 334.834.8990 www.fumcmontgomery.org
The flower fades but the
word of our God
will stand forever. Isaiah 40:8
Join us for worship, fellowship, and service. Sunday Morning Worship 8:45 & 11 a.m.
Worship Service at Cloverdale School Sunday at 6 p.m.
Dr. R. Lawson Bryan Senior Minister
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. 23
River Region’s Journey
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.
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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: 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. River Region’s Journey
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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.
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: 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 24
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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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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.
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: First UMC, 100 E. Fourth Street, Prattville Divorce Recovery meets Wednesdays at 6:15 p.m., Bldg. 101. 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: 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: 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
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) 2842721. We will also collect Toys for Tots. 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 UMC, 6000 Atlanta Hwy Grief Recovery Support Group meets Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m., Rm 3105, in Fellowship Hall Lobby. 272.8622. 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 one by successfully traveling the journey from mourning to joy. Alicia Glover is the coordinator. For more information contact Glover at 334-281-2754.
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.
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.
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 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.
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. 25
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 (334-834-8990). 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 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.
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 email@example.com or 354-8869.
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. April 2013
River Region’s Journey
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we dis us als ou oth co acq or
cau W ph eat tak are do it s fill no Go im ma
For Your Benefit & God’s Glory by Candy Arrington
Beth left the retreat determined to follow through with the commitment she made to go to bed earlier and get up early enough to have a daily quiet time. She also pledged to stop eating junk food and manage her time better. When she got home, her laptop beckoned. She’d been away from it all weekend and really needed to check her emails. Three hours later, Beth had skimmed emails, tweeted about her weekend, posted retreat pictures on Facebook, and consumed a whole bag of cheese puffs. River Region’s Journey
With reluctance, she glanced at her planner: a report due tomorrow for work and a meeting the next day. Both needed her attention. Beth flipped on the TV and struggled to compose the first paragraph of her report before hearing the buzz of several text messages. After texting replies, she became engrossed in the program on TV. When the news came on, she turned off the TV, and wrote a few more sentences before her cell phone rang. At 1 a.m., she turned off the light and drifted off to sleep with a vague plan to finish the report in the morning before her quiet time. 26
Thirty minutes before Beth needed to leave for work, her eyes flew open to bright sunlight flooding her room. What happened to my alarm? Beth thought. She zoomed around the house getting ready, stuffed her report in her briefcase, and shot up a quick prayer on the way out the door. Less than 24 hours after leaving the retreat, Beth’s resolutions dissolved amid procrastination and time management issues.
Technology distracters – All of us are swimming in a sea of time-wasters. Those
on pro ob pe les ing dis as tim
us bri on al tra
o ht ed
little gadgets, which are so much a part of our lives, appear to help, but often sidetrack us onto things that seem important, but really aren’t. We opt for cyber relationships and quick communication at the expense of face-to-face contact and interaction on more than a surface level. It’s much easier and seems more fun, to sit down with a laptop or cell phone or plop in front of the TV for an hour rather than work on an upcoming project, read the Bible, or have a meaningful conversation with a family member. We’re multi-taskers and we’ve become so accustomed to having some form of technology going we rarely take time to savor silence, enjoy nature, and listen for God’s voice. Perhaps the relationship that suffers most in our frenzy of technology and activities is our relationship with God. Relational distracters – Many times we allow people and their problems to distract us and shift our focus. God wants us to be caring and compassionate, but also expects us to be wise about managing our own lives. Avoid getting involved in other people’s drama. It’s not up to you to counsel and mediate for every friend and acquaintance or coach them academically or professionally. Activity distracters – Often we get caught up in saying yes to everything. While sports offer opportunities to stay physically fit, practices, games, and travel eat up lots of time. Volunteerism can also take over your life. While “good works” are biblical and beneficial, make sure you don’t volunteer beyond reason. Although it sounds crazy, even church activities can fill up your schedule to the point you have no time for a personal relationship with God. Make choices that don’t put you on an impossible schedule. Balance is key to time management.
Redeeming the Time
Identify personal time-wasters – What one person wastes time on might not be a problem for others. While the Internet is an obvious candidate for wasting time, your personal time-waster may be something less obvious, like daydreaming or playing a game on your phone. By applying discipline to areas of our lives we realize as personal time guzzlers, we gain valuable time and lessen stress. Learn to live by a schedule – Many of us are so scheduled by outside sources we bristle at the idea of scheduling ourselves on a personal level. We reason we deserve a little latitude, but that attitude quickly translates into wasting precious time. Al-
though it feels like you have little free time, examine how you spend the next 24 hours. While many hours are pre-scheduled with requirements beyond your control, look at the time that isn’t. You may be surprised to discover there are more hours available than you realize and you are wasting them with mindless pursuits. Prioritize activities – Assign importance to items on your to-do list. Obviously, time alone with God needs to be on the top of the list, but in reality usually gets shuffled to the bottom in favor of things that seem more urgent. But growing spiritually is an investment in your future. Not only will you be equipped to face difficult situations and make wise decisions, but you’ll be able to invest in the lives of others. Your effective use of time and your spiritual example may be just the encouragement someone else needs to make life changes. Do difficult tasks first – Stop procrastinating. Waiting until the last minute adds stress and makes things seem harder than they really are. When you begin difficult assignments or tasks early, your mind has time to process what you are working on and come up with creative solutions. You actually waste additional time when you procrastinate an activity or assignment because it keeps popping up, distracting you from other things and keeping you from sleeping well. Organize – Disorganization is a major deterrent to the effective use of time. Without planning, you end up wasting time and energy, often backtracking instead of accomplishing tasks in a fluid motion. Organization streamlines activities and makes the most effective use of time. Don’t assume you have plenty of time – The news is full of stories of people whose lives were unexpectedly cut short. It’s our human nature to assume we have plenty of time to accomplish goals, admit wrongs, say we’re sorry, or tell others about Jesus. But the truth is none of us know if we’ll have another opportunity beyond today. Part of using time wisely is acknowledging current circumstances could change in the blink of an eye and acting now rather than putting off what can be done today. We all have the same amount of hours in a day. That doesn’t change. But what we do with those hours is our responsibility. You can choose to waste the gift of time or use time for your benefit and God’s glory. Candy Arrington is a contributing writer. 27
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Grace to You
an an les un to fir ag arg rea to the
by John MacArthur
Ashamed of the Gospel For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16) The introductory phrase for I am not ashamed of the gospel adds a final mark of spiritual service to those presented in verses 8–15, the mark of unashamed boldness. Paul was imprisoned in Philippi, chased out of Thessalonica, smuggled out of Damascus and Berea, laughed at in Athens, considered a fool in Corinth, and declared a blasphemer and lawbreaker in Jerusalem. He was stoned and left for dead at Lystra. Some pagans of Paul’s day branded Christianity as atheism because it believed in only one
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God and as being cannibalistic because of a misunderstanding of the Lord’s Supper. But the Jewish religious leaders of Jerusalem did not intimidate Paul, nor did the learned and influential pagans at Ephesus, Athens, and Corinth. The apostle was eager now to preach and teach the gospel in Rome, the capital of the pagan empire that ruled virtually all the known world. He was never deterred by opposition, never disheartened by criticism, and never ashamed, for any reason, of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Although that gospel was then, and still is today, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, it is the only way God has provided for the salvation of men, and Paul was both overjoyed and emboldened
by the privilege of proclaiming its truth and power wherever he went. Although every true believer knows it is a serious sin to be ashamed of his Savior and Lord, he also knows the difficulty of avoiding that sin. When we have opportunity to speak for Christ, we often do not. We know the gospel is unattractive, intimidating, and repulsive to the natural, unsaved person and to the ungodly spiritual system that now dominates the world. The gospel exposes man’s sin, wickedness, depravity, and lostness,
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and it declares pride to be despicable and works righteousness to be worthless in God’s sight. To the sinful heart of unbelievers, the gospel does not appear to be good news but bad, and when they first hear it they often react with disdain against the one presenting it or throw out arguments and theories against it. For that reason, fear of men and of not being able to handle their arguments is doubtlessly the single greatest snare in witnessing. It is said that if a circle of white chalk is traced on the floor around a goose that it will not leave the circle for fear of crossing the white mark. In a similar way, the chalk marks of criticism, ridicule, tradition, and rejection prevent many believers from leaving the security of Christian fellowship to witness to the unsaved. The so-called health and wealth gospel that has swept through much of the church today is not offensive to the world because it offers what the world wants. But that spurious gospel does not offer the gospel of Jesus Christ. Like the false teaching of the Judaizers, it is “a different gospel,” that is, not the gospel at all but an ungodly distortion (Gal. 1:6–7).
Jesus strongly condemned the motives of worldly success and comfort, and those who appeal to such motives play right into the hands of Satan. A scribe once approached Jesus and said, “Teacher, I will follow You wherever You go.” Knowing the man was unwilling to give up his comforts in order to be a disciple, the Lord answered, “The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head” (Matt. 8:19–20). Shortly after that, “another of the disciples said to Him, ‘Lord, permit me first to go and bury my father.’ ” The phrase “bury my father” did not refer to a funeral service but was a colloquialism for awaiting the father’s death in order to receive the inheritance. Jesus therefore told the man, “Follow Me; and allow the dead to bury their own dead” (vv. 21–22). Geoffrey Wilson wrote, “The unpopularity of a crucified Christ has prompted many to present a message which is more palatable to the unbeliever, but the removal of the offense of the cross always renders the message ineffective. An inoffensive gospel is also an inoperative gospel. Thus Christianity is
wounded most in the house of its friends” (Romans: A Digest of Reformed Comment [Carlisle, Pa.: Banner of Truth, 1976], p. 24). Some years ago I spoke at a youth rally, after which the wife of the rally director approached me. Expressing an unbiblical mentality that is common in the church today, she said, “Your message offended me, because you preached as if all of these young people were sinners.” I replied, “I’m glad it came across that way, because that is exactly the message I wanted to communicate.” Paul’s supreme passion was to see men saved. He cared nothing for personal comfort, popularity, or reputation. He offered no compromise of the gospel, because he knew it is the only power available that can change lives for eternity. 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.
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Counselor’s Corner by Brenda Payne, Eastwood Counseling Center
The Ministry of Comfort Are you suffering? Does your current trouble have you feeling confined, restricted, without options and with no way of escape? While suffering is painful, it produces a precious opportunity to know the comfort of God. We never discover the depth of God’s compassion until we get in a place where we need God’s compassion desperately. The apostle Paul wrote that God “comforts us in all our afflictions” (2 Cor. 1:4). In writing to the church at Corinth, Paul relayed a harrowing trial he had recently encountered, “For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired for life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death” (2 Cor. 1: 8-9). Have you ever experienced an affliction so great you did not think you would make it through? Have you called out to God in desperation for deliverance? Paul did not want the Christians in Corinth to be ignorant about the “abundant” trials they would face, but more importantly he did not want them to be ignorant about God’s “abundant” comfort in adversity for His beloved children (2 Cor. 1:5). If you have a child, then you know how heartbreaking it is to watch your child suffer. The greater the suffering, the more your heart breaks and your own personal pain for your child can seem unbearable. Your heart, filled with compassion, moves you to pity and motivates you to comfort and care for your loved one. If you, a sinful parent, feel this way how much more will God (the perfect parent) have pity on you, His child? “As a Father has compassion on his children, so The Lord has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed; he remembers that we are dust.” (Psalm 103:1314). God is the Father of mercies (2 Cor. 1:3). He is the most compassionate about your plight. He is the God of all comfort (2 Cor. 1:3). He is in the suffering by your side advocating for you. He River Region’s Journey
is personally urging you to carry out His plan in the trouble. Do you believe God loves you deeply and wants to comfort you in your pain? Paul believed it. He knew it was true because He personally experienced the comfort of God in the worst of times. That is what makes his words so powerful. If Paul told the Corinthians of God’s mercy and comfort (which he did) but had no personal knowledge of it, God would still be a comforter. But, because we are but “dust” and God knows our frailty, He graciously provides testimonies of His mercy and comfort in the lives of His children. Then, He expects these children to be “ministers of comfort” to others. Paul tells us that God comforts us in our affliction, “so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction” (v. 4). Without experientially knowing suffering and the comfort of God in our own lives, we will tend to be callous and critical of others. We will be prone to give quick, matter of fact answers to hard questions. Aeschylus, “The Father of Tragedy” said, “It is easy when we are in prosperity to give advice to the afflicted.” Adversity makes us merciful because we know what mercy looks like and it teaches us how to comfort others because we ourselves have been comforted. God lets us go through hard times to break us and soften us so that we are able to minister in the name of Jesus Christ to other hurting people. This past year, our family has experienced several difficult circumstances. While not surprised by the “fiery ordeals” that come our way (1 Peter 4:12), we sorrow and struggle in the painful realities of living in a sincursed world. So often we want to hide our pain so no one will see it. We don’t want anyone to know our struggles are great and our faith is weak. We don’t want to be vulnerable. Too often, we want to hide behind masks of Christian “piety” and pretend that we have it all 30
together. Paul teaches us that if we are going to know God’s comfort and be ministers of that comfort we are going to have to be transparent. Paul knew that our troubles are God’s triumphs. Remember it was Paul who a few chapters later wrote, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me” (2 Cor. 12:9). Because by nature, we are proud people who want to rely on ourselves God uses our affliction and His comfort to “make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead” (2 Cor. 1:9). The Bible says that suffering overflowed into Christ’s life as an essential part of his earthly ministry (2 Cor. 1:37). It stands to reason then that suffering will be an essential part of our earthly ministry, too. But it is through Christ and because of His mercy toward us that we share in abundant comfort (2 Cor. 1:5). Christ suffered so that we could be comforted. We are comforted so that we may share His suffering and comfort with others. I pray you experience the Father of mercies and God of all comfort in whatever affliction you are facing, and that after you have been comforted, you will be a minister of comfort to others. **If you would like to get in touch with this or any counselor at Eastwood Counseling Center, please call 334-386-2384. Brenda is a certified counselor through the National Association of Nouthetic Counselors. She counsels part time at Eastwood Presbyterian Church where she is a member. She and her husband Paul have three children--Kadie Allen, Rome, and John Clark. Brenda is active in teaching women’s Bible studies and discipleship. She has taught a number of seminars on issues related to women.
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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 email@example.com or visit www.bridgeoflife.tv. Capitol Heights UMC, 2000 Winona Ave., Montgomery offers Parenting Classes beginning at 7:00 p.m. on Thursdays. 264-2464. 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 1-205-9805577. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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
FOR YOUTH DEVELOPMENT® FOR HEALTHY LIVING FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
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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snack supper $3.00 followed by activities, small groups and lots of fun! Visit www. fumcmontgomery.org or call 334-834-8990. First United Methodist Church will host 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 $2.00. Every fourth Tuesday the time will extend until 3:00 p.m. for bridge, games, and other activities in room 203 in Wesley Hall. For additional information please contact NeeNee Webb at 834-8990. Good News @ Noon is an interdenominational Bible study, held at the First Baptist Community Ministries Building on Adams Street, Thursdays, at noon. Small cost for hot lunch. Call 272.1133. Hall Memorial CME Church, 541 Seibles Road, Montgomery, offers Bible Study Tuesdays at 5:30 P.M. and Wednesdays at 6: 30 P.M. For directions or information call 334-288-0577. Email HallMemorialCME1@aol.com or visit www.HallMemorialCME.blogspot.com. Hall Memorial CME Church says: VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! Tutors, prayer-warriors, and office/clerical volunteers needed for the Montgomery City Jail Ministry & G.E.D program. Opportunities are ongoing. No experience or
cer T. Ca an Ch ww iCo wo wit ing 3rd Fra Ma Ce Mo Ne shi 7:0 (BO Me inv a$ Mo pm for We inf Mt Da chu Ple lea He Mi at 1 We Ne Sh Wo We Op De Mo 5:0 mi at 7 Do enc chu Pe aB on 12A to a cal Pe We eac are sup Ca Riv aF Da ao mu
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Christian Calendar certification necessary. Contact Pastor Anderson T. Graves II, at email@example.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 495-6391. 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. Mid-day Bible Study begins each Wednesday at 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 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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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 invites you to attend its women’s fellowship at 1 pm 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 33
River Region’s Journey
PO rac to t enc Wo Fo Lin Yo Va Re 4-6 dis inv so me a re
Our treatment approach is effective and affordable. Our mission is to bring hope to our patients and their families and lead them on the path to recovery.
What Are The Signs and Symptoms Of Adolescent Alcohol And Drug Abuse? • Sudden or Gradual Drop in Grades • Pattern of School Tardiness • Lying/Blaming • Unusual Need to Access Money • Changes in Peer Group • Sneaking Alcohol or Drugs • Burns on Hands or Clothing • Denial when concerns are expressed regarding drinking and drug use • Unusual sleeping patterns
Free 24 hour Emergency Consultations
(334) 244-0702 or 1-800-873-2887 www.bradfordhealth.com River Region’s Journey
No Le ch Sa Ho 60 Da ror Be Pr Ro NM
M tor Ch am clu en An $1 Fo Hi
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Ex wi Da ne Tim
Calendar POTTER. All women of all denominations or race are welcome. This ministry is available to teenagers as well. Come join us as we lift, encourage and build each other up through the Word of God and the words of our testimonies. For more information contact Evangelist Dr. 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 email@example.com.
This Month 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, The Marriage Prayer and more. Call Ministry Consultant Roddey Roberts to reserve your team’s NMLB Courseware: 407-472-2110.
Saturday, April 6
Mommy Boot Camp presented by Mentors & Moms of Eastwood Presbyterian Church. 9 am to 12:30 pm (registration 8:30 am in Fellowship Hall) Topics covered include: Biblical Communication, Gospel Oriented Parenting, and Dealing with Mommy Anger. Lunch and snacks provided. Cost $10. There will not be a nursery provided. For more info or to register, email Tiffany Higginbotham at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday, April 9
Eastwood Counseling Center will begin a new series of classes, Using the Scriptures in Counseling. Ten classes will be taught by Lou Priolo from 6:30-9:30 pm each Tuesday night, offering 2 credit hours with Birmingham Theological Seminary. Call 386-2384 to register by April 5.
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 35
River Region’s Journey
Community Calendar Christian Community Calendar Christian Center. For more info, visit www.itickets. com or call 205-458-8400. Stadium Fest 2013 at Spain Park in Birmingham. This free, biannual event features Christian music artists and speakers including: Rhett Walker Band, Bill “Bubba” Bussy and Rick Burgess, Jamie Grace, SwitchFoot, Bello, KJ-52, Britt Nicole, Building 429, Crowder, Scott Dawson, Newsboys and more! Children’s Playtime in Bronner Burgess Playground with inflatables, face painting, games and James Spann. Firework finale. Visit www. stadiumfest.com.
Sunday, April 21
Gloria! Montgomery Chorale Spring Concert, 2:30 pm, Stakely Sanctuary, First Baptist Church. The Montgomery Chorale will be joined by the Montgomery Youth Chorale and a professional orchestra to present settings of the Gloria, an ancient hymn of worship and praise of God. The Youth Chorale will sing Vivaldi’s beloved Gloria, with men from the Chorale, and the Chorale will present several settings of the Gloria, including the opening chorus from
River Region’s Journey
the Gloria of Bach’s B Minor Mass. The featured work of the concert will be Francis Poulenc’s animated and exciting setting of the text. Tickets are $15/$10 and may be reserved and purchased online at montgomerychorale.org, from Chorale members or by calling (334) 265-3737.
Friday, April 26
Christ Community Church will host a Community Worship Night at 7:00pm. This night is going to be very special as they will be recording the service for a live album that will be out sometime in late summer/ early fall 2013. For more information about how you can get involved please contact Jeff Bush at 334.273.8110.
Thursday, May 2
The 2013 Montgomery Prayer Breakfast for the City of Montgomery is scheduled for 7 am, in downtown Montgomery. Mayor Todd Strange invites the citizens of the City to join him on this day in a spirit of humility and pray. It is an opportunity to pray and give thanks for the goodness the community experiences. A devoted time of prayer will
be offered on this morning as well as special music. The breakfast will be held at the Alabama Activity Center, located at 201 Dexter Avenue, downtown Montgomery, from 7 am to 8:15 am. A full buffet breakfast will be served. Tickets for the breakfast are $12.00 per person. Individuals may purchase tickets at His Vessel® Ministries, Union Station, 300 Water Street, Suite 100, Montgomery. Seating is limited and will be available on a first come first served bases. For questions or more information call 334-356-4478.
Saturday, May 11
The 3rdAnnual Agape Run For A Mom 5k and Fun Run. Proceeds from the run benefit women facing crisis-pregnancies, foster children, domestic adoptions and soon to be added international adoptions. Dedicate your run to your mom, birthmother, adoptive mom, foster mom, or any special woman in your life. For information and registration for this year’s run, please visit www.runforamom.org. Please send your calendar events to email@example.com by the 18th of the month for FREE print.
al aer am
We’re making room for more.
e ur m,
our new addition—phase ii lots—expected in August! New Park is growing. Phase I is almost sold out. And it’s no wonder—
with a great location within walking distance to the city’s newest schools and YMCA, a wide variety of builders creating comfortable, livable and
now under construction!
beautiful homes, plus a park-like neighborhood perfect for enjoying the great outdoors —New Park is a family favorite.
Stop by our New Home Information Center today before the lots in Phase I are gone!
pArk crossing high s cho ol opening August 2013!
9430 Park Crossing, off Ray Thorington Road
For the latest neighborhood news and promotions, follow us on Facebook.®
River Region’s Journey
Get the Point?
the an to es as Th on me tro we cu an an ap
by Elaine Britt
The Point of the Passage:
Are You Partaking of the Father’s Feast? Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him. Psalm 34:8 If you were really hungry, which of the following would you choose? A. A piece of stale bread and a cup of questionable water B. Your least favorite fast-food meal C. An all-you-can-eat buffet of your favorite foods, prepared specifically for you For once I suspect that we are all in agreement – this is a no-brainer! In your mind’s eye, place yourself in front of such a feast. An image floats into my mind of many
beautiful, scrumptious dishes crafted with foods and ingredients that fit my stringent dietary restrictions… prepared by someone other than me… and with unlimited takehome boxes! An exciting fantasy I must admit. If we hesitate long enough to honestly engage this subject of ‘hunger’ from a spiritual standpoint, however, what does our table look like? The hunger is there – God created us to be in relationship with Him, to ‘hunger’ for Him as Scripture illuminates, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” (Matthew 5:6). Sadly, however, poor choices or inaction on our part often leaves our ‘table’ poorly appointed.
Many times, we indeed choose stale bread and stagnant water spiritually. Arising each morning, we approach the day ahead with little emotion, content to drudge through today the same way that we trudged through yesterday. Our knowledge intake consists only of those people, interactions and events that naturally unfold throughout the day, with no effort expended toward improvement. Spiritual subsistence aptly describes this selected state of mind, offering no more satisfaction than meal ‘A’ would supply physically.
YOU ARE INVITED
to learn more about Cornerstone Classical Christian Academy at our
Student Presentations April 25, 2013 beginning at 6:30 p.m. 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 River Region’s Journey
the is i dit mo ar he an acq be tiv sio an all
Option ‘B’ we will call our ‘Meal-onthe-Run,’ furnishing temporary satisfaction and just enough energy to propel us forward to the next ‘meal’. This mindset encompasses mentally ‘buying into’ what is proffered as producing ‘happiness’ or ‘fulfillment.’ The list is endless and naturally includes only what we each ‘deserve’ as card-carrying members of the human race...the latest electronics; the perfect new car; quick and easy weight loss; a pill, ointment or new drug to cure whatever ails us; our ideal ‘match’ in another person; acquiring ‘enough’ insurance; this or that ‘amazing’ sandwich, beer, appliance…you get the picture. Granted, like the sandwich, each of these fixes works in its own way. The rub is in the gratification being short-lived. Additionally, having had - and then lost - this momentary thrill, our dissatisfaction craves a repeat performance, preferably one with heightened intensity. Our ‘new prize,’ merely an inanimate object, sits idly…the desire to acquire overwhelming. Drugs and alcohol betray us. ‘Getting away with’ criminal activity manifests guilt and possible repercussion. Acquiring wealth or fame may offer an extended sense of well-being, but when all is spent and sampled, we have circled the
board and can find ourselves back at ‘start,’ having gained nothing of permanent worth. These do not even rise to the level of subsistence in that we actually regress because it is unhealthy. Further, embracing this temporary high, like grabbing the sandwich-to-go, poaches our time and attention, effectively displacing more productive actions and choices. The veritable feast detailed in option ‘C,’ our ‘no-brainer,’ is far and above anything available to us in this life. We are not only allowed, but also invited and encouraged to continually gain a more comprehensive knowledge and understanding of God. The Bible contains 66 books, hundreds of chapters, and thousands of verses, accessible for individual enlightenment and instruction. My personal favorite, Philippians 4:4-8, prompts us to, Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, what-
ever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things. These four verses alone are a fairly thorough life-map. When this mere ‘taste’ of Scripture has the potential to enhance our lives and positively alter our thought patterns, imagine the bounty available within the Bible! Why choose otherwise when offered the privilege of this 24/7, all-you-canabsorb buffet which includes a glimpse into the very mind of our Creator God! The banquet is here, the table set, all just for you. God is your gracious host. Feast on His ways and His thoughts, so far beyond our imaginings. Learn of Him, remaining at His table always, savouring the endless illumination embodied in Scripture and in our Lord Jesus Christ. 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.
WHAT IF THERE IS MORE TO CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY THAN THE WHITE PICKET FENCE OF ALL THAT YOU THOUGHT IT SHOULD BE?
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 39
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.
Olympus Has Fallen
Quality: **** Moral Acceptability: +1 (Wholesome) Starring: The Voices of Nicolas Cage, Ryan Reynolds, Emma Stone, Catherine Keener, Cloris Leachman Genre: Family/Animation/Comedy Audience: All ages Rating: PG Content: Very strong moral worldview supporting family and sacrifice, but with some implied humanist, environmentalist elements; no obscenities or profanities, some light scatological elements; animated action violence with characters slapping each other, grandmother gets slapped, father gets hit in the face by monkeys, characters hunt for their food, some scary animals; no sexual content; upper male nudity, some women have small outfits; no alcohol use; no smoking nor drug use; and, teenage daughter is rebellious at times, father is put down upon on times, an emphasis on knowledge, and grandmother and father fight, but father loves his family. THE CROODS is a new animated comedy about one of the world’s first families. The Croods, fear the new until their cave is destroyed. Grug loves to protect his family, including his wife, mother in law, teenage daughter Eep, son, and baby daughter. With his motto being “Fear is in the new,” Grug doesn’t like change. Then, one day, the family’s cave is destroyed by a platonic shift. The family has to travel together to get to higher land. Along the way, they meet Guy, a young man who knows how to make fire. THE CROODS is a funny family movie showing the importance of sticking together and loving each other in the midst of everything. It’s a well-made animated movie. The audience is kept constantly amused by the movie’s clear plotline. The animation in THE CROODS is wonderful, full of imaginative images. However, in addition to the strong pro-family theme, THE CROODS has some implied humanist, environmentalist elements. There is also no mention of the supernatural, or God. Therefore, MOVIEGUIDE® advises families to use some media wisdom while seeing THE CROODS.
Quality: *** Moral Acceptability: -2 (Extreme Caution) Starring: Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart, Finley Jacobsen, Dylan McDermott, Rick Yune, Morgan Freeman, Angela Basset, Melissa Leo, Radha Leo, Cole Hauser, Phil Austin, Kevin Moon, Ashley Judd Genre: Action Adventure/Thriller Audience: Older teenagers and adults Content: Strong moral, biblical worldview with strong Christian content and very strong patriotic content; however, 60 obscenities (including at least 40 “f” words) and 13 profanities (some of which are strong); strong battle violence, civilians are shot up on the street, multiple people are shot point blank in the head, stabbings in the knee, throat and head, necks and arms are broken, sometime blood is squirts from wounds, we see injured people with missing limbs in a hospital, woman is beat to a pulp; no sex, light kissing; upper male nudity; no drinking; light smoking; and, evil but rebuked by integrity, honor, loyalty, and sacrifice. In OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN, a North Korean terrorist group attacks and takes control of the White House with the President of the United States as a hostage. Mike Banning, the former head of security for the President, is the only surviving agent in the White House. It’s up to him to save the President and the country. OLYMPUS HAS FALLEN is an exciting, action-packed thriller with a red, white and blue heart. The story moves fast enough to keep it interesting and intriguing. Though the bad guy is clichéd and the special effects aren’t along the levels of a movie like THE AVENGERS, the movie is enjoyable. There are strong Biblical themes of sacrifice, honor, integrity, and loyalty with multiple Christian elements. One character quotes “The wages of sin is death,” and “God Bless America” is emphasized many times. There is also a strong patriotic message of standing for the principles that built America: principles like liberty and justice. Sadly, the movie is marred by plenty of strong foul language and graphic battle violence.
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
BABBIE MASON SPORTS SPECTRUM
NICOLE C. MULLEN
MATT REDMAN CHRIS TOMLIN
MAX LUCADO KUTLESS
CASTING CROWNS FOCUS ON THE FAMILY
through Christian PROGRAMS and MUSIC. ADRIAN ROGERS LARNELLE HARRIS
ADVENTURES IN ODYSSEY KARI JOBE
NANCY CHRIS AUGUST LEIGH DEMOSS
LAURA STORY FAMILYLIFE TODAY
MARK SCHULTZ JIMMY DEYOUNG
MERCYME RANDY CARLSON
MISSION NETWORK NEWS
SELAH RON HUTCHCRAFT
KEITH & KRISTYN GETTY
STEVEN CURTIS CHAPMAN
MANDISA CHARLES STANLEY
JONI EARECKSON TADA
POINT OF GRACE
BIG DADDY WEAVE
PHILLIPS, CRAIG & DEAN
February 2013 Journey Ad_Layout 1 1/23/13 10:43 AM Page 1
Be a part of a ministry touching thousands of lives each day with God’s Word! Help support the broadcast that grows our community in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. Contact us: 1-800-239-8900 or visit: www.faithradio.org.
334.271.8900 | firstname.lastname@example.org | P.O. Box 210789, Montgomery, AL 36121 Listen LIVE Now at www.faithradio.org | Montgomery WLBF 89.1FM | Andalusia WSTF 91.5FM Dothan WDYF 90.3FM | Eufaula 91.9FM | Alexander City 94.1FM | Sylacauga 94.1FM | Thorsby/Jemison 96.9FM
Come Worship With Us!
Programs offered for all ages and stages of life. Sunday 8:30 am 9:45 am 11:00 am 5:00 pm 6:15 pm
Worship Services Bible Fellowship Classes Worship Services Discipleship Classes Worship Service
Wednesday 4:45 5:30 6:00 6:30 6:35
pm pm pm pm pm
First Family Dinner Sanctuary Orchestra Rehearsal First Family Prayer Time Powerhouse (Student Ministry) Sanctuary Choir Rehearsal
Jay Wolf, pastor
Bring them in... Build them up... Send them out... 305 South Perry Street | Montgomery, AL 36104 17 Call334.834.6310 334.213.7940 today! | www.montgomeryfbc.org www.ReadJourneyMagazine.com
July 2012 • River Region’s Journey
In this month's issue see how Medical Outreach Ministries is meeting the physical and spiritual needs of the medically under served. Also, w...