Page 1

FREE

DECEMBER 2010

Christmas Gift Guide

HOLIDAY EVENT CALENDAR

TIPS 12 to Avoid Aches and Pains


Congratulations to JA’s Davis Rogers!

Wendy’s High-School Heisman National Finalist

“JA has given me the opportunity to play several sports while enjoying other activities. It has given me the nurture of a close-knit community. All of this has helped me accomplish my goals. JA has made the difference.”

Davis is one of six QDWLRQDOÀQDOLVWVFKRVHQ from 65,000 nominees based on leadership, scholarship, service and athletics. He will attend the Heisman Week in New York City representing the Southeast U.S.

— JA senior Davis Rogers

Give the Light of

Hope during the Holidays Patients and families can feel vulnerable and overwhelmed as the end of life nears. The holidays often magnify these feelings. Odyssey offers hope for a more peaceful holiday season. Are your patients hoping for any of the following? ✴ ✴ ✴ ✴ ✴ ✴

Having more time with loved ones? Being comfortable? Not being discouraged? Their lives having purpose? Mending relationships? Seeing a loved one who is far away?

✴ ✴ ✴ ✴ ✴ ✴

Attending an important event? Saying “goodbye”? Family and loved ones being okay? Not having much suffering or pain? Not being alone? Having a last wish?

Hope changes over time. We can help. Let us tell you how. 2001 Airport Road, North, Suite 304 • Flowood, MS 39232 601-939-9288 • www.odsyhealth.com 2 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living


Kid-friendly care for infants, tweens and teens. www.mbhs.org/pediatrics | 601.948.6262


Picture Yourself in Clinton for the Christmas Parade and Holiday Events

Chbgnl_hk<ebgmhglZggnZe <akblmfZlIZkZ]^Zg]hma^k aheb]Zr^o^gml'?ng_hkma^ pahe^_Zfber Lighting of Kids’ Towne Thursday, Dec. 2, 6 pm Parade & Tree Lighting Saturday, Dec. 4, 6 pm BRIGHTON PARK KIDS’ EVENTS Reserve your spot today! (for K-6th Graders) Shop `Til You Drop Saturday, Dec. 11, 10am-2pm (Childcare available) Elf Workshop Friday, Dec. 17, 6pm-9:30pm

For more information, visit

www.clintonms.org

Things are Always Clicking in Clinton!

HE A LT HC A R E f o r w o m e n b y w o m e n. • Obstetrics • Gynecology • Incontinence Testing • Infertility • Ultrasound • Bone Density • Laser for Vein & Hair Removal • Skin Rejuvenation • Digital Mammography

EAST LAKELAND OB - GYN ASSOCIATES , PA

601.936.1400 800.273.6716 The Suites at River Oaks 1020 River Oaks Drive Suite 320 Jackson, MS 39232

E A R LY DETECTION SAVES LIVES

Standing, L-R: Donna G. Breeland, M.D.; Natasha N. Hardeman, M.D.; Shani K. Meck, M.D.; Freda McKissic Bush, M.D. Seated, L-R: Mary W. (Katie) Sartin, CFNP; Temeka L. Johnson, M.D.; Missy Jackson McMinn, M.D; Rhonda Sullivan-Ford, M.D.; Sharon K. Brown, CFNP Beverly A. McMillan, M.D., Emeritus

4 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living


ST. CATHERINEâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S VILLAGE

NEW GARDEN HOMES ~ NEWLY REFURBISHED INDEPENDENT APARTMENTS ALZHEIMERâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S ASSISTED LIVING ASSISTED LIVING ~ SKILLED NURSING CARE WE CURRENTLY HAVE AVAILABILITY IN INDEPENDENT LIVING APARTMENTS. 5HWLUHPHQWOLYLQJDW6W&DWKHULQH¶V9LOODJHRIIHUV¿UVWFODVVVHUYLFHVDQGDPHQLWLHV\RXQHHG WRFRQWLQXHOLYLQJ\RXUYLEUDQWLQGHSHQGHQWOLIHVW\OH±SOXVWKHPRVWFRPSOHWHSODQIRU\RXU IXWXUHWKURXJKWKHVROLG¿QDQFLDOSURWHFWLRQRIRXU/LIH&DUHSURJUDP 6KRXOG\RXHYHUQHHGFDUH\RX¶OOKDYHJXDUDQWHHGDFFHVVWRRQVLWHKHDOWKFHQWHUVHUYLFHV DWSUHGLFWDEOHPRQWKO\FRVWVIRUWKHUHVWRI\RXUOLIH&DOOWRGD\WRVFKHGXOHDFRPSOLPHQWDU\ OXQFK DQG WRXU /HW XV VKRZ \RX KRZ VHFXUH UHWLUHPHQW OLYLQJ ZDV PHDQW WR EH

200 DOMINICAN DRIVE, MADISON, MS 39110 601.856.0123 OR TOLL-FREE 800.223.0809 village@stdom.com stcatherinesvillage.com

6W&DWKHULQH¶V9LOODJHLV0LVVLVVLSSL¶VRQO\UHWLUHPHQWFRPPXQLW\ DFFUHGLWHGE\WKH&RQWLQXLQJ&DUH$FFUHGLWDWLRQ&RPPLVVLRQ


contents DECEMBER 2010 columns 12 The Way I See It Story collectors

16 HomeWorks A cup of Christmas soup

17 Modern Motherhood Is Jesus still a baby?

18 Our Daily Bread How do you keep the faith?

24 All in the Family Are you a failure as a Christian?

30 Let’s Talk it Over Addiction recovery is possible

32 Legal Advice My children’s names are on everything. Is that okay?

feature

26

34 Money Talks

Bill and Patti Buckner

Tentative about taxes?

Trusting God in the Tough Stuff

35 Christmas Village The Greatest Gift

departments

31

11 December Details 14 Fresh Finds

14

Christmas gift guide

19 Healthy Living Smoke-free Sabbath

21 Salt & Light

11

36

Bring joy to the elderly this Christmas

23 The Doctor is In 12 tips to avoid aches and pains

31 Food For Thought A Christmas brunch

33 This is My Story Cross healed hearts

36 Rave Reviews Books, Movies, Music

in every issue

What’s Coming Next Month? Judy Bryant A soul restored

8 37 38 38

Editor’s Letter Event Calendar Quips & Quotes Ad Directory

®

Volume 5, Number 7 Publisher: MHS Publications, Inc., Member, M.I.P.A. Editor: Marilyn Tinnin marilyn@metrochristianliving.com Associate Editor: Christi B. Steckel christi@metrochristianliving.com Administrative Assistant: Carol Rodgers carol@metrochristianliving.com Sales & Editorial Assistant Ashley Cirilli Art Direction/Graphic Design Sandra K. Goff Sales Marilyn Tinnin, Christi B. Steckel, Ashley Cirilli Contributing Writers: Lydia Bolen, John Cox, Rochelle Culp, Jana Dean, Susan Deaver, Cathy Haynie, William Howell, Robin O’Bryant, Susan E. Richardson, Martin E. Willoughby, Jr. Cover Photography Stegall Imagery Special thanks to Callaway’s Yard & Garden Distribution Assistants: Laura Blackledge, Kim Roberts, Carol Rodgers, Rachel Schulte, Jerri Strickland, Priscilla Sullivan, Bob Whatley

Metro Christian Living is committed to encouraging individuals in their daily lives by presenting the faith stories of others and by providing information that will point every person, at every stage of life, to a deeper, authentic, personal, and life changing encounter with Jesus Christ. Views expressed in Metro Christian Living do not necessarily represent those of the publisher. Every effort has been made by the Metro Christian Living staff to insure accuracy of the publication contents. However, we do not guarantee the accuracy of all information nor the absence of errors and omissions; hence, no responsibility can be or is assumed. All Rights Reserved. Copyright 2008 by Metro Christian Living, Inc. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version, copyright 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of International Bible Society.

Metro Christian Living is published monthly and is available at high traffic locations throughout the metropolitan area. Copies are also available by subscription, $29 for one year. Single issues available for $3 an issue. POSTMASTER: Send change of address to Metro Christian Living, 573 Highway 51 North, Suite C, Ridgeland, MS 39157, phone number 601-790-9076.

M I P A Mississippi Independent Publishers' Alliance

6 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living


Our Inspirationâ&#x20AC;ŚThe Burragesâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Next Anniversary After being diagnosed with cancer within just two weeks of each other, the Burrages are now cancer survivors thanks to St. Dominicâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Cancer Services. For more information about our Cancer Services call 601-200-3300 or visit stdom.com for more inspirational patient stories.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Everyone at St. Dominicâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gave us hope.â&#x20AC;?

THE BURRAGESâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; TEAM: Paul Seago, MD, Guangzhi Qu, MD and the Cancer Center staff

PAT & CHARLES BURRAGE Brandon, MS

Skilled Hands. Compassionate Hearts.

Everything you need for Christmas and designers to help!

L A N D S C A P E & I R R I G AT I O N County Line Rd at Pear Orchard Ridgeland, MS

Over 55 years of service

WWWCALLAWAYSONLINECOMs601-957-1731 metrochristianliving.com â?&#x2DC; DECEMBER 2010 7


➺editor’s letter New Songs, Old Words…and Very Good News

M

to the Lord a ❝ Sing new song, for he has done marvelous things.

– Psalm 98:1

Maura McIntosh recently gave me her new CD. It’s a mix of favorite old hymns and her original songs. I immediately downloaded the entire collection to my iPod. Every morning for the last two weeks as I take my walk around the neighborhood, her clear beautiful voice and heartfelt lyrics encourage my soul. Even the familiar old hymns sound new. It is as though I am hearing words I know by heart for the first time. It’s just like God to take old things and make them new (Revelation 21:5). I never grow tired of Psalms. It is there that God references “new songs” again and again. I think He was the original recycler! He takes the refuse of our lives and writes a story that is more wonderful than we could ever have dreamed. In our lifetimes we are blessed to discover many “new songs,” those “aha” moments when we recognize the deeper extraordinary meaning within the ordinary like when we look across the breakfast table and our eyes fill with happy tears just watching a spouse or a child engaged in an everyday moment. There’s a surprise “real time” realization that these people and our time together are gifts. I’m also thinking of the scene on the hillside near Bethlehem 2000 years ago when angels announced the good news of Christ’s birth to the shepherds. These shepherds were a rather motley group of ordinary people in the middle of their tasks when the mundane was interrupted by a heavenly choir…literally. New Song? I doubt there has been anything like it before or since, and I just imagine the shepherds had a “real time” moment of glimpsing into God’s heart in its enormity of inclusiveness and its intimacy of relationship and surely, there were happy tears in their eyes too. As you celebrate Christmas this year, focus on the wonder of God’s totally illogical desire to have a relationship with us with all of our earthly hang-ups, baggage and too often blasé attitudes. There is a freshness in that thought; that no matter how many years pass, no matter how many life changes interrupt, no matter where we’ve been, where we are, what we’ve done—the fact that the God of the Universe sent his beloved and only begotten son to earth to do for us that which we could not do for ourselves…well, just take it in and contemplate the fact that defies reason. In this particular period of history, most of us recognize that we desperately need a savior, no less than the shepherds on those far away hills outside the little nowhere village of Bethlehem needed a savior 2000 years ago. How it comforts me to read that he, our Lord, doesn’t change. He is the same yesterday, today and forever (Hebrews 13:8). It’s also comforting to know that there is something permanent in this impermanent world. The mere thought appeals to me more with every passing day. I can’t wait for you to read our cover story on Bill and Patti Buckner. It was Bill who called me out of the blue one day in 1992 and asked me if I would come to work at Fellowship of Christian Athletes as the administrative assistant. I could not turn on a computer, had never seen a fax machine and could not balance a checkbook if my life depended on it. Even the Lord must have had to work overtime on making a “new song” out of this situation! Bill was undeterred. He convinced me that I was called to this and he would see that I received the training to succeed. I learned the job and stayed for three years, but God only knew what He had in mind when He put me in that place. I learned to operate the equipment, fill out the reports and believe it or not, balance their checkbook. But it was the super encouragement I received from the men I worked for and the friendships I made with the incredible Godly members of the FCA board that planted the desire in my heart to create this magazine. One of Bill’s board members told me that Bill Buckner has probably led more people to Christ than anyone else in the state of Mississippi. He is the real deal for sure. I could wax on forever about this issue. You are in for a treat—so start reading! Merry Christmas from all of us at Metro Christian Living. May peace, love and Christ fill your heart with new songs this season! Y

Marilyn H. Tinnin, Publisher and Editor marilyn@metrochristianliving.com

8 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living


November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month

William C. Ashford, M.D.

Elizabeth Wyatt Mitchell, M.D.

Jay Brown, M.D.

At The Eye Group of Mississippi, we know diabetic eye problems are among the most common complications facing people with diabetes.

Early Detection and Treatment is the Key! Early detection and treatment of diabetic retinopathy can usually prevent permanent vision loss. Call The Eye Group of Mississippi to schedule your appointment.

Colonnades, Suite 603, 501 Marshall Street, Jackson, MS 39202 ss

www.eyegroupms.com Everything You Envision for Comprehensive Eye Care

from Pennsylvania Life Insurance Company, a member of the Universal American family of companies.

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Welcome the holidays.

Dogwood Festival Market in Flowood, Northpark Mall in Ridgeland, Mall at Barnes Crossing in Tupelo, our original store in Indianola, or our temporary holiday location at The Original Praline Pecan TM Turtle Creek Mall in Hattiesburg ÂŁÂ&#x2021;nääÂ&#x2021;x{ÂŁÂ&#x2021;Ă&#x2C6;Ă&#x201C;xĂ&#x201C;Ă&#x160;UĂ&#x160;ÂŤiV>Â&#x2DC;Â&#x2026;Â&#x153;Ă&#x2022;Ă&#x192;i°VÂ&#x153;Â&#x201C;

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metrochristianliving.com â?&#x2DC; DECEMBER 2010 9


Shaping visions of places worth calling HOME.

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10 DECEMBER 2010 â?&#x2DC; Metro Christian Living

Because life insurance isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t for the people who dieâ&#x20AC;&#x201D; Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s for the people they leave behind.

Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company P.O. Box 78 Jackson, MS 39205 (601) 981-7422 â&#x20AC;˘ sfbli.com


December Details December 25, 1789 Congress was in session on the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first Christmas under the new constitution.

The Salvation Army has been sending Santa Claus-clad donation collectors into the streets since the

1890s.

30-35 million

1828

The year Joel R. Poinsett, an American minister to Mexico, brought Poinsettia plants from Mexico to America.

The amount of Christmas trees sold in the US each year. Christmas was declared a federal holiday in the United States on

June 26, 1870.

Invites you to LISTEN to your favorite Christian Artists!

Christmas music around the clock Christmas Eve & Christmas Day!

metrochristianliving.com â?&#x2DC; DECEMBER 2010 11


O! Gift How Cute Market Wrap up your Christmas List with the O! How Cute Girls!

COME SHOP WITH US ! Wish List Now Available Just for You!

Pearl

601-939-5082 Downtown Brandon

601-825-5080

Thinkthis holiday Theatre season! Tickets On Sale Now for

A Christmas Carol

December 3-19, 2010

For Your Holiday Shopping â&#x20AC;&#x201C; See 3 shows for $60 The 39 Steps Comedy January 25 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; February 6, 2011

A Soldierâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Play Drama April 5 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 17, 2011

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat Musical May 24 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; June 5, 2011

$25 Gift Certificates also available Call Today!

lfg7ojn7ikig5R5(1-.!.".,8)' 12 DECEMBER 2010 â?&#x2DC; Metro Christian Living

â&#x17E;şthe way i see it by MARTIN E. WILLOUGHBY, JR.

Story Collectors Everyone has a story to tell. Are you listening?

ave you ever had a conversation with someone when the person asks you a question only to cut you off mid-response and talk about himself or herself for the next 30 minutes? Or, perhaps you have had a conversation with someone who seemed to be overly anxious to â&#x20AC;&#x153;one upâ&#x20AC;? whatever story you told as if it was a contest? It is as if the other person is not really listening at all. I think it is in our nature to want to be heard. Stephen Covey in his bestselling book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People emphasizes the need to understand before seeking to be understood. Similarly, there is the common expression that â&#x20AC;&#x153;people donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t care what you know, until they know you care.â&#x20AC;? I spoke with someone recently who bluntly put it this way, â&#x20AC;&#x153;There is no reason to be a complainer because nobody really cares anyway.â&#x20AC;? Recent studies have found a dramatic uptick of loneliness in our society. One study by the AARP found that about 35 percent of the participants were chronically lonely. Those suffering the most were adults in their 40s and 50s. Interestingly, there appears to be a pervasive loneliness regardless of race, gender, educational background and geography. Even married people reported high rates of loneliness. The only people who had lower rates of loneliness in the survey were those who identified themselves as very religious. There appear to be several factors behind these trends. There has been a rapid increase in single person households rising from 20.6 million in 1985 to 31.7 million in 2009. Although Facebook and other social media have increased connections, there is a counter trend of a breakdown in traditional social structures such as civic organizations. Robert D. Putnam explores this trend in his book Bowling Alone. Although we are busier and more technologically connected than ever, we seem to actually be more alone. It appears that Facebook is no substitute for face time.

H

I believe one of the greatest gifts we can give someone is to truly be interested and listen to them. I met a well-known leader recently in a small group setting. After about five minutes, I felt like I had known him forever. He was incredibly present and made me feel like I was the only person in the room. In reality he had not really shared much about himself at all. Instead, he had asked me thoughtful and insightful questions. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve heard these types of people called â&#x20AC;&#x153;story collectors.â&#x20AC;? I like that term. We all have a story. Our lives are a narrative, but we often donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t really get to share it with anyone. I think this is a big part of the loneliness. One of my good friends is a great story collector. He asks you questions that nobody else does. He doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t settle for surface answers and probes deep for authentic responses. He is known to interrupt a dinner party and say â&#x20AC;&#x153;no discussions about your kids or football for the next hour. Talk about something else.â&#x20AC;? As we approach the Christmas season, there is much to celebrate. We serve a God who knows us. He knows every hair on our head. He â&#x20AC;&#x153;knit us together in our motherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s womb.â&#x20AC;? (Psalm 139). The question is whether we actually want to know Him and those around us. As Paul encourages the Philippians, we are to â&#x20AC;&#x153;Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.â&#x20AC;? We value people by being interested in who they are and what they are about. We all have the ability to become great story collectors and share that gift with those in our path in life. That might be the best gift we could give someone this year. Merry Christmas!

Y

Martin E. Willoughby Jr. is an attorney/business consultant with Willoughby Law Group, PLLC, located in Ridgeland. He and his wife Nicki have two children, Ally and Trey, and live in Madison.


persnickety is … the best place to find a gift in Mississippi.*

Start your Christmas shopping at Gameroom Gallery, and give a gift the entire family can enjoy! 1HZ 8VHG3RRO7DEOHV )RRVEDOO $LU+RFNH\ 3LQJ3RQJ7DEOHV 3RNHU7DEOHV 6XSSOLHU %DUV %DUVWRROV 6SDV +RW7XEV $UFDGH*DPHV

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Peter’s Pottery The Good Earth Pottery Annieglass Jay Strongwater Mary Rose Young

Moni Pottery Simon Pearce Riedel Thymes

Niven Morgan Herend Casafina Vietri Seda France 601-853-7777 660 Ridgewood Rd. Ridgeland, MS www.gameroom-gallery.com

*according to Mississippi Magazine voters

2078 Main Street, Madison, MS 39110 • 601-853-9595

“As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15

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Wrap It Up in Canton! ‘Ž‹†ƒ›Š‘’’‹‰ǥ ‹’Ž‡ƒ†‡”•‘ƒŽǨ ’‡…‹ƒŽ˜‡–•

‹•‹––Š‡•‡‡”…Šƒ–• ‘„Ž‡Ǧƒ––• ‡™‡Ž‡”• ƒ†‡Ž‹‡ǯ• ‹•ˆ‘””‹‹–‹˜‡ ‹‘–”‡‡–‘‘• ƒ‹ƒƬŠ‡ƒ…”‘‘‘—–‹“—‡ Š‡ ƒŽŽ‡”› ’‡…‹ƒŽ”‡ƒ–‹‘• ƒ–‘“—ƒ”‡–‹“—‡• ƒ”‰ƒ”‡–ǯ••–ƒ–‡‹Ž˜‡” Š‡”‹…‡–‘š —Žǯ• ‹ˆ–• Šƒ”Ž‘––‡ǯ•‡„ Š‡’‘”‹— ‡ƪ‡…–‹‘•–‹“—‡•Ƭ‘ŽŽ‡…–‹„Ž‡• Š‡‹ŽŽ–‘”‡ ‡”‹‡•–Š‡“—ƒ”‡ ƒŽŽ‘™—•‹…Ƭ –…ǤǤǤ ‹ˆ– ƒŽŽ‡”› ƒ–‘‘˜‡–‹‘Ƭ‹•‹–‘”•—”‡ƒ—

‹…–‘”‹ƒŠ”‹•–ƒ• ‡•–‹˜ƒŽ ‘˜‡„‡”ͦ͢Ǧ‡…‡„‡”ͣ͢ ƒ–‘‹•–”—Ž›ƒ ‘Ž‹†ƒ›‘†‡”Žƒ† ‡Ž‡„”ƒ–‡–Š‡Œ‘›‘ˆ–Š‡•‡ƒ•‘—†‡” –Š‘—•ƒ†•‘ˆ•’ƒ”Ž‹‰Ž‹‰Š–•Ǩ 

‡”…Šƒ–•’‡ ‘—•‡ ‘˜‡„‡”ͦ͢Ǧͧ͢͡͠ǣ͠͠ƒǦͨǣ͠͠’ ‘˜‡„‡”ͨ͢͡ǣ͠͠’Ǧͦǣ͠͠’ Š‘’–Š‡ ‹ˆ–Ƭ–‹“—‡“—ƒ”‡‘ˆ ‹••‹••‹’’‹Ǩ‹•‹–‘—”—‹“—‡•–‘”‡•ƒ† †‹•…‘˜‡”–Š‡’Ž‡ƒ•—”‡‘ˆ•Š‘’’‹‰ˆ‘” –Š‡Š‘Ž‹†ƒ›•Ǩ 

͠–Š—ƒŽ‹’ǯ‹†‡” ‡…‡„‡”ͤ͡͠ǣ͠͠’Ǧͩǣ͠͠’ ƒ”–‹…‹’ƒ–‹‰‡”…Šƒ–•‘ơ‡”–Š‡‹” ˜‡”•‹‘‘ˆŠ”‹•–ƒ• ‘–‹†‡”Ǩ‘–‡ ˆ‘”›‘—”ˆƒ˜‘”‹–‡Ǩ

͢͜͝Ǥͤͥ͡Ǥͤ͢͡͝ ǤǦ    Ǥ  ǯ            Ǩ

metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 13


➺fresh finds by CHRISTI B. STECKEL

Christmas GIFT GUIDE

This Christmas let MCL help you find the perfect gift for everyone on your list!

An exquisite gift or decoration, Mark Roberts Limited Edition signed and numbered Christmas fairies are one-of-a-kind. $38-118, Persnickety, (601) 853-9595

Christmas family stocking with free personalization makes a great gift every year! $42.95 O! How Cute, (601) 825-5080

Frame your Christmas family photo in a Swanky Frame handmade in Madison. $62-72, Persnickety in Madison, (601) 853-9595

Remember the reason for the season with this antique finish nativity six piece set. $195, Callaway’s Yard & Garden Center in Ridgeland, (601) 957-1731.

Elegant pool table and fun Air Hockey Table, Gameroom Gallery in Ridgeland, (601) 853-7777, www.gameroom-gallery.com

14 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

Barbara Garwood design, Blue topaz cross made by Faberge Technique in Mongolia, Russia. $287, Joel Clarke and Sons Jewelry on Lakeland Dr. in Jackson, 601.983.2600

“What Do You Think?” By Ellen Langford, Framed Acrylic on Paper. Lounge Art in Canton Mart in Jackson (601) 206-1788


The V.I.P. Crate is filled to the brim with Southern Gourmet delights! $134.95, www.pecanhouse.com or 1-800-541-6252

This 2010 Collectible Tin featuring the “Sunflower River Trestle” contains the 7-way Combo from Indianola Pecan House. $22.95, www.pecanhouse.com or visit the Flowood store in Dogwood Center.

Make this Monkey Bread mix for your monkeys on Christmas Eve! $12, O! How Cute in downtown Brandon or in Pearl off I-20, (601) 825-5080

Handmade Sterling Silver Freshwater Pearl Necklace. $24.97, Monkey Charms on Lakeland Dr. or Hwy. 80 in Brandon, (601) 992-6565

Bella Enchanted Leather Cuff Bracelets $12.99$18.99, Monkey Charms www.monkeycharms.com

Christmas tree serving dish is great for chips and dips at your holiday party! $39.95, Apple Annie’s Gift Shop on Grants Ferry road at the Reservoir, (601) 992-9925

Personalized Christmas family tree serving dish perfect for Santa’s cookies! $12.95 (personalization is free), Apple Annie’s Gift Shop, www.appleanniesgiftshop.com.

Make your Christmas decorations complete with a custom Christmas wreath designed by Callaway’s designers or personalize your own wreath. $175.99, Callaway’s Yard & Garden Center in Ridgeland, www.callaways.ms

metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 15


➺homeworks by CATHY HAYNIE

A Cup of

Christmas Soup B E YOND Y OUR B EST.

L

ife picks up in December. With already crowded schedules to balance, we add Christmas shopping, holiday cooking, special programs, parties and more. But a little of this and little of that doesn’t have to make us stressed out. Just like a cup of soup, it can all blend together for the perfect December. Enjoy this special time of year as you reflect on its true meaning, the birth of our Savior. In the busy days before Christmas and during the holidays, soup simmering on the stove can be the ultimate comfort food. It is a simple way to serve dinner for your family or a crowd, and this hearty meal in a cup stands alone for supper. So pull out your Christmas mugs and serve soup for supper! As you stir in your ingredients, consider the ingredients of a balanced life amidst busy days. Consider what draws your family together and what calms your soul. Let the Lord fill you up as you fill up your bowl with your Christmas soup. Here are simple recipes fit for your reflection time and for your dinner table.

Pantry Soup

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1 can chili with beans 1 can chili without beans 1 can chicken and stars soup 1 can Rotel tomatoes with chilies 1 can tomato soup 1 can mixed vegetables 1 can shoe peg corn

This recipe recently made its way around my office and is as simple as it gets. Combine the contents of the following cans (do not drain) and simmer.

Creamy Chicken Enchilada Soup 1 envelope enchilada sauce mix 1 can corn, drained 1 can Rotel tomatoes with green chilies 2 cans Ranch-style beans (with or without jalapenos) 2 cans chicken broth 1 can cream of chicken soup 2 cups sour cream 1 Rotisserie chicken, pulled from bone

Recently served (with rave reviews) at a school function, this recipe comes from Debbie Thornton’s cookbook, Anybody Can Cook in a Crock Pot! Combine ingredients on the stove top or in a crock-pot and simmer. 16 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

Pizza Soup 1 pound sausage, cooked and crumbled (try precooked Jimmy Dean turkey sausage crumbles or patties for a short cut) 1/4 pound sliced pepperoni, halved 1 can sliced mushrooms 3/4 cup frozen chopped onion 1/2 cup frozen chopped green bell peppers 3 cans tomato soup 3 soup cans of water 1 can Italian-style tomatoes, stewed or diced

A friend gave this one to me, and if it says pizza my kids give it a thumbs up! While this recipe calls for short cuts like frozen chopped vegetables, fresh ones will certainly work. Simmer on the stove top.

Quick Corn Chowder 1 package of precooked and crumbled bacon (about 1/2 cup or so) 4 (10 oz) cans Campbell’s cream of potato soup 4 soup cans low fat milk 2 cans corn, drained

Talk about fast! Stir ingredients into a sauce pan, heat, and eat. For quick soup sides, try cheese toast, corn bread muffins from a mix or oyster crackers. Y Cathy Haynie and her husband Jack have three children and live in Madison. Cathy is the Headmaster of Christ Covenant School in Ridgeland. She occasionally speaks to groups on Honoring God in the Home, Managing the Busy Life, and Balancing Work and Home. Contact her at chaynie@christcovenantschool.net.


modern motherhood by ROBIN O’BRYANT Illustration by MARY MARGARET MINK

Is Jesus Still a Baby? “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.” Isaiah 9: 6-7 (NIV)

Y

You never know when children will open their mouths and say something so brutally honest it makes you laugh out loud or ask a question that leaves you speechless for an answer. Occasionally they unknowingly speak a truth so profoundly you wonder why you never realized it on your own. It was a morning like any other. My two daughters sat on stools in our kitchen, eating breakfast and getting ready for school. I was pouring myself a cup of coffee and packing lunches for the day as they chatted. As my daughters ate, their conversation turned to Christmas. Emma, my four-year-old, snapped her head up as though she’d had an epiphany and asked, “Momma is Jesus still a baby?” Before I could even set the coffee pot down on the counter and turn to face her, my six-year-old Aubrey laughed and said, “Oh Emma! He’s so much bigger than you think!” I know that Aubrey’s response wasn’t meant to inspire deep philosophical discussion. She has simply logged more Sunday school hours than her little sister and has a better grasp of Jesus’ whole life. Aubrey has heard the stories of His ministry, feeding the multitudes, raising the dead and healing the sick, and Jesus is a grown man in her mind. But Aubrey’s response resonated deeply with me. My mouth hung open as I absorbed what she had said. So many people, some who label themselves as skeptics but also some who call themselves Christians still only see Jesus as a baby in a manger. It’s so easy to be swept up into living our lives on earth that we allow Jesus to only become a part of our Sunday morning routine. It’s simple to punch the clock and just show up at church, pay our respects and then resume life as usual as soon as we walk out the door. When we do that, we are essentially leaving Jesus in the manger. We are forgetting that that baby grew into a child who challenged the religious leaders of His day. We are forgetting that He was born to fulfill prophesy and that His sole purpose in being born was to give us the opportunity to

be in fellowship with God again. To a Christian the birth of Jesus should only be surpassed in beauty and importance by His death, burial and resurrection. Are you serving baby Jesus by punching the church clock or is the Jesus you serve the same one who fed 5,000 with only three loaves and two fish? Is the Jesus you serve still lying sweetly in the manger, or is he continuing to change your life through your relationship with a living God? This Christmas season my six-year-old has challenged me to believe that Jesus is bigger than I could ever imagine. This year I’ll celebrate His birth, while remembering His resurrection. How big is Jesus to you? Y Robin O’Bryant is a wife, stay-at-home-mother to three daughters, author, humor columnist and speaker. She thanks God for the days she is successfully able to multitask. Read her blog at www.robinschicks.com or contact her via email at robinschicks@gmail.com.

Victory Construction Inc.

- Custom Homebuilding - Remodeling - Tenant Improvements

Barry C. Cooper Licensed Residential Builder 601.573.1441

“Overwhelming victory is ours through our Lord Jesus Christ.” Romans 8:37 metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 17


â&#x17E;şour daily bread by SUSAN DEAVER

How Do You Keep THE FAITH? T his column is for sharing our faith with other readers. Sharing with and serving others changes us and reminds us that our time on earth is about much more than our own needs. To share your story or favorite scripture, please e-mail us at info@metrochristianliving.com.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Romans 12:10

Paige and Larry Stowe Paige is a member of Christ United Methodist Church; Larry is a member of Meadowbrook Church of Christ. We have been married for 16 years and been blessed with our four daughters who married wonderful Christian men and have given us nine beautiful grandchildren. God has richly blessed us, but that doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mean we havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t had sorrow in our lives. We both lost our spouses to cancer and experienced the helplessness of watching that awful disease take its physical and emotional toll. Thankfully, we had built our arks before these floods came and knew God loved us and heard our prayers. Surrounded by Christian friends and Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s presence, we claimed his promise in Isaiah 43: 2: â&#x20AC;&#x153;When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you.â&#x20AC;? As we have matured in our faith, we have come to understand that trials and troubles make our walk with God stronger. The verse in Isaiah says â&#x20AC;&#x153;when you pass through the waters,â&#x20AC;? not â&#x20AC;&#x153;if.â&#x20AC;? Being a Christian doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t exempt you from pain, sorrow and disappointment. Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s grace is sufficient, however, and leaning on His strength, we â&#x20AC;&#x153;can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.â&#x20AC;? Philippians 4:13. Thankfully, we donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know what the future holds, and we simply trust God to help us live each day to the fullest. Our prayer is simply that God will put someone in our paths who needs to know Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s love and grace and that we will minister to them with a servant spirit. â&#x20AC;&#x153;My brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance.â&#x20AC;? James 1: 2-3

Martha Lane â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cast all your anxiety on God because He cares for you.â&#x20AC;? 1 Peter 5:7 Through the years I have left hundreds of flyers in restrooms, waiting rooms, etc. with a prayer that God would enlighten or encourage someone with the message. Then one morning I went to the restroom at the gym where I workout, and to my surprise, there was a tract in the restroom that seemed to have been left just for me. My heart was so heavy with a burden I was carrying at the time. The title seemed to jump out at me â&#x20AC;&#x153;He Cares.â&#x20AC;? It contained the above scripture and this reminder, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Whatever your burden may be at this hour, will you not let God bear it? He has proved to thousands through the years to be a loving friend and a lasting friend.â&#x20AC;? The rest of the message was that God supplies sufficient strength and grace for our needs and the cheering assurance that through this trial, I can experience more of His love, comfort and compassion. I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know who left it, but I thanked God for that person and their ministry. It occurred to me that while I had always been a distributor, now I was the recipient when my heavenly Father knew I needed that message of encouragement. My burden was lifted and my faith in Him was renewed. He is awesome! â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you.â&#x20AC;? Psalm 55:22 Y Susan Deaver is a freelance writer. She and her husband Mac live in Madison and are members of Christ United Methodist Church in Jackson. Contact Susan at sldeaver@comcast.net

Merry Christmas! Jennifer C. Lumbley, DMD 1679 Old Fannin Rd. Suite A Flowood, MS 39232

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NEW PATIENTS ARE ALWAYS WELCOME! 2IĂ&#x20AC;FH+RXUV )ULGD\DPSP 6DWXUGD\DPSP (PDLOEULWHH[SUHVVLRQV#DWWQHt 18 DECEMBER 2010 â?&#x2DC; Metro Christian Living

DANCE / ACTIVE WEAR

More than just a dance store! For all your childs dance needs and for all your workout clothes

880 Avery Blvd. â&#x20AC;˘ Ridgeland, MS 39157 PAT YEOMANS & SKIP YEOMANS

(601) 956-1595


New December 9, 10  11 • 5 pm VQ 8 pm Location Mississippi Museum of Natural Science, Jackson $1.00 Admission ($5 max per family)

Christmas Tree Parade • Train Rides Christmas Carols • Polar Post Office Temporary Tattoos • Glow Bracelets Hot Apple Cider Appearances by Santa Claus Living Nativity And More

Enjoy an old fashioned Christmas as your family strolls through magical Christmas lights, have your photo with Santa, ride the train, listen to Christmas choirs, mail your kids’ letters to Santa, and watch the mystery of the Nativity enacted live. This family friendly event will be an enchanting evening of fun for all ages. Brought to you in partnership with Metro Christian Living, Parents & Kids Magazine is proud to sponsor this event as a gift to our community. Merry Christmas! For information on this event, or to sponsor an activity, please call 601-366-0901.

®

metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 19


This Christmas, give them something to sing about!

Christmas Time! There’s excitement in the air! You can feel it everywhere! Christmas Time is FINALLY here... Filling our hearts with love and cheer! There’s expectation in their eyes— As kids look for Santa across the skies! It’s hard to describe the feeling of joy Found on the faces of each girl and boy! In the churches, the malls, or down the street... The children are telling everyone they meet, “Santa’s Coming!” they say with a grin! “Yes, Santa Claus is coming again!” “We’ve been ready for him for weeks, you see... With the decorations and our Christmas Tree! Soon, we’ll put out milk and cookies, too! I wonder what Santa will bring for you!?” But, when they awaken on Christmas morn— How many remember their Savior was born? As they take gifts from under the tree; Will they remember Calvary? Will they remember how He died on that Cross, To keep all people from being lost? Or, that He rose again the Third Day? He paid the price we could not pay! Because of Jesus, we won’t die in sin; And better yet, HE is coming again! He’ll take us to a far more wonderful place, Where we’ll see Him daily Face to Face! So, as you take gifts from under your tree— Remember God’s Gift to you and to me! The TRUE meaning of Christmas will be very clear! And, best of all; it will last all year! There’s excitement in the air! You can feel it everywhere! Christmas Time is ALWAYS here... Filling our hearts with love and cheer! There’s expectation in our eyes— As we look for JESUS across the Skies! In the churches, the malls or down the street... His children are telling everyone they meet, “JESUS is coming!!” they say with a grin! “Jesus Christ is coming again!” “I’ve been ready for Him a while, you see... I’d love to take you to Heaven with me!! Soon He’ll be here! You’ll know it, too!” I wonder if Jesus is coming for You?!”

the showplace for shoppers

Jingle Coin Gift Certificates may be purchased at the Highland Village office, Ste. 281 or Fresh Ink, Ste. 136. • For more information, call 982-5861 I-55 N at Northside Dr, Exit 100 • Shops open Mon-Sat 10am-6pm Restaurant hours may vary • www.highlandvillagems.com Check us out on Facebook - Highland Village Shopping Center

r! e v o n See what everyone’s talking about! Come o

> Fabulous Activities > Beautiful Surroundings

> New Found Friendships > Mouth-watering Meals

Merry CHRISTMAS and a Blessed 2011!

Sunnybrook Estates is a strictly rental independent living retirement community offering spacious apartment living. Low monthly rates with NO long-term lease or buy in required. Rent includes meals, housekeeping, transportation, activities, on-site movie theatre, central heat & air in each apartment and more!

Eugene C. Brown, Jr., D.D.S., M.S., P.A.

To inquire about Sunnybrook Estates

www.dreugenebrown.com 125 Jones Street Madison, MS 39110

601-853-0303

5800 Ridgewood Road, Suite 103 Jackson, MS 39211

601-957-1711

Visit us on Facebook at Dr. Brown’s SMILES BY DESIGN “The American Dental Association recommends that a child see an orthodontist by age seven.” MEMBER OF THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF ORTHODONTISTS

20 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

CALL 601.856.4050 248 Locust Lane

O

Madison, MS 39110 O www.sunnybrookestatesofmadison.com


salt & light by ASHLEY CIRILLI

Bring Joy

to the Elderly This Christmas

T

he Christmas season is a time of fellowship and fun festivities. However, for many it can feel like the loneliest time of year. A

group often overlooked but in need of holiday cheer is the elderly. The scripture tells us in Matthew 25:40, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The King will reply, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;? Find out how you can donate your time or services to the elderly this Christmas, and know you are also serving the Lord. Rosemary DeMoney, activity director at Sunnybrook Estates for six years, says many of the residents at Sunnybrook do not have family nearby or family at all. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They miss the holidays they had with their families,â&#x20AC;? she says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I try to keep our residents active and provide plenty of activities with the help of volunteers.â&#x20AC;? Whether itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s your own elderly family members, a neighbor, a stranger in an assisted living community or a shut-in, make time this season to bring joy to someoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s day. Just a simple act of kindness could change someoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s holiday.

How to Help at Assisted Living Communities: â&#x20AC;˘ Help residents wrap and send gifts and send Christmas cards. â&#x20AC;˘ Decorate rooms/apartments and the hallways for the holidays. â&#x20AC;˘ Bring your children to spread some cheer. â&#x20AC;˘ Carolers are always welcome. â&#x20AC;˘ Bring a school or church group to do a festive program for residents. â&#x20AC;˘ Volunteer to help at parties within the community. â&#x20AC;˘ Help residents send e-mails to family. â&#x20AC;˘ Volunteer to visit and make cookies with residents.

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How to Help a Shut-In:

â&#x20AC;˘ If you and your family are attending a holiday musical production or driving around your neighborhood to look at Christmas lights, offer to pick them up to go with you. â&#x20AC;˘ While cooking for your family, make an extra plate to deliver. Get the kids involved by having them decorate cookies to take as well. â&#x20AC;˘ Many elders would love to have their home decorated with lights and a tree for Christmas, but physical limitations keep them from it. Help by offering to assist them in decorating their house, but please remember to help take down decorations after the holidays. â&#x20AC;˘ The best place to find out how to help shut-ins and who they are in your community is to check with a local church or ministry. â&#x20AC;˘ A great gift to deliver is a gift basket. Ideas for what to include might be fresh fruit, hot cider packets, crossword puzzles and a good book or devotional.Y

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â&#x20AC;˘ Many elders would just enjoy conversing with others, and you stopping by just to chat can make their day.

THE 14th Annual

Gingerbread House Christmas Gift Show

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Get 50¢ off ZLWKWKLVFRXSRQ metrochristianliving.com â?&#x2DC; DECEMBER 2010 21


S! FPD e im t kindergarten for

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registration! Call or visit us at

fpds.org ACCEPTING applications now!

FPDS

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the doctor is in by the physicians of NewSouth NeuroSpine

12 TIPS to Avoid Aches and Pains

T

he holiday season is right around the corner, and amid the decorating, gift wrapping, cooking and cleaning, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the serious risk of adding pain to your back and neck that could make it a not-so-jolly Christmas. In most cases holiday back and neck pain is simply a function of rushing around getting ready, jumping in the car, hanging around at the airport, sitting in a bad position on a plane or picking up your luggage, then BOOMâ&#x20AC;Śthere goes your back. As spine specialists, weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve treated many patients suffering from overexertion during the holiday crunch. Here are some tips to avoid back and neck pain around the holidays.

1

When traveling, try not to get stressed running around and squeezing all those essential tasks into the frenetic last two days before you leave town. Stress increases your chance of a back or joint strain by increasing tension, but more likely by causing you to take short cuts with how you move, leading to bad positions and increased chance of injury.

2 3

Try to keep the weight of your suitcase down to a sensible level. Keep the weight distributed as evenly as possible too.

4 5

At your departure gate, donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t spend your entire time sitting; walk around.

If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve had a long drive to the airport, walk around for five minutes before lifting luggage; make sure you keep your back straight, swivel your whole body and not the spine.

On your flight, try to sit upright, (some of us have no option or our knees get crushed), get up and walk around if you are able to. If you are going to sleep, get a travel pillow to help support your neck and prevent injury. Also, keep yourself hydrated; dehydration is a factor in muscle injuries.

Merry Christmas from the staff of Metro Christian Living! Marilyn, Christi, Ashley, Carol & Sandra

â&#x20AC;&#x153;For to us a child is bornâ&#x20AC;Śâ&#x20AC;? Isaiah 9:6

6 7 8 9

Be careful loading and unloading luggage. Once you arrive at your destination, walk around and save the unpacking for an hour or so. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re helping in the kitchen, bend your knees and keep your back straight when lifting items out of the oven. When it comes to shopping, make sure you avoid carrying all your bags in one hand. Try to distribute the weight as evenly as you can.

Be careful cutting down or carrying Christmas trees, reaching and over stretching to decorate trees, pulling decorations out of the attic, hanging lights, putting items together and tossing your young relatives into the air during family visits.

10

If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re going to nap, and face it, you probably are, go lie down in a bed. Too many of us end up in odd positions when we doze on the couch, and very few people really think about the angle of their neck before drifting off in the recliner. Inevitably, you wake up an hour later, and the first thing you do is reach up to massage your sore neck.

11

Be conscious of your posture, even while watching TV. Slumping into the couch places an unnatural strain on your spine. Make sure that your lower back is supported; use a pillow to give lumbar support if necessary.

12

One of the best ways to make sure you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t strain your back muscles while watching TV is rather simple: donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t spend huge amounts of time in front of it. Granted, you will probably watch football or a holiday movie, but get up every hour and move around a bit. Change positions frequently when youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re sitting down.

Most important of all though, make sure you have a great time and recharge your batteries. We want to help you get through this holiday with as little back and neck pain as possible. Y NewSouth NeuroSpine is Mississippiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s leading provider of comprehensive spine care, located at 2470 Flowood Drive in Flowood, Mississippi. Visit us online at www.ns2.md.â&#x20AC;?



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➺all in the family by DR. JOHN L. COX

Are you a Failure as a Christian?

Admit it, you don’t feel like you are a very good Christian, do you? (Somebody please say yes or I’ll feel like I’ve said too much!) At church you hear how you ought to read the Bible, how you should be involved in regular giving, and something inside of you says, “Yeah, I really should be doing better at that stuff. I’m a failure at this whole Christian thing!”

The good news (the Gospel) is that the phrase “failure as a Christian” is sort of redundant, like saying “three-sided triangle!” If you’re a Christian you have already admitted that you are a failure. You’ve told God that you can’t do it and need Christ! Pastor Steve Brown once said something to the fact that Christianity is the only club that the only qualification for membership is to know that you are not qualified for membership. The problem is that once most of us become Christians, we all of a sudden feel the pressure to be qualified and that we have to earn our salvation. More good news: One of Christ’s favorite pastimes while reading in the Gospels was undermining that kind of thinking. My favorite is the story of the Rich Young Ruler. I’ve always heard this story with a lesson of commitment. Jesus tells this guy what he needs to do: sell everything for Jesus, and that Rich Young Ruler was just not willing. We’re told don’t be like him, and we all leave church feeling guilty because we are all like him. Now, I guess that interpretation is fine in some ways, but if we just see it in that way, I think we miss the most powerful message. Let’s us “Christian failures” look at this story from another

perspective. The Rich Young Ruler comes to Jesus with a question. And Jesus is going to answer it. It seems that there is a problem in the Rich Young Ruler’s life, and he reveals it in how he asks his question. He asks, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus immediately pegs him. (I wish I was as good a therapist as this.) Jesus addresses the heart of the matter like a laser. Jesus says, “Why do you call me good. No one is good except God alone.” The Rich Young Ruler’s problem has been fully diagnosed and addressed. He thinks it’s possible for someone to be good! Jesus’ answer: No one is good! Court adjourned, no further questions. But the Rich Young Ruler is still clueless like us, so Jesus plays along. He says, “You know the commandments, do not commit adultery, do not murder, do not steal…” And the Rich Young Ruler actually says, “All these things I have kept since my youth.” (Did you know guys like this growing up? He was that kid who reminded the teacher that she forgot to give the homework assignment!) Talk about self-righteous! But Mark’s version of this story tells us that Jesus heard this preposterous statement, and that Jesus looked at him and loved him.

24 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living


Jesus gave him a wonderful gift designed to help him at the point of his greatest need, a gift to cut through his self-righteousness, a gift to help this “rich” ruler see that maybe he wasn’t so rich after all, maybe he was a failure. Jesus’ response to him in essence is, “You say you’ve kept all the commandments? Well, let’s start with the first one, “Thou shalt have no other God’s before me.” Jesus tells him, “Go and sell all you possess and give it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven and come and follow me.”

If you’re a Christian you have already admitted that you are a failure. You’ve told God that you can’t do it and need Christ! Why does Jesus say this? Because he wanted to test this guy’s commitment? Or to say giving money will get you into heaven? No. Jesus tells him this because He wants to demonstrate to the Rich Young Ruler that he is not good. In essence Jesus says, “Your sin (the lie you tell yourself) is that you think you are good, and that will kill you. Let me help you see the truth about yourself and die to that self-righteousness. Let me help you feel the most important feeling you could ever feel. Let me help you walk away grieved because now you know that you cannot sell everything. You are too in love with your money. You are not good. Only our Father in heaven is good. Need a savior yet, young man?

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In my opinion, now and only now, does the Rich Young Ruler stand a chance. I don’t think that this is necessarily a story of a failed conversion. Perhaps this is a story of Jesus giving someone the only thing that might ever help him to get it. Usually when people are sad or grieved, they have to give up something; something vital and life changing. What if the Rich Young Ruler had responded differently? What if he had heard Jesus say, “Obey the Commandments!” and he had fallen on his face and said, “Son of Man, I could never obey you like you demand and deserve. My heart is too hard. I love money more than I love anything. But you help the blind men by healing their eyes, and you help the lame by healing their legs. Could you help me by making my money-loving hard heart faithful and submissive to you?” What do you think Jesus would have said? If you feel like a failure as a Christian, then Merry Christmas! This month, you are celebrating the birth of a savior whom you desperately need. He has come to bring forgiveness and healing. Once we embrace Him and His forgiveness, we strangely find ourselves not “failing” so much any more and somehow becoming more like Him, for “it is the kindness of God that leads us to repentance.” Romans 2:4 Oh come let us adore him! Y Dr. John L. Cox is a clinical psychologist in private practice in Jackson. He also serves as the Visiting Director of Spiritual Development at Intown Presbyterian Church in Atlanta, Georgia. To contact Dr. Cox, please call 601-352-7398.

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Preschool-Middle School metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 25


Bill and Patti Buckner Trusting God in the Tough Stuff

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ill Buckner, director of Mississippi Fellowship of Christian Athletes, is finishing out his 23rd year with the ministry he originally viewed as a temporary detour from his career in coaching. He planned to help this new effort ground itself and then go back to the profession he loved, coaching football. God had other plans.

Bill played quarterback for two years for the Alabama Hawks, a farm club team for the Atlanta Falcons in 1967.

Patti Smith Adams of Hattiesburg had plans too. Like most little Southern girls, she wanted to get married and live happily ever after. Her father was an alcoholic and her family life was chaos. She craved affection and approval from men that she was not getting from her dad. She married at 18 and became a mother at 19. She thought her life had finally found stability—not so. She was divorced at 22. It was after another breakup with a man she was sure she would marry that she came to an up- close and personal confrontation with the real Lord of her life. When this particular man told her he did not love her, that he probably never had loved her and it was over, she had a major wake-up call, realizing she had never completely surrendered to God. She saw that in all the previous years of seeking Him, she had been trying to manipulate her way and her plans. This time, she was ready to do things God’s way. With a hunger she had never had before, she began to pore over scripture and seek a God who was active and involved in her life in a way she had never really believed was possible. On Jan. 26, 1979, she knelt by her bed and told the Lord, “I know, Lord, that you do love me and even if nobody else ever loves me, you do, and we are together.” For the first time, that was truly enough for Patti. And then, things began to happen!

26 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

God Set the Stage Patti attended the Bill Gothard seminar with some of her new friends from Pear Orchard Presbyterian Church in Ridgeland. Unfortunately, or so it seemed at the time, Bill Gothard convinced Patti that she should attempt to reconcile with her first husband. She says she cried for three days. After a time of wrestling with God about it, she decided she could definitely trust a God whose very word spoke of “abundant life” and very safe places. He would not send her back in order to make her miserable. And so she told her son’s father that she thought they should try again. His answer caught her by surprise as he told her that he would be getting married in a few weeks. It was just too little too late for him. After all of Patti’s struggling, she had not considered that he might say no. The Lord was definitely working out some plan, but she had no idea what it could be. Today Patti sees God’s hand throughout that season of her life. “As I look back on it, I really think the Lord was freeing me so that when Bill came into my life there would be no obstacle and no question we were free to marry,” she says. Meanwhile, Bill had a few struggles of his own. He was a very committed father of three who had been


through a difficult divorce several years earlier. He was just getting his balance back and had taken a secure and fulfilling job as head football coach and director of development at Hinds Community College when he was approached about taking the position as the Mississippi director of Fellowship of Christian Athletes. The ministry was new and there was no guarantee that he would even get a regular paycheck. Why would he give up the best job he ever had to take on a job in a fledgling ministry that might not succeed? As he was studying his Bible, he came across the story of the rich young ruler in Mark 10. Bill could not get that story out of his mind. The insight given to him was this: Jesus’ point with the young man was not money per se but instead, anything we hold fast to as being dearer to our hearts other than Christ is something we need to be willing to let go. For Bill, it was coaching football. That is all he had ever wanted to do. Was it just a test he needed to pass to know that his love and commitment to God was the greatest focus of his life? When he resigned, he told Hinds Community College President Dr. Clyde Muse, “There is nothing in the world that could ever make me leave this job except the sense that God is calling me.” Meanwhile, a part of Bill hoped that if he obeyed God in this, God would not ask him to give up coaching. Bill and FCA are now in their 23rd year together, and God has yet to change his mind.

God brings them together October 1987, friends introduced Bill and Patti after a football game. There was a conscious effort on the part of several of Patti’s Sunday school friends to encourage a romance between the two. At least six months passed before Bill invited Patti to lunch. Bill was in the early days of FCA fundraising. . He was doing a lot of traveling and speaking, Patti was sending her only child off to Mississippi State, so in some ways they both had a lot on their plate. It didn’t seem like the best timing for a relationship. After a date or two, Bill invited Patti to hear him speak about the FCA ministry. She got a friend to go with her and sat through the event mesmerized. When Bill presented the long term vision for FCA, it seemed ambitious. It was clearly going to require a lot of hard work, prayer and a big dose of God’s blessing. Mississippi had only about 60 active chapters at the time, and Bill was the lone full-time employee. Patti is sure that in the middle of his presentation as she was thinking what a mission impossible this would be, the Lord spoke to her, “Yes, and while he’s working on this you will be taking care of him.” From her first introduction to the FCA ministry, Patti has been a willing partner with Bill. They share a passion for seeing others come to know Christ. Even today Patti says, “I still love for him to come home and

share with me what is happening in the ministry. I love the camps, the meetings, the events, the people. I love it all.”

Marriage Made in…Heaven? Surrounded by friends and family, Bill and Patti married on May 19, 1989. They were ecstatic, but “happily ever after” was happening slowly. They had absolutely no idea that blending their families would be so hard. Both agree that their marriage survived the first year by God’s grace. Although, each of their children (ages 19, 19, 18, 15) had given their blessing, issues that came from becoming a blended family began to surface. The marriage that seemed to be made in heaven was being pulled by human insecurities and baggage from the past. During that time Bill decided it would be good for him and Patti to move to Raymond, into a very small house he had bought in an estate sale. It was a definite “fixer-upper” that had become a kind of hobby for him. They count those months as some of the best in their married life. They were slightly isolated and Bill and Patti Buckner just have a way about able to draw close to each other them. They are warm, easy going and and to God. Feeling estranged comfortable in their own skin. from their children was on one level extremely difficult, yet it was an opportunity to discover God’s complete faithfulness in the midst of a storm. Sometimes you have to let something go in order for God to give it back. That seemed to be the case here. Today, there is the blessed perspective of hindsight, and it’s easier to make sense of what didn’t make sense while it was happening. Bill says that all of their struggles speak to him about how God does indeed hate divorce. There are no clean and quick cures. But he has also seen that in God’s amazing grace, there can be healing and even blessing. Twenty-one years and nine grandchildren later, their clan is close-knit. There was no overnight healing but rather a gradual change that came as the children found their mates, had children of their own and began to understand firsthand the inexplicable bond a parent feels for a child. Patti and Bill were patient. It was hard, but as second Corinthians speaks of walking by faith and not by sight, they tried to do just that and found God to be faithful. metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 27


Bill cites Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it,” and its validity in their lives. They have seen their four children make their way in the world. It has not been a smooth journey, but everyone has found a rocksolid faith in the Lord, as Patti and Bill have spent hours on their knees behind the scenes. Will, Jodi, Trace and Tyler Adams

Health Challenges

Weathering the challenges of the early years of marriage and building the FCA ministry in Mississippi were not small ventures of faith. However, the Buckners were not anticipating even bigger trials. Bill, a lifelong athlete, had been physically fit his entire life but in May 2007, he began to have frequent shortness of breath. Initially he Keith and Wendy Sewell, April Johnson, Tracey and thought he was having a David Buckner heart attack, and he and Patti headed for the emergency room. There was nothing that could have prepared either of them to hear the term, Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia.

28 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

Front: Ana Sewell, Nash Johnson, Aslan Buckner, Ariel Buckner; Back: Asa Sewell, Noah Johnson, Nathan Johnson, grandparents Patti and Bill

His oncologist explained that although it is indeed chronic and incurable, most victims never have to undergo any treatment. The message Bill and Patti took away was that this did not have to change his life, and it didn’t for three years. In February 2010, Bill came home from a road trip with a bad cold that wouldn’t go away. Bronchitis and other nagging respiratory ailments followed. When he went to see his doctor for blood work, she told him he would have to start chemotherapy immediately. Patti and Bill say it really knocked them for a loop. Bill needed six treatments at three week intervals, and they were brutal. Bill felt so ill he found it impossible to eat most of the time. Patti, in her efforts to encourage him, ran on adrenalin for weeks, trying to


cheer him with food, music, funny videos, anything. They spent lots of time together in prayer and searching scripture for encouragement. When he was admitted to the hospital for eight days right before the third chemo Register Jan. 6th for treatment, they both felt like they had hit a wall. They were worn out, worried and frightened as the MC Accelerated Degrees! seriousness of the disease became overwhelming. Ready to advance your career and enrich your life, but need evening class hours During this challenge, Bill got the and convenient locations? With the Mississippi College Accelerated Degree news that Fellowship of Christian Program, you’ll find that and more. Call 601-925-3979 or visit mc.edu/accelerated Athletes was undergoing some to learn more about our in-depth and in-demand programs: reconstruction and his job as a regional - Accounting - Public Relations - Business Administration director was to be eliminated. This was - Marketing - Sociology a new low at the worst possible moment. He was also told he might or REGISTRATION: JANUARY might not have another job in the S HOES, P U6th, 2011 R ministry. All he could do was wait and Clinton Campus – Self Hall, on the S ES, JEW ELRY, C Mississippi College campus in Clinton see, and walk by faith, not by sight. Flowood Center – Across from Lowe’s Bill says the Lord taught him two NG I on Lakeland5Drive H T very valuable lessons he must have O 417 Hwy. 2 L C , Y R L E 5, F wood W E J , missed in his earlier trials. S Classes begin January E S R 601- 99lo210. U P , S E O - 6565 118 Service H Bill says the first one was that he S w 60 w w.monke was not in charge. “A blood disease? ycharms.c1- 824 n om do What could I do? The message was e Dr., 0Bran ic v r e S 8 loud and clear. Even though I try to 1 1 - 824 - 913 lowood65 601 F , be in charge, I’m not and really never 5 2 . y w 5 H m 6 7 1 2 4 9 5 have been,” He admits that was 601- 9 w w.monkeycharms.co w humbling to grasp. Bill says his second lesson was that S HOES, P U FIND FAITH. FIND FAMILY. FIND YOUR FUTURE. RS ES, JEW he needed to live everyday as if it were his last. ELRY, CL “Whether it’s cancer or something else, none of us are OT HING promised tomorrow,” he says. G Y, CLOT HIN Patti says, “I was trusting the Lord, but we were just R L E 5 W 4 E 1 J 7 , H wy. 25, Flo S ES so tired and had been through so much. When Bill was HOES, P UR S 601- 992w- 6ood 118 Serv admitted to the hospital and the doctors weren’t even 5 w w w.m., oB6nk5randon 601- 82ic4e Dr., Brandon talking in terms of sending him home, I got really - 9130 e Dr eyc scared.” 118 Servic 9130 harms.com

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GI FTS D Service Dr., Brandon 5417 Hwy. 25, Flowood S AAN118 D T F I G FORMALA 601-992-6565 EAR W601-824-9130 www.monkeycharms.com FORM LW EAR metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 29


➺let’s talk it over by JANA DEAN

ADDICTION Recovery is Possible

At Christmastime addiction might not seem like a likely topic, but the holidays can be the most difficult for addicts.

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his is a time in all of our lives when we want peace and joy in our family. Addiction is a family disease, and the family needs treatment and support just like the addict does. Family members need to learn that addiction is not something they can control or fix. There are behaviors family members can do that may hinder an addict who is trapped in addiction from getting into recovery. For those of you in trouble with addiction please know that any attempts to fix or control it will fail. My daughter went through a time where she was controlled by addiction, and my husband and I were equally controlled as well in our efforts to save her. The main thing we found that we could do to help her was to say “no.” Enabling is a word that you will always hear connected with addiction. It is not doing someone a favor or helping them out during a hard time. Where addiction is concerned, it is doing for the addict what they should and can be doing for themselves. While family members didn’t cause the addiction, they cannot control it either. But enabling is something that family members do that can prolong the disease. At Summit we use the 12 Step Program to treat addicts and their family

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members. The 12 steps are a biblically based design for living and can bring order out of the chaos that is addiction. Our goal at Summit is to look at the unmet needs that are pushing the addiction. Recovery is possible, but both the individual with the addiction and their family need counseling. It is not about beating the addiction with will power or a family member loving an addict enough to heal their addiction. Recovery is difficult, and the addict and family members need someone they can partner up with to help provide truth, structure and accountability while they are working a program of recovery. Asking for help is a good thing and something that is essential to full recovery from addiction. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” God has great plans and a hopeful future for addicts and their families. Claim His promise and call for help in the battle of addiction in your life. Y Jana Dean is a married mother of a former addict who is now happily married and a mother herself, of two beautiful children.

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food for thought by LYDIA BOLEN

A Christmas Brunch The presents under the tree aren’t the only gifts you can give your family on Christmas morning. Why not treat your family and friends to a festive Christmas brunch? A special brunch can be a new tradition and a perfect end to your morning holiday celebration. Set the table with your pretty Christmas china and serve a menu of indulgent items to make the morning a memorable occasion.

French Toast Casserole (Recipe courtesy of Paula Deen) 1 loaf French bread (13 to 16 ounces) 8 large eggs 2 cups half-and-half 1 cup milk 2 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg Dash of salt PRALINE TOPPING: 1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter 1 cup packed light brown sugar 1 cup chopped pecans 2 tablespoons light corn syrup 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Slice French bread into 20 slices, 1 inch each. Arrange slices in two rows in a generously buttered 9 x 13 flat baking dish, overlapping the slices. In a large bowl, combine the eggs, half-and half, milk, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt, and beat with a whisk until blended but not too bubbly. Pour mixture over the bread slices, covering the slices evenly. Spoon some of the mixture between the slices. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight. The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees. For Prailine Topping: Combine all ingredients and blend. Makes enough for the French Toast Casserole. Serve with warm maple syrup. Spread Praline topping evenly over the bread and bake for 40 minutes, until puffed up and slightly golden. Serves 8 or more.

Country Grits and Sausage 2 cups water 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup uncooked quick grits Bring water and salt to a boil. Stir in grits. Return to a boil; reduce heat. Cook 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. 4 cups (16 ounces) shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese 4 eggs, beaten 1 cup milk 1/2 teaspoon dried whole thyme 1/8 teaspoon garlic 2 pounds bulk sausage (1 hot, 1 regular) cooked, crumbled and drained.

Combine grits and cheese in a large mixing bowl; stir until cheese is melted. Combine eggs, milk, thyme and garlic salt; mix well. Add a small amount of hot grits mixture to egg mixture, stirring well. Stir the rest of the egg mixture into grits mixture. Add sausage, stirring well. Pour into a 12 x 8 x 2 inch baking dish. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Remove from refrigerator; let stand 15 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 50 to 55minutes. Serves 8 to 12. Recipe can be halved.

“My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to finish His work.” – John 4:34

Raspberry Almond Muffins 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup packed brown sugar 2 1/2 tablespoons almond paste (found on baking isle) 1/4 cup butter, softened 2 large eggs 1/2 cup fat-free buttermilk 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice 2 cups all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries Cooking spray 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place first three ingredients in food processor and blend well. Add butter, and pulse 4 to 5 times. Add the eggs, one at a time, pulsing 1 or 2 times after each addition. Add buttermilk, vanilla and lemon juice. Pulse until blended. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Make a well in the center of mixture; add buttermilk mixture, stir until moist. Gently fold in raspberries. Let batter stand 5 minutes. Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake 375 degrees for 22 minutes. Remove muffins to wire rack for cooling. Y

Remember to make memories through the kitchen…”the heartbeat of the home.” Go to my blog. For more recipes at www.lydiasapron.blogspot.com or e-mail me at lbbolen@gmail.com Enjoy the gift of making memories with new and old traditions. Y metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 31


➺legal advice by WILLIAM B. HOWELL

My Children’s Names are on everything. Is That Okay?

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any people do their estate planning using what has frequently been referred to as the “lazy man’s will.” That is, they designate a survivor owner in the ownership document (deed, CD, bank account, etc.) so that when one of the owners passes away, the other owner automatically has full and total rights in the asset to sell, spend or do whatever they want to with it. This happens without any kind of court proceeding, including probate. The arrangement is referred to as JTWROS, which stands for “Joint Tenancy with Rights of Survivorship.” This titling is common between spouses for their homestead property, and many people have the same designation on their investment accounts, CDs and similar financial instruments. It is quite clear that when the first of two joint owners passes away the other joint owner has, as stated above, the right to do with the property as he or she sees fit. Although, it sounds like a good solution, in reality it can be quite a nightmare. What if the spouse as joint owner does not pass away but becomes incapacitated? Then the other spouse will likely have a problem disposing of the asset (or borrowing money against it) unless other

affective arrangements have been made. Some people elect to have a living trust through which they own their assets in order to solve this joint ownership incapacity dilemma, as well as several other problems. Sometimes people put their children’s names as survivor owners on things that the parent owns: home, bank account and other assets. The effect at death: it goes to the other owner(s), but there is an additional wrinkle that parents don’t often consider. If your child as a joint owner is sued and a judgment is obtained against the joint owner, then your property (or a portion) can likely be seized by the creditor as the child’s asset. The problem is that when you put the child’s name on an asset, the asset stopped being yours exclusively. Instead, the child has an actual ownership interest, and it can be reached by their creditors. What kind of creditors? It could be their divorce, bankruptcy, a lawsuit as a result of an automobile accident or many situations that cause the assets of the child to be placed at risk. Many elders have put a child on their bank account with the idea that the child can pay bills for them in case the parent becomes ill and can’t act for themselves. Let’s say the parent has three

children and wants to divide the bank account and all other assets equally among the three, and that’s what they have written in their will. However, the will only controls property that goes through probate. A bank account with one child’s name on it (in other than a “signatory authority only” situation) will cause that child to be a coowner and the child will own the entire bank account when you pass away to the total exclusion of his or her brothers and sisters. It does not matter what your will says. Many people are unaware of this development and make some sizeable mistakes in titling assets so that their original intent is substantially frustrated after they have passed away. These and other complications are so easy to avoid. All it takes is a little good estate planning, and an understanding of the consequences of your actions. We find that many people create their own problems. Frequently a living trust is used to avoid these outcomes. Get some good advice. Solve these problems in advance for your family. It’s truly a loving thing to do. Y William B. Howell is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and practices law in Ridgeland.

You have worked hard for it. WHY THROW IT AWAY? We are all living longer. But we are not all going to be in good health, or aware of our families, or both. Then what happens? Someone has to take over. The question is: Will this be someone you chose? And will it be outside of court or in court? The same with the distribution of your assets after you pass away: In court or out of court? The choice is yours. What about protecting your assets from lawsuits, or a child’s inheritance from a divorce? And will most of your hard-earned savings go to the nursing home? Or have you planned? Here are a few ideas for you to consider:

Living Trust – Allows the person you choose to take over for you in the event of your incapacity, without any court involvement. At your death the person you have chosen makes the distribution of your assets the way you have instructed in your Living Trust, and to do so promptly, inexpensively and privately, without going through probate in the court.

Asset Protection – Lawsuits are filed every day. If you get sued, are your assets protected? They can be, and probably should be. Also, the divorce rate has never been higher than it is today. Will your child’s divorce cause them to lose half of what you leave them after you are gone? Not if you plan now. The level of protection (or not) is up to you.

Nursing Home Planning – Don’t qualify for long term care insurance, or can’t fit it in your budget? You don’t have to spend everything that you have in order to become eligible for nursing home benefits. There are legal and ethical ways for you to save well over half of your assets in most cases, even if you are already in the nursing home. Hear Mr. Howell on the radio

Tuesdays 8:35 am WJNT NewsTalk 1180 32 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

THE LAW FIRM OF

WILLIAM B. HOWELL, LTD. 406 Orchard Park • Ridgeland, Mississippi (601) 978-1700 or (800) 839-7857

National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys


Editor’s Note: This is part two of a two part series submitted to MCL.

this is my story by ANONYMOUS

Avoiding the Hope Killers

W

hen someone commits suicide, the comments begin. The question of how anyone could do such a thing. The “if only we’d known” regrets. Sometimes condemnation and an accusation of selfishness comes, too. When someone’s personal darkness becomes so deep that only death seems to be the answer, what can you do to help? The dark downward spiral that is suicidal depression may begin as a tidal wave of trauma. Crisis blasts through everything familiar and sucks someone into a whirlpool of despair. Or the spiral may begin as a light rain: just a gentle sprinkle that slowly, imperceptibly gains strength until the torrent sweeps him or her away. I know. I have been to the edge more than once and barely escaped with my life. The pain, hopelessness, and despair are hard to describe. No one can take those away or be responsible for another’s choices, but people who want to help and choose appropriate ways to do so can make a difference. Let me warn you away from hope killers-well meaning, but uninformed tactics people use to try to fix the problem.

HOPE KILLER #1 Putting a time limit on the process. Would you say to someone with cancer, “I can’t believe you haven’t finished treatment yet. What’s taking so long?” Depression is as difficult and insidious a disease as cancer. As one who has suffered, I can attest that nothing hurts worse than to hear someone suggest you should have finished dealing with your issues. The implication is that you’re not really trying. HOPE KILLER #2 Minimizing or comparing the pain. Someone struggling with depression may

have given every bit of energy available to get up and out of bed. He or she doesn’t need to hear you say you know someone who dealt with the same issue, plus three more, and never stopped praising Jesus through the whole process. Everyone’s pain is individual. You may think the comparison is encouraging, but it can crush the wounded heart.

HOPE KILLER #3 Be impatient with hearing the same story again. When someone has been hurt, repeating the story is a necessary part of the resolution process. If you’re not up to hearing it again, tell your friend gently, understanding the need, but asking for a different time when you have the energy to listen again. Hearing, “Just put it behind you” or “You just need to let it go” invalidates the pain your friend is trying to work through. HOPE KILLER #4 Only be available for crises. Yes, you have your own life and you should set proper boundaries to protect yourself. I’m not talking about inappropriate dependency, but about making time occasionally. I have friends I could call at 2:00 a.m. in a crisis but who don’t have time for lunch or dinner every now and then. Often all I want is to feel connected, not to rehash everything again. Having someone contact me to suggest getting together helps, too. HOPE KILLER #5 Spiritual shaming. Nothing is more damaging than hearing a friend say, “If you were really (a Christian, knew Jesus, filled with the Holy Spirit) you wouldn’t feel this way” or “You just need to trust more, have more faith.” Christians do get depressed.

Imagine Behavioral Health Structured Specialty Programs (IOP) for Adolescents and Young Adults We work with young people and their families experiencing severe distress as a result of substance abuse, depression, anxiety, anger and other destructive behaviors. All of our services are performed or supervised by board certified psychiatrists and master’s level clinicians. We accept private insurance and provide scholarships to those in need.

(601) 982-5376 • www.imagineiop.com

Just as God did not answer Paul’s prayer to take away his thorn in the flesh, sometimes He does not answer fervent prayer to remove depression. HOPE KILLER #6 Demand instant forgiveness when hurt is involved. As Christians we can’t get around the call to forgive. Scripture is clear on that point, but forgiveness is a process, not something that can be easily decided or implemented. Forgiveness does not mean denying the offense occurred and ignoring the pain. That comes under the heading of denial. Your friend may need time to work through the pain to the point of forgiving. Depression is hard and painful, but friends who care and avoid trying to apply easy fixes can make a difference. You can make a difference. Who could you bring hope to today? Y

Have you or a loved one experienced the loss of an infant to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome? We are here to help. MS SIDS ALLIANCE (601) 859-8900 1-877-471-7437 www.ms-sids.org metrochristianliving.com ❘ DECEMBER 2010 33


➺money talks Tentative about TAXES by MICHAEL DENNY

A

As business advisers, we have rarely entered our year-end planning season with so much uncertainty regarding tax laws. With

the recent mid-term elections, our outlook regarding tax laws has almost come full circle. Just a few months ago, it appeared that higher tax rates were in the cards. Now after the election, a compromise to extend current tax rates is a possibility. So where does that leave us as planners and taxpayers planning for the next couple years? We do not have any concrete laws yet and may not until sometime next year when newly elected officials enter office. However, there are a few things we need to start thinking about to prepare as much as we possibly can in this uncertain environment. If you are like many of the clients I have spoken with, you want to be proactive but do not know where to start and what questions to ask. First, there has been a lot of press regarding Roth IRA conversions. Any taxpayer can convert part or all of their pre-tax IRA account to a Roth IRA and pay tax on the amount converted. For tax year 2010, if you convert by December 31, you have the option to pay the tax on the 2011 and 2012 tax returns. Once the funds are converted to the Roth, all distributions from the Roth are tax-free.

So does this make sense for you? Well, there is one thing most people agree on and that is tax rates are not going down. If you have money in a pre-tax IRA, it could be a good move to convert to a Roth IRA and pay the tax at the current tax rates versus electing to pay tax in future years. This strategy makes sense if you believe tax rates will go up, or if you believe you will be earning more money in the future. There are some other advantages to a Roth conversion. First, there are no required minimum distributions (RMDs) at age 70.5. So, the money can continue to accumulate free of tax. Also, if you pass these funds along to a beneficiary, they will not have to pay tax on distributions. Another topic regarding tax planning that is getting a lot of attention as of this writing is the extension of the “Bush tax cuts.” If nothing happens and the Bush tax law is allowed to expire, many taxpayers will be impacted, not just those in the higher brackets. Tax rates will increase

If you are like many of the clients I have spoken with, you want to be proactive but do not know where to start and what questions to ask.

for single taxpayers who have taxable incomes starting at about $35,000 and about $68,000 for married filing joint. Keep in mind that taxable income equals income after allowed deductions and exemptions, not gross income. Not only will some of the lower brackets increase, the top two brackets will increase from 33 percent and 35 percent to 36 percent and 39.6 percent, respectively. Also, the tax rates on capital gains and qualified dividends will increase. The possibility of tax increases has flipped year-end tax planning on its head. Conventional wisdom was to take deductions as soon as possible and delay income if you can, but if tax rates could be higher next year, the opposite would be true. Likewise, we typically would take any losses in the current year and try to push any gains into the following year. However, if there is a chance capital gains tax rates could increase, we should look at realizing those gains in 2010. The dynamics of our year-end tax planning season have certainly been challenging this year. We hope to have some clarity before the end of the year. In the meantime, we are closely following the changes regarding tax laws and discussion in Washington. Y Michael P. Denny is a CPA and Certified Financial Planner (please include the registered mark after Planner) with us. He can be contacted at mdenny@granthampoole.com. 34 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living


Venable

The Greatest Gift benefits THE CHRISTMAS VILLAGE

The Greatest Gift, a Christmas concert benefiting The Christmas Village, is a gift in itself and will feature some of Mississippiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s favorite sons and daughters. Whether your preference is gospel, soul, easy listening, classical, country or contemporary Christian, you will find it in this lineup that is sure to be one of the highlights of central Mississippiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Christmas season. The concert will benefit The Christmas Village, a residential ministry for women without a support system who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and want to choose life for their unborn child. The Christmas Village, located in Canton, opened its doors in May, 2007, as a safe place for 59 young women who found the nurture, direction and skills needed to put their lives back together. Beth Kellogg of Creative Partners Public Relations in Ridgeland is one member of a diverse committee involved in putting this event together. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It has been incredible to see how God has organized this as a mission for Mississippi all of us,â&#x20AC;? she says. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Everything, Metropolitan Ballet Company and I mean everything, has been donated. All of these artists are donating their time and paying their own way. In these tough economic times, that is a powerful witness to how God opens all doors when it is for Him.â&#x20AC;? To read the amazing story and purchase tickets for the December 17, 7 p.m. concert at Belhaven University Center for the Arts visit www.thechristmasvillage.org. Tickets are available for $20 and $25. Sam Haskell, former worldwide head of television for William Morris in Hollywood and author of the best-selling memoir, Promises I Made My Mother, will emcee the star-studded evening. Y

Drew Holland Country Artist

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➺rave reviews BOOKS

Advent Conspiracy Reviewed by Susan E. Richardson

Advent Conspiracy is not a cheerful feelgood book to get you in the Christmas spirit. Those books abound this time of year. Instead it offers a challenge to the way we celebrate Christmas as Christians, calling us to rethink our embrace of consumerism. The authors begin by arguing that consumerism is the fastest growing religion in the world, and is one that Christians have embraced as much as others. Recognizing how the desire for possessions snares us is the first step to moving beyond greed to worship more fully. They challenge us to reconsider how we spend money, from the production of goods to focusing more on relationships than gifts. This approach leads to spending less and giving more. The authors advocate giving relationally: focusing on the recipient and giving a gift meaningful to that person.

Summit Recovery Ministries INTENSIVE COUNSELING PROGRAMS (ICP) For individuals and families from a Christian perspective • • • • • • • • • •

Behavioral Problems Anger Management Depression/Dealing with Loss Self-Esteem Social & Life Skills/Problem-Solving Skills/Goal Setting/Communication Skills Family Dynamics/Emotional Healing Assertiveness Training Drug/Alcohol Abuse/Dependency Eating Disorders/Self Harm Pornography/Sexual Addiction/Sexual Identity

601.949.1949 www.counselingministry.com 36 DECEMBER 2010 ❘ Metro Christian Living

Givers may choose to make gifts rather than purchase them. Either way, the gift honors the relationship more than the gift’s price tag, leaving money available for Kingdom work. The churches involved in the Advent Conspiracy support Living Water International, an organization that drills wells to provide clean drinking water in impoverished areas. Most testimonials in the book refer to this particular ministry, but the authors do not insist on everyone supporting their choice. The core goal is for each of us to make choices with giving that reflect Jesus, the focus of Christmas. Advent Conspiracy can be an uncomfortable book, but one that will prod you to think about your choices this Christmas. Susan E. Richardson is a writer, critique reader, and former Christian retailer with a passion for meeting people’s needs through the written word. You can reach her through her website www.nextlevelcritiques.com.

MUSIC

Michael Boggs’ More Than Moved Reviewed by Ashley Cirilli Christian pop music artist Michael Boggs has released his newest album, More Than Moved. His hit single, “Said and Done,” is currently being played on Christian radio and is also featured on the new Max Lucado: Out Live Your Life album. Boggs is no stranger to the music business, having been a part of the group FFH and contributing to several hit radio singles, receiving seven Gospel Music Dove Award nominations and making records that have sold to millions. When FFH took an extended break in 2006, Boggs became the worship leader at a fast growing young adult gathering in Brentwood, Tennessee that hosted nearly 1,500 college students and young adults each week. Although he has become a talented and successful solo-artist and worship leader,

Boggs has truly made his mark on the music industry with his songwriting. In April, Boggs was nominated for Songwriter of the Year and Song of the Year at the Gospel Music Association Dove Awards. He also took home the Dove award for Country Recoded Song of the Year, for his song, “Somebody Like Me.” Boggs has also offered his talent of songwriting to other artists such as FFH, Big Daddy Weave, Josh Bates and more, gaining him many Top 10 singles. One of the songs Boggs wrote was featured in the feature film Facing the Giants. When asked where is journey is off to now, Boggs says, “Those plans have never been up to me. I’ll just continue to follow Jesus.” Boggs is now a regular guest worship leader at Max Lucado’s church, Oak Hills, in San Antonio. Y


events calendar December 9-12

December 3-5

Disney on Ice: Princess Wishes is coming to Jackson at the Mississippi Coliseum on the Fairgrounds. Enjoy an evening with your favorite Disney characters from Tinker Bell to Snow White. For ticket information call 601353-0603.

Let the shopping begin at the beautiful Chimneyville Crafts Festival held at the Mississippi Trademart! Listed as one of the “Top 20 Events in the Southeast” by the Southeast Tourism Society, the Chimneyville Crafts Festival hosts 185 booths featuring master artisans from all around the country. For ticket information call 601-856-7546.

December 3-19 New Stage theatre presents A Christmas Carol. Recognized by USA Today as one of the top fine productions in the US. Special ticket prices available. A classic for all ages. 601-948-3531 or www.newstagetheatre.com

cause. For more information go to info@thechristmasvillage.com

BRANDON December 14 Eight-year-old Bethani Grace Alman of Pelahatchie shared her vision with her parents that included a benefit concert for the Toys for Tots program that would be headlined by Mississippi’s own Grammy Award winning group The Williams Brothers, and now her wish has become a reality. Join Bethani Grace, the Mississippi Marine Corp and The Williams Brothers for a benefit concert for Toys for Tots at First Baptist Church of Brandon at 6 pm. The cost? A new unwrapped toy.

CANTON November 26 - December 23

December 3-4 A tradition at Belhaven since 1933, the Belhaven Singing Christmas Tree, is a fun family event that is sure to bring out the spirit of Christmas. Enjoy traditional Christmas carols while sitting under a blanket beneath the open sky. Festivities begin at 7:30 p.m. and are free to the public.

December 4 St. Anthony Catholic School in Madison will be the center of fun at the 2010 Starry Night Gala. Presented by Mad Genius, the evening will feature music, food and exciting auctions to benefit the new state-of-the-art school. For ticket information call 601-607-7054.

December 16 - 19 Ballet Magnificat presents A Christmas Dream at our own Thalia Mara Hall. The true meaning of Christmas will be told through the artistry of over 150 dancers, 300 costumes and beautiful sets. The evening will be a sure delight for the entire family. For ticket information call 601-977-1001.

December 17 The Greatest Gift, a benefit concert for the Christmas Village, will be held at Belhaven University Center for the Arts at 7 p.m. Enjoy beautiful music while supporting a great

Friday, Dec. 17 ~ 7 PM Saturday, Dec. 18 ~ 3 PM Sunday, Dec. 19 ~ 2 PM

• K-12th Grade Programs • Open Enrollment • Small Classes • Experienced Instructors • Individualized Instruction • Integrated Curriculum • Online Courses • State-of-the-art Technology • Character Education Programs • Life Skill Classes • Extra Curricular Activities

IThe city of Canton becomes a sparkling wonderland during their “City of Lights” Christmas celebration. Decorated with over 200,000 glittering lights, the Historic Courthouse Square comes alive each holiday season with attractions and events for all to enjoy.

CLINTON December 1-5 The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, a hilarious tale of a small church’s annual Christmas pageant, will be presented at Mississippi College featuring the Mississippi College Tribal Players and children from the Clinton area. For show times and tickets call 601-925-3935. Y

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DECEMBER

JACKSON


➺quips & quotes ✂

ADVERTISING INDEX

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Cut out the scriptures and quotes and place them around your home for daily encouragement!

“Were it not for the shepherds, there would have been no reception. And were it not for a group of stargazers, there would have been no gifts.” – Max Lucado, God Came Near

“Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind.” – Calvin Coolidge

“And don’t be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are is God’s place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there.”

“There has been only one Christmas —the rest are anniversaries.” - W.J. Cameron

– I Corinthians 7:17 (MSG)

“Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree. In the eyes of children, they are all thirty feet tall.” – Larry Wilde

So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them,“Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.” – Luke 2: 1-10

“It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you . . . yes, it is Christmas every time you smile at your brother and offer him your hand.”

“Peace on earth will come to stay, when we live Christmas every day.” – Helen Steiner Rice

– Mother Theresa

“When we recall Christmas past, we usually find that the simplest things—not the great occasions—give off the greatest glow of happiness.” – Bob Hope

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ADVERTISER PAGE Anthemion Construction Services ...................10 Apple Annie’s Gift Shop ..................................30 Ballet Magnificat ..............................................37 Baptist Health Systems ......................................3 Belhaven University..........................................10 Belhaven Graduate & Online Program ...........16 Brite Expressions..............................................18 Callaway’s Yard & Garden..................................7 Carr, Riggs, & Ingram, LLC ..............................19 Christ Covenant School ...................................25 Christmas Fest..................................................19 Clinton Olde Towne Holiday Market.................4 Community Bank..............................................10 East Lakeland Ob-Gyn Associates, PA ..............4 Easely Amused.................................................30 Energy Insulation, Inc.......................................35 FPDS.................................................................22 Gingerbread House .........................................21 Gameroom Gallery...........................................13 Grantham Poole CPAs .....................................34 Highland Village ...............................................20 Imagine Behavioral Services ............................33 Indianola Pecan House ......................................9 Jackson Academy ..............................................2 Jackson Preparatory School ............................13 Jazzy Dancer ....................................................18 Joel Clarke & Sons Jewelry .............................23 Lounge Arts......................................................17 Main Street Canton..........................................11 Medtronic.........................................................39 Mississippi Blood Services ...............................22 Mississippi College ..........................................29 Mississippi Ironworks .......................................40 Mississippi SIDS................................................33 Mississippi Tobacco Free Coalition .................23 Monkey Charms ...............................................29 Newks .................................................................9 New Stage Theatre..........................................12 New Summit School ........................................37 North State Animal Hospital ...........................38 O! How Cute Gift Shop ...................................12 Odyssey Hospice................................................2 Persnickety .......................................................13 Pennsylvania Life ................................................9 Sitters, LLC .......................................................36 Smiles ...............................................................20 Southern Farm Bureau.....................................10 Summit Counseling..........................................36 Sunnybrook Estates .........................................20 Star 93.5 ...........................................................11 Stegall Imagery ................................................19 St. Andrew’s School .........................................19 St. Catherine’s Village ........................................5 St. Dominic’s ......................................................7 The Eye Group of Mississippi ............................9 Tinnin Imports Rug & Home............................22 Trustmark .........................................................25 Venable Glass...................................................35 Victory Home Construction .............................17 William B. Howell .............................................32 Wright & Ferguson Funeral Home ..................22 Written in Stone, LLC.......................................30 For more information on our advertisers visit www.metrochristianliving.com


SPECIAL ADVERTISING

PRISCILLA’S STORY Osteoporosis is a disease that causes bone to become weak and susceptible to fracture. Of the 10 million Americans with this disease, 80% are women, and having a mother with osteoporosis puts a daughter particularly at risk. Priscilla Turner, 67, of Memphis, TN knows this risk all too well. Her 90-year-old mother, Jewell Fondren, suffers from osteoporosis (a disease that causes bone to become weak and susceptible to fracture). Over the past 30 years, Jewell has experienced a hip fracture, spinal fractures, and has a hunched back that may have been caused by multiple spinal fractures. Jewell, who lives with her daughter, has difficulty walking, cannot bend, and finds her clothes don’t fit well because of her hunched back. Two years ago, Priscilla seemed to be heading toward the same fate as her mother when she suffered from back pain. Priscilla went to see her doctor and discovered she had a spinal fracture. She was also diagnosed with osteopenia or low bone mineral density that can lead to osteoporosis. “I just thought I was getting older,” she said. “I didn’t know my bones were breaking, but when my doctor told me I had a spinal fracture, I was very surprised.” Like Priscilla, the estimated 44 million Americans at risk for osteoporosis are often unaware that they have the disease until they break a bone, according to the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF), sponsors of National Osteoporosis Awareness and Prevention Month. However, today more information is known about the risk factors for osteoporosis and fractures. If you have a low bone mineral density coupled with one or more other risk factors, you are at increased risk of having an osteoporosis-related fracture over the next 10 years, according to a recent publication by the World Health Organization (WHO). These risk factors include a previous fracture, a parent who has had a hip fracture, smoking, taking steroid medications, drinking three or more glasses of alcohol daily, and suffering from rheumatoid arthritis or from a disorder strongly associated with osteoporosis. Less was known about osteoporosis years ago when Priscilla’s mother was prescribed pain pills and bed rest to manage her osteoporosis-related spinal fractures. Treatments are now available to help strengthen bones, and new procedures have been developed to repair spinal fractures. When Priscilla experienced her spinal fracture, her primary care physician referred her to orthopaedic surgeon Dr. Edward Pratt* of the Memphis Spine Center, who treated her spinal fracture with balloon kyphoplasty. Balloon kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that can reduce back pain and correct the deformity caused by a spinal fracture. Small balloons are inserted and inflated in the fractured area of the spine to restore it back to its normal shape. After the balloons are deflated and removed, the cavity that has been created is filled with special bone cement, creating an internal cast. Priscilla is exceedingly close to her mother. They spend afternoons on their parlor couch, reminiscing about their years together or sitting quietly as Priscilla reads and her mother knits. However, she knows that she does not want to suffer the same fate as her mother.

“Osteoporosis has kept Mama from being as mobile as I knew her years ago,” Priscilla said. “Her movements are restricted. She cannot bend nor do many activities around the house. Her walking is limited.” When Priscilla experienced her second spinal fracture in 2007 and her activities became restricted due to the back pain, she decided to take action to avoid her mother’s fate. She again had her fracture repaired with balloon kyphoplasty and now exercises regularly and takes prescription drugs and calcium supplements to prevent more bone loss. “Today I do everything,” she said. “We have a two-story home, and I am always going up and down the steps, and I couldn’t do that before the (balloon kyphoplasty) procedures because of my back pain. I am also gardening again. I walk two miles a day and work out on weight machines. I am a very active person. I don’t sit.” The National Osteoporosis Foundation estimates that one in two women and one in four men over age 50 will experience an osteoporosis-related fracture in their lifetime. Dr. Pratt believes that efforts like National Osteoporosis Prevention and Awareness Month are helping to raise much needed awareness of the risks and treatments for osteoporosis and related fractures. “The world is beginning to gradually wake up and see that osteoporosis is a problem and that the best way to treat it is to stay ahead of it,” says Dr. Pratt. To learn more about osteoporosis, visit the National Osteoporosis Foundation at www. nof.org. For more information about spinal fractures, take the risk assessment, go to www.spinalfracture.com. *Paid consultant of Medtronic Although the complication rate with KYPHON® Balloon Kyphoplasty has been demonstrated to be low, as with most surgical procedures, there are risks associated with the procedure, including serious complications. This procedure is not for everyone. A prescription is required. Please consult your physician for a full discussion of risks and whether this procedure is right for you. For more information please call Medtronic at 1-888-645-4444 and/or visit www.kyphon.com.

If you’re over 50 or have osteoporosis, it’s important that you don’t ignore your back pain. It may signal a spinal fracture. See your doctor right away if you think you may have one.

TAKE CHARGE Don’t turn your back on back pain.

Spinal fractures can be repaired if diagnosed. KYPHON® Balloon Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive treatment for spinal fractures that can correct vertebral body deformity, reduce pain and improve patient quality of life.

before

balloon kyphoplasty

after

For more information on balloon kyphoplasty or to find a local physician performing the procedure, call 800-652-2221 or visit www.kyphon.com Although the complication rate with KYPHON® Balloon Kyphoplasty has been demonstrated to be low, as with most surgical procedures, there are risks associated with the procedure, including serious complications. This procedure is not for everyone. A prescription is required. Please consult your physician for a full discussion of risks and whether this procedure is right for you. © 2008 Medtronic Spine LLC. All Rights Reserved.

MEDTRONIC Spinal and Biologics Business 1221 Crossman Avenue Sunnyvale, CA 94089 USA Tel: (408) 548-6500 16003152_002 [01]


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