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departments Founder and Editorial Director Verna V. Nickelberry

Editor-In-Chief India B. Oliver

Art Director

Rushun Wiseman

Contributing Editors Josie Hayslett Alexis Johnson

Contributing Writers Vanderbilt Brabson Pamela Steward Paola Tennon Cheryl Robinson Paris Ducker

Layout Designer Denardo Crawford

Marketing Consultant Joyce Parkinson (901) 907-8557

Photographers Kendall Elem Marlon Hayes

Sales Director/ Memphis, TN Janet Chestnut salesmemphis@

Sales Director/ Frisco, TX Will Odom (214) 514-2926

O.P. Magazine Mail

P. O. Box 323 Memphis, TN 38101 (901) 949-3409 ORDINARY PEOPLE MAGAZINE is a quarterly publication and is distributed in Memphis, TN; Knoxville, TN; Frisco, TX; Atlanta, GA; and Orlando, FL.

Spring 2011 2010 46 || Winter

contents Winter 2011 6





IN THE SPOTLIGHT The Wisdom of a Father


Elijah English










CONSIDER THIS Senior Citizens and a Joyride




10 25


All rights reserved.Reproduction in whole or in part without the founder/editor’s consent is strictly prohibited. The opinions expressed herein are exclusively those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the positions or views of the editor. The publication of any advertisement in the issue does not constitute an endorsement of the advertiser’s products or services by the publication. © 2009 Ordinary People Magazine

4 | Spring 2010 | 5

onthecover Rosa Wilson-Ritter has a long and rich heritage in the Church of God in Christ (COGIC). She is the daughter of Deacon John Fitzgerald and International Evangelist Henrietta Thompson Fitzgerald. She is the mother of one son, Charles Wilson (now deceased) and two lovely daughters, Crystal Wilson Brown of Memphis, TN and Celeste Wilson of Atlanta, GA. Mother Ritter recently celebrated her 84th birthday and is still going strong. She is teacher, lecturer and seminar conductor for the Church of God in Christ. Formally serving as Supervisor of Women in Tennessee 5th Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, she now serves as secretary of the Nominating and Screening Committee of the National General Assembly

of COGIC. She is also a member of the Advisory Board of the International C.H. Mason Jurisdictional Bible Colleges. She was recently elected President of the Memphis Chapter of the National Drifters, Inc., group of dynamic women with social, civic, charitable and educational interests who have dedicated their talents to the enhancement of their chosen communities and the universal image of womanhood. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Natural Science for LeMoyne-Owen College, a Master Degree in Administration and Supervision from the University of Memphis and has earned 90 hours toward her Doctoral Degree in Curriculum and Instruction. She is a retiree of the Memphis City School System where she served as Director of Medical Technology in the Vocational Education Program. A member of Temple of Deliverance Church of God in Christ where Superintendent Milton Roscoe Hawkins is her pastor, she is a woman of impeccable character, great wisdom, and profound integrity with a great love for humanity.

Letters to the Editor First let me congratulate you and your staff for putting together such a wonderful and thought provoking issue on “Diversity in the Church,” in you Winter 2011 issue. It made me wonder if we can’t worship for two hours together on earth, how we are going to live together in heaven. I also enjoyed the article, “This Old Clock”. Keep up the great work.

Vonzelle Bibbs Memphis, TN Thank you so much for such a wonderful magazine. I enjoy reading the articles and how they relate to scriptures in the bible.

Anonymous I would like to thank you for the magazines that you send to Tim’s Health Hair Care Center. Tim Orlando, FL 6 | Winter 2011

FromWithin . . . .

EDITORIAL The words “sitting at the feet of the elders”, had been in my mind for weeks before I really knew why. I would even say them out loud at any moment. It wasn’t until God gave me the scripture for this issue that I knew what the issue should be about. “How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!” (Proverbs 16:16)

“How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!” (Proverbs 16:16) All scriptures are from the Holy Bible the King James Version

It is at the feet of our elders (older individuals, grandparents, season saints) where one might obtain wisdom. I don’t mean to literally sit at their feet, but to listen to what they are saying. I am a firm believer that young people can learn a lot from older people. Unfortunately, in this day and time, many young people don’t necessarily think this way. As a young girl, I would spend many evenings visiting two older women in my neighborhood. I enjoyed hearing their stories. Listening to them talk about their youth, words of wisdom that their parents imparted to them, how they were brought up, and even how they dress, had a great impact on my life. I wanted to be like them. I wanted to be respected as a young girl, get married, become a mother, and impart words of wisdom to my own children. In this issue Cheryl Robinson shares with us “The Wisdom of a Father” in our Spotlight segment. In For Your Health, Paola Tennon asks us to seek wisdom and understanding when it comes to our health. Pamela Steward tells the story of a group of young ladies’ disregard to words of wisdom, in Miracles and Blessings. In Consider This, Vanderbilt Brabson shares story, “Senior Citizens and a Joy Ride.” This article will bring a smile to your face and will touch your heart! What a great time we had at the 26th Annual Stellar Awards, which is part of our Gospel Music/Artist section. And, in Inspirational Words, Paris Ducker, shares her thoughts on wisdom and understanding. As you enjoy reading this issue, I sincerely hope that you will seek wisdom and understanding in all that you do. Proverbs 8:9-10 states, “They are all plain to him that understandeth, and right to them that find knowledge. Receive my instruction, and not silver; and knowledge rather than choice gold.” To my mother, Mrs. Hester Bowens and my spiritual mother Mrs. Vera Holmes, thank you for your words of wisdom that you imparted to me. And as always, Love, Peace, and Increase…

Verna | 7| 7


TheWisdom of a

Father by Cheryl W. Robinson

As most know-it-all teenagers, I doubted that my father knew anything about life, especially mine. After all, he was “old” in my eyes. I grew to learn that one of the wisest men I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing was my “old” father. From my earliest memory, my Daddy was always speaking words of encouragement into my spirit. His wise counsel spread the gamut on a variety of subjects. While I can’t share everything l learned from him, time or space will not allow for it. I can share the topics closest to my heart that include friendship, foolish thinking and faith. The wisdom of my father’s words continues to live in and through me every day. Although Daddy has passed on, there is not a day that passes that I do not hear his voice. I recall returning home from high school one day, distraught about some silly gossip that my juvenile mind thought was destined to ruin my life. It was a mandate in our house that you did not leave or enter without saying “good-bye” or “hello.” On this particular day, I tried to quickly offer my “good evening” and slip away. However, my daddy had “father wit” and

10 | Winter 2011

“How much better is it to get wisdom than gold and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver…” Proverbs16:16 (KJV)

instinctively knew when something was bothering me. He asked, “What’s wrong with you little girl?” Somehow, I managed to tell him through my tears that somebody at school was telling stories about me. (Back in the day to say “lie” or “lying” was a bad word.) He calmly asked if the gossip was true. I exclaimed “NO!” He then chuckled and responded. “Then why are you upset?” Without waiting for my answer, he replied, “You cannot worry about or stop people from talking about you. They talked about Jesus, who are you? What you need to worry about is when people stop talking about you.” Instantly, I knew what was coming next, a scripture, “Woe unto you, when all men shall speak well of you!” Luke 6:36(NIV) Words of wisdom from a so-called old man that have carried me through many of story telling situations.

I am most thankful and eternally grateful to God for blessing me with a father who cared enough to introduce me to Christ. Without any doubt my Daddy loved the Lord fearlessly and fiercely. He instilled in me from a very early age that Jesus is my Savior and in all my ways acknowledge Him and He will direct my path. Daddy went home to be with the Lord in 2005 after fighting a brave battle with lung cancer. As you can imagine, it is difficult being a Daddy’s girl and having to live without him. Yet, my father’s spirit is always with me and his wisdom is etched in my heart. Elroy Day wasn’t a rich man and had no silver or gold to leave my brothers or me. Instead, we inherited the treasure and the richness of his wisdom. No greater treasure could he give to us than to share his faith, love and wisdom. Some things by far are worth more than emeralds, rubies, silver or gold. The popular songwriter, Kirk Franklin, put it this way:

He instilled in me from a very early age that Jesus is my Savior and in all my ways acknowledge Him and He will direct my path.

We live in a world where there is so much evil, deception and depravity, where it often appears that doing the wrong thing is revered. We see it in so many facets of our lives. For example, turn on your television or listen to your radio. We are inundated with sin and wrong thinking everywhere we turn. For some of us, we don’t even need that incentive; all we have to do is survey our homes and communities to see how far we’ve strayed from doing the right thing. To be real, a look in the mirror might tell us a few things. As an adult, I would confide in my father about something negative someone else was doing or proposing to do. Anytime I suggested following suit, whether out of hurt or pure stupidity, he would quickly interject, “Girl, it does not matter what other folks do, YOU do the right thing. God looks at what you do; don’t let other folks send you to hell!” Yes, my daddy was not one to mince words. He was a Baptist minister in every sense of the word and I am so thankful he was true to his calling. He wasn’t a perfect man, but in my eyes, he was a perfect father. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Gal 6:9 (KJV)

Silver and gold Silver and gold I’d rather have Jesus than silver and gold No fame or fortune Nor riches untold I’d rather have Jesus than silver and gold Don’t give me a mansion on top of the hill Don’t give me the world with a shallow thrill But just give me a Saviour My life He can hold… I’d rather have Jesus than silver and gold | 11

Elijah English by Will Odom

ther King (MLK) Junior Oratory competition in Dallas Texas. After finishing in forth place, he was determined to enter the contest this year with renowned focus. ORDINARY PEOPLE magazine was excited to learn that Elijah was the First Place Winner of the 19th Annual Gardere MLK Junior Oratory competition 2011 in Dallas, Texas.

Elijah English was born June 10, 2000, to Macada English. He has two sisters, Patricia and Joy. He is a very teachable and fun-loving child, who is a resident of Carrolton, Texas. He attends Jerry Junking Elementary School and is a member of Keller Springs Baptist Church. His hobbies are reading, hip hop dancing, puzzles, video games, and sports such as basketball & football. Academically, Elijah is a straight A student while being commended in reading, writing, and math on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills Test. He is a dedicated and hardworking young man and takes pride in his responsibilities as the Morning Announcer, a member of the security detail and the Drama Class. He is a member of the African American Academic Bowl team Carrollton Texas. In 2010, Elijah entered the 18th Annual Gardere Martin Lu-

12 | Winter 2011

Since winning the Gardere MLK Junior Oratory Competition 2011, Elijah has had various engagements as a guest speaker listed below. Friday, January 14th - Interview with Channel 11 Saturday, January 15th - Interview with Channel 8 Sunday, January 16th - Performed speech for his church Keller Springs Baptist Church, Pastor Larry Sanders Monday, January 17th - Performed speech at International House of Blues MLK Day Celebration Monday, January 17th - Performed speech at Annual Dallas Bar Association MLK Justice Award Luncheon Thursday, January 20th - DFW Close-Up, CW Channel 33 Saturday, January 22nd - Perform speech at January Christian Fellowship Meeting. Elijah possesses strong leadership skills that lead him towards his Passion and Destiny as a public speaker. Link on Channel 8 News: Students-shine-in-MLK-oratory-contest-114005749.html

Word Search… THE BIBLE D  U  S  U  C  I  T  I  V  E  L  Z  E  Y R  C  Z  D  B  M  1  S  A  M  U  E  L  E U  Y  T  N  E  M  A  T  S  E  T  D  L  O T  M  Z  J  U  D  G  E  S  M  S  D  B  I H  I  A  P  E  L  C  I  N  O  R  H  C  2 E  L  C  I  N  O  R  H  C  1  P  K  U  F 1  K  I  N  G  S  E  L  B  I  B  G  L  M M  A  S  G  N  I  K  2  H  E  Z  R  A  J V  S  K  O  O  B  F  A  A  U  H  S  O  J Z  E  U  S  I  S  E  N  E  G  D  T  M  K V  G  B  G  N  U  M  B  E  R  S  E  Z  U E  X  O  D  U  S  G  C  W  D  E  H  B  F I  O  F  Y  M  O  N  O  R  E  T  U  E  D V  S  L  Z  2  S  A  M  U  E  L  T  U  W 1CHRONICLE EXODUS 1KINGS EZRA 1SAMUEL GENESIS 16 | Winter 2011



26 | Summer 2010

For Your Health

Wisdom “How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! And to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver!” Proverbs 16:16 (KJV) by Paola Tennon RN, BSN, MBA/HCA, CCM When we seek knowledge we gain understanding; with understanding, we increase in wisdom. This enables us to make informed and wiser decisions, which in many cases leads to a more harmonious or optimal outcome. Proverbs 3:13 tells us that “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom; and the man that getteth understanding. Proverbs 4:7 further explains that “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.” You may have heard people say: “If only I had known,” I wasn’t aware that could be done or I didn’t know that.” In many of these cases a critical decision may have needed to be made, identification of early warning signs may have needed to be detected to prevent an unfortunate situation from occurring, effective communication with a healthcare provider could have occurred, and active participation in the process of managing one’s health may have been ensured. Nonetheless, these examples reflect the significance of gaining knowledge, understanding and wisdom. Although these terms share many similarities in definition, wisdom is inclusive and encompasses the ability of judging rightly and following the soundest course of action based on knowledge, experience, understanding, and good judgment, as defined in the Webster New World College Dictionary 4th Edition. The quality of being wise and the use of this word can

18 | Winter 2011

be traced backed to biblical times. It is reflected in the collected works of many religious groups including Christianity (The Holy Bible), Islamic (The Q’ran), Buddhism and Mesopotamian. References are also found in philosophical writings and ancient mythology. (Wikipedia/Wisdom) The world is faced with a multitude of mental, physical and spiritual conditions that could benefit from increased wisdom if only we would recognize our limitations. Regardless of the context in which we seek knowledge, understanding and wisdom, it is important to note that they each play a pivotal role in improving or enhancing our overall welfare and outcome. Think of these three words as stepping stones to a more informed path and bear in mind that limited knowledge places one at risk.

In healthcare as an example, lack of or limited knowledge

lead to exacerbation of these diseases. Given the current

can lead to exacerbation or worsening of diseases and

climate of the US economy, the high rate of obesity, the

other health related illnesses, as well as increased risk

continuous rise in the cost of services and delayed medical

of uninformed decision making and financial disparities.

care, these statistics are destined and expected to rise.

These deficiencies may be rooted in insecurities and based on a variety of causes including lower educational

Knowing this type of information may lead one to

levels, language barriers, the cost of healthcare services,

ask how this applies to wisdom, understanding and

transportation, and limited access to healthcare providers,

knowledge. It is important to first recognize that lack

internet services or public health resources. Other

of knowledge attributes to worsening conditions, a

factors that may compound this issue include, denial,

shorter life expectancy and increases the morbidity and

fear, low self esteem, and disparities related to limited

mortality rates significantly. We must empower ourselves

or unavailable patient/ consumer information in diverse languages. In addition, issues such as risky behaviors, chronic disease and health damaging conditions such as obesity,

We must empower ourselves and take the initiative to seek knowledge related to our health interests.

only compound the problem.

and take the initiative to seek knowledge related to our health interests. In doing so we gain a better understanding as it relates to disease management, methods of prevention, evidence based practices

The staggering reality is that many conditions associated

and vital resources to help guide us. In addition, we

with these factors are preventable. When modifying

benefit from knowledge associated with and in the area

behaviors such as smoking, physical inactivity, poor

of potential discounts from pharmaceutical companies

nutrition, and alcohol consumption, wellness improves.

for medication or from medical supplies affiliates. These

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention National

options, along with financial assistance organizations,

Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health

support services, resource materials and referral

Promotion (NCCDPHP) is currently seeking ways to

information, will aid us in optimizing our approach when

improve the health and quality of life for all people.

facing decisions related to acute care, home care or long-

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Vital Sign Report of 20092010 on access to healthcare identified cost of services as the primary cause of missed or delayed medical care. Their statistics showed that 40% of the US population age 18-64 years who fell in this category were uninsured and had one or more chronic illnesses. Additionally, 1 in 4 (46 million) adults who have a disability also delayed medical care secondary to cost. These factors can only | 19

term care settings. We must be willing to seek out the

we can then effectively communicate and give opinions


based on our experiences, research, reasoning and good judgment. “He that handleth a matter wisely shall find

There are a multitude of consumer health information

good: and whoso trusted in the Lord, happy is he.”

resources available. Information should be tailored to

Proverbs 16:20 KJV

the needs of the specific individual and centered on their medical history, current status of disease, management approach and available resources. As consumers, it is important to enhance our knowledge related to specific disease process, potential tests, procedures or surgeries preferably prior to the time of need. Consequently, we will be able to effectively communicate with healthcare providers, know which questions to ask and actively participate in the process of managing our health. A word of caution when accessing health information is to consult with your healthcare provider and check to ensure that information obtained from the internet or unfamiliar resources is reputable. 2 Timothy 2:15 tells us to “Study to show ourselves approved…” This does not only apply to the Holy Word; it also can be use throughout our lives and on any subject matter whether mental, physical or

References The Holy Bible, King James Version htm (NCCDPHP) National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention & Health Promotion 4770 Buford Hwy, NE MSK-400 Atlanta, GA 30341-3717 770-488-5131; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 1600 Clifton Road NE, Atlanta, GA 30333 Publication date: 11/09/2010 1800-CDC-INFO (232-4636)

spiritual. When we take charge

of managing these areas we

become empowered. We have a yearning and desire to seek more knowledge concerning ourselves or our loved ones well-being. As parents, caregivers, friends, family members or individuals, we also serve as advocates who are continually seeking knowledge, gaining understanding, and becoming wiser. With this approach

20 | Winter 2011

Other Resource References:

Miracles & Blessings By Pamela Stewart

There is certain information That you can only get in conversation… When Young People, talk to Old People, it would make us A better People, all around... And if Old People would talk to Young People, it would make us A better People, all around...India Irie


ne night a group of young women (who had been raised in a Holiness church) decided they would go out to Club Royale on Beale Street in Memphis, TN. They were in their 20’s and two were married with children. One of the young women lived with her grandmother who was affectionately called “Mother Wilson.” Mother Wilson’s house was the meeting place before this event. As they arrived she greeted the young women at the door with a smile and a “Praise the Lord.” In the midst of all the greetings and conversation the question was asked, “Where are you all going?” Well, they couldn’t and wouldn’t lie, but knew the answer would not be met with her approval. The group hesitantly spoke in chorus, “to Beale Street.” Immediately Mother Wilson said, “y’all ain’t got no business down there.” Her speech sped

20 | Winter 2011

up and she stuttered, as she often did when she got upset or nervous. “That’s just not right! It ain’t right! It, it don’t look good. Lord, have mercy!” The young women took their stand alone with the granddaughter (who will remain nameless) when she said “Madear, we are going!” The young women felt that it would be better for them not to argue their point. Mother Wilson saw her words had fallen on deaf ears. Her | 21

final words were, “I’m gonna pray! I’m gonna pray!” The attitude of the group was “go on pray” because we are still going. Of course they didn’t say this out loud, but that was their stance on the matter.

every Sunday morning Robert wakes her with breakfast. She says that when a man loves you he is consistent. She has been getting Sunday morning breakfast prepared by the man she loves and who certainly loves her for the past 48 yrs.

When they got to Beale Street, it was like the “Night before Christmas” We praise God for not a person was stirring, the wisdom and not even a mouse... Alwise counsel that though, it was after 11pm, we receive throughBeale Street was quiet, as out our lives. Some my mom would say, “You we listen to, and could hear a mouse licksome we don’t. Our ing flour.” Everywhere acceptance or rejecthey went it was quiet, no tion never changes action. They finally gave the validity or up, stopped by a local reality of tried truth. Robert and Geraldine Walker Church’s Chicken and May you embrace spent the night talking at the wisdom of those the home of one of the young women. This is the story who love you and above all the wisdom of God! of a grandmother’s disregarded words that would be the Much love and Miracles and Blessings to you, final word! We have no idea what incidents we are protected from. If any one prayer could shut down Beale Street, Mother Minnie Mae Wilson’s could and did. Mother Wilson has gone on to be with the Lord but I asked her daughter, Geraldine Walker, what were some of mother’s words of wisdom that she has seen come to pass. She immediately answered, “My mother told me that when it comes to marriage, I should marry a man who treats his mother well and who would love me more than I love him. Also, that a woman can learn or grow to love a man, but if a man doesn’t love you before he marries you, he never will. He may marry you but he will never love you fully.” Robert and Geraldine Walker have been married for nearly 48yrs and have four lovely daughters. Before there was family medical leave, Robert made it clear to his supervisor that he would take time off from work to help his wife care for their newborn babies. Geraldine shares that

22 | Winter 2011

Pam Steward | 21

Gospel Music/Artists

God’s Diva “07” “I Sing Because I’m Happy”

As an enthusiastic, energetic woman of God, Aretha Debra Williams blazes the trail with a song in her heart. She was born in 1972 to the proud parents, Pastor and Mrs. Samuel A. Phillips, Sr. At an early age, Aretha knew that the Lord had given her the gift to sing. As a child, Aretha attended Chulahoma M.B. Church under the leadership of Rev. James Futrell. Aretha says, “Being a part of the choir singing and leading songs, God was really setting me up at a really early age.” Her mother won a piano, so music was already in the house. She began teaching herself to play by ear and shortly afterwards began taking formal piano lessons. At the age of 11, she had begun her journey as a pianist for the Chulahoma M.B. Church choir, as well as for other churches in the area. Her greatest honor

await bigger and bet-

was to sing after her father had preached. She cites her

ter things to come!”

parents for their support in the earliest stages of her music

Aretha is thankful for

ministry and as she has continued to praise God and honor

her pastor and men-

Him in song.

tor, Pastor Andrew Perpener of the Holy Nation Church of Memphis, who “pushes me toward perfection.”

As her journey continues, Aretha has been afforded the opportunity to sing both far and near, taking the glorious gospel through song with her. “Just recently, I was asked

Look on Facebook for the schedule of all of Aretha Debra

to sing at the church here in Memphis where the Rev. C.L.

Williams’ upcoming singing events or you may e-mail her at

Franklin pastored before moving to Detroit,” she says with

excitement! In her own words, “I am most grateful for the gifts God has given me and the opportunities that I’ve had. I | 23

MARVIN SAPP BRINGS HOME TOP HONORS AT 26th ANNUAL STELLAR GOSPEL MUSIC AWARDS James Fortune & FIYA, BeBe and CeCe Winans Also Score Multiple Wins; Featured Performances by Host Donnie McClurkin, Deitrick Haddon, Forever Jones, The Nevel Sisters, JJ Hairston, Beverly Crawford, VaShawn Mitchell and More The 26th Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards Airs in Syndication Beginning January 22 to March 13, and on GMC March 5

NASHVILLE, TN (January 17, 2011) – Platinum artist Marvin Sapp topped the list of winners during the 26TH ANNUAL STELLAR GOSPEL MUSIC AWARDS announced Saturday night during the show’s taping at Nashville’s iconic Grand Ole Opry House Theater. Sapp

Dr. Malinda P. Sapp. The Grand Ole Opry landmark was transformed into a spirit-filled sanctuary as Pastor McClurkin led the ‘congregation’ in a prayer for Sapp and provided one of the night’s biggest moments. “It’s great to be honored by your peers, and you do

took home four awards, your best to give honor including Artist of the and glory to God,” said Year, Traditional Male of Sapp. “But it’s bitterthe Year, CD of the Year sweet with my wife not and Traditional CD of the here with me.” Marvin Sapp Photo by Moses Robinson/Courtesy of The FrontPage Firm Year. A highlight of the evening, his emotion-filled Before introducing the finale performance of his biggest hit “Never Would performance, McClurkin added, “If it wasn’t for PasHave Made It” with Stellar Awards host Donnie Mctor Marvin Sapp’s wife Malinda, this song would have Clurkin created an overwhelming audience response never made it on the CD.” as he dedicated the night to his recently-deceased wife | 25

Other top winners included James Fortune & FIYA who received two awards for Group/Duo of the Year and Contemporary CD of the Year, and presented his award to his wife who joined him on stage for standing by him while they were homeless, sleeping out of their car and expecting their third child. James Fortune was also named Contemporary Male of the Year. Seasoned vets Bebe & Cece Winans won awards individually and collectively; the duo received the Urban Inspirational Single or Performance of the Year and Music Video of the Year awards. Bebe Winans also received the Song of the Year award while CeCe Winans was named Contemporary Female of the Year. Karen Clark Sheard received the first-ever Albertina Walker Female Vocalist of the Year award, presented to her by legends Shirley Caesar (former member of The Caravans) and Vickie Winans. In addition, Serump/Psalms/Universal Music Group artist Kristina Halloway won the hotly-contested Best New Artist category.

Cece Winnans

Photo by Moses Robinson/Courtesy of The FrontPage Firm

Gospel superstar Kirk Franklin, who was honored with the Thomas A. Dorsey Most Notable Achievement Award for his Haitian relief efforts, was moved to tears during an All-Star tribute of the song he wrote to benefit disaster victims “Are You Listening: A Love Song for Haiti” by his friends and colleagues. The choir included stars CeCe Winans, Vickie Winans, Karen Clark Sheard, Marvin Sapp, Wess Morgan, Dorinda Clark Cole, Shirley Caesar, J Moss, Myron Butler, The Nevel Sisters and others. The award was presented to Franklin by Haitian-born actor Jimmy Jean-Louis (NBC’s “Heroes”). Franklin spoke of the industry’s response to the 26 | Winter 2011

Byron Cage Male Vocalist of the Year Photo by Kendall Elem; Ordinary People Magazine

tragedy in Haiti, saying “Gospel music –- we were the first genre to come together and respond musically.” The hand-clapping, foot-stomping revival began with star-studded red carpet arrivals featuring stars from Gospel, television and film, such as Andrae Crouch, Omari Hardwick (For Colored Girls), Meagan Good (The Game), Yvette Nicole Brown (NBC’s Community), BET’s Dr. Bobby Jones (Bobby Jones Gospel), Beth Payne, Shari Addison and Jessica Reedy from Sunday Best, Committed (winners of NBC’s “The Sing Off”), and TrinI-Tee 5:7 as well as other notable personalities. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee presented Central City Productions CEO and founder of the Stellar Awards Don Jackson with a proclamation celebrating the establishment of September as national Gospel Music Heritage month. The show was filled with stirring performances, including a heart-pumping opening performance of “Lord You’re Mighty” by JJ Hairston & Youthful Praise; Beverly Crawford brought the audience to their feet with a rendition of “It’s About Time for a Miracle;” Forever Jones masterfully sang “He Wants It All;” and Joshua’s Troop delighted the crowd with the youthful praise song, “Everybody Clap Your Hands.” Other big performers included Voices of Destiny - 2010 Verizon

Red Carpet

Photo by Kendall Elem; Ordinary People Magazine

music which have set the bar for future generations of artists. The 26th Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards is scheduled to air in syndication from January 22, 2011 to March 13, 2011 and air on Saturday, March 5 at 8 p.m. EST on GMC (Gospel Music Channel).

Wireless “How Sweet the Sound” Choir Contest Winners, Deitrick Haddon, VaShawn Mitchell, a quartet collaboration between The Rance Allen Group, The Soul Seekers, and The Williams Brothers, and more.

The Stellar Awards is sponsored by American Airlines, Ford Motor Company, Verizon How Sweet the Sound, Johnson & Johnson, AllState, Chevrolet, State Farm and McDonald’s.

The show also recognized the great accomplishments of some of Gospel’s brightest stars as Donald Lawrence received the James Cleveland Lifetime Achievement Award and Vanessa Bell Armstrong received the Ambassador Dr. Bobby Jones Legends Award. Both were lauded for their significant contributions to Gospel

Courtesy of The FrontPage Firm 3350 Wilshire Blvd. #1225 Los Angeles, CA 90010 | 27


28 | Winter 2011

Pictures by Kendall Elem | 29

30 | Winter 2011 | 31



Citizens and a

Joy Ride By Vanderbilt Brabson III

32 | Winter 2011

A teenage boy and his girlfriend spent a great deal of time

Nathan’s parable. After hearing of the rich man’s wicked

joy riding in his’ 57 Chevy. His girlfriend would sit so close

actions, David became enraged and declared to Nathan that

to him in the car, he barely had enough room to steer the

as surely as the Lord lives, whoever this rich man was, he

vehicle. In the course of time the two were married. They

would be put to death. Imagine the king’s shock when Na-

raised a family together and, as the years rolled on, the two

than revealed to David the identity of the rich man:

aged into senior citizens. Whenever this elderly couple trav-

“Thou art the man” (2 Samuel 12:7).

eled together, the wife would position herself comfortably on the other side of the car. One evening while the two of them

Perhaps if some of us discovered just how far we have

were out and about in their car, they pulled up and stopped

strayed from an intimate relationship with God, we would

at a red light. The old woman glanced over to her right just

be just as shocked as King David. Like the king, we unwit-

as another car pulled up and stopped right beside theirs. The

tingly allowed our relationship with our Lord to erode and

older woman noticed it was a teenage couple was sitting in

become lukewarm. This is inevitable when (1) our relation-

the other vehicle. The teenage boy barely had enough room

ship with Jesus Christ ceases to be the number one priority

to steer the vehicle because his girlfriend was sitting so close

in our lives, and (2) our allegiance to God becomes divided

to him. Reminiscing, the old woman smiled and turned to

because of an unchecked infatuation with the lures of this

her husband.

world—fortune, fame, power, and pleasure.

“Honey, look over there at that teenage couple,” she said pointing at the other car. “They are so cute. Remember when we used to sit like that in the car?”

The spiritual minded Christian is not sinless, but continually seeks God’s guidance (Proverbs 3:5-6) and God’s cleansing (1 John 1:7-9) in every area of his or her life. Therefore, the spiritual minded Christian is no stranger to spiritual victory.

The elderly gentleman smiled and quietly replied, “I haven’t moved!”

Paul teaches in his first epistle to the Corinthian believers that, spiritually speaking, there are only two kinds of people—the saint and the sinner. In the same passage of scripture Paul also teaches that there are

only two kinds of Christians—the carnal minded and the spiritual minded. The carnal minded Christian caters to his

Question – Have you allowed distance to come between

or her fleshly appetites and lives with unconfessed sin in

the Lord and you?

his or her life. Therefore, the carnal minded Christian is no stranger to spiritual defeat. The spiritual minded Christian is

The second book of Samuel records an event in which the

not sinless, but continually seeks God’s guidance (Proverbs

prophet Nathan informs King David of a very hideous act

3:5-6) and God’s cleansing (1 John 1:7-9) in every area of

perpetrated in his kingdom against a poor man by his rich

his or her life. Therefore, the spiritual minded Christian is

neighbor. What the prophet actually described to the king

no stranger to spiritual victory. To be carnal minded means

in the form of a parable was the evil deed David himself had

our relationship with Jesus Christ is, at best, lukewarm. To

committed against his own servant Uriah, the Hittite (2 Sam-

be spiritual minded means our relationship with Jesus Christ

uel: 11-12). However, having become blinded by his own

is our number one priority.

sin, David was unable to recognize himself as the villain in | 33

What about you? Are you a spiritual minded or a carnal

spirit within me (V10)...

minded Christian? Have you allowed distance to come

Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation (v12a)…

between the Lord and you? If so, remember…

(Psalm 51:1-4; 10-12)

God has not moved.

If your relationship with God has eroded into lukewarmness, and you now desire the same closeness with God that He

James, the brother of our Lord, teaches how we may close the gap and eliminate the distance between God and

desires with you, tell Him. Remember, God is as close as the mention of His name. Pray the following…

us. James urges that we should… Dear Heavenly Father, as David repented and prayed, • Humble ourselves before God. (James 4:6)

I too repent and am asking for Your forgiveness. For-

• Stop resisting Christ’s lordship over our lives. Instead sur-

give me for not seeking first Your kingdom and Your

render to it. (James 4:7)

righteousness and allowing other things to have greater

• Resist the temptations and snares of the devil who would

priority in my life than You. Forgive me for my divided

have us to be self-reliant rather than God-reliant, self-cen-

allegiance and my unchecked infatuation with the lures

tered as opposed to Christ-centered, and selfish as opposed

of this world. You said in Your word in Revelation 3:15,

to selfless. (James 4:7)

You would have us to be hot or cold, but not lukewarm.

• Draw nigh (come near) to God, knowing if we do, God

I desire to be hot, Lord, and I sincerely mean it. Help

will draw nigh to us. (James 4:8)

it to be so in my life from this day forward. I ask this in

• Cleanse our hands and purify our hearts. (James 4:9) In

Jesus’ name. Amen.

short, address those things in our lives, which place distance between the Lord and us.

“No one who really wants to count for God can afford to

• Grieve and truly mourn over our sin. In other words,

play at Christianity.”

repent. (James 4:9)

Harry Allen (H.A.) Ironside.

After being confronted with his own sin, King David repented and sought to eliminate the distance between God

Harry Allen (H.A.) Ironside was an American Bible teacher,

and him. Consider his words…

pastor, and author.

“Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Thy lov-

© November 2010

ingkindness; According unto the multitude of Thy tender

Vanderbilt Brabson III, Author

mercies blot out my transgressions (v1).


Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin (v2). For I acknowledge my transgressions; and my sin is ever before me (v3). Against Thee, Thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in Thy sight; that Thou mightest be justified when Thou speakest, and be clear when Thou judgest (v4)…. Create in me a clean heart; O God; and renew a right

34 | Winter 2011

Words of Inspiration by Paris Ducker

Proverbs 16:16 Acquire Wisdom – How Much Better It Is Than Gold! And Acquire Understanding – It Is Preferable To Silver! Have you remained true to your goals, commitments or resolutions for 2011? When you declared your lifestyle changes for this New Year, did you remember to include spiritual wisdom and godly insight? Is there a yearning to know more of God’s will for your life? Proverbs 16:16 reminds us that wisdom and understanding are much more valuable than gold or silver. Wisdom and understanding are not skills that can be purchased, but rather are God given abilities that enable us to make sensible decisions involving sound judgment. Those who possess wisdom and understanding are held in high esteem in both the business arena as well as in spiritual settings; they are also referred to as those who have mother wit, common sense, gumption, and discernment. Many of the highest posts in the land are held by those who have knowledge which solves many problems, a sage sense, and prudence in Many pledges handling finances.

In the same manner, when seeking for wisdom and understanding, various tools are needed. We are to study, dig and probe God’s Word and seek God’s will for our life with daily prayer and meditation. Proverbs 9:10 tells us “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” Wisdom speaks to us in Proverbs 8:19 stating “my fruit is better than solid gold, and my harvest is better than silver.” Many pledges and guarantees including the promise of long life, enjoyment of good things, knowledge that will delight your heart, wisdom that will enter your mind and and guarantees understanding from the including the promise of long mouth of God. How There are many similariexciting are God’s promlife, enjoyment of good things, ties in searching for gold to us if we just obey knowledge that will delight your ises and silver and searching his Word and diligently heart, wisdom that will enter your seek wisdom and underfor wisdom, and understanding. When mining mind and understanding from the standing. With wisdom for gold and silver or and understanding, we are mouth of God. worldly wealth a person less likely to be caught up must have specific tools in foolishness, conflict, that allows him to study, dig, and probe in order to obtain deception, crooked paths and devious ways. Wisdom and the treasure they seek. Gold is a precious and highly valued understanding that is downloaded from God will guide us in metal. Silver is noble and an excellent reflector of light. the path of righteousness, prosperity, peace, understanding Mining for these involves a timely process which requires and the ability for creatively achieving wealth of gold and patience, persistence and determination. Although doing all silver. that is required to mine these earthly treasures, there is no guarantee of retrieving these gems. There is nothing wrong Let’s be doers of God’s Word and become spiritually with achieving monetary wealth, but it is not guaranteed wealthy beyond measure by obtaining wisdom and insight in today’s economic recession. But even in these times of that is everlasting. Acquire Wisdom – How Much Better It bad news, we STILL have God’s Word that gives us timely Is Than Gold! And Acquire Understanding – It Is Preferable instruction in being astute in achieving wealth. To Silver! | 35

The “Each One Reach One” church growth challenge is an initiative that challenge members of Holy Nation Church to....

• Be a witness and win souls for Christ • Compel individuals without a church home to visit Holy Nation • Challenge individuals to become members of Holy Nation • Spread the vision of Holy Nation in the Memphis and surrounding community We are extending ourselves to the Memphis, West Memphis and surrounding communities to come and grow with us as we impact the world for Christ!

3333 Old Brownsville Road Memphis, TN 38134 For More Information Call: (901)491-6403

Andrew and Shirley Perpener, Pastor

Ordinary People Magazine Winter 2011  

Ordinary People Magazine is an inspirational magazine that is produced four times a year. Our goal is to produce a quality Christian magazin...