Connected, Session 5 (Connected in Service): Can I Take Your Coats?


by Scott Penner These were the first words that greeted me as I, along with my family, entered Truro Alliance Church as a candidate for pastoral ministry.  Delbert, a quiet, unassuming senior, had his own way of making a person feel welcome. He was what you would call the head usher. However, when asked if [...]

Connected, Session 6 (Connected Through Prayer): May I Pray For You Now?


  by Kaye Johns “Brothers, pray for us also” (1 Thess. 5:25).  Most of us, if we are at all active in our churches, are occasionally asked to pray for someone. We say we will — and we fully we intend to — but sometimes we forget. One way to avoid this is to pray [...]

Connected, Session 4: No, Not Forever


A Prayer of Thanks for an Overheard Conversation by Charlotte Poteet Lord, yesterday, one of Your saints encouraged me, although he had no idea of it. I did not know him, nor did he know me. But I saw his face, and I knew he belonged to You. Actually, I was encouraged by several of [...]

Connected, Session 3: Pen to Paper


by Farrell D’Lynn Boone At Cross Point Community Church in Nashville, Tenn., a team of volunteers has put new life into the dying art of letter writing. Not only have they given voice to its revival, but they’ve shaped it into a ministry that has far exceeded their expectations with its powerful results. Members of [...]

Connected, Session 1: All Excuses Ceasing


by Susan Childress This year, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated the 60th anniversary of her coronation. In 1953, she sent special invitations to the coronation. The invitations were inscribed, “all excuses ceasing.” In other words, there is no RSVP — you’re expected to be there, no excuses. Today, you are invited and expected to accept an [...]

And It Was Good, Session 2: All God’s Creatures


By Tracy Crump Valery Smith has been bitten, clawed, pecked, and chewed. But she keeps coming back for more.  In her work as a wildlife rehabilitator, the 66-year-old great-grandmother has cared for all species native to her north Mississippi home — and some non-native species. Bobcats, eagles, beavers, and even cuckoo birds have passed through [...]

And It Was Good, Session 1: The Seas as Divine Imagery


By Thomas Goodman Gifted Bible Teachers will use analogies and illustrations drawn from their students’ lives. Some churches will even use a clip from a popular movie to drive home a Bible lesson, while acknowledging that the film in its entirety may not accurately portray God’s character or the biblical lifestyle. This teaching tool is actually quite ancient. The biblical writers sometimes [...]

Resilient Faith Session 6: Grow Through Adversity


by Larry Dry Dr. John Dunlop, author of Finishing Well to the Glory of God, sees patients even the day after running a marathon. One of his elderly patients greeted him, saying, “I understand you ran the marathon yesterday. That’s 26 miles, isn’t it?” Dr. Dunlop responded jokingly, “No sir, it’s 26.2 miles. Don’t forget [...]

Resilient Faith, Session 5: Cookies


by Linda K. Anderson Sometimes you just know it’s going to be a good day. You wake up, stretch, and smile, feeling ready for anything.  One such morning, many years ago, was a springboard to a little miracle in my life, proving beyond a doubt God does indeed provide for our needs — and in [...]

Resilient Faith, Session 4: God’s Purpose in Our Suffering


by Larry Dry Recently I received an email from a retired pastor friend: “What I thought would be a routine exam with the heart doctor has turned out to be much more. So far I’ve endured wearing a heart monitor and having blood tests and an echo cardiogram. At least they have proven beyond a [...]