Five years ago, Jeff and Jennifer Hand were living what they believed was “the good life.” Jeff worked in construction and Jennifer owned half of four businesses. Their multiple cars, investment properties and large home seemed to say they were living “The American Dream.”

Wednesday, 06 June 2012 14:32

Choosing Forgiveness

Written by Karen Wingate

I remember the sick feeling in my stomach when I heard about the brutal shooting of ten Amish girls at a rural school near Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania in October, 2006. Five girls died and, to this day, one survivor still remains semi-comatose in her parents’ home. How could anyone be so vicious? News reports validated that I wasn’t the only one who felt horror - and yes, a tinge of anger - at this unfair and evil act.

Tuesday, 01 May 2012 20:22

2012 Vacation Bible Schools

Written by Staff

Did you know there is a tangible way for the Church in the River Region to make a substantial difference in the lives of the children who fill our public elementary schools?

Tuesday, 01 May 2012 17:43

Seizing Teachable Moments with Children

Written by Karen Wingate

After teaching children in the local church for more than 30 years, I have reached two conclusions. First, there’s never enough time to teach all I want to teach. Second, my students may not be ready to hear what I have to say on any particular day.

It is not often that you come across someone who possesses contagious joy, fearlessness and pure love for others like LaDonna Brendle. Reality and Truth, the ministry she began in 2008, is quickly becoming a force for good among the homeless and poor in downtown Montgomery. The fuel that drives this force is prayer and a desire to serve people--no matter who they are. LaDonna has abandoned the status quo and exchanged it for a life lived in the spirit of Jesus through serving the least, last and lowest.

Saturday, 07 April 2012 10:47

I Can Read It…But Can I Understand It?

Written by Reed DePace

In a nightmare, I was in a classroom with lots of other students, taking one of the standardized tests like the SAT. Nervous enough, as such tests make most, I froze as I looked at the next section of it. It was a reading comprehension test, “Read the following paragraph and then explain what it means. You will be graded on how well you comprehend what the writer is saying.” Anxiety gripped me. I could read the words, but what if I didn’t read them rightly? What if I didn’t comprehend, didn’t understand what I was reading? Ahhh!!!.

Each Easter an age old question comes to mind: did Jesus really rise from the dead? This is not an unimportant question. The Apostle Paul makes it clear that if Jesus did not rise from the dead, if the Resurrection is nothing more than a quaint holiday tradition with no factual basis, then we who profess him to be our Savior are at best silly and naïve. At worst, if Jesus died and that was it, end of story, we’re still in a heap of trouble (1 Corinthians 15:14, 17).

A Chinese church leader once met with some American businessmen. “How do you share Christ in your workplace?” he asked one man.

“We couldn’t do that!” came the horrified answer. “We would get fired.”

The Chinese man quietly asked, “And the problem with that is . . . ?”

Monday, 06 February 2012 19:19

Real Repentance; A Picture Worth Considering

Written by Reed DePace

So what does real repentance look like? A good picture can be seen in Jacob’s repentance to his twin brother Esau. Remember that these twins did not have the best of relationships. Esau was rash and irresponsible. Jacob was conniving and manipulative. In fact it is fair to say that Jacob had a made a career out of tricking and taking advantage of his older twin’s weaknesses. Theirs was not a relationship of brotherly love.

Monday, 06 February 2012 19:13

What is the Cost of Adoption?

Written by Sam McLure

How much does adoption cost? Granted, this is not the most basic question about adoption. It is however, one of the most important. Many couples are philosophically on-board with the idea of caring for the fatherless through adoption, but consider it to be out of God’s will for them because it costs too much.

Monday, 06 February 2012 19:11

Embracing Orphan Care and Adoption

Written by Sam McLure

Some things in Scripture are not so clear. Revelation, for example, is a hard letter to understand and the geographic descriptions in Isaiah can be confusing. That’s one reason that I smile when I come across passages like James 1:27: “Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”

Monday, 06 February 2012 19:07

What a Teen Daughter Needs From Dad

Written by Kimberly Davidson

Would you believe that 11 percent of all alcohol consumed in America is consumed by teenagers? Being a teen isn’t easy, and it seems to be getting worse. Drinking, drugs, premarital sex, eating disorders, and the pressure to be attractive are shoved into teens’ faces more than anything else. One of the main reasons teens turn to substances or extreme dieting is low self-worth and their desire to feel accepted by peers. It’s uncomplicated to follow the crowd when you don’t have anyone showing you the way to the truth.

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