THE HEIGHTENER                                  

"Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall exalt you."  -James 4:10


Volume XXVIIII

November 20, 2007

Number 47

                                                                    

VIEWPOINT

 

Mattie Stepanek is the author of Journey Through Heartsongs. It is an impressive collection of poems by a young man who touched millions with his writings.  He was been on Good Morning America, Today, and Oprah.

One of the most interesting Stepanek verses is “On Being Thankful.”  It is short but profound. Written as a prayer, it begins with his intention to thank God that evening for a beautiful sunrise, a wonderful rainbow, and a sunset that “sparkled orange across the water.” Wonderful images. Worthy of gratitude, right? He continues . . .

   was going to thank You tonight

For all of these special gifts,

      except that none of them happened.

But do You know what?

I still love You, God,

And I have lots of other things

     That I can thank you for tonight,

Even if You didn’t give those

Very special gifts to me today.

It’s okay, God,

because I’ll look for them all again,

When my tomorrow comes.

What a wise and strategic insight about life!  Our human tendency appears to have us presenting God an agenda for selfish consumption and personal joy. Then, when those items fail to materialize, we whine and blame.  We indict God for his injustice or lack of concern. In some cases, we turn away in angry unbelief.

But God is God, and we are not! Prayer is not a license to demand. Faith clings to him in dark times, finding “lots of other things” to give thanks for yet.

By the way, you should know this about Mattie Stepanek.  He was twelve when that poem was written.  However, his “tomorrow” has already come.  His life has ended since then from a rare form of muscular dystrophy.  His struggle seemed to give him insights that some of use and us who are several times his age could envy— and use.

So is there anything for which you can be thankful today?         RA

 

 

            

Thanksgiving: Time for Sharing

 

“Hi! My name is Sam. What’s yours?” A brief conversation started between an attorney and a little boy whose head didn’t quite come to his waist.  The little boy had a big smile and an infectious personality.  He also had an assortment of birth defects that were very visible and obvious.  But he was smiling, meeting new people, and tasting the sweet nectar of delight in life!

The man who had been an absent-minded shopper became an enthralled buddy to Sam.  So he glanced up at the mother of such a remarkable little boy.  And it didn’t take any special insight to see that Sam and his mom were not high rollers from an upscale neighborhood.  They were buying a few basics for their pantry — a pantry that probably wasn’t stuffed with lots of extras.

He remembered a newspaper article he had read that very morning about a “Seeds of Kindness” project.  (Note: Details are at www.SeedsOfKindness.com.)  Its goal is to encourage sharing and generosity.  There are lots of barren places where just a little kindness would do wonders.  The plan is to encourage people to use $5 or $50 or $5,000 to help someone in need — and take nothing in return.

So he looked up at the cashier who was scanning the last item for the lady who was starting to count out her money and said, “If you don’t mind adding my couple of items to this lady’s tab, I’d like to pay for both of us.”

A confused clerk and startled customer looked at him for an explanation.  Was it a joke? If so, it was pretty heartless!  Did he know the lady?  Maybe that’s why he got in this line.  Were they together?  Not too likely — given the obvious differences between them.  So what gives?

He told the mother about “Seeds of Kindness” and said he wanted to be a blessing to her — and asked that she pass a blessing forward to someone else.  She thanked him.  She and Sam went home with their groceries.  The cashier who had heard everything smiled broadly.  And the man left with his sack — thanking God for showing him where to plant a few seeds of kindness that day

If you ask, God just might show you a spot for

sowing a     few yourself.

  

                

 

FOOD DRIVE

Thank you to everyone who helped with the food collection the past few days.  In order to help some families at the holiday time, we are continuing the food drive for the next few weeks.  This will extend into December to help with Christmas as well.  Remember, our children like to be involved so they can bring their contributions to Bible class. 

 

 

 

FROM THE MAILBAG

Dear Cedar Grove Friends,

Thank you for the beautiful plant arrangement you sent to Heather’s funeral.  The meal you prepared after the service was so much appreciated.  Benny and I could never begin to express in words how grateful we are for all your love, support and prayers over the past year.  A great deal of our strength and courage came from knowing how much we are cared for by this congregation.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers as the healing process continues for us.

Love,

Benny, Renee; & Justin Moore

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHILDREN'S HOLIDAY PARTY 

There will be a Holiday Party for the children on Sunday, December 2 after the morning assembly.  There is a sing-up sheet on the Involvement Team bulletin board.  Please be sure to indicate how many in your family will be attending.  We will have a special guest visiting us, pizza for lunch, crafts, Bible stories, and cookie decorating!

 

 

 

Our Holiday Party this year will be Saturday, December 8.  There is a list on the Involvement Team bulletin board to indicate if you will be attending.

·         We will be asking each family to donate $5 to help prepare for the dinner party.  Give the money to Sheila Mixon or Jana Hamby.

·         We will be having an ornament exchange.  Everyone needs to bring a wrapped ornament.

·         Anyone who cannot attend because of childcare issues, please see Jana Hamby as soon as possible.

·         If you have empty coffee cans, chip cans or anything similar, please give to Sheila Mixon or Jana Hamby as soon as possible.

 

 

 

 

 

ATTENTION MEN

      One or two more days of work will finish our storage building.  Jim O’Brien suggested beginning Friday at 8:00 a.m. and continuing Saturday if necessary.  Call Jim at (770) 853-0312 for any questions.

 

 

 

 OUR SICK

Sheila Hunt had heart catheterization and an echogram last Friday; she is conferring with the heart surgeon this week.

Phil Hamby has been suffering with pneumonia.

Kay Buckner and Murray Kirkland were sick Sunday.

Continue to remember Evelyn Bohannon, Susan Carson, Nell Peters, J. W. Raines, Richard & Joyce Smith, and

Geneva White.

 

 

THOSE TO SERVE - November 25, 2007

Welcome

Chris King

Song Leader

Doyle White

Opening Prayer

Dick Massey

Lord's Table

*Phil Hamby

 

*Dave Hamby

 

Danny Hamby

 

Chris Greenwald

Scripture Reading

Todd Wisenbaker

 

     Ephesians 5:15-20

Closing Prayer

Greg Cannon

Welcome -PM

Ross Anderson

Song Leader

Doyle White  

Opening Prayer

Steve Putman

Scripture Reading

Jason Ray

 

Psalm 103:1-5

Closing Prayer

Keith Bearden

Communion Preparation

 

Nancy Kirkland

Nursery Attendant

Mary and Jillian Mitchell

 

 

 

RECORD 11/18/07

Bible School

87

Worship AM

125

Worship PM

69

Wednesday Bible Study

50

Contribution

$ 2,996.20