THE HEIGHTENER                                  

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


Volume XXXIX

February 6, 2018

Number 6  

                                                                    

VIEWPOINT

I enjoyed this story from Phil Ware in Heartlight:

Bertie had never married. As she had grown old, she had outlived most of her family. Her heart was failing. She knew that she would be “graduating to meet Jesus” very soon. And, to be quite honest, she was scared.

“Phil,” she said summoning all her courage, “I am afraid and don’t want to die alone!”

I was twenty-four years old. I wasn’t quite sure what to do to help her. So, I prayed with her asking for Jesus to show himself to Bertie. “Lord,” I prayed out loud with her, “please show yourself to Bertie in an unmistakable way so that she knows that she is not alone as she dies. Amen.”

Bertie was tired of being alone. She desperately wanted reassurance that the Savior she had trusted through life would accompany her through her death. I didn’t know what else to ask, so I asked for her to be able to experience Jesus’ presence as she died.

After my prayer, I began to turn to different passages of scripture and read them aloud to her. Somewhere during the ninety minutes of Bible reading, she slipped into a peaceful sleep. Eventually, her failing heart quit. There was no struggle. There wasn’t even a whimper. Somewhere along our journey through God’s promises, the eternal part of Bertie left her body to be with Jesus and await the great reunion at his return (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). She died with a sweet smile on her face; all fear was gone.

I’m not sure what led me to begin saying this prayer — this straightforward asking that the person dying, along with his or her loved ones, be able to experience Jesus’ presence. All I know is that it became part of my care for those in this closing time of life. I wasn’t taught to pray for such a thing. In some ways, this audacious request was outside the accepted theology on which I had been raised. However, I know that this simple prayer has been answered more times than I can count.

The touches of the Lord’s presence have sometimes been experienced in small, almost unnoticeable ways — the timing of certain events, the words of the music playing when a person drew his last breath, or the unexpected card or visit from her old friend. Sometimes the touches of the Lord’s presence have felt much grander — the look on her face right before her body failed, the final words he shared before his passing, her reaching upward as if to take a reassuring hand to cross from this life to the next, or the words of a nurse or doctor that seemed a direct answer to a prayer.

That doesn’t mean the passing of most of these people was as sweet and peaceful as Bertie’s. Many, if I am honest, have been much harder, some even gut-wrenching. But, I am convinced, most families and most of those dying knew they were not abandoned by their Lord in their time of loss and grief.

Over the years, I have grown more and more passionate about my simple, but bold prayer:

Lord Jesus, please make your gracious presence known to this precious person and his or her family during this hard time! We need to experience the nearness of your presence. Amen.

For me, this simple prayer makes the promises of two of my favorite passages in the time of death even more reassuring

The LORD is my shepherd;
I shall not want.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the LORD
Forever
   (Psalm 23:1-6 NKJV).

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord  (Romans 8:38, 39).

My prayer for you, my prayer for me, is that when our time comes -- no matter how alone or terrifying or unfair or ill-timed our death may be -- we experience the hand of our Shepherd and know that we are not alone as we walk through the dark valley of shadows and into the presence of Jesus! 

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I look forward to seeing you Sunday with a Bible, a smile and a positive word!  RA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"The test of love is in how one relates not to saints and scholars but to rascals."

— Abraham Joshua Heschel

 

 

 

  

 

                         

 

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"Thank you, Cedar Grove, for delivering the truck load of clothes and food from the congregation.  You always seem to be right on time."  -- Alfred Donald 

 

 

 

 

Southside Area Youth Devotional 

  NEXT EVENT:  

February 18, 2018

Atlanta Airport 

5:00 p.m.

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Congratulations to Craig and Sharon Hodges on the birth of a granddaughter.  Alice Elaine DeCoster was born on January 2.  She weighed 7 lb. 13 oz. and was 20 inches long.  

 

 

Bible Camp Fundraiser 

Camp Inagehi was founded in 1954 and has provided many years of safe and fun Christian camp experiences.  There is always the need to make improvements for the camp.  February 11 is designated the Heart of the Matter Campaign.  Donations will be used to update the facility and provide scholarships for children who need help. 

 

 

 

 

 Notes following Youth Exposure Camp

Dear Church Family,

Each time I accompany the youth on a trip like Exposure I learn a great deal more.  I learn that we have a really awesome group of kids and that group texts with them involve far too many emojis! The support of the congregation for the youth is very much appreciated!

Much love, Janine

 P.S.  If you have never stood among hundreds or thousands of young people while singing praises to God, I highly recommend it!

Dear Cedar Grove Family, 

Thank you" is not enough to express our appreciation for giving us the opportunity to experience not only our youth together, but also over 2,000 Christians together to praise God!! 

Thank you for your love and support of the Cedar Grove Youth!!

 Susan

Dear Congregation, 

I don't know how we could go without you.  Thank you.  

Clark Coggin

Thank you for sponsoring our trip to Exposure.  We all had lots of fun!  

Regan

Thank you for sponsoring our trip.  I have had a great time.

 Conner Adams

Thank you for helping us go on this trip.  

Devin

Thank you for sponsoring our trip.  I greatly enjoyed it.  

Amber May

Dear Cedar Grove Family,

Thank you for helping make this trip happen.  I love coming together with other Christians to learn more about God and his words.  To see over 2,400 Christians come together in one room, one house and sing God's praises and learn his word is amazing.  I love going to these retreats and I thank every single one of you for helping make this trip happen!  

With love, Cassidy

 

Dear Cedar Grove,

Thank you for sponsoring this year's trip to EYC!  This has been an amazing experience!  I am so thankful I was able to have this time with the CG family, getting a little more about my relationships.  

I would like to thank all of you for accepting me into yo7ur wonderful Cedar Grove family.  I love the friends that I have made and I value the memories we have made.  Each time I come back to Cedar Grove I am reminded that God is with me and I am never alone.  I love you all.  

I would also like to thank everyone for continued prayers and support as I just only can watch my sweet sister go through chemotherapy.  We both feel all of you love and prayers.  I hope t one day bring her to meet you all.  

Bailie Rhodes

 

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Dear Cedar Grove Family,

What wonderful servants of our Lord you are!  Thank you so much to all who sent cards, called, brought food, brought medicine, ran my errands, and prayed.  You are truly the light of our Lord.  

Love to you all, 

Sheila Mixon

 

Dear Cedar Grove Family,

I want to thank the church for all that was done for me during my sickness.  

With Christian love, 

Jeanette Bullington

Dear Cedar Grove Family,

Thanks for all the calls, texts and prayers during our loss of Mother.  Words are not enough to express how much it all meant to us.  

The plant is beautiful and when we look at it we see the love of our new family. 

 Love, 

Greg and Miram

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

Eddie Brown is recovering from knee surgery.  He is in the VA hospital.  

Matilda Jones' grandson, Elijah Jones, is having tests.

Donna Kirk (Joyce Shelton's niece) is resuming chemotherapy.    

Continue to remember Susan Carson, Stan Caudle, Donna Kirk, Dick and Barbara Massey, Jean McBride, Hilda Morrow, Lanier Richards, and Jimmy Wellborn.

 

Bible Reading Schedule for 2018

 

Read the Bible Chronologically

Week 1

January 1 Genesis 1-2; Psalm 19; Mark 1

January 2 Genesis 3-5; Mark 2

January 3 Genesis 6-8; Psalm 104; Mark 3

January 4 Genesis 9-11; Mark 4

January 5 Genesis 12-15; Ps.148; Mark 5

 

Week 2

January   8 Genesis 16-18; Mark 6

January   9 Genesis 19-20; Psalm 1; Mark 7

January 10 Genesis 21-23; Ps. 107; Mark 8

January 11 Genesis 24-25; Psalm 4; Mark 9

January 12 Genesis 26-27; Mark 10

 

Week 3

January 15 Genesis 28-29; Mark 11

January 16 Genesis 30-31; Ps.11; Mark 12

January 17 Genesis 32-34; Ps.145; Mark 13

January 18 Genesis 35-37; Ps. 12; Mark 14;

January 19 Genesis 38-40; Mark 15

 

 

Week 4

January 22 Genesis 41-42; Mark 16

January 23 Genesis 43-44; Ps.24; Galatians 1

January 24 Genesis 45-46; Psalm 108;
                   Galatians 2

January 25 Genesis 47-48; Psalm 25;
                    Galatians 3

January 26 Genesis 49-50; Galatians 4

 

 

Week 5

January 29 Exodus 1-3; Galatians 5

January 30 Exodus 4-6; Galatians 6

January 31 Exodus 7-9; Ps. 105; Ephesians 1

February 1 Exodus 10-12; Ephesians 2

February 2 Exodus 13-15; Psalm 114;
                   Ephesians 3

Read the Bible in Order

January  1 Genesis 1-4

January  2 Genesis 5-8

January  3 Genesis 9-11

January  4 Genesis 12-14

January  5 Genesis 15-17

January  6 Genesis 18-20

January  7 Genesis 21-23

January  8 Genesis 24-26

January  9 Genesis 27-29

January 10 Genesis 30-32

January 11 Genesis 33-35

January 12 Genesis 36-38

January 13 Genesis 39-41

January 14 Genesis 42-44

January 15 Genesis 45-47

January 16 Genesis 48-50

January 17 Exodus 1-4

January 18 Exodus 5-7

January 19 Exodus 8-10

January 20 Exodus 11-13

January 21 Exodus 14-16

January 22 Exodus 17-19

January 23 Exodus 20-22

January 24 Exodus 23-25

January 25 Exodus 26-28

January 26 Exodus 29-31

January 27 Exodus 32-34

January 28 Exodus 35-37

January 29 Exodus 38-40

January 30 Catch-up day

January 31 Catch-up day

 

2017

Read the Bible Chronologically

Week 49

December 5 – Esther 7-10; Revelation 3

December 6 – Ezra 7-10; Psalm 97; 
                        Revelation 4

December 7 – Nehemiah 1-3; Revelation 5

December 8 – Nehemiah 4-6; Psalm 98;
                        Revelation 6

December 9 – Nehemiah 7-9; Psalm 140; 
                        Revelation 7

 

Week 50

December 12 – Nehemiah 10-13; 
                          Revelation 8

December 13 – Malachi 1-4; Psalm 2;
                          Revelation 9

December 14 – Job 1-3; Psalm 29; 
                          Revelation 10

December 15 – Job 4-7; Psalm 99; 
                          Revelation 11

December 16 – Job 8-11; Revelation 12

 

Week 51

December 19 – Job 12-14; Psalm 100; 
                           Rev
elation 13

December 20 – Job 15-17; Revelation 14 

December 21 – Job 18-20; Psalm 141; 
                           Revelation 15

December 22 – Job 21-23; Psalm 101;
                           Revelation 16

December 23 – Job 24-27; Revelation 17

 

Week 52

December 26 – Job 28-30; Revelation 18

December 27 – Job 31-33; Psalm 102;  
                          
Revelation 19

December 28 – Job 34-36; Revelation 20

December 29 – Job 37-39; Psalm 103;
                           Revelation 21

December 30 – Job 40-42; Psalm 150;
                           Revelation 22

 

 

Read the Bible in Order

December 1  2 Corinthians 1-5

December 2  2 Corinthians 6-9

December 3  2 Corinthians 10-13

December 4  Galatians 1-3

December 5  Galatians 4-6

December 6  Ephesians 1-3

December 7  Ephesians 4-6

December 8  Philippians 1-4

December 9  Colossians 1-4

December 10  1 Thessalonians 1-5

December 11  2 Thessalonians 1-3

December 12  1 Timothy 1-3

December 13  1 Timothy 4-6

December 14  2 Timothy 1-4

December 15  Titus 1-3; Philemon

December 16  Hebrews 1-5

December 17  Hebrews 6-9

December 18  Hebrews 10-13

December 19  James 1-5

December 20  1 Peter 1-5

December 21  2 Peter 1-5

December 22  1 John 1-5

December 23  2 John; 3 John; Jude

December 24  Revelation 1-4

December 25  Revelation 5-7

December 26  Revelation 8-10

December 27  Revelation 11-13

December 28  Revelation 14-16

December 29  Revelation 17-19

December 30  Revelation 20-22

December 31 Catch-up day

 

 

 

            

FEBRUARY BIRTHDAYS

 

 February   1

Paula Anderson

 February   3

Lisa Sickler

February   3

Greg Granberry

February   3

Ralph White

 February   3

Ja'Michael Morris

 February   4

Hannah Putman

 February   7

Landon Perry

February   8

Larry Simmons

 February   8

Cooper Minichowski

 February  11

Drake McDowell

 February  21

Janie Brown

 February  28

Collins Egwu

 February  28

Cassidy May

 

 

 

 

 

 

THOSE TO SERVE - February 11, 2018

Welcome

Jimmy Pulliam

Song Leader

Jimmy Pulliam

Opening Prayer

David Grogan

Lord's Table

* Phil Hamby

 

* David White

 

Bill Baker

 

Steve Esler

Scripture Reading

Greg Cannon

 

Mark 1:16-18

Closing Prayer

Larry Simmons

   

Welcome - PM

Jimmy Pulliam

Song Leader

Jimmy Pulliam

Opening Prayer

Jim Warren

Scripture Reading

Ed Kelly

 

Exodus 1:8-12

Closing Prayer

David White

Communion Preparation

 

Nursery Attendant

 
 

 

 

 

Cedar Grove Church of Christ

Serving in Our Assemblies

 

      Morning

February 4

February 11

February 18

February 25

Call to Worship

Greg Cannon

Jimmy Pulliam

Doyle White

David White

Singing

Greg Cannon

Jimmy Pulliam

Doyle White

David White

Opening Prayer

Collins Egwu

David Grogan

Joe Maddox

Collins Egwu

Table – Lead

Joe Maddox

Phil Hamby

Donnie White

Phil Hamby

 

Jim Warren

David White

Greg Cannon

Jim May

Table – Serve

David Grogan

Steve Esler

Jim May

David Grogan

 

Jim May

Bill Baker

Collins Egwu

Steve Esler

Scripture

Doyle White

Greg Cannon

David Grogan

Donnie White

Closing Prayer

David White

Larry Simmons

Ed Kelly

Eddie Brown

 

 

Evening

February 4

February 11

February 18

February 25

Call to Worship

Greg Cannon

Jimmy Pulliam

Doyle White

David White

Singing

Greg Cannon

Jimmy Pulliam

David White

David White

Opening Prayer

Donnie White

Jim Warren

Phil Hamby

Eddie Brown

Scripture

Phil Hamby

Ed Kelly

David White

Greg Granberry

Closing Prayer

Eddie Brown

David White

David Grogan

Ed Kelly

   

         
 

RECORD 2/4/2018

Bible School

34

Worship AM

54

Worship PM

35

Wednesday Bible Study

25

Contribution

N/A