“Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.” (Joshua 3:5)
These were the words spoken to the people of Israel just before they were to enter the promised land.
In the Old Testament book of Joshua, chapter 3, Joshua told the people to consecrate themselves, to get ready for the wonders that God is going to do among them. What happened next was the stopping of the Jordan River for the Israelites to cross over on dry ground, the destruction of Jericho’s walls, and the Israelites conquering other cities—all by the power of God!
But first, the people had to consecrate themselves—they had to get ready. This involved a great ceremony of cleansing from sin, putting away any distractions, and attentively presenting themselves before God. This was a picture of the importance of approaching God with a pure heart. God was about to give them uncommon instances of His favor, which they must be spiritually ready to receive.
Today, it is still a need for us to stay close to God, to stay cleansed from sin, and to stay in communication with Him to distinctly hear His voice to us. Sometimes we don’t receive the great things God wants to do because we haven’’t prepared ourselves to receive them. Other times we don’t recognize the great things God has already done because we haven’t paid attention to where God is working.
I wonder what amazing things God wants to do among us? What would have to happen in order for the people in your church to say, “God is definitely showing His favor. He is doing a new work among us!”?
In Isaiah 43:19, God says, “Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”
What new wonder do you desire and even pray for God to do among us as Christians and as an Association? We must devote ourselves to God’s honor, and cleanse ourselves from anything that would hinder us from moving forward in His power.
I want to be ready to receive whatever the Lord has for our churches and for our Association. Let’s all spiritually prepare and be ready for the great wonders God wants to do among us.
—Michael Cox, Pastor
ReminderWe would like to have an Associational Choir sing at the 6:30 p.m. session of the 234th Annual Session of the Strawberry Baptist Association on Monday, October 25, at Bedford Baptist Church. Susan C. Batten-Bell (Minister of Music at Bedford Baptist) will be conducting the choir and Carol B. Spencer (accompanist at Hunting Creek) will be the accompanist. We will be singing three selections: I Must Tell Jesus with Blessed Assurance arranged by Mary McDonald, I Could Sing of Your Love Forever (a worship medley which includes I Could Sing of Your Love Forever and Can It Be?, No Greater Love, The Power of Your Love, and Think About His Love) arranged by John E. Coates, and Amazing Grace, arranged by Lee Turner.
Two rehearsals are scheduled—Sunday, September 19, and Sunday, October 17, both beginning at 3 p.m. and held in the sanctuary of Bedford Baptist Church. Please contact Susan C. Batten-Bell at 540.586.9564 if you would like to participate.
FALL 2010 MASTERS CLASSES
Bethlehem has called R. Grant Harbridge as pastor. Rev. Harbridge earned a Master’s degree in Counseling from Southwest University and was in the first graduating class at Liberty University. Coming to Bethlehem from an associate pastoral ministry at Lakewood Baptist Church in Evington, he will assume the pastorate of Bethlehem on August 1. Grant and his wife Sheila have five children and two grandchildren.
Big Island Baptist Church is seeking a Part-Time Youth Director. Primary responsibilities are on Sundays during school year and Sundays/Wednesdays during the summer; approximately 10-15 hours/week during the school year and 20-25 hours/week during the summer months. A qualified applicant should have a strong desire to minister to youth, experience in discipleship and missions, and good ability to relate to students. Interested persons may mail their resume to: Big Island Baptist Church, Attn: Youth Director Search Committee, P.O. Box 348, Big Island, VA 24526 or you may email your resume to: BigIslandChurch@gmail.com. Resumes accepted until position is filled.
Gary Fowler has announced his retirement as bivocational pastor of Flint Hill effective the end of August 2010. He and his wife Becky have served at Flint Hill since December 1997. We wish them well in this new phase of their life.
Mentow will host a cookout on Sunday, August 29, 6 p.m., with special music by the Mentow Quartet and Living Legacy, the praise team at New Prospect Church in Hurt.
Morgans hosted a High Power Soccer Camp in July with much success! There were 83 campers, 66 volunteers, and two salvations— a lot of seeds planted. Everyone had an outstanding time and can’t wait to do it again next year!
Effective June 27, Gary Kingery has resigned as pastor of Mountain View, having accepted a call to pastor New Creation Ministries in Salem.
In June, several members of Trinity served on a mission team to Lancaster, PA, to help pack food and clothing through Global Aid Network (GAIN). This included packets of seeds for Zimbabwe, meals for Haiti, clothing, quilts, witnessing bracelets, and hygiene kits for countries around the world.
Beaverdam is seeking a part-time Youth Director (approx. 10 hours per week). Contact personnel committee chairman, James Mitchell, 540.297.5579.
Shady Grove is seeking a part-time music director. If interested, please call Karen Foutz at 540.890.5636.
Listed below are the number of elected messengers to which each church is entitled for the 2010 SBA Annual Meeting: Beaverdam-9; Bedford 12; Bethel-4; Bethlehem-4; Big Island-6; Diamond Hill-4; Flint Hill-10; Glade Creek-5; Hunting Creek-9; Mentow-8; Morgans-12; Mount Hermon-10; Mount Olivet-9; Mount Zion-8; Mountain View-4; Norwood-7; Palestine-9; Pecks-4; Quaker-7; Rainbow Forest-8; Sedalia-4; Shady Grove-5; Suck Spring-8; Thaxton-12; Timber Ridge-8; Trinity-11; Walnut Grove-4. Please note: Only SBA officers are automatically messengers—all other messengers (including pastors) must be elected by their churches.
Aug 29 Marc Reynolds (Mt. Olivet)
Aug 7 Vernon & Wanda Delong (Trinity)
Aug 7 David & Suzann Timma (Quaker)
Aug 12 Rick & Laura Mallory (Morgans)
Aug 17 David & Donna Henderson (Bedford)
Aug 19 Dennis & Mary Moore (Retired)
Aug 20 Gary & Becky Fowler (50 yrs.) (Flint Hill)
Aug 20 Ed & Nancy Greer (55 yrs.) (Retired)
Aug 26 Mike & Edith Grooms (Rainbow Forest)
Sep 11 Rick & Cheri Dellinger (Music Evangelist)
Sep 1 Esther Woodford (Admin.Asst./SBA/25 yrs.)
If you are willing to serve at SBA’s Lemonade/Water Booth or monitor our Baby Care Station, please contact Rita Calhoun at 540.297.5271 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Three to five people are needed for each hour. Our time slots are being filled now—call to reserve your time.
10:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m. Mt. Zion
11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon Flint Hill
12:00 noon-1:00 p.m. Open
1:00-2:00 p.m. Hunting Creek
2:00-3:00 p.m. Open
3:00-4:00 p.m. Open
4:00-5:00 p.m. Open
5:00-6:00 p.m. Open
We also need several men who are willing to help set up our two tents around 8 a.m.
Mrs. Rebekah Overstreet, WMU Director
1813 Oakwood St., Bedford 24523
Women on Mission: Rainbow Forest will lead weekly devotionals at Oakwood Manor in August; Bedford will lead them in September. Morgans will host the August birthday party for residents of Bedford County Nursing Home; Thaxton will host it in September.
@ Crossroads Camp & Conference Center
September 16-19, 2010
Calling ALL willing volunteers—bring your tools and able bodies with enthusiasm to put your heart, hands, feet, and back into it! The plan is to put new roofs on all cabins, meeting lodges, and the gym—IN ONE WEEKEND!! Many hands make light work, but in order to make this AWESOME experience a reality, WE NEED YOU!!! For details, go to http://wmuv.org/opportunities-missions/crossroads-camp-and-conference-center/raise-the-roof-crossroads/
October 15-16, 2010
CrossRoads Camp & Conference Center
For details, go to http://wmuv.org/events/ministers-wives-retreat/
November 5-6 & 6-7 at Eagle Eyrie
Guest: Vonda Skelton, Author and Speaker
(WMUV Annual Meeting will be Saturday, November 6.)
Strawberry Association’s Self-Study Team continues to work out the details of the proposed structure for the Association. For input or questions, contact any member of the team by email or telephone:
The Self-Study Team is working on Job Descriptions for the three Area Ministry Coordinators and the Regional Representatives. Under the proposed New Structure for the association, we are moving from a committee-based structure to a network-based structure—churches networking together to carry out the Great Commission. Under the proposed New Structure, we are dividing the association into several “Regions” which will be led by Regional Representatives from the churches. For the Regional Representatives, we are looking for persons committed to communicating with the regional churches in order to coordinate Ministry Opportunities and Needs, including Encouragement, Fellowship, and Prayer. The Regional Representatives will meet with and communicate with the pastors and church representatives at least on a quarterly basis.
As part of the Leadership Team (the old Executive Board), three Area Ministry Coordinators will be needed to lead the Ministries within the Regions, a Missions & Ministry Coordinator, a Pastoral Development Coordinator, and a Church Development Coordinator. The Missions & Ministry Coordinator should be a person with a passion for Missions, who is experienced in Mission work. They will be responsible for coordination and communication of Missions and Ministry opportunities between Regions. The Pastoral Development Coordinator should have a passion for Ministry and Pastoral experience, in order to coordinate and communicate opportunities for Training, Ministering, and Encouraging pastors. The Church Development Coordinator needs to have a passion for Church Health, desiring to see churches working together, coordinating and communicating opportunities for Training and Equipping Churches for Ministry. All three Area Ministry Coordinators will be members of the Leadership Team.
For more information, questions or clarity, you may contact any member of the Self-Study Team by email or telephone: Rev. David Timma, timmaone@ hotmail.com or 540.297.3715; Rebekah Overstreet, email@example.com or 540.586.2956, Rev. Rick Mallory, firstname.lastname@example.org or 540.297.4959; Rev. Dennis Moore, Kadessong@hotmail.com or 540.947.2091, Rita Calhoun, acvaowlsnest@ aol.com or 540.297.5271; Billy Burnette, 540.586.8087, Rev Vernon DeLong, email@example.com or 540.586.8010.
SBA’s Vision Statement: Due to our common faith in Jesus Christ and His body, the Church, we Commit ourselves to Connecting with one another for Coordinating the missions and ministries of our member churches and Communicating opportunities to partner together to fulfil the Great Commission and Great Commandment.
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