March 2008

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Upon This Rock

Matthew 16:17-20 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Then he warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.

These familiar words will often elicit a cheer, but sometimes as we dig deeper into a passage we become uncomfortable.

God does not lie. He is incapable of deceit or falsehood of any kind. We may trust what He says. Jesus clearly states that “on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades or hell will not overcome it.” No matter how this verse is translated, the meaning is the same. Hell will not overpower or prevail against the church in any offensive way nor be able to withstand the forward motion of the church in a defensive way. The victory belongs to Christ and His Church. We know who has the power and who will win. This is a repeated theme throughout the Bible. At His appointed time God will vanquish from the earth the enemy and all those who serve with him. Their defeat and destruction are sure.

The Church is the bride and body of Christ, and according to Scripture, is to reflect His image in this world today. She is unique among all organisms and institutions on the planet, the only one entrusted with the godly task of sharing the Gospel message and representing Jesus. As beneficial as many social and humanitarian organizations might be, they are not the church of God.

Henry and Richard Blackaby

Henry and Richard Blackaby, best known for the Experiencing God series, will be at Highlands Fellowship Church in Abingdon on April 25-26 for a “Spiritual Leadership Conference.” Based on their book, Spiritual Leadership: Moving People to God’s Agenda, the best-selling authors will teach on leadership from a biblical perspective, not only for those in ministry roles, but business and education leaders.

Conference sessions will be held on Friday evening (7:00-9:30 p.m.), Saturday morning (9:00-11:30 a.m.), and Saturday afternoon (1:00-3:30 p.m.). Persons may attend any or all sessions. There is no charge to attend the conference, though love offerings for the Blackabys will be taken at each session. There is, however, a charge of $7 for a box lunch on Saturday.

This event is sponsored by the Southwest Virginia Christian Leadership Network, a ministry of the Virginia Baptist Mission Board Individuals and groups interested in attending or needing more information may contact the Network by phone, 540.777-3014 or 866.223.9344 (toll free). The Network can also be contacted by email, Reservations for the conference should be received by April 14. More information available on the Network website,

Focus on Our Family

Woody Elliott has retired as pastor of Bethel, effective December 31, 2007. He began his ministry there in June 1976.

In December, Hunting Creek donated 247 knitted/crocheted baby hats to Virginia Baptist Hospital.

On Friday March 21, 2008, at 6:30 p.m., Mt. Olivet Southern Baptist Church, 2933 Mt. Olivet Road, will be presenting a program called “The Living Lord’s Supper.” Everyone is invited to join us for this inspiring evening.

Norwood will be having an Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, March 22, at 2:00 p.m. All are invited to come and bring the children for some good old fashion FUN.

Sedalia Baptist Women's Ministry presents their first conference on April 12, 2008, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. They are excited to have the music and ministry of Bev Lowry who will be speaking on “Spiritual Growth in Times of Crisis.” There is a registration fee of $10.00, ($15.00 with box lunch included.) To reserve your seat, please mail your check along with your name, address & phone number to: Sedalia Baptist Church, 1072 Charlemont Rd., Big Island VA 24526. The registration deadline is March 24, 2008. For additional information please call 434.299.5039.

Sedalia filled 96 shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child.

Thaxton will have an Easter Eggstravaganza at the Thaxton Community Center on Saturday, March 15, from 10 a.m. to 12 Noon. The choir will present a cantata during the 10:30 a.m. worship service on Sunday, March 16. “The Living Lord’s Supper” will be presented at the church on Thursday, March 20, 2008, 7:30 p.m..


Apr 9 Jackie Carver (Palestine)
Apr 13 Gary Fowler (Flint Hill)

Wedding Anniversaries

Apr 22 Wayne & Joy Sellers (Mountain View)
Apr 29 Elmer & Tiena Sellers (Retired)

Church Ministry Anniversary

Mar 1 Bill Mitchell (Pastor/Mount Zion/1 year)

Click for March Calendar

2007 SBA Annuals may be picked up from the office the middle of March.


Mount Olivet is in need of a paid piano player immediately. If you know of someone qualified to help, please contact Kelly Daniel at 540.587.5536.

ALEXANDER, The Servant Boy Who Became A Colonial Virginia Frontiersman, published by Infinity Publishing, is now available. The 385-page book contains 25 pages of pictures, documents, a bibliography, and a genealogy chart for the benefit of researchers. It has a high-resolution laminated cover, a perfect bound binding, and retails for $19.95. To purchase, go to or call toll-free 877.BUYBOOK. (877.289.2665) For more information, you may contact the author, Charles Stinson, at 434.384.5879 or

Bring A Kid To The Race Day is an annual event sponsored by Raceway Ministry. Children and Youth (ages 5-18) must be accompanied by parents and/or chaperones such as church leaders, Sunday School teachers, youth directors, etc. Tickets for the Saturday, March 29, 2008, NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series are $15 each and must be ordered through your local church. (Deadline to order is March 13.) For more info, call 276.638.2951, e-mail, or visit

A Place for You in WMU!
Mrs. Lois Stevens, WMU Director
1118 Roundtree Dr., Bedford 24523
Phone: 540-586-7409

Women on Mission: Radford is leading devotionals at Oakwood Manor in March; Thaxton will lead them in April. Diamond Hill will host the March birthday party for residents of Bedford County Nursing Home; Palestine will host it in April.

Mark your calendars!
SBA WMU Annual Meeting
Saturday, April 19, 2008, 10 a.m.
Timber Ridge Church
(Bring side dishes or desserts—Timber Ridge is providing meat, bread & beverages)

Mark Your Calendars!

SBA Children's Summer Music Camp
(For children who have completed grades K-6)

Monday, July 28-Friday, August 1, 2008
9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Bedford Baptist Church
Musical Program, Friday, 7:00 p.m.

(God) typically lays a foundation of character before building a superstructure of leadership. —Henry Blackaby

Help us all stay informed. If you have information about what's going on at your church, please share it with us. Items for the next newsletter should be written and in the association office by Wednesday, March 19.

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Strawberry Baptist Association
163 West Main, Bedford, VA 24523
FAX: (540) 586-4246

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Updated 3/1/2008
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