Good morning. Thank-you for reading and praying today. May you be blessed as you do so.

Have a wonderful weekend.

Anna Lee


I heard about a couple who received a set of two horrible bedside table lamps as a wedding present from a distant aunt. Since the lamps were so ugly, this couple didn’t want to actually use them, so they put them in storage and bought a nicer set themselves. That worked for a while, but a few years later, this particular relative came to a family celebration. Knowing she would be there, the couple quickly set up the aunt’s lamps on the tables and hid their usual ones under the bed.

When time came to show the aunt around the house, the wife said, “Come and see how nice your lamps look in our bedroom.”

She turned on the switch on the wall — and suddenly an intense luminosity emerged from under the bed…..

Oops! How embarrassing! I am reminded of the following statement made by Jesus:

“[Jesus] said to them, ‘Is a lamp brought to be put under a basket or under a bed? Is it not to be set on a lampstand? For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light.’ ” (Mark 4:21-22).

Jesus’ point here is not quite the same as it is in the more familiar passage in Matthew 5:16 (“Let your light so shine before men…”). Here in Mark, Jesus has apparently just begun to speak in parables. To the apostles, it may have seemed that Jesus was trying to hide the truth from people by speaking with such obscurity. But Jesus points out that wouldn’t make much sense; it would be like lighting a lamp (to bring light) and then placing it under a bed (to hide the light). His reason for using parables wasn’t to hide God’s truth, but to set it on a lampstand so that it could give forth as much light as possible.

Father, we thank you for sending One who not only came to show us the light, but who is Himself “the light of the world”. May our lives and conversation be such that we will never be embarrassed by an attempt to hide that light under our beds. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Have a great day!

Alan Smith
Helen Street Church of Christ
Fayetteville, North Carolina

Nothing in all creation

is hidden from God’s sight.

Everything is uncovered and laid bare

before the eyes of him

to whom we must give account.

Hebrews 4:13 (NIV)

Update on Don Denton:

It is a privilege and we feel honored that you all would take time today to lift us up in prayer today.

I woke this morning with a peaceful and thankful spirit. Don continues to be moved by the love of family and friends. One of his precious students wrote him and email today that lifted his spirits.

I have to confess to you all that I have never been strong through this long illness. I have been weak and most days are hard. So I too struggle. Yet, I know what is true. I know even when my feelings are saying one thing that my heart believes in what is true. And the big picture here is this – Don is alive and with us. God has heard our cries, our prayers. We have so much to be thankful for and that is my prayer.

We had doctor appointment yesterday and that went well. This doctor wants Don to see a specialist in Kansas City. This doctor specializes in area of dizziness. And Don goes to Cox South Tuesday for a lumbar puncture. Don will be getting new glasses and I feel that will help as well.

Bless you our family and friends


This morning at 7 A.M. FBC, Kentwood will host a superbowl prayer breakfast. Everyone is invited to attend.

Miss Virgie Bridges was returning home from work as a nurse when she found my grandpa, G.R. Smith, Sr., at the gate to what was then his farm. It is now our cabin. After Katrina, David was delivering supplies all around Kentwood. He “found” Miss Virgie. After a couple of meetings and lots of question about who he was and where he lived, she revealed she found Grandpa G.R. Needless to say, she became someone special to us. It was a long overdue friendship and a special connection we were glad to finally make.

Miss Virgie passed away Thursday night. Her wake will be at Pine Ridge Methodist Church from 10:00 to the funeral service at 1 P.M.

Reuel Townsend Adams, Jr.
(September 13, 1927 – January 29, 2009)

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And a resident of Mt. Hermon died at 5 PM Thursday, January 29, 2009 at East Jefferson General Hospital. He was a member of Mt. Hermon Baptist Church, vice president of Ruritan Club, former member of Franklinton Lion’s Club, secretary/treasurer of Mt. Hermon Volunteer Fire Department, active member of the Camellia Society and AHS. He was a WWII veteran of U.S. Navy.

Survived by: Wife: Bobbie Wilkes Adams of Mt. Hermon, 4 Daughters and sons in law: Suzanne Seale of Florence, MS, Beverly and Mike Taylor, Cheryl McElveen all of Mt. Hermon, Kim and Bret Allain of Jeanerette, 1 Son and a daughter in law: Craig and Lisa McElveen of Baton Rouge, 12 Grandchildren: Laurie Schexnider, Michael and Melissa Walker, Shea Taylor, Amber McElveen, Mac McElveen, Quin, Emma, and Robert Allain, Ashley McKenzie, Erin and Ryan Seale, 4 Step grandchildren: Tia, Crystal and Cole Taylor, Tyler Simmons, 3 Great grandchildren: Jace Schexnider, Hayden McElveen, James McKenzie, 2 Brothers and sisters in law: Robert and Joan Adams of Jacksonville, FL, John and Sherry Adams of St. Augustine, FL, He was preceded in death by a son Robert Townsend Adams, his parents Reuel T., Sr. and Pearl Rogers Adams and a brother Ben Adams.

Visitation will be at Crain Funeral Home from 5 PM until 9 PM Friday, January 30, 2009 and after 8 AM Saturday, January 31, 2009. A funeral service will be held at 10:30 AM Saturday in the funeral home chapel with Dr. Joe Baugh and Rev. Dale Parker officiating. Burial will follow in the Ellis Cemetery.

Friday Afternoon

Jim Miller had a work accident yesterday. He is hospitalized in McComb. Pray for him as he heals.

Jason had a link to this article on his website. It is soooooo inspiring. I hope we can all get some ideas from this and apply them in our little worlds. Let’s pray we will use our opportunities to make a difference.

(Jason, I’m glad you shared this. It was a great article.)

Sunday Evening

Big 10 from teamromany January 2009

1. On January 13 teamromany members Boyd, Joe, Gayle, and Daniel will meet with International World Changers volunteers in Prague. After a few days of planning and training, the volunteers will travel with the teamromany members to their fields of service. They will spend several days making plans together for the large groups of students who will serve with teamromany this summer through International World Changers. Pray for the leaders as they make decisions about the ministry opportunities this summer.

2. Bob and Gayle will spend most of the month of February in Prague for team leader training. Pray for them as they complete assignments this month. Pray that the training will help better prepare them for their role in ministry.

3. In December we asked you to pray for Daniel as he directed a live nativity. Twenty youth participated and were able to share the gospel. Thank God for the witness of these youth and pray for those who heard the message of the Savior.

4. Teenagers from 4 villages will participate in a winter retreat this month. Pray for Daniel as he leads this event.

6. Pray for Cornel Tuns as he returns to Romania to teach in the Romany Bible Institute.

7. Pray for Romany believers to grow in their faith, to have strong testimonies in their communities and to be bold to share Christ with their friends and family.

8. Pray for Boyd, Jennie, and their children as they face some transitions this year. As the IMB is restructuring, Boyd was asked to take on the responsibility of leading Romany ministry throughout Europe. This role will begin in March. The Hatchel family will be moving to Prague in the summer.

9. Pray for volunteer Lisa Kail as she makes plans for the Romany Summer Youth Camp in Romania.

10. Pray for those who are considering serving with teamromany as summer missionaries.


Thank you for praying with us and for us.



Daniel Byrd – Romania

Boyd and Jennie Hatchel – Czech Republic

Bob and Gayle Hill – Romania

Joe and Julie Silby – Czech Republic


Kitty Bennett Lapreyrolerie continues to need our prayers. Her condition doesn’t seem to be improving. New problems are arising. Your prayers will be greatly appreciated.

Mrs. Faye Price in now in a room at North Oaks. She no longer has a vent. Plans are being made for a future transfer to rehabilitation. Thanks for your prayers for her, the medical staff, and the family. Keep on praying.

Aubrey Perry, brother of Karen Miller, will have surgery tomorrow. Karen said Aubrey needs a miracle. Karen and her family will appreciate your prayers for Aubrey and his entire family.

Mrs. Alice Faye Lee requested prayer for her nephew’s wife. Amy Hood Conti is undergoing tests in Baton Rouge for a heart issue.

Mrs. Annie Bell Harrell is home, but still having some continuing health issues. Pray for her as she sees a different doctor this week.

Jared Prescott and David Gullota are both still recovering from their accident. Please continue to pray for them.

Mr. Charley Kuss seems to be much better. The doctors have given him a good report. He is appreciative of visitors.



“Whatever happens,

dear brothers and sisters,

may the Lord give you joy …”

Philippians 3:1 (NLT)

(b. Viewmont, Albermarle County, Va., Dec. 12, 1840;
d. Kobe, Japan, Dec. 24, 1912). Missionary in Tengchow
and Pingtu, China, for nearly 40 years; instrumental in
instigating first Christmas offering, 1888. She was
educated at Female Seminary at Botetourt Springs (later
known as Hollins) and at Albermarle Female Institute,
Charlottesville. She was converted in the spring of 1859
in a meeting by John Albert Broadus, then pastor at
Charlottesville. She taught at Danville, Ky., and Cartersville,
Ga. She volunteered for missionary service in Feb., 1873,
in response to a sermon on the text, “Lift up your eyes, and
look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest,”
and she was appointed to China, July 7, 1873, by the Foreign
Mission Board, Southern Baptist Convention. In 1888 she
wrote to the Baptist women of the South, pleading for
reinforcements. The first Christmas offering in 1888 provided
three additional missionaries. She spent 14 years in China
before taking her first regular furlough. Toward the end of
her days, she suffered with her Chinese people in the terrible
famine. She gave all she had. In the time of deepest trials
she wrote, “I hope no missionary will be as lonely as I have
been.” Literally starving, she grew steadily weaker. Before
Christmas, 1912, Cynthia Miller, faithful nurse, started back
to America with Lottie Moon; death came to the frail missionary,
Christmas Eve, while the ship was at harbor in Kobe, Japan.
The present Christmas offering for foreign missions,
sponsored by the W.M.U., is named for Lottie Moon.

Yesterday, I had opportunities to learn from several
John Schaffner, the BCM director at SLU and pastor
of Roseland Baptist Church, told about returning a

few days ago from a two week mission trip to China.

He learned many lessons there. One was that the loss

of his camera, exta money, and GPS system caused

him to lose sleep, but the had not lost enough sleep

over the lostness of people.
The Sloan family of King’s Mountain, North Carolina

told us of three recent trips to Romania. They

ministered to the Roma and chose that people group

because of Jennie. Bro. Chip baptized Jennie!
Holly K. spoke last night of her future work in West

Africa where she will teach four MK’s. She leaves in

one week for a two year commitment as a journeyman.

Pray for Bro. John as he leads college students and chuch

members to be more aware of missions.

Pray for the Sloan family as they have developed a love for

the Roma and a desire to minister to their lostmness.

Pray for Holly to be a witness as she lives daily among people

who do not know the Lord and an example for those who are

new Christians.
I thank God for three special opportunities in one day.

I pray I will use what I learned to further His kingdom.

I pray you will become more mission-minded. God has a

plan for each of us!
Anna Lee


You will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6 (NLT)

I talked with Sherry Rosamond. She said her son is glad to be home from the hospital. Pray for him as he continues medication to complete his recovery. Pray Dustin will be able to follow the doctor’s orders for his recovery.

Debbie Miller had a good medical report when she went for a check-up. She will see a heart doctor for the next check-up in six months. Thank God for Debbie’s return to good health.

Mrs. Annie Bell Harrell continues to need our prayers. She still is having the same problem that has plagued her for months. As always, she would be most appreciative of your prayers.

You may have noticed I haven’t posted an emails from Frann Smith Clark lately. When Frann doesn’t email, that means she is not feeling her best. Please pray for Frann, Riley, and their family members who are so attentive to their needs.

Many of you like to keep up with the Hatchels. Commission stories has posted some information on the Roma and a story about the Hatchels. You can find this at

I especially enjoyed reading some of the Baptist Press articles that were released yesterday. I hope you will take time to read some too. I especially enjoyed the articles about Mike Hulkabee, graduations at NOBTS and SWBTS, as well as the story of the third generation at New Orleans. Many of you may know one of the Charlie Ray familes. I marked my favorites (***).
December 22, 2008

WASHINGTON–Gay activists demand Obama concessions for Warren pick.

FLORIDA–Huckabee: Christians should be firm, not angry about Wash. atheist flap.

*** FLORIDA–Huckabee pauses during book tour to preach.

MINNESOTA–Minn.-Wis. Baptists face financial challenges.

*** LOUISIANA–‘We own the night,’ Kelley tells graduates.

CALIFORNIA–5 married couples among GGBTS grads.

*** LOUISIANA–3rd generation earns doctorate at NOBTS.

KENTUCKY–Preach with authority, Mohler tells grads.

*** TEXAS–Southwestern wraps up centennial celebration.

NORTH CAROLINA–Merritt challenges Southeastern graduates.

NORTH CAROLINA–FIRST-PERSON (Paul Brewster): A life-changing trip.

WASHINGTON–Conservative leader Weyrich dies.

Why Jesus is Better Than Santa Claus?

JesusSantaSanta lives at the North Pole…
JESUS is everywhere.

Santa rides in a sleigh…
JESUS rides on the wind and walks on the water.

Santa comes but once a year…
JESUS is an ever present help.

Santa fills your stockings with goodies…
JESUS supplies all your needs.

Santa comes down your chimney uninvited…
JESUS stands at your door and knocks, and then enters your heart when invited.

You have to wait in line to see Santa…
JESUS is as close as the mention of His name.

Santa lets you sit on his lap…
JESUS lets you rest in His arms.

Santa doesn’t know your name, all he can say is “Hi little boy or girl, what’s your name?”…
JESUS knew our name before we were born. Not only does He know our name, He knows our address too. He knows our history and future and He even knows how many hairs are on our heads.

Santa has a belly like a bowl full of jelly…
JESUS has a heart full of love

All Santa can offer is HO HO HO…
JESUS offers health, help and hope.

Santa says “You better not cry”…
JESUS says “Cast all your cares on me for I care for you.”

Santa’s little helpers make toys…
JESUS makes new life, mends wounded hearts, repairs broken homes and builds mansions.

Santa may make you chuckle but…
JESUS gives you joy that is your strength.

While Santa puts gifts under your tree…
JESUS became our gift and died on a tree…the cross.

We need to put Christ back in CHRISTmas, Jesus is still the reason for the season.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).


I hope you know Jesus this Christmas! If so, please share His message. If not, find someone who can introduce you to Jesus. He can give your life a purpose greater than you can imagine!

Merry CHRISTmas!
Anna Lee


Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Romans 5:1 (NLT)

Update on Dustin Rosamond: Dustin is now home and doing better, has to take real good care of himself and take it easy for a while. We want to thank all of you for all of your prayers and ask you to continue to pray for his full recovery. Thank you again for praying.

Faye Faller is home from the hospital.

According to Les, Faye Price is about the same. Keep praying for everyone involved.

Ways to Keep Christ in Christmas

By Mary Fairchild,
12 Days Of ChristmasEnter the 12 Days of Christmas Competitions for a Chance to

Keeping Christ in Christmas:

The number one way to keep Jesus Christ in your Christmas celebrations is to have him present in your daily life. If you’re not sure what it means to become a believer in Christ, check out this article on “How to Become a Christian.” If you’ve already accepted Jesus as your Savior and made him the center of your life, keeping Christ in Christmas is more about the way you live your life than the things you say—such as “Merry Christmas” versus “Happy Holidays.”

Keeping Christ in Christmas means daily revealing the character, love and spirit of Christ that dwells in you, by allowing these traits to shine through your actions. Here are simple ways to keep Christ the central focus of your life this Christmas season.
1) Give God one very special gift just from you to him:
Let this gift be something personal that no one else needs to know about, and let it be a sacrifice. David said in 2 Samuel 24 that he would not offer a sacrifice to God that cost him nothing.

Maybe your gift to God will be to forgive someone you’ve needed to forgive for a long time. You may discover that you’ve given a gift back to yourself.

Corrie Ten Boom, a Christian who survived extreme brutality in a German concentration camp after rescuing many Jews from certain death during the Nazi Holocaust, was later able to say, “Forgiveness is to set a prisoner free, and to realize the prisoner was you.”

Perhaps your gift will be to commit to spending time with God daily. Or maybe there is something God has asked you to give up, like last New Year’s resolution. Make this your most important gift of the season.
2) Set aside a special time to read the Christmas story in Luke 1:5-56 through 2:1-20:
Consider reading this account with your family and discussing it together.
• The Christmas Story
• More Christmas Bible Verses
3) Set up a Nativity scene in your home:
If you don’t have a Nativity, here are ideas to help you make your own Nativity scene:
• Nativity Related Crafts
4) Plan a project of good will this Christmas:
A few years ago we “adopted” a single mom. My friend was barely making ends meet and didn’t have money to buy gifts for her small child. Together with my husband’s family we bought gifts for both of them and replaced her broken down washing machine the week of Christmas. Do you have an elderly neighbor in need of home repairs or yard work? Find someone with a genuine need, involve your whole family and see how happy you can make someone this Christmas.
• Top Christmas Charity Projects
5) Take a group Christmas caroling in a nursing home or a children’s hospital:
One year the staff at the office where I worked decided to incorporate Christmas caroling at a nearby nursing home into our yearly staff Christmas party plans. We all met first at the nursing home and toured the facility while singing Christmas carols. Afterwards, we headed back to our party with our hearts full of tenderness. It was the best staff Christmas party we’d ever had.
6) Give a surprise gift of service to each member of your family:
Jesus taught us to serve by washing the disciples feet. He also taught us that it is “more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35 (NIV) The idea of giving an unexpected gift of service to members of your family is to demonstrate Christ-like love and service. You might consider giving a back rub to your spouse, running an errand for your brother, or cleaning out a closet for your mother. Make it personal and meaningful and watch the blessings multiply.
7) Set aside a time of family devotions on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning:
Before opening the gifts, take a few minutes to gather together as a family in prayer and devotions. Read a few Bible verses and discuss as a family the true meaning of Christmas.
• Christmas Bible Verses
• Christmas Prayers and Poems
• The Christmas Story
• Christmas Devotionals
8) Attend a Christmas church service together with your family:
If you are alone this Christmas or don’t have family living near you, invite a friend or a neighbor to join you.
9) Send Christmas cards that convey a spiritual message:
This is an easy way to share your faith at Christmastime. If you’ve already bought the reindeer cards—no problem! Just write a Bible verse and include a personal message with each card.
• Select Christmas Bible Verses
10) Write a Christmas letter to a missionary:
This idea is dear to my heart because I spent four years on the mission field. Receiving a letter always felt like opening a priceless gift on Christmas morning, no matter what day it was. Many missionaries are unable to travel home for the holidays, so it can be a very lonely time for them. Write a special Christmas letter to a missionary of your choice, thanking them for giving their life in service to the Lord. Trust me—it will mean more than you can imagine!

You may see some familar faces at

Have a great day. Try to do some of the things listed on today’s devotional. You’ll be blessed.

Anna Lee


Big 10 from teamromany December 2008

1. Please pray for Daniel Byrd as he leads 6-week Bible study courses and shows portions of the Jesus film each week. Pray that those who attend will be responsive to the message of the Gospel. Thank God for volunteer Gene Leis. Legally blind, this volunteer is serving alongside Daniel Byrd for three months. Pray for him as he shares his testimony through word and song in Romany villages.

2. Pray for Bob and Gayle Hill as they are on vacation in the United States this month. Pray that their time with family and friends refreshes them to return to ministry. Pray that as they share with others about their ministry that others will become encouraged to pray for the Roma.

3. Romany youth will be presenting a live nativity in the villages of Cămărașu and Mociu, Romania. Pray that those who attend will recognize the significance of Jesus’ birth.

9. This week a team of 18 Lifeway Centrifuge staff will arrive in Brno, Czech Republic to work with Boyd and Jennie Hatchel and Joe and Julie Silbly. Using sports as an outreach tool, these volunteers will share the Gospel with Romany youth. Pray that Romany youth will participate and that be receptive to the message of Hope the volunteers will share.

10. Pray for Jennie Hatchel as she shares the Christmas story in eighth and ninth grade classrooms this month. Pray that the students who hear the true story of Christmas will want to know more about Jesus.