Friday – Update on Faith and Aaron Hill

Happy Friday to everyone. I understand snow is expected in MS today…how strange. It is hard to believe I have been here in NJ (and PA) for almost 5 weeks now. When mom got home she told me how surprised she was to see all the flowers, grass and spring growth in abundance. I hope the snow leaves quickly so that when Aaron and I get home NEXT WEEK, we can see the spring flowers (or weeds in our yard), too.

Moo went home today, so we are a bit lonely again. Aaron has still been hard on the task of eating well. He has done pretty good adjusting to breastfeeding with an occasional bottle here and there, but he still doesn’t seem to be eating as well as I would like. He doesn’t nurse long enough or seem to take more than 2ish ounces in his bottle. Please pray that he will start doing better and that he will have gained some weight at his visit on Wednesday. Otherwise, they will want to start concentrate his feedings, something we hope to be able to avoid.

Many continued thanks for all of your prayers, cards, emails, calls and posts to the website. My heart is continually warmed in knowing that you all care about Aaron’s heart.

Friday Afternoon

There is no fear in love;

instead, perfect love drives out fear,

because fear involves punishment.

So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love.

We love because he first loved us.

~1 John 4:18-19 HCSB~






Kids on Mission Pray

Prayer Requests


“Let the little children come to me

and don’t stop them,

because the kingdom of God belongs to such as these,”

Luke 18:16b

Friends of Jesus…

There is a special club in South Africa for children. It’s called Friends of Jesus. Please pray for the grown-up leaders—some of them are missionaries and some are South Africans. They are starting new groups so pray that children will be eager to come. They will learn about the best friend they can ever have: Jesus!

A Club at School…

Some children of missionaries attend a large, public high school in Cape Town, South Africa. Many of the children are not from Christian homes. You can guess—there are many problems like smoking and alcohol at the school. The school principal is not a Christian, but the government wants schools to let children meet in a Christian club if they want. There isn’t a club meeting right now. Please pray for a teacher to plan activities and meetings. Ask God to help missionary kids who will go to the club. They can invite their friends and tell them about Jesus. Pray for the principal to become a Christian too!


My prayer is that more people may love Jesus, my sister may get better, and my brother may grow big. JL, age 8 (East Asia)

Please pray that I would be kind to others when they are mean to me. PE, age 9 (East Asia)

Kenji is one of my best friends and he doesn’t know the Lord. We have been praying for him for a while and I wanted to ask you to pray for him too. Pray that he will come to know Christ and that he will be able to share Jesus with his family once he becomes a Christian. Please pray for me to have lots of chances to witness to him. ADAM, age 12 (Pacific Rim)

Please pray for the country of Venezuela. There are problems with a bordering country, Colombia; and it is getting worse every day. There are soldiers on the border and even trouble in Ecuador. Please pray that the leaders of Venezuela, Colombia, and Ecuador will find a peaceful answer to their argument and that these countries will not go to war. Ask God to give peace of mind to the foreigners living in these countries. KIERA, age 17 (South America)

(Note: I was unable to complete posting this morning because of the satellite and the bad weather, but others have been praying. I just heard this problem has been resolved in the last hour. I think Kiera’s request and many people praying was part of the bring about a solution!)





“At the name of Jesus every knee should bow…” (Philippians 2:10).

Mike Benson, Editor

As I listen to Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, my emotions are greatly stirred. But since there are no words that accompany the work, I receive no understanding from it. Any ideas that come into my mind as I listen were there before hearing the music.

When I listen to Lee Greenwood’s “God Bless The USA,” my emotions are again stirred powerfully. This time words have communicated ideas that led to my emotions. If the listener has no loyalty to the USA, perhaps their emotions are aroused in a different direction, if at all.

All will agree that music has the power to stir emotions. But does it also communicate understanding? That depends on (a) whether there are words that accompany the tune, and (b) whether the singers focus on the words or on the melody.

God’s desire for those under the new covenant is understanding as the result of our worship. Paul made this clear in 1 Corinthians 14 as he dealt with abuses of miraculous gifts. Some were “showing off” their ability to speak in languages they had never studied. They experienced a rush of emotions as they delivered a message in another language. Even those who didn’t understand the language being spoken likely also felt that rush, if they knew a miracle was unfolding before them.

As Paul contemplated such a scene, his advice was simple: Don’t do it.

“What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding. … yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue” (1 Corinthians 14:15,19, NKJV). Verse 28 brings to a close Paul’s remarks on the subject: “But if there is no interpreter, let him keep silent in church, and let him speak to himself and to God.”

God’s instructions on music for the assembled church of Christ is that praise be offered through singing. This is obvious from passages such as Colossians 3:16 where the emphasis is not on beautiful melodies but understanding: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Careful students will note that every mention of music in the Christian covenant specifies singing.

Worship in many churches has become emotion-driven. Some trust their feelings above what God has revealed. Granted, emotions are from God; they can be useful in many realms of life. But unless they come through the channel of understanding, emotions may not be appropriate. Our first priority is to understand God’s will, and then to obey (Matthew 7:21-23). Only then will the emotions of joy and gladness be valid. (Tim Hall)

KneEmail: “What is the conclusion then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will also pray with the understanding. I will sing with the spirit, and I will also sing with the understanding” (1 Corinthians 14:15).

Easter “08


Community Outreach


  • Saturday, March 8 @ 10 A.M.
  • Give away a New Testament, a FBC brochure, a list of local churches, and an invitation to the Easter musical presentation

Daylight Savings


Time Returns


Set your clock forward one hour when you go to bed Saturday, March 8th.








  • Church-wide
  • “Foods across America”
  • Sunday, March 9 after worship
  • Kick-off for the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering

Nursery Volunteers – March 9th


Ora Lee Wilson

Sonya Brouillette

Stephanie McKenzie

Jimmy Tolar




Deacon Hospital Ministry – March 9-15

Tom Tolar and Raymond Cutrer




Monthly Meeting

Monday, March 10 @ 6:30

Fellowship Hall



Easter Worship Musical

“The Risen Christ”

FBC, Kentwood

Sanctuary Choir

Sunday, March 16 @ 6 P.M.

Monday, March 17 @ 7 P.M.





First Baptist Church of Arcola


“The Celebration of Easter”

  • i-55 Frontage Road, Arcola
  • No admission charge
  • March 14-15, 2008
  • 7:30 – 9:00 P.M.
  • Twelve live drive-through scenes of the life of Christ

(Note: I have been going since they began this ministry. You will be blessed if you take the time to go.)



Easter Schedule

FBC, Kentwood

8:15 – Worship
9:15 – Sunday School
10:30 – Worship




March 16 & March 23 – Will not meet

March 30 – Surprise Easter Egg Hunt




Check out the Baptist Press articles for today. I think you’ll find several that are worthy of your time and effort. You’ll find a link in the column to the right.


Please add Dillon Gorman to the prayer link. He is a 6th grade student at Sumner Middle that has been burned and is in Baton Rouge General Burn Unit for 7-10 days. We just found out this morning when we got to school. Dillon is a precious child that works very hard and is very smart. Please pray for his family and him as he goes through the next few weeks of treatment. Thanks, Tammie Roberts

I talked with Ferrin Hendry’s grandfather last night. She is continuing to progress, but will be in Baton Rouge for a while longer. Please continue to pray for her and her family.


Jon Hodge Leads NAMB’s

World Changers Ministry in Five States

By Mickey Noah

BARTLETT, Tenn. – For nine years now, Jon Hodge has been in the neighborhood-changing business, and while he’s changing neighborhoods, he’s also working — with God’s help — to change hearts, minds and souls.

Based out of Bartlett, Tenn. just northeast of Memphis, Jon and Linda Hodge are national missionaries for the North American Mission Board (NAMB), an assignment that takes Jon to middle Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, southern Illinois and Alaska.

Hodge manages a big chunk of NAMB’s nationwide World Changers ministry. Created in 1990, World Changers is a pre-packaged mission experience that enables students – middle schoolers to collegians – and adults to donate a week of their summers to rehabilitate substandard housing and share Christ.

Last summer, some 25,000 World Changers participants partnered with 1,100 churches in 88 separate projects across the United States, which resulted in 900 decisions for Christ and the repair and renovation of 1,700 homes.

The Hodges are two of more than 5,000 missionaries in the United States, Canada and their territories supported by the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering® for North American Missions. They are one of eight NAMB missionary couples highlighted as part of the annual Week of Prayer, March 2-9, 2008. This year’s theme is “Live with Urgency: Seize Your Divine Moment.” The 2008 Annie Armstrong Easter Offering’s goal is $61 million, 100 percent of which is used for missionaries like the Hodges.

Responsible for planning and coordinating 13-17 different World Changers projects in the five states he represents, Hodge spends many months – prior to the actual summer project months — picking cities, meeting with city officials, school officials, city economic leaders and homeowners to choose the renovation projects. He also must ensure that his World Changers participants have a place to stay, get fed, serve and share.

Hodge also selects and trains about 25 college students who serve as summer staff volunteers for four-five World Changers projects, traveling from site to site. The projects are in lower-income neighborhoods of cities large and small.

Each volunteer has a different role – office manager, music leader, audio-visual (AV) person and even a missions communication specialist responsible for alerting local media to World Changers activities in a given city. They, in turn, work for World Changers’ experienced project coordinators, construction and ministry coordinators.

“The college students must be strong people to serve on these teams,” Hodge said. “We need leaders who’ll take a group and lead it. We have to have people strong in computers and AV. Mainly, we need kids who are willing to go, serve and work hard because it’s long hours. You may go from 5:00 one morning to 1:00 the next morning. You have to be flexible, have a great personality and be willing to do whatever the Lord wants you to do that week.”

Regardless of the project venue, Hodge says the first questions the World Changers always get from local residents are “why are you here?” or “why are you doing this?”

“And we’re able to share with them that we’re doing this because we love Jesus, and Jesus called us to go, serve and help people,” Hodge says.

Hodge recants the true story of a man in Gulfport, Miss., the victim of Hurricane Katrina. About 350 World Changers were on the scene in Gulfport to help local residents re-build.

The 50-something man — naturally suspicious of anyone claiming to want to help him for free — had already run off others from another denomination who had volunteered to re-roof his wind-damaged home.

“Then he met 12 teenagers and adults who had come from different Baptist churches in different places to help hurricane victims,” Hodge recalls. “He said he could see in them a love that he had never seen before. He said he had to have what this group had. He accepted Christ because of the witness of the World Changers.” He also got his new roof — at no charge.

Prior to his appointment as a NAMB national missionary, Hodge worked as a coach, truck driver and a Krispy Kreme Doughnut route salesman. Before his call to full-time missions work, he also served as a youth and recreation minister for 11 years in Tennessee and Illinois churches.

“My call to missions came after I took a youth group to a World Changers project in Alabama. The more I became involved on the leadership side of World Changers as a project coordinator and speaker, the stronger the call I felt to be involved in missions.

“I had taken the group to Alabama to rehab the homes of several low-income homeowners. I thought I was going to change their world by repairing their homes and sharing the love of Christ with them. But not only were their lives changed, my life was changed,” Hodge said.

After a hard day of installing a new roof or scraping and painting a house in summer’s heat, the World Changers spend evenings after dinner in worship services, led by student ministers and music leaders, also volunteers.

“World Changers makes my day, my summer,” Hodge says. “It’s exciting. I have one of the best jobs in the world. I thank the Lord everyday that I’m a Southern Baptist missionary.

“There are times when it’s tough during the summer — long hours and a lot of different things going on, and a lot of fires to put out. But it’s all worth it when you see these high school and college students, and hear the stories of how their lives were impacted and changed.”

Because Hodge now has been working with World Changers for nine years, he’s seen high school and college students grow up, finish their educations, marry and have their own children.

“I’ve seen many college students come in, thinking they’re going to be something else in life, but God gets a hold of them that summer and they realize they want to be in the ministry or go into missions. It’s exciting at the end of the summer when we compile everything and see 1,000 or more students who say ‘I want missions to be part of my life.’ That makes it all worth it right there,” said Hodge.

Hodge said he wants to thank “those people who give Annie Armstrong Easter Offerings sacrificially.

“Because of them, I don’t have to come back from the field worried about whether I have food on the table back at home or whether my family is being taken care of. I can go out and do the ministry I’ve been called to do.

“Southern Baptists need to be involved in World Changers because it’s an opportunity for us to be out there and to touch people’s lives. I’ve seen this program open up doors that through other avenues, we couldn’t open up.”

Hodge says back home in Bartlett, wife Linda “keeps the home fires burning bright when I am traveling,” which is much of the time. Married since 1983, they have three children – a college sophomore, an 11th grader and a third grader.

Thursday – Obituary

Christopher James Pittman

(September 14, 1976 – March 6, 2008)


Died on Thursday, March 6, 2008 at his mother’s residence in Summit, MS. He was a native of McComb, MS and a resident of Kentwood, LA. Age 31 years. Visitation at McKneely Funeral Home, Kentwood, from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Friday and from 8 a.m. until religious services at 2 p.m.Saturday. Interment Roberts Cemetery, Osyka, MS. Survived by wife, Lindsey Y. Pittman, Kentwood, 2 children, Kelsey Pittman, Kentwood, Coby Pittman, Kentwood, mother, Betty Bond, Summit, MS, father, James L. Pittman, Kentwood, brother, James F. Pittman, Roseland, sister, Amanda Williams, Ocean Springs, MS, grandmothers, Helen Roberts, Kentwood, Bertha L. Pittman, Kentwood, 4 nieces, 2 nephews, numerous aunts and uncles. Preceded in death by grandfathers, William Roberts, Bobby R. Pittman.

Thursday – Baptist Press

Some of the articles from Baptist Press

March 5, 2008

TEXAS–McCain seals nomination; Huckabee drops out.

TENNESSEE–Study: 1 in 100 Americans are in prison.

ZAMBIA–Cornmeal outreach aids flooded Zambians.

TENNESSEE–EDITORIAL (Will Hall): Obama lacks trust in the whole Word of God.

Thursday’s Devotional



“At the name of Jesus every knee should bow…” (Philippians 2:10).

Mike Benson, Editor


THERE ARE THREE desires of the human mind that create the circumstances for a perfect spiritual storm…

First, we will seek happiness in our lives. Second, we will seek to fulfill our own desires. Third, we will do what we have to do to be at peace with ourselves. Our minds will find a way to accomplish these goals if we do not control them. They will be wild horses loosed from their stables.

People will do anything to accomplish these goals. They will lie to themselves and everyone else. They will abandon their loved ones and plunge into human depravity while maintaining their innocence. These desires become the core of their lives and anything that crosses them suffers the consequences.

Those who cannot silence their conscience will dig deep to find justification for their actions even to twisting Scripture. Rationalization, accomplished at the speed of light, alleviates our minds of all manner of complications. We act and then find the means to justify our actions. There appears to be no limit to our skill in this area. In our haste, we leave no room for reason and sobriety.

One of the most devious of these rationalizations is, “God wants me to be happy.” God ultimately becomes irrelevant as we seek our own pleasures, no matter the cost.

Keeping these facts in mind, we examine whether God wants man to be happy. The answer is obviously affirmative. God desires that we find joy in our time on earth. However, the happiness we find must be God’s definition. Man’s selfish brand of happiness is insufficient.

God promises, “[T]he peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7). We can find inexpressible joy in our lives if we are in Christ (1 Peter 1:8; Ephesians 1:3; Psalm 100).

God’s mind is vastly different from man’s mind (Isaiah 55:8,9). We cannot hold him to our lax standards. God bases truth on absolute standards established prior to the construction of time (Psalm 119:89). Situational or cultural ethics have no bearing on God. The feelings we cherish are simply grass blowing in the wind, ready to be burned and cast aside.

God did not call man to happiness, but to holiness. Holiness should make us happy but holiness comes first. Happiness never supersedes holiness (1 Thessalonians 4:7; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Ephesians 1:3,4).

Man expects to do as he pleases, to accomplish the three goals mentioned previously, and God should stand by his side as he does so. We do what we want and expect God to agree. We imprison God in the structure we have constructed for him. We live however we wish and when confronted with the objective truth of Scripture, we say, “Well, God wants me to be happy!”

We must never confuse our voice for God’s voice. Millions do this every day. They are completely convinced that whatever they do, God will nod affirmatively. Therefore, the Lord is no longer the God who demands obedience (John 14:15), but the indulging grandfather ready with a smile and treats.

Wayne Jackson said, “How very foolish we are when we allow ourselves to be enticed from godliness by the temporal and exceedingly shallow emotions of passing mirages that will prove to be nothing more than cruel illusions in the eternal order of things.”

In our delusion, we believe the lie that true happiness is found outside of God in fleshly pleasures. We choose sexual pleasure, allegiances and materialism to justify disobedience to God. However, as C.S. Lewis wrote, “God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.” (Richard Mansel)

“For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness” (1 Thess. 4:7).