What is the Blessed Life?

What is the Blessed Life?

by Jason Mabe

April 27, 2011, is a day that will forever live in infamy for millions of people across the Central, Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic portions of the United States. For on this day, many of us found out what it truly means to be blessed. For those who may not remember, it was a day where 216 tornadoes (360 over a 48 hour period) tore their way through many areas leaving a path of death and destruction in their wake. The numbers were staggering:  21 states had tornadoes, four of them were the highest EF-5 rating, over 12 billion dollars in damage, 324 deaths and over 3,100 injuries. Virginia even had 19 tornadoes during this window. The reason this day stands out for me is that I lived in Alabama during that time, where there were 238 deaths, 58 Tornadoes, including two that came within a mile of my house during the morning and evening outbreaks.

Recalculating

Recalculating

by Tracy Cooper

When riding in the car with my husband, Kurt, there was nothing that stressed me out more than when he would say, “Hurry up and pull out the map. See if I need to get off at this exit.” What?  Seriously? As though I could figure that out quickly and under pressure! Or… figure it out at all for that matter. Not a chance.

3...2...1...JUMP!

3...2...1...JUMP!

Have you ever peered over the edge of a 700 ft drop (216 meters)? The equivalent height of a 70-story building.

Just imagine. You are on a bridge, 700 feet above a river gorge. The scenery is beautiful. A slight breeze is blowing. You look down and see trees and boulders below you. Way below you.  You think you see people looking up at you, but you can’t quite make out the small ant-size figures. The sky above you is bright blue. The white clouds are seemingly within grasp. And then the countdown begins… 3…2…1. You jump! You trust the bungee cord will not break.

Church: Yesterday and Today

Church: Yesterday and Today

by Andrea Perdue

As a child, I grew up in a small rural Methodist church. There were no extensive programs to minister within the church or the community at large. The church had a small nursery located in a room directly behind the pulpit where you could take your child and sit with them if you chose, but there were no nursery workers and no soundproofing. There was one children’s Sunday school class in a small room behind the sanctuary and one adult Sunday school class held in a larger room. We shared a pastor with a larger church in a neighboring community. This is the picture of “yesterday’s church.”

Laying Out a Fleece

Laying Out a Fleece

by Tracy Cooper

Have you ever felt so ill-equipped to do the task God has laid before you, that you actually lay out a fleece before God?

“Gideon said to God, “If this is right, if you are using me to save Israel as you’ve said, then look: I’m placing a fleece of wool on the threshing floor. If dew is on the fleece only, but the floor is dry, then I know that you will use me to save Israel, as you said.” Judges 6:36-40 The Message (MSG)

Gideon was willing to do what God was calling him to do, but because of his feelings of inadequacy, he wanted confirmation.