15 January, 2012

Tablecloth (a true story)

The brand new pastor and his wife, newly assigned to their first ministry, to reopen a church in suburban Brooklyn , arrived in early October excited about their opportunities. When they saw
their church, it was very run down and needed much work. They set a goal to have everything done in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.

They worked hard, repairing pews, plastering walls, painting, etc, and on December 18 were ahead of schedule and just about finished. On December 19 a terrible tempest - a driving rainstorm hit the area and lasted for two days. On the 21st, the pastor went over to the church. His heart sank when he saw that the roof had leaked, causing a large area of plaster about 20 feet by 8 feet to fall off the front wall of the sanctuary just behind the pulpit, beginning about head high. The pastor cleaned up the mess on the floor, and not knowing what else to do but postpone the Christmas Eve service, headed home. On the way he noticed that a local business was having a flea market type sale for charity, so he stopped in. One of the items was a beautiful, handmade, ivory colored, crocheted tablecloth with exquisite work, fine colors and a Cross embroidered right in the center. It was just the right size to cover the hole in the front wall. He bought it and headed back to the church. By this time it had started to snow. An older woman running from the opposite direction was trying to catch the bus. She missed it. The pastor invited her to wait in the warm church for the next bus 45 minutes later.. She sat in a pew and paid no attention to the pastor while he got a ladder, hangers, etc., to put up the tablecloth as a wall tapestry. The pastor could hardly believe how beautiful it looked and it covered up the entire problem area. Then he noticed the woman walking down the center aisle. Her face was like a sheet. "Pastor," she asked, "where did you get that tablecloth?"
The pastor explained. The woman asked him to check the lower right corner to see if the initials, EBG were crocheted into it there. They were. These were the initials of the woman, and she had
made this tablecloth 35 years before, in Austria . The woman could hardly believe it as the pastor
told how he had just gotten "The Tablecloth". The woman explained that before the war she and
her husband were well-to-do people in Austria . When the Nazis came, she was forced to leave.
Her husband was going to follow her the next week. He was captured, sent to prison and never saw her husband or her home again. The pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth; but she made the pastor keep it for the church.. The pastor insisted on driving her home. That was the least he could do. She lived on the other side of Staten Island and was only in Brooklyn for the day for a housecleaning job. What a wonderful service they had on Christmas Eve. The church was almost full. The music and the spirit were great. At the end of the service, the pastor and his wife greeted everyone at the door and many said that they would return. One older man, whom the pastor recognized from the neighborhood continued to sit in one of the pews and stare, and the pastor wondered why he wasn't leaving. The man asked him where he got the tablecloth on the front wall because it was identical to one that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war and how could there be two tablecloths so much alike? He told the pastor how the Nazis came, how he forced his wife to flee for her safety and he was supposed to follow her, but he was arrested and put in a prison. He never saw his wife or his home again all the 35 years between.
The pastor asked him if he would allow him to take him for a little ride. They drove to Staten Island and to the same house where the pastor had taken the woman three days earlier. He helped the man climb the three flights of stairs to the woman's apartment, knocked on the door and he saw the greatest Christmas reunion he could ever imagine.

True Story - submitted by Pastor Rob Reid who says God does work in mysterious ways.

15 December, 2011

A $1 for Agta

Christmas is just around the corner. But instead of celebrating it with a Christmas party and gift giving, our bible study group decided to share a day of our lives on a mission’s trip to Camarines Sur on Dec 27-28, 2011.
A dollar for Agta is a fund-raising activity of our Pasir Ris discipleship group. Your $1 will be used to buy basic school supplies as a gift for the children in the villages which will include the following: pencil, eraser, ruler, notebook, water bottle, envelope, flashlight and raincoat.

We are targeting to send out 250 sets of school supplies and we would like to give you an opportunity to bless these children by sharing a dollar from your pocket. Of course you are much welcome if you want to give more A few people already gave pledges and the collected amount will be given to the ministry of Agta Tribe.
If you want to know more about the Agta Ministry, I encourage you to visit their website and be blessed.

The Lord is surely doing a lot of amazing things in that part of the world. We are excited as to what the Lord is going to reveal to us as we prepare to experience what life is up there in the mountains.
Please be with us in prayer as we go through this journey and take part by sharing a $1 for Agta.

God Bless You!

Matthew 18:10 “See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven."

Agta Missions Team
*If the Lord is touching your heart to give your share please get in touch with us through FB personal message or simply sms us @ 93382707 or 91992704.

26 February, 2011

An Open Letter to my Future Husband

Even though I don't know exactly who you'll be
yet, I think of you often. I wonder how you're
living your life now. It matters to me, you know,
because how you live your life now determines the
kind of man you're becoming … and the kind of man
I'll spend the rest of my life with.
Apparently, for some bizarre reason manhood
doesn't come automatically for males. Some guys
seem to spend their entire lives trying to "prove
their manhood" – by hunting, playing sports,
driving fast … and unfortunately, by having sex.
It seems rather strange to us women that guys
think that having sex proves you're a man. To us,
it just proves that you've reached puberty. And
we don't really consider that, in itself, to be
any accomplishment. Becoming a man is a much more
complicated process.
The funny thing is, even in this day and age,
most guys want to marry a girl who respects her
sexuality. A guy doesn't like the idea of his
future wife in the back seat with someone else,
or her being the subject of a sexual conquest
story in the locker room. They'll brag about
girls like that, but they won't marry them. They
want to marry a girl, whether she's never "done
it" or done it and regretted it, who recognizes
that sex speaks the language of forever,
committed love … someone like me.
But why would I want to marry someone like that …
someone who wants to marry a virgin, but spends
his dating years robbing other girls of their
virginity so that he can prove his manhood? He's
not a "real man" in my eyes – he's selfish,
immature boy driven by insecurity, not love. And
I'm not interested.
I want more from you. I want you to respect your
sexuality as much as I respect mine. I want you
to be a real, confident man not a wimp who has to
use women to feed his insecurity. A guy like that
couldn't use all of those women, and then
suddenly love me. He may be "good in bed" but he
is no good in loving.
I want you to learn to really love. Learning to
love is learning to put the other first. A guy
who messes around outside of marriage isn't
putting the good of the other first. He is using
a girl … speaking the "body language" of
permanent commitment when the relationship isn't
permanent. He's putting the girl at risk of
pregnancy. And he's putting himself at risk for
some nasty diseases … diseases he can then later
give his wife. That's not making love. A real man
loves women – and wants what's best for them. And
he doesn't let his desires control his actions.
He controls his desires instead.
I want you to develop self-control. That's
important to me. I don't want to marry a man who
can't control himself. Men like that make lousy
husbands. A man who isn't used to saying "no" to
sex isn't going to be any better at it at 40 than
he is at 18. I've seen women who worry everytime
their husbands hire an attractive secretary. I
don't want that. What kind of marriage could I
have with someone I couldn't even trust on a
business trip.
In the short run, I'm sure there aren't too many
rewards for living lives this way. Society tells
you that you're missing out on your "sexual
peak". You silence during the locker room
bragging sessions can seem deafening. You may
even heard from the girls you date that something
must be "wrong" with you because you won't take
them to bed. Deep down, you must know that having
sex won't prove you're a man. It's just
irritating that no one else seems to know it,
isn't it?
But someone does know it. I know it. And in the
end, I'm the only one who matters. And no, I'm
not as narrow minded as those guys who say
they'll only marry a virgin. Society isn't too
supportive of virginity. I can forgive mistakes
of the past. But I'm interested in your future,
starting now. When I meet you, I want you to be a
man who has made a conscious decision to wait …
out of love for our future family and commitment
to our marriage. And I want you to be a real man,
who's developed the control, maturity and
unselfishness that waiting brings. They may not
be popular traits in the locker room, but they're
popular with me. They'll make you better husband,
and a better father. To me, that's sexy.
I've abstained from sex all these years and it
hasn't been for the lack of offers. I've had
plenty of opportunities, and saying "no" hasn't
always been easy. I'm sure, it's not always easy
for you either, but it will make our marriage so
much stronger. Sex will be our gift to each
other, our exclusive "language". It'll belong to
us, not "us" and everyone else we ever dated.
Thanks for waiting for me. I promise you won't
regret it.
by: Mary Beth Bonboci