Time to Read? Try these Books!
In 1914, the Morton Salt Company adopted the familiar logo and slogan: “When it rains, it pours”, letting the consumer know that their product will still pour in dampness and humidity.
That slogan also has come to mean, for some, that when troubles start, they continue: sort of like a Corona followed by an Isaias, and maybe this weekend a plague of locusts or frogs?
But even as we continue not being out and about as much from the virus, now for at least a day or two the hurricane will probably keep us inside. So what do you do?
I tire quickly of the word and trivia games on my tablet. The Hallmark movies have become very predictable. A lot of the old television shows from my youth are still enjoyable, but get old quickly. Reality shows, forget it. The news, well the news isn’t! And I vowed never to watch another professional sports event.
That leaves me much more time to read my Bible and pray and to communicate with relatives and friends from all over. It gives me time to cut down my large stack of “yet to be read” books. And yes, I like paper books; you can dog-ear the pages, highlight and mark them; you don’t have to recharge them, and if necessary, when you’ve finished reading the book, and your coffee table has one leg too short, you can prop it up with a book (try that with a Nook or Kindle).
So perhaps you’re reading too and here are a couple of good Christian books I know you’ll find relevant and interesting. Both are by Erwin Lutzer, pastor of historic Moody Church in Chicago. He is also a gifted preacher/teacher and prolific author. (And if you enjoy electronic reading, I’m sure you can find these for your device.)
The first is 10 Lies About God and the Truths That Shatter Deception. While we cannot ever understand the mind and actions of the God of the universe, He reveals Himself to us in His Word and in our hearts. And many lies and misconceptions keep us from really knowing all He wants us to know.
The chapters (lies) include: (1) God is whatever we want Him to be. We want to humanize Him, minimize Him and push Him into our boxes; but we cannot. (2) Many paths lead into God’s presence. When Jesus, God the Son was on earth, He said “I am THE way”, not A way. There are many ways into eternity but only one way into the family of God.
(3) God is more tolerant than He used to be. He has changed His mind about sin and brought Himself down to our human moral culture. (4) God has never personally suffered. (5) God is obligated to save followers of other religions. God is not obligated to anything but to uphold His nature and keep His promises. He made one way to save mankind and all must come that way.
(6) God takes no responsibility for natural disasters. Hurricanes. Pandemics. Tragedies and disasters. Where is God? Does He just sit back and watch it happen. (7) God does not know our decisions before we make them. The omniscient God knows all!
(8) The fall ruined God’s plan. Can anything or anyone ruin God’s plans? (9) We must choose between God’s pleasures and our own. If I choose my pleasures without God, I’m in trouble! (10) God helps those who help themselves. For years I heard this from an uncle who claimed it was in the Bible, though He could never show chapter and verse.
Want to know God better? Pick up this book and read it with your Bible in your other hand.
The second book was written in 2010 and becomes more relevant daily. It’s simple title is When a Nation Forgets God: 7 Lessons We Must Learn from Nazi Germany.
In the preface, Dr. Lutzer says, “If you read this book with the sole intention of finding more grist for your political convictions, then you have missed my heart. Yes, I am deeply distressed over the direction our nation is taking, but I am even more concerned about how the church – the people of God – will react to what is taking place. To become angry, vindictive and filled with self-pity is hardly what God expects of us. We must respond on many different levels, but surely one of the most important is that we as individuals and the church at large must bear a credible witness to the saving grace of God in Christ.”
The book has only 145 pages and seven chapters, but it’s filled with truth! The chapters include: (1) when God is separated from government, judgment follows. God instituted government to bring order and peace and that cannot happen apart from Him.
(2) It’s always the economy. We have become a money and pleasure-driven nation/world and that always leads to problems. (3) That which is legal might also be evil. Remember, slavery was once legal in America and abortion still is. (4) Propaganda can change a nation. We have forgotten how to think and reason; we believe everything on television or the Internet. We don’t know truth because we don’t really want to.
(5) Parents – not the state – are responsible for a child’s training. Another of God’s directives, the mind of the child, has been hijacked. Yes, we send our children to school to learn skills and concepts, but not to be brainwashed by the culture. (6) Ordinary heroes make a difference. God doesn’t need superheroes, He asks us to serve faithfully and well and to do whatever is necessary to get the message of the cross into the world. (7) We must exalt the cross in the gathering darkness. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only thing that can save a soul, or a nation.
So there you have it, two very relevant books for you. Happy Reading!
A Message from ISAIAS!
“Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him and by His stripes we are healed.
“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way, and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.”
What’s Going on Where You Are?
As we continue on in our “new normal”, more and more churches are opening, often with different schedules and other modifications. And as summer progresses, we’re thinking about Vacation Bible School and other activities like that.
Let your congregation and the community as a whole know what’s going on in your church, temple, house of worship or other faith-based organization. And let Church Talk help.
You can send your announcements to us by email at email@example.com and we’ll be glad to share the news.
Christ has called us to be the light of the world at a time when the world needs His light. Let’s accept the calling and share His love!
Helping the Helpers
As we continue through this worldwide “emergency”, needs seem to be multiplying. There are many economic problems from those out of work; there are medical needs for the ones coming down with COVID plus the other “normal” diseases and physical problems; there are emotional needs of loneliness and depression; and there are nutrition needs as many in our area (and around the world) are hungry.
There are a lot of groups that are trying to do that: the Salvation Army, Help4Kids, the Red Cross, CAP, the Shepherds Table, many local churches and so on. The Waccamaw Community Foundation collects “gifts” and distributes them to a number of charities. And we need to remember groups like Coastline Women’s Center and Bethesda Home for Single Mothers who go beyond the physical to assist the spiritual and other needs of our people. If you look, you can find someone to help. Let’s all open our eyes and hearts to friends, neighbors and strangers and be the hand and feet of God to the needy.
A Day of Hope This Saturday
This year’s Day of Hope will be different because of COVID, but it is now time to pre-register for the event to be held Saturday.
For the sixth year, Sheila Karsevar is organizing the event benefitting many school-age children and their families. The Day of Hope provides each child with new shoes and backpacks filled with school supplies and provides household supplies for each family.
But Ms. Karsevar says the most important part is to serve and show love to these children and families and to let them know that Jesus loves them and God has a plan for each life! And the volunteers pray with each family that would like prayer!
Each year this event has served 250-270 kids; however, this year because of hurricanes, flooding and COVID, they are expecting to have 400 backpacks and 300 bags of household supplies.
This year’s event will be a drive-through that will start at 9 a.m. Parents or guardians can register their child at Catholic Charities (843) 438-3108 and will be given an appointment time and all the details including where the event will be held.
Volunteers are needed! If you are interested you can email Sheila at firstname.lastname@example.org or just show up at a meeting at 6 p.m. on Aug. 6 in the Community Center behind Carolina Forest Community Church on Carolina Forest Boulevard. Also, if you want to donate financially you may email Sheila or go through @ADayofHome at Venmo.
In the past onsite haircuts were given, but this year vouchers for haircuts will be given to each child. Barbers or hairstylists willing to provide vouchers can contact Karsevar for details.
This is certainly a way of “ministering to the least of these” and you and I can help!
Crossway Church, 2000 U.S. 701 S. in Loris, will host a benefit fundraiser Aug. 16 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. This will be a spaghetti dinner with the low cost of $10.
This dinner will benefit Natalie Thomas and her family, husband Timothy and children Nate and Bennett. Currently Natalie is battling a rare, aggressive form of cancer and your help will be greatly appreciated. And we can all pray!
Virtual Dragon Boat
COVID won’t keep the Ground Zero Dragon Boats down. But this year’s event, the 12th Annual, will be virtual! This fundraiser will be held via Facebook, video chats, email etc. as Ground Zero leads Dragon Boat team members to raise funds for GZ all through the month of August.
Mark your calendars for Aug. 22 as there will be a live TV broadcast from Ground Zero with reports and a celebration of what has been accomplished. Go to www.mygroundzero.com.
Community Bible Study Registration Opens
Community Bible Study (CBS) has opened registration for this year’s study The Gospel of John. CBS offers classes for men, women, couples and children (birth-high school) and meets at the host church Ocean Drive Presbyterian on Sixth Avenue South in North Myrtle Beach. The group will begin Sept. 9 and meet every Wednesday at 9:15 a.m.
The New Testament book of John is an eyewitness account of the life of Jesus Christ. The apostle John was transformed by the years of close friendship he spent with Jesus, and he wanted everyone to experience that same joy. John 20:31 says he wrote the book, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, “so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in His name.”
CBS is a nondenominational, in-depth Bible study designed for all levels of Bible knowledge, and we welcome all faiths and beliefs. You may now register with our coordinator Jeri Friz at (843) 249-6957 or email to email@example.com.
Conway, Loris, Aynor and Western Horry
■ Due to the hurricane, Bethany Bible Chapel, 1668 Four Mile Road, has postponed its “modified” Vacation Bible School until Aug. 9-11 from 6:30 p.m.-8 p.m. for young folks age 3 through college & career.
This will be “in-person” with care taken to provide safe and sanitized facilities; all participants will be encouraged to wear face masks.
Come enjoy songs, memory verses, Bible study, crafts and more. Phone (843) 369-7729 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
■ The Catholic Church of St. James, 1071 Academy Drive, announces a new Mass Schedule beginning this month as follows: Saturdays at 4 p.m. and 6 p.m.; Sundays at 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. (and 12 p.m. Spanish); Monday-Friday at 9 a.m. and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. – Spanish.
The church also collects nonperishable food items for Catholic Charities and CAP Monday-Friday from 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at the church. Please help as you are able. Call (843) 347-5168 or go online to www.stjamesconway.org.
■ Tilly Swamp Survivors of Suicide, a new faith-based support group for those having lost someone to suicide, meets the first and third Mondays of each month at 6:30 p.m. at the church: 4619 S.C. 90. Phone (803) 566-0702.
■ St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church, 3449 S.C. 65, will distribute food on the second and fourth Fridays of each month from 11 a.m. until all food has been distributed.
■ Loris First United Methodist Church, 3507 Broad St., has a Blessing Box in the church and it is available each Friday from 4:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. This box contains nonperishable food items, and individuals in need are encouraged to come to the church at those times. Also, if you would like to donate items, please place them in the box.
■ Dogwood Hill Baptist Church, 1040 Mt. Zion Road in Loris, has a food pantry on the third Saturday of each month from 8 a.m.-10 a.m.
■ Salem Baptist Church, 4008 Salem Road in Aynor, opens its Food Bank on the second and fourth Wednesday of each month from 9 a.m.-noon. The mission: “We serve Christ when we serve people.”
Myrtle Beach/The Coast
■ Help 4 Kids and Backpack Buddies continue to provide food for 400-500 families per week and need your help. Suggested food donations include: peanut butter, jelly, pasta and sauce, rice, beans, cereal, macaroni & cheese, canisters of Kool-Aid, canned meats, snacks and chips.
You may also donate grocery gift cards used for produce, meats, dairy and bread and monetary donations are always appreciated. The office is located at 2523 Forestbrook Road, Myrtle Beach SC 29588 (gifts may be mailed to that address also). Go online to www.help4kidssc.org.
■ Together in Christ has a Wednesday ZOOM Prayer Meeting from noon-12:30 p.m. each week. Prayer changes everything and you are invited to pray with the mid-week group. Email hgprayer @sccoast.net.
■ Ground Zero is working hard to get back up and running with its various youth-oriented ministries and services. They need our help. If you are interested in assisting GZ, then go to the website or give them a call and see how you can be used there. Email to email@example.com or phone (843) 945-9440.
■ Low Country Food Bank and Faith Outreach Ministries will have another sponsor Drive-Thru Food Distribution at 4223 Socastee Blvd. on Aug. 7 at 2:30 p.m. Phone (843) 215-4500.
■ The New Beginnings drive-thru food distribution will be held Aug. 15 from 10 a.m.-noon at the Church of the Resurrection, 8901 U.S. 16 Bypass in Surfside Beach. Phone (843) 215-4500.
■ The fall’s Women of Passion Conference, Dare to Dream God-Sized Dreams (Ephesians 3:20) will be held on Oct. 10, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at The Grace Place, 404 George Bishop Parkway in Myrtle Beach. Tickets go on sale this week. Contact Stacey Gurley by phone at (864) 477-9683 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
■ The Colombiettes of St. Andrews Church, 37th Avenue North, are in need of crafters and vendors for their Christmas Bazaar which will take place Nov. 7 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. in the Community Life Center. If interested, please contact Patricia Martelli at (908)938-1433 or email email@example.com.
■ St. Philip Lutheran Preschool is currently registering students for its 2020-21 school year for the 2, 3 and 4-year-old classes. Come join the fun! Contact Director Jenn Loeswick at firstname.lastname@example.org or look us up on Facebook: St. Philip Preschool-Myrtle Beach. The preschool is located at 6200 N. Kings Highway. Call (843) 449-4322 and we’ll get back to you.
■ Horry Friends Monthly Meetings, formerly known at Five Rivers Friends, has offered unprogrammed, silent Quaker worship in our area for more than three decades. Now meeting virtually, Horry Friends welcome new attendees and visiting Friends. Contact clerk Grace Gifford at (843) 365-6654.
■ St. Michael’s Catholic Church, 542 Cypress Ave. in Murrells Inlet, has a Life Chain every first Sunday at 12:30 p.m. on U.S. 17 Business near the church driveway. You are invited to participate in this event. (Bring a chair if not able to stand for the hour.) Contact Joanne Bennett at (614) 313-8425 or email Joanne.bennett55@ gmail.com.
■ Temple Emanu-EL by the Sea, 65th Ave. North and N. Kings Highway, invites you to Friday night service at 7:30 p.m. (Kosher Oneg), Shabbat Service at 10 a.m. (Kosher Kiddush).
Current Second Nature Project: we are collecting items for New Directions of Horry County that provides shelter and meals for those in need. Please bring paper products (toilet paper, paper towels, diapers), bath towels, laundry soap, toothpaste and brushes, and cleaning supplies. We are continuing to collect new packages of children’s underwear and socks. Take your donations to the Rosen Center and place them in the basket provided by the front door. All Mitzvoth greatly appreciated! Questions? Contact Karen Osborne at (843) 446-1060.
■ Myrtle Beach Christian Church, 1226 Burcale Road, opens its Thrift Store each week, Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. You are encouraged to come out and browse and buy and, in so doing, you’ll be supporting this community outreach. Phone (843) 236-1121.
■ Temple Shalom, 4023 Belle Terre Blvd., invites you to Shabbat services each Saturday at 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Phone (843) 903-6634 or go online to templeshalommyrtlebeach.net.