Greetings from The Springs! Let me tell you that all of the ladies that attended the women’s Conference weekend feasted on a special treat. Sister Toni Terrell and Dr. Kathy Hubbard organized the event and it did not disappoint. Sister Toni blessed us with prayer and words of encouragement and Dr. Hubbard was the keynote speaker both days. It was so evident that both of them truly hear from the Lord. Dr. Hubbard’s Friday night address was based on Romans 12:1-2, and it was titled, “Turning What You Think is Impossible into the Possible.”
The Word tells us to be transformed in our minds. This should be something that we are constantly doing. We all would like to change something in our lives, yet to do so most of us deal with the outward person instead of the inward being. She gave us an example of the caterpillar to explain her point. For the first part of its life it crawls around on the ground, eating and getting fat. That is its job. Then, it wraps up into a cocoon and stays there for a period. When the time is right it breaks out in the form of a beautiful butterfly. We tend to think that we can change ourselves overnight. However, it takes time when we are working on things that are on the inside of us. God want us to transform our minds. It is important that we understand that to get to our destiny we have to transform and not conform. We cannot stay the same as everyone else. We have to reach higher. In keeping with the theme for the evening we have to be transform by the renewing of our minds. We all have a ministry and we need to work our ministry. We do this by making a commitment to God and renewing our minds. It is a process. It may take a long time to transform but we cannot stay stuck in life. Bring your vision back to life!
Dr. Hubbard’s Saturday message was called, “A Diamond in the Rough.” She had another demonstration that detailed the way a diamond is processed. It is carefully cut and shaped. We are done the same by God. God is molding us. In addition what the Lord sees is not what we see. He sees us with the spiritual eye and not the physical. At first we may not look like much, but when God gets finished we shine like a diamond! In keeping with Women’s History Month, USBC celebrated our Annual Women’s Day on Sunday, March 20. Coordinators this year were First Lady Toni Terrell and Gwen Johnson and the two collaborated on a beautiful program. The service was filled with songs of praise along with liturgical dance as we uplifted the Jesus Christ. There were power-point presentations giving honor to women of the past and present and displaying the progress of the church. One of the highlights of the morning service was the announcement of our Woman of the Year. Willie Ann Mathis received the award for her unwavering service to the church and her family. If you know her, you are aware of her beautiful smile and kind heart. She is one that is always willing to go the extra mile and then some to help someone else. Don’t forget to congratulate her when you see her. Encourage her the way that she always encourages those around her! The speaker for the morning program was First Lady Toni Terrell and she delivered a great message. Her text was based on the first three chapters of Daniel detailing the lives of Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego.
Most of us know the story of how King Nebuchadnezzar came into power but he started wrong by bringing the articles of the house of God into his house to serve his god. She stated that promotion does not come without testing and trials. We need to begin to walk into our destiny and stir up the gifts that God has placed in us. God has equipped us to do what we are supposed to do and we are not here just to take up space. We are created to be effective in the Earth. The time that we are wasting we cannot manufacture again. Therefore, we have to take the opportunities that we have to do what God has called us to do. We do this by taking baby steps. If you are thrown into a situation that you are not ready for, you will sink. In her text you see that the men that were tested and tried were ready. In chapter one, the king wanted the choicest of young men to serve in his court. He gave them a daily provision of what the king ate and drank. The king wanted them to do what he did. However, “Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s delicacies, nor with the wine which he drank.” He instead asked to eat vegetables and water in a test for 10 days to prove that he and his three friends would not look worse than their counterparts would. Being obedient to God always pays off. These men passed the test by being faithful to God and the Lord in turn gave them, “knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom”and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams. God took this mess and turned it into a miracle.
In chapter two, First Lady Terrell stated that the king believed in magicians and astrologers to lead and guide him. You are delving either in the Spirit of God or in the spirit of the devil. There is no in between. If King Nebuchadnezzar was not trying to flow in the Spirit of God then he was flowing in the spirit of the devil. Sometimes when people are used to getting what they want and are used to people always giving them what they ask for, they think that they can buy anybody and anything. His magicians and astrologers were there to make sure that everything went the king’s way. In the second year of the king’s reign, he was troubled with a dream and he wanted someone to explain it. Nevertheless, it went further; the king wanted them to tell him what his dream was and to interpret it. If they could not do this then they would die. Those people were no good to him if they could not tell him what he wanted. Daniel finds out the king’s request and asked for time. He believed that God would give him the answer. Even with the risk of death if he was wrong, Daniel had faith in God. He was given the secret in a dream and Daniel blessed God. The Lord answered his prayer and honored him. God took this mess and turned it into a miracle.
In her final example, we see that after the king sees this, he goes back to business as usual. He builds a golden idol and commands everyone to bow down to it. When the horn sounded, all the people had to worship this idol god. There was a group of Jews that noticed Daniel and the Hebrew men were not worshiping the idol and told the king. The king was furious and gave another decree. A furnace was built that was seven times hotter than normal. It even burned the men that took the Hebrew men up to the furnace. Surprisingly, after the three men were in the fire, the king saw four men walking in the flames. When this was proven to the king, he says in verse 29, “Therefore I make a decree that any people, nation, or language which speaks anything amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made an ash heap; because there is no other God who can deliver like this.” What these men went through was not a small thing. They were faithful to God. We must remember that although we are caught up in what we are going through, we cannot forget the One that keeps and delivers us. Ministry is not just at church, but it is in the world, too. It is not only when we show up in the building. Are we off duty when we leave? What would happen if the pastor were off duty when the benediction is over? Would a doctor give someone a card who fell down with a heart attack and tell him to come see him tomorrow at the office? Would a paramedic only help when on duty? They have to help because that is how they are trained. God honored Daniel and the Hebrew men by what they did in private. When you are holding fast to the things of God, He can take a mess and turn it into a miracle! Glory Be To God!