A WORD FROM THE EDITOR
Pray for One Another
Sometime this year, a major artist in CHH announced he was leaving the church. He had been making music for quite awhile, but because of the things he had witnessed and experienced within the body, he felt it was time to go. Not too long after that, another artist (not as major, but still had influence) has also chosen to leave the faith, revealing on his social media account that his reason for walking away was that he believed he could no longer go on making music for Christ knowing that he wanted to pursue something else. Both still believe in Jesus, but each had their own reasons for choosing to go their own separate ways.
But that’s not what concerns me the most…
What I found to be more devastating than these two artists no longer being in the faith were all the people that came out to ‘stone’ them.
Personally, I find it despicable and very disheartening to see so many saints lashing out at these two men. Where is our faith? Where is the God in us to reach out and love on them, to pull them back into the fold? Where is the compassion to encourage and pray for our wayward brothers and sisters?
Then again, perhaps that’s the problem. There are too many church folks and not enough men and women of God.
I suppose however that is a topic for another time.
At the end of the day, I recognize we all have a choice. Whether we choose to believe, not believe, or no longer believe, is each person’s choice. When a person decides to join a church or to walk away from the faith completely, that is their choice. Everyone is free to make their own decisions, and while we may not agree with it or like it, we must respect it.
But to think by beating someone up for deciding to go another way will make them say, “Oh my goodness! You’re right—what on earth was I thinking? Let me turn right back around right now,” is foolish. It is a sign we have completely missed the mark. To even approach someone in that manner, as though we haven’t ever sinned in life and are holier than thou, doesn’t make sense and is an insult to Jesus.
So, my plea would be that before you go to pick up a rock, think about all the times just THIS WEEK you have messed up. Think of all the instances God could have wiped you off the face of the earth, but instead extended grace and mercy your way so you could another chance (yet again) to realign yourself in Him. Consider the days you struggled or wrestled with your faith, had moments of doubt, or wondered why you chose Christ in the first place. Recall all the times people prayed with you on those things, and even when there was no one to intercede with you, Jesus was always interceding for you.
Especially when you didn’t feel like praying for yourself, the Lord was.
It is in times like these that we must pray for one another, including for those in leadership and positions of influence, because we are all under attack and people in those positions are attacked by the enemy more than anyone.
Pray for them; don’t push them away.
Local News in the area
TEMPLE OF REFUGE PASTOR RUNS FOR MAYOR
by Jacqueline S. Sadberry
Editor in Chief
Elections are coming up and the race for a new mayor in the city of Prairie View has begun. Dr. Michael W. Prince, pastor of Temple of Refuge COGIC, decided he would run for the position.
Prince first announced this to his congregation on New Year’s Day. He admitted he had shied away from the idea, but after prayer and some serious consideration, he went and filled out paperwork to become a candidate. Once he was cleared to go, the pastor got a small crew together and began posting signs.
TOR’s pastor first came to Prairie View Jan. 10, 1988 to attend school at Prairie View A&M University, where he played baseball and married the love of his life. After he finished school, he and his wife Stephanie went on to call PV home and raise a family. Over the years, Prince has built up his ministry, gotten elected to serve on the Waller ISD school board, and has started programs within the county. OpenMic Broadcast Network (OBN) is Prince’s online radio station with which he services Waller County athletics, NJCCA/NCAA colleges; he broadcasts his sermons live as well (Sunday Morning Live.)
Prince now desires to build up his community, saying that the Lord showed him the city needs healing, “The primary focus for the city is to bring about healing. This is too fine a city for people to be walking around hurt…I am here to serve…I am happiest when I’m serving others.”
A humble man, Prince doesn’t care to speak on what all he’s done, “I don’t like to boast…” He went on further to say that he realized he will need to share what all he has contributed to the Prairie View community and what new things he would like to bring to the table.
There will be a debate held on PVAMU’s campus Feb. 13, 9 a.m. in the Don Clark building auditorium.
The Temple of Refuge is currently raising funds to finish the installation of our bathrooms. The total cost for the project is $6000. Anyone who wishes to donate can do so by going to our church website KTOR Radio and click on the donate button toward the top of the homepage.
Sunday sermons, Wednesday messages
Sunday, Jan 31, 2016, “Stop Trying To Revive What God Has Killed (Matthew 10:14)”
“And whosoever shall not receive you, nor hear your words, when ye depart out of that house or city, shake off the dust of your feet.” (Mt. 10:14 KJV)
In this passage Jesus in readying the disciples to go out and spread the Gospel. He sent them in twos so that they would be each other’s keeper. A lot of times we try to go it alone and end up in a worse state than we were before.
“At some point you tried to hold on to something you thought was good to you,” God removed it from you, but you found yourself trying to go back and get it.
Jesus reminded His disciples that they were going to face some challenges out there, but to not get caught up in things that are irrelevant to the work they’ve been called to do, “Stop fighting stuff that’s not even worth fighting.”
The truth is not everyone is going to receive us, but we still have to be able to deal with them the way God said to, “God might put you in a hostile situation on purpose to see if you meant what you said.” If we tell God we will serve Him regardless of whatever opposition we face then we have to stand by our word.
Life is too short to fret over trifle things. A person may not see eye to eye with you, even when you give them the scripture to back it up. You just have to move on. Things may not have turned out the way you thought in your assignment, but you don’t whine or mope about it.
We have to stop taking it personal. People watch us because of who we claim we live for, therefore they may not always hear you but they are always looking. We can’t change anybody—only God can do that, “Sometimes we are interfering with God’s work…”
Every person God used was a regular, average person like the rest of us. They weren’t trying to be any bigger than what they were’ they simply wanted to please Him.
Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016, “The Simplicity of Christ (II Corinthians 11:3)”
“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” (II Cor. 11:3 KJV)
What we learn about the Corinthian church is that they were very knowledge about who God was, “The Corinthians knew how to have church,” but Paul had to correct them on living by a “form of godliness” only.
Everything we do for Christ should be done with purpose, “You’re showing up, but are you doing it with an understanding?”
The Corinthians were very intelligent but missed the whole reason of why Jesus came for us in the first place, “The anointing doesn’t care what your building…what your skin looks like. It wants to do what it was sent to do: cover God’s people.”
Living for Christ is truly simple, but we tend to overcomplicate things. Scripture says that if we profess Christ is who He says He is and that He’s coming back again, then we are saved. We have to stop confusing people by telling them they need to do more to get saved, “…trying to have people jump through hoops hone it’s not necessary.”
One thing we certainly must not do is speak curses over ourselves, “Either you’re going to speak life over your situation or you’re going to bury yourself…You can’t continue to hope God blesses your situation—you have to put yourself in position for Him to bless you.”
THE ART GALLERY
Poems, shorts and other creative pieces
DEAR BLACK HISTORY (POEM)
by Jacqueline S. Sadberry
Dear Black History,
I’m sorry for never taking the time
–to learn about you
For ignorantly thinking
They would let you into our schools
And then when they removed the few
–traces of you we had
From our textbooks
I complained about it
I chose not to speak up because let’s
I wasn’t reading any of that stuff
Dear Black History,
I beg your forgiveness
For neglecting you
I went from looking forward to
Other than Valentine’s Day
To having you become
A mere afterthought
As I hear myself say,
It is our month, huh?”
Dear Black History,
Pardon me, I beg you, please
I am so self-righteous
In all my false claiming
Proclaiming to be such an advocate
–for the preservation
Of your memory
But it’s all so pretentious
And it’s obvious
Because I don’t even bother to go
–and research for new material
I just stick to those faithful few
Those few that get people to
Rosa, Maya, MLK, Malcomb…
I don’t give the people something
They didn’t already know
I just regurgitate, reword
Plagiarize and replay
While I try to make myself look very
–well-studied in the ways
Of who you are
When in reality
I still don’t know you
Dear Black History,
I am ashamed
And I am guilty of thinking
That just because of my skin’s
–pigment and hue
I look in the mirror
And I tell myself, “That’ll do,”
I hear my peers
And become enraged
When they dismissively say things
While dissing you
Still upholding the status quo
But all I can be is silent
Because I am a victim of my own
I say you are important
And yet I have pushed you aside
All the while wondering
As they slowly erase you away,
As we do things
That make your creators
Roll in their graves,
God, I say, God
What on earth
Will I pass on down to my children?
What shall I be able to give them
So to you, Black History,
I am sorely grieved by my offenses
And I am sorry
For my cowardice
My willingness to stay in the dark
My failure to keep you alive
You are still living
So to you I promise
I will take the time
To learn of you
Going beyond those standard pioneers
And discovering those figures
Great and small
I’ve never heard of before
In every field
Because I say it matters
And it does
Black History, you do matter
And your beauty runs through me
It is in fact
Therefore to reject you,
Is to reject myself
I yearn to go beyond the surface
Of settling for the only history I know
Stopping at my epidermis
Dear Black History,
You deserve better
Events and announcements for the month of February
- Feb. 1: Last day for voter registration
- Feb. 4: Brother Michael Prince II’s birthday
- Feb. 7-12: District Meeting, Beaumont, TX
- Feb. 11: Dallas Black Dance Theatre, 6 p.m., Prairie View A&M University
- Feb. 13: Electoral Debate, 9 a.m., PVAMU-Don Clark building auditorium
- Feb. 28: “The Remedy” Talent Showcase, 5 p.m.
**This issue has been edited**