Why Overnight Camp Matters

Recently, I had the opportunity to speak as a part of CentriKid Camps again. One of my favorite parts of speaking with CentriKid is the opportunity that I have to share the stage with my friend Dylan Arms and his band. One of their members is a "kid" I once had in kid's ministry during my early years of ministry named Coleman. A kid who grew up fast. That little, quiet first grader quickly grew into a seasoned lead guitar player, who now leads me in my spiritual walk.

Overnight camps like CentriKid are not just an opportunity for kids to get away. It's a ministry that makes a huge impact. It's a ministry that changes perspectives. It's a ministry that God uses to change hearts. How?

1. Overnight Christian kids camps give kids the unique opportunity of being able to live in a kid's world for a week. In a world bombarded with adult life, kid's camps are a time for kids to sing and laugh and play and get messy. Adults even join in the fun.
2. Overnight Christian kid's camps provide memorable experiences. As we talked about camp, Coleman didn't remember every small group activity or every craft we made in kids ministry but he did remember his Track Time Leader. He did remember his Bible Study at camp. He did remember the worship band. He did remember how he trusted God for the first time. Why? Because camp matters. Camp is a spiritual marker.
3. Overnight Christian kid's camps focus on what's most important - Jesus. Games matter. Communication matters. Srageating matters. Why? Because a kids Camp that focuses on Jesus, focuses on Him at all times.

When your child looks back on his life, he probably won't remember every detail of last week's Sunday School lesson or even last month's memory verse—but he will remember the impact of a week of camp.

That week when he was "on his own." And it was all ok.
That week when God made sense for the first time. And it was all ok. That week when life was fun and made up of dancing and laughing and screaming out loud. And it was all ok.
That week at camp that summer. That week that Coleman and I talked about last week. That week that your child will talk about in 15 years. That week that your child will look back on when he needs remember what it was like... When it was all ok.

DAVID PEARSON is from Greenville SC. David served as Children's
Pastor for l3 ve;irc and as Family & Operations Pastor at Springwell
Church in Taylors, SC for the last four years.

Connection News for Jan 2018

new beginnings

I recently saw this quote, "No one can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending" (Unknown). I really began to think about that statement. The conclusion was that we don't start over; but we begin again right where we are, making things better in our lives.

As a believer in Christ, it is not about saying I will do this and I won't do that and then dropping the idea or falling short. It is more about asking the Lord to help us each day, to fall deeper and deeper in love with Him. This way our focus will be set on the things of heaven and not on all this earthly stuff.

If I were to make a New Year resolution, it would be to have a deeper commitment, a deeper love, and a deeper worship for the Lord. In the beginning of this past year, He spoke to me in that still small voice in prayer and said, "I am more than enough. I am more than enough in every area of your life." He also said to tell others the same thing.

This year I am determined to make Him my all and all. He wants our undivided attention in spite of the distractions and temptations that lie waiting around the corner. He has to be our main focus.

Do you want a new ending this year? How do you want the ending of your life? If you're not a Christian, please know that this could be the best New Year of your life. Your life can be filled with hope and peace. To know what the ending will be is an extra bonus. Why should every year be the same as the one before with nothing really changing? After all, the New Year resolutions may or may not get accomplished.

If you are a Christian and you feel stagnate in your relationship with the Lord, then now is the time to rekindle the love affair with Him. He calls us to Himself and says, "Come away my beloved." Can you hear Him? He is tugging at your heart. The real ending in our life will be when Jesus says well done my good and faithful servant. That statement will be for someone who took the time to get to know Him, love Him, and that obediently followed Him.

“My Daily Devotions” Cathy Irvin

Connection News for Dec 2017

parenting class

Coming February, 2018


Seven week bible study topics include:

The 10 Best Gifts You'll Ever Give Your Kids

How to Listen so Kids Will Talk & How to Talk So Kids Will Listen

Discipline Isn't Spelled P-U-N-I-S-H-M-E-N-T

10 Ways to Improve Your Child's Self-Confidence

Caution: Anger Ahead

Birth Order-and What You Need to Know About It

Standing Up to the New Goliath



"What is the true meaning of Christmas?"

Answer: The true meaning of Christmas is love. John 3:16-17 says, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." The true meaning of Christmas is the celebration of this incredible act of love.

The real Christmas story is the story of God's becoming a human being in the Person of Jesus Christ. Why did God do such a thing? Because He loves us! Why was Christmas necessary? Because we needed a Savior! Why does God love us so much? Because He is love itself (1 John 4:8). Why do we celebrate Christmas each year? Out of gratitude for what God did for us, we remember His birth by giving each other gifts, worshipping Him, and being especially conscious of the poor and less fortunate.

The true meaning of Christmas is love. God loved His own and provided a way—the only Way—for us to spend eternity with Him. He gave His only Son to take our punishment for our sins. He paid the price in full, and we are free from condemnation when we accept that free gift of love. "But God demonstrated His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8).


Connection News for Nov 2017

Dear Church Family,

             I would like to take the opportunity to tell each of you how much I appreciate your support and encouragement since coming to Jesup. Your monetary gift was greatly appreciated. Wanda and I are thankful for the blessings that are shared by your love each day. May God grant each of us another day to share His love with one another and with those who need the love of Christ in their lives.

 God’s Servants,

 Earl & Wanda Barron

parenting class

Coming January 2018


 Seven-week Bible study topics include:

 The 10 Best Gifts You'll Ever Give Your Kids

 How to Listen so Kids Will Talk & How to Talk So Kids Will Listen

 Discipline Isn't Spelled P-U-N-I-S-H-M-E-N-T

 10 Ways to Improve Your Child's Self-Confidence

 Caution: Anger Ahead

 Birth Order-and What You Need to Know About It

 Standing Up to the New Goliath

Living by Faith

I have learned in my life that things do not always go the way we expect them to. Our plans we have for this journey wind up have more twists and turns than we planned. We get discouraged and depressed. We tell ourselves we are a failure. Satan begins to enjoy our little pity party. At that point of the party I remember the words I have heard over and over, “It’s time to be a big boy and pull yourself up by your bootstraps.”

Let’s stop for a moment and think of the people in the Bible who faced the death of their dreams and how God’s plan for them worked out for the best.

“Abraham dreamed of being the father of a great nation, but he was still childless in old age. Joseph dreamed of grandeur in Genesis 37, but he landed in prison. Moses dreamed of liberating his people, but he was thrown out of Egypt as a murderer. David dreamed of leading the armies of Israel, but he became their prey. Thomas dreamed of proclaiming the Messiah, but his Jesus was crucified. Paul dreamed of going to Spain, but was a prisoner of Rome.

Yet in each case the setbacks became stepping stones; for in God’s will there is no failure, and out of His will there is no success. Our dreams sometimes die so they can be reborn in the image of God’s will.

Faith is trusting God’s promises when they are most needed, and going forward without a loss of enthusiasm. God provides the opportunity of having big dreams, but we must work according to His timing and will to achieve them.

Along the way, if your dream dies, don’t let your spirit falter. Keep you eyes focused on Jesus, count it all joy, and wait for Him to give the victory.”

“Failure isn’t so bad if it doesn’t attack the heart. Success is all right if it doesn’t go to the head.”

Grantland Rice

*Exerts from Turning Point Magazine

Connection News for Sept 2017

backtochurch front

It's exciting to feel like you belong. That feeling of arrival—like sitting down to a homemade meal with you closest friends—brings a sense of inclusion like nothing else can. Everyone, no matter where they are in life, needs

 to know they belong, because something inside each of us longs to be pursued, to be valued.

The word “Church” means different things to different people. For some, it awakens warm feelings of childhood potlucks and singing. For others, it might trigger a more sour feeling, a subtle tensing of the shoulders. People’s reactions to the Church are as varied as their individual histories.

But what is God’s intention for the Church? When God initiated the Church, He had in mind a heartfelt connection of diverse people. He said that the greatest love we could show was to lay down our lives for our friends. There’s no greater belonging than the one God intended in the Church.

The Church is a community of people committed to doing life together and knowing God. Through thick and thin, these are the friends who stay by your side. God wants each of us to find a place of belonging in His family. Come find you place of service in the kingdom.

The Church is not a building. It’s a community of people brought together to experience God’s love and purpose.