Newsletter October 17, 2014

Pastor's Corner

Dear Friends,

I apologize for my late "report" on our last "Read a Book With the Pastor." As you may recall, that book was the classic by John Bunyan, Pilgrim’s Progress. Even at this juncture, if you have never read it, please do. It truly is a classic and one that will inspire you on the journey of faith.

What makes Pilgrim's Progress so important? This is a great question. While we should never seek to replace the prominence and importance of daily Scripture reading, I certainly do believe there are books, written by men, that the Lord uses to point us to the Word of Life. Pilgrim’s Progress is such a work. Rather than replace the importance of Scripture or turn people away from the Scripture, Bunyan points the reader towards the Scripture showing us that Christian's walk is our walk.  His journey is our journey.  His battles and victories are our battles and victories. 

Another reason that Pilgrim's Progress is so alluring is because it is fantasy. Bunyan puts color, life and imagery on the journey that all Christians must take in this world. His wonderful descriptions and character names help to put a face on what we encounter in the Christian life. I knew this book would be important in my family when my children began to beg me each night to read the book to them. It is not a silly book. It is not a necessarily a children's book. It is a Bible book because it talks about the Bible and it makes it exciting to read!

Why read Pilgrim's Progress? Let me offer a few reasons:

  1. It will help you see your Christian life as a journey. That is one of the big takeaways from reading the Bible - it is a journey from beginning to end. Bunyan does an excellent job of taking us along on Christian's journey. 
  2. It will make you want to read your Bible and see it as the adventure that it actually is. Pilgrim's Progress is not fluff. It does not present the Christian life is happy, happy, happy all the time. Christian's journey is a difficult one, a challenging one. So too is our Christian life. Jesus does not wax eloquent when He states, "If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also.” (John 15:20) 
  3. It will grow your imagination. Too often we read the Bible and become bored with it's message because we fail to use our God-given imagination to dream and fantasize about the great stories of the Bible. Bunyan no less tricks us into seeing that as we read Christian's adventure story.  It is not a mistake that we recognize many of the situations and locations in which Christian finds himself.  They are, in fact, right out of the Bible. The Bible is meant to be read and studied because it is the Word of God, but it is also a story, with a hero, with action, with real-live people and in real-live places.
  4. It will make you long for home. The ultimate destination for Christian is the Celestial City. Our ultimate destination is the Celestial City - the New Heavens and the New Earth. Our ultimate longing is to be with our Lord, our Savior, our King, our friend, Jesus. Bunyan helps to take us there.

As a side note, Bunyan wrote Pilgrim's Progress from jail because he was being persecuted. He refused to turn over his sermons to the government and preach only a message they approved. Coincidently, I will be preaching on the 8th Beatitude this Sunday on persecution.  Thank God for His grace and providence because due to his persecution, Bunyan was able to produce this marvelous work. 

Be on the lookout next week as I will introduce our next book to read with the pastor.

by His grace and to His praise, 

Prayer Concerns

Children's Ministry Coordinator  - Continue to pray that God would raise up someone to fill our Children's Coordinator position.

Pray for healing - Aubrey and Ann Lammons and Shelly Caramanian.

Serving Overseas:

    John Hinshaw (Afghanistan)
    Noah Evans (Afghanistan)
    Chris Hahnemann (Kosovo)

Please pray for persecuted Christians in Iraq and Syria.

Pray for our expectant mothers - Esther Cook, Erin Harris, Suzie Harrison and Katie Park.

Pray for sister PCA church: Redeemer Presbyterian Church - Florence, AL

Pray for Local Ministry:  NE Alabama Fellowship of Chrisitan Athletes

Pray for CPC Ministry: Nursery - Pray for Dee Petcher, coordinator, the nursery workers and volunteers as they care for our children.
Send your prayer requests to Cynthia Keen at or call the church office.


Men’s 5-week small group study:  The men of the church are invited to attend a 5-week study as a follow up to the men’s dinner and Pastor Shirleys' talk: “The 5 Priorities of the Christian Life."  The study will start on Friday, October 24th at 6:30am at Little Rosies and will conclude by 7:35am.   The group will meet at the same time and place the following 4 weeks.  Questions:  Contact Bob Boerner at  

New Members Class - Sunday, November 2nd and 9th @ 9:45. Please visit: to sign up!

YBL Fall Luncheon - Wednesday, November 12th @ 11:30 at The Jackson Center (6001 Moquin Drive, NW, Huntsville, AL  35806).  Speaker is Bill Yeargin, President and CEO of Correct Craft, Inc.  Registration required by Friday, Nov. 7th, by calling YBL office at 256-882-6003 or email  Tickets are $25/each.

Thanksgiving Celebration - We will celebrate Thanksgiving together as a church family on Sunday, November 23rd at Monte Sano Lodge.  Please save the date and watch for details to come.

Welcome Mike King - We are thankful for the Lord’s provision by sending Mike to serve as our Student Ministry Coordinator.  Parents and students contact him at

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