I don’t usually do this

Published 3:04 pm Wednesday, March 23, 2022

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I try to avoid politics or any sort of controversial topics in the column, however, what I am wanting to discuss I don’t consider politics. In fact, it is almost a matter of the heart. I have been reading about Russia’s war with Ukraine and I can’t help but be angered by the acts of Putin. When I read that maternity hospitals have been destroyed and watching as women and children scramble for their very lives, this is not the way people are meant to live, in fear of a tyrant. Putin has placed himself on the wrong side of history now. He will now and forever be considered no better than Adolf Hitler or Mussolini. He is now a tyrant trying to grab land that is not his and in doing so he is the modern day villain. However, the president of Ukraine — Volodymyr Oleksandrovych Zelenskyy — will forever be the hero of the story no matter the outcome.
When I read about the destruction and the loss of lives of the innocent bystanders I was overwhelmed with emotion, something uncommon for me, and that’s when I wanted to help in some small way. I searched for charities online to try and see if I could find one that is solely for the people of the Ukraine and I did. This week’s column is not trying to get you to give money, so I will not say as to which charity I supported. But I will say dig in your heart and feel for those poor people that have or are about to lose everything they have ever owned because of some maniac wanting to make a land grab and give what you can. Trust me, any amount will help.
My Church
By Lorie Anne McReynolds
What do you love about your church? Is it the people? Is it the activities? Is it the message God lays on your pastor’s heart? Is it the music? Did you say all the above? Me too. Providence Community Church in Abingdon, Va., is my church. It is small but we have big praying hearts. My husband, at the time, and I started going there in 2015. From the first moment we walked through the door, it felt like home. We were welcomed with open arms. I could see the love they had for Jesus and for us. I didn’t want the pastor’s sermon to be over with because he was so engaging and easy to understand. I have learned so much there and have grown so much under his teaching. We helped with many ministries. We taught Vacation Bible School. Helped with the bread ministry. Taught children’s church. Made cobblers for church functions. We were even in a few Christmas and Easter plays. Our pastor preaches the Word. He doesn’t sugar coat anything. He teaches the truth. After I leave each church service, I am changed a little bit. And it is always for the better. My church just has such a sweet spirit there.
I have often said that I don’t know how people get through the tough times without a church family. When my husband wanted a divorce, my world shattered around me. I could barely make it through the next moment. I sought the counsel of my pastor and his wife. Many of the ladies of the church walked through that horrible valley with me. They encouraged me, supported me, and lifted me up. My church family was just as broken as I was because they loved my husband too. Most of all, they helped me focus on God instead of my heartbreak. “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind stays on you, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28. Through God’s healing and the love from my church family, I was able to find peace and joy again.
After my divorce, I started dating again. Dating at 50 was so much different than dating at 20. And those same ladies walked this new journey with me. Their advice was and is invaluable. Fortunately, God allowed me to meet a wonderful guy who has stolen my heart. He and his son love coming to my church. And once again, my church family opened their arms and their hearts and welcomed these sweet guys. I am extremely blessed that God led me to that little church. They are truly my family. I couldn’t imagine walking through this life without them. If you are looking for a church to visit, please come see us. We will welcome you with open arms.

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