December Manna Highlights
McDonald Road Seventh-day Adventist Church Vol. 13 No. 12           December, 2000


Annual Christmas

Tree Lighting at S.A.U.

Begin your Christmas Season with the Southern Adventist University Annual Christmas Tree Lighting on December 5 at 6 p.m., in front of Brock and Wood Hall. We will be entertained by various Southern Adventist University musical groups, performing Christmas carols to ring in the season. Come join in the Christmas spirit.

New Tuition Assistance Fund

Benefits Local Mission

by Mary Anne Turner

"In the highest sense, the work of education and the work of redemption are one." Education, p. 30. This quotation tells us how very important Christian education is for our young people. McDonald Road is blessed with a large number of children and we feel that they should all have the privilege of a Christian education. The church has a Worthy Student Fund set up to help with the tuition for students who meet the fund's criteria. For elementary students the maximum aid is 40% and for academy students it is 25% (because academy students are able to earn part of their tuition).

The church pays so that our students can pay the lower constituent rate per month for elementary or for for academy. If the bill is paid by the 15th of the month, a discount is given for students in the family. This discount is only given if the entire bill is paid by the 15th of the month. Collegedale Academy students average 8 hours of work a week with which they can only pay approximately 1/3 of their bill.

When we were in academy in the 60's our tuition was $36 per month.

We received 75¢ to $1 an hour and we could work 20 hours a week. We were able to pay our tuition and have money for clothes and other needs. With inflation there is no hope of a student earning their whole tuition. Tuition has risen 12 times but wages have only risen 4 times, and because of a longer school day than what we had, today's student can't work as many hours. Most elementary students aren't able to work at all.

If you have two children in academy (as some families do) the tuition is an impressive amount.

So, what is the solution for this problem? At a recent board meeting, McDonald Road opened up an auxiliary fund to make it possible for members to donate money to help with the tuition of students over and above the amount they receive from the Worthy Student Fund and at the same time receive a tax deductible receipt. (Parents and Guardians are not able to take advantage of this, they have to pay direct to the school). Forms are available from the church secretary's office.

"Who are these children committed to our care?They are the younger members of the Lord's family. He says, Take these children and train them . . . so that they will be polished after the similitude of a palace, prepared to shine in the courts of My house. What an important work!" Sons and Daughters of God, p.371.

Won't you help in our local "mission field"?


Pastor Kent Crutcher
Pastor's Challenge

by Kent Crutcher

Christmas Again?

Yes, it is time for Christmas again. According to some of our local retailers, it was time for Christmas back in August! This seems to be the most stressful time of year for everyone. Children (and some adults) are stressed out over wondering if they will receive the latest and the greatest gadget on the market (which will be an antiquated piece of junk by this time next year). Parents are stressed out because they have no financial peace and their credit card company does. Others are under stress because they don't know whether to visit the inlaws or the outlaws on Christmas day. Can we afford the trip? Who will be there? Will the car make it? How much should we spend on gifts? What if someone comes unexpectedly and we don't have a present for them but they have one for us? Can't we just stay home? Still others are under stress because they have no family to go to or to stay away from.

Even the church seems to be under stress. You should see how hard Sabbath School leaders have been working to change the scenery in the children's divisions to depict Bethlehem! You should see the work of the Social Committee as they plan a Christmas party for the church! You should hear the phone calls of the Music Committee as they arrange for us to have a Christmas program! So many others are doing so much to make this a great time of year! All the stress of doing all these things is just piled on top of what was already there. No wonder the pastors and others spend so much time visiting in the hospitals this time of year. Stress can cause all manner of illness.

So what can we do? The angel that announced the first Christmas had some good advice for the shepherds. The angel could see that the shepherds were really under stress because of his appearance so he gave this council; "Then the angel said to them, `Do not be stressed out, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people.' " Luke 2:10 JKV (James Kent Version).

The advice of the angel fits today. We may not be able to stop some of what we are doing, but if we can change our mind set by remembering the reason behind it all. Just think of the stress facing the Son of God as He left heaven to visit His sorry relatives! But the gift that He brought will never go out of style! Remember this and have great joy this Christmas!


Helping a Lady in Need

By Pastor Don Gettys

Many of our members have been either sick or hurting lately. As I drove from one hospital to another, I thought about what to say to the next person that might cheer them up.

Entering the room I was greeted by a warm smile from one of our senior saints. She was so glad I came. As we sat and talked she said something that made me think. She expressed appreciation to our church leadership because now she could drive in and out of our church driveway so much easier. She told how cars used to be parked up and down our entry drive making it so narrow for her to get through. Sometimes cars were parked all the way to McDonald Road. She said now that we have the new parking area, the driveway is easier and safer for her to navigate.

Imagine a person in pain and stress wanting to express thanks for what the church did for her. It must have been important.! The church went out in faith to provide a safer place for her. The church borrowed funds it did not have to buy the land for this project.

Be a Samaritan Center Booster with your Bi-Lo Bonus Card.

Follow these easy steps:
1. Call 1-877-4-BOOSTERS or go to www.bi-lo.com
2. Enter your bonus card number.
3. Enter your last name.
4. Enter the Samaritan Center's booster number: 4608 or Call the Samaritan Center at 238-7777, ext. 21 and ask to be registered.
Then the church borrowed money it did not have to bring in earth moving machinery which spent nearly a full week to make the new parking area smooth and the grade less steep. Then the church debated about whether or not to put on temporary gravel or to go ahead and pave it right away. It was felt that paving would be more attractive to drivers searching for a parking spot and do more to eliminate unwanted parking in our driveway. It would also prevent gravel washing down on our driveway and gravel washing down onto the grassy land between the new parking lot and McDonald Road. This has proved to be a wise decision. The church did it for her and for all of us.

The project is far from being paid for. Many are beginning to set aside regular donations to help pay for this endeavor. Some are considering giving a larger one time gift before the year runs out. It is our hope that all will shoulder this load and we can quickly pay it off. A goal devise will soon be displayed showing the progress we are making toward our objective. We urge you to be involved. We thank those who are already giving liberally. I also know of a senior saint who is grateful.


Internet Ministry News

Did you know that every single person in this world counts, when God is involved? It doesn't matter where you are, God will make a way to find you, and you are very important to Him! That is wonderful news! One of our staff pointed out to me that a lot of military people use McDonald Road web pages while they are scattered around the world. God's server receives well over 1,000 hits each week from US military personnel stationed in out of the way places. About 4 % of the people who look at our web pages are in the US military. In fact, there were more people in the US military looking at our pages last week that there were from Canada or Australia! God loves us, and our vote counts for him. I am thankful that we here at McDonald Road Church are able to provide a service that helps many thousands of people, including those in the military.

Here is part of a letter that we received this month from a serviceman in Germany: "Hi There, Jose told us that you had included our SDA Servicemen's Center in the SDA Churches around the world... English Speaking. Thank you so much! We don't have a church, other than the military chapels we attend, but we do have Friday and Saturday night meetings at the Servicemen's Center and a place to eat and sleep."

We are averaging over 6,000 hits every day from McDonald Road Website. The top three popular items are the Churches Directory, the Sermons, and the Bible Studies we offer online. Then, in addition to that, we have an extremely active email Bible Study program. Please continue to pray for this giant undertaking.

If you would like to learn more, write to: volunteer@mcdonaldroad.org

An online survey is also available at: http://mcdonaldroad.org/members/

God will bless as we work for Him!

Dean Saunders,

Internet Ministry coordinator


A Prayer and a Song

I


Keep a Prayer on your lips,

And a Song in your Heart,

And the Cares of the Day

Will take Wings and Depart.

II

Your Day will be brighter,

And gone your Despair

With a Song in your Heart,

And a Soul-burdened Prayer.

III

If you follow this Precept,

You'll find to your Joy,

Your Troubles will vanish,

And no longer annoy.

IV

No Problem or Worry

Has ever endured

APrayer or a Song,

Of that be assured.

V

Now if you are doubtful,

Just try it and see

For you'll be enraptured,

Unburdened and Free.

VI

I have proved it myself,

You cannot go wrong

If you'll keep in your Heart

A PRAYER and a SONG!

Adrian V. Boyer

Positive Lifestyle

Our Source of Health and Strength

Why aren't more people interested in living the good life that God has for us? The answer lies in our trust in eternal power. We lack power from above to follow through. God has given us much information in the Bible and Spirit of Prophecy books (Diets and Foods, Ministry of Healing, Temperance, Counsels of Health and more) for us to follow to have the "abundant life" He has promised. God will bless when His words are followed. Trusting in God and believing in His willingness to come to our aid when we follow His plan is the bottom line for sound health.

"What you need to understand is the true force of the will. This is the governing power in the nature of man, the power of decision of choice. Everything depends on the right action of the will." Steps to Christ p. 47. We have good intentions, but lack the power of will to carry them through. This is a problem Paul had in Romans 7: 15, 16 & 25. Trust in God is the answer.

Are we planning to go to heaven? What about our diets? In heaven there won't be any animals killed for dinner. We will be eating simple, but a very tasty diet from the original source. Many of the foods we eat now won't be found in heaven. Don't you think it's a good idea to start to have the tasty diet God plans for you here on earth.

God has designed our bodies and made the laws to govern it. He knows what we need. He made small packages of perfect vitamins, minerals and protein for us, but if we are going to fill our bodies with meats, sweets and overcooked foods, how can we expect to be healthy?

We need God for everything! He helps us to follow His health and moral laws for the "good life." "It is truly a sin to violate the laws of our being as it is to break the ten commandments. To do either is to break God's laws. Those who transgress the law of God in their physical organism will be inclined to violate the law of God spoken from Sinai." Diets and Foods, p. 17.

Making time for God is the most important health rule. We need to make an appointment with God each day. Block off a big amount of time daily. If we don't, chances are we won't have much time for Him. Coming close to God will make everything in life fall into place, even our diet.

You'll receive courage, encouragement and admonition by reading a portion of the Bible each day, listening to Him and talking to Him. Take time for morning and evening prayer. Our goal is to be with God, dedicated to Him, Christ centered and to receive His grace and blessings. The business of the day is talking with Him all day long. Do we spend more time with friends, T.V., computers, etc... than with Jesus? Family worship is just as important.

There is a temptation to slip by your appointment with God. If you do miss it, just keep you next appointment with Him. You do need Him now and in the days ahead.

Your time is limited. Look at your daily schedule. What can you eliminate in order to make time for God. The benefits are a closer walk with God, piece of mind and better health.

Yes, we do need Jesus! He is the firm foundation upon which we build our character. As long as we are "willing to be made willing," God will work in us. Philippians 2: 12, 13. He will help us to regain our health. We can trust Him. We can strive for something better - Today, tomorrow, forever!

By Charlene Anderson

--Health & Temperance Leader


Teen Scene

Prince of Peace Is Born to a Common, Teenage Jewess

And This Isn't a Tabloid Story Either!

By Melissa Turner

"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace," (Isaiah 9:6).

Mary walked home with the summer sun's blazing rays lighting on her shoulders. [I can't believe an angel talked to me last night! Am I going crazy or what? What am I going to tell Mom and Dad? They'll just say that I was messing around with Joe. Joe and I haven't done anything, though! We promised each other that we would wait until marriage. Why is this happening? And to me of all people?]

Mary now came face to face with the door, knowing that Mom was on the other side waiting to see her beloved daughter and hear all about Mary's day. What would Mary tell her mother? Should she tell her that she threw up three times earlier that day and the school nurse gave her a pregnancy test that came back positive?

Mary turned the knob slowly trying to waste as much time as possible. As she opened the door, she not only saw Mom, but she saw Dad, Joe, and Joe's parents as well. [Oh no! The school nurse called home with the results and now everyone wants an answer! What am I going to say?] Mary entered the living room with a halfsmile and downcast eyes. She knew that they wouldn't

believe her. They would think that she was crazy. Maybe they would even send her to a psychological hospital.

"Mary," Dad said, "Mrs. Grant, the school nurse, called this afternoon. She said that you've been pretty sick today. She said that there was something that you needed to tell us. Well, what is it?" Silence entered the room as quickly as Mary wanted to escape it. What could she say to them? How could she say it?

She said a silent prayer: [Father God, you have placed this child within me. Please speak through me to my family, since I have no idea what to tell them or how to say it. Please help me!]

Suddenly Mary felt a strength overwhelming her and giving her power to speak firmly with great passion for what God had placed within her. She took a deep breath and began, "Everyone, I know that what I'm about to tell you is impossible to even consider. But, please hear me out. Last night I was visited by an angel of God. He told me that I would give birth to a child and that His name would be Jesus. The child that I am to give birth to is the Messiah that we have been waiting for! I am to be the virgin mother of Jesus Christ."

"You're what?!" the others cried out in disbelief.

Have you ever thought about what it must have been like for Christ to have been born to a human being?

Have you ever thought about what it must have been like for a human being to give birth to Christ?

This year, consider the tremendous amount of love that seasons the true meaning of the Christmas holiday.



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