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Vol. XXXVIII • No.

19 • September 26, 2008

“Among Friends”
Some years ago I took a week-long preaching class
in Berkeley, California, taught by Tom Long who is now
at Emory’s Candler School of Theology. Excellent class.
Tom is an outrageously gifted preacher and teacher. It
was a wonderful learning experience for me.
One of the requirements for the week was that each of us preach a
sermon to the others in the class. Of course everyone is always a little
nervous about this kind of thing, but one woman—a young seminary
student named Lyddie—was particularly terrified. We encouraged her
all through the week, assuring her of our support and prayers. But on the
final day when it came her turn to preach, Lyddie was all but paralyzed
with fear. At the moment when Tom Long called her name, she emitted
a small gasp that I could hear from across the room. She slowly stood
with a look of dread on her face, steadied herself on her feet, then
walked to the front of the room and took her place behind the small
About midway through the sermon Lyddie began to tell a story about
a Sunday School teacher from her childhood, and of the difference the
elderly saint had made in her young life. As she talked of how this
teacher's witness had led to her conversion, Lyddie became so moved by
that special memory that she began to weep. Then she began to sob. She
stood there, rooted to the floor, unable to continue.
The rest of us were desperately trying to figure out how to help
Lyddie but we didn't know quite what to do. Until one of our
classmates—an older, African American woman named Rose—stood
up, crossed the floor and quietly pulled up a chair directly behind the
pulpit. Without saying a word, Rose placed her hand solidly against
Lyddie's back, lowered her head, closed her eyes and began to pray
silently for the weeping young woman.
The effect was immediately visible. Lyddie took a deep breath,
closed her eyes for a moment, and then leaned into the rest of that
sermon with a confidence and strength that surprised everybody in the
class. Rose eventually removed her hand from Lyddie's back and
remained quietly seated there with her head bowed until the sermon was
finished. Then she stood up and without a word, returned to her seat.
Often since that day I have thought about Lyddie and Rose and of
the very real power of Christ that flows like an electric current through
the Church. I have had, in moments of anguish or doubt or grief, the
experience of feeling the strengthening presence of a sister or brother
coming to stand beside me. The smallest encouraging word or gesture
has, at times, felt like a hand against my back, re-charging my anxious
heart with the very courage and power of Christ. I want to be more a
conveyer of grace like that. May God help us to be that for each other.


Family Night Supper—5:15-6:30 Music on Wednesday Nights
Handbell Ensemble—6:30-7:25
(Sanctuary Balcony)
Avé-Adult Vocal Ensemble—6:45-7:25
(Music Suite, S226)
Wednesdays at 6:30 PM Sanctuary Choir—7:30-8:45 (Music Suite, S226)
2nd Floor Education Building (Rms. E212-E220) Fresh Start Band—7:45-9:00 (Fellowship Hall)
Congregational Life Prayer Concerns as of
Senior Adult Luncheon—October 2 September 24, 2008
All senior adults are invited to share lunch and conversation with the pastoral staff on Thursday,
In the Hospital:
October 2, in Carreker Hall. Our senior adults are vitally important to the life of this
▪Lib Ferguson, DeKalb Medical.
congregation and we want to hear your perspectives about where you see God at work in our
▪Kathy Seim, Northside
church! Lunch will be served starting at noon.
▪Addie Veatch, Henry Medical
Sympathy To:
It’s Apple Time!
▪The family of David Coker.
Our Senior Adult/Young At Heart/and Friends apple trip will be Oct. 16th. Lunch will be at the
▪The family of Martha Kiser.
Smith House in Dahlonega followed by a scenic ride over to Merciers Apple orchards in Blue
▪The family of Walter Wilson.
Ridge. We will leave at 9:00 a.m. and return by 6:00 p.m. Total cost for the meal and transportation
Congratulations To:
will be $37. Deadline to sign up Monday Oct. 13th!!! Anyone is welcome to join us. Questions?
▪ Katherine and Todd Boyce on the
Call Bob @ 404-373-1653 or send an email to
birth of Elizabeth on Aug. 27!
▪Laurie (Sparks) and Matt Junko on
HymnSing Coming in October
the birth of Celia on Sept. 21!
Plan now to attend the HymnSing Celebration on Sunday evening, Oct.
26 beginning at 6:15PM. It will be a time of singing the old familiar
hymns from years past. We will meet in the Fellowship Hall. More Tithes & Offerings
details coming soon!
A Generous People
Women’s Ministry Fall Luncheon—November 1 2008 Ministry Action Plan
Save the date! On Saturday, November 1, 2008, the New FBC Women's Weekly Need: .....................$ 27,361
Ministry is hosting its first big event. Join us for a luncheon with Received on Sep. 14 ...........$ 28,964
well-known Christian author, Ginger Garrett, in Carreker Hall from Noon Received on Sep. 21 ...........$ 11,340
till 2:00p. Tickets ($5) go on sale Sunday, October 5. Free child care and transportation available Y-T-D Need:..................$ 1,039,730
upon request. Y-T-D Received: ..............$ 871,851
Surplus/(shortfall):............ (167,879)
Receive The Outlook by Email
Would you like to receive The Outlook (FBC’s bi-weekly newsletter) the very day it’s published “Years of Opportunity 2007-09”
and in color? Tired of waiting for your black & white paper copy to arrive by bulk mail? Want to Campaign
help our church save on postage? Sign up today and you’ll receive the next Outlook by email! Given to Date:...................$ 324,904
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Missions Offering YTD ....$ 15,079

Wednesday Night Bible Study Series
October 1 Spirituality and Money (2 Corinthians 8 and 9)
October 8 Why praise? Does God have low self-esteem? Wednesday Dinner Menus
October 15 Radical Forgiveness
October 22 Praying Politically (not nationalistically) October 1
October 29 Fall Festival Pick one of the following menus:
November 5 What’s with this “Ask and you will receive” and Traditional Menu
“Your Father knows before you ask”? Ranch Crispy Chicken, Steamed
November 12 “In all things give thanks.” (Who is God kidding?) New Potatoes, Steamed Carrots,
November 19 Walking with God (through a prayer labyrinth). Salad Bar, Yeast Rolls, Chocolate
Go…Be…Do! Missions Corner “Lighter Side” Menu
Cream of Mushroom Soup, Baked
DEAM needs peanut butter, jelly, and cereal. Please bring your contributions before Potato/Salad Bar, Grilled Pork
the end of September. Many thanks to Mai and Fred Cavalli for the wonderful Chop, “The Works” Pizza
rolling collection bins that we will be using from now on.
Lunch Sacks for the Homeless October 8
Many thanks to the Verdery Class and the Fellowship Class, who have provided a new supply of Pick one of the following menus:
sack lunches for the homeless who come to the church office hungry. We will need to replenish Traditional Menu
this ministry in a few weeks. Would your Sunday School class like to help out? Ann Smith can Beef Tips in Mushroom Gravy,
supply information about what goes into these sacks. White Rice, Green Beans, Salad
Your Fall Missions Offering Bar, Yeast Rolls, Coconut Cake
The Missions Team has a list of priority projects we would like to support this year. Among other “Lighter Side” Menu
things we need scholarships for some Thai students related to the ministries we assist with our Tomato Soup, Baked Potato/Salad
mission trips. To give to this and other Missions Teams goals, write “FBC Missions” in the memo Bar, Grilled Chicken Strips, Cheese
line of your check to missions this month. Pizza
Youth Sp•t Kid’s Zone
We have officially entered the season of fall! For many people Wow, Fall is here, and Children’s Ministry has some exciting
this means new television shows, football, homework, and the activities in the works!
beautiful colors. One of the many things this means for the youth
ministry is looking forward to next summer. This means collecting Fall Festival is October 29 from 5:30-8:00 PM, on the front lawn
for the next yard sale and thinking of ways to make it the best ever of FBC Decatur. Invite your friends and wear your costume.
so that we can have another great summer of ministry. I am Ponies and the Varsity will be here.
thankful that God has blessed us with such a great yard sale
tradition and also a great tradition of ministry for youth in All children, 3rd – 5th grade, are invited to a fall retreat in
Decatur. Last year our yard sale was staffed by over 200 people Chattanooga TN, November 21-23. The cost is $65.00 per child.
who picked up, sorted priced, setup, sold, and cleaned up. This We will leave FBC Decatur at 4:00 PM on Friday afternoon and
work allowed over 75 teenagers to participate in a variety of big travel to Dogwood Lodge where we will join FBC Chattanooga’s
and little activities that helped shape children. We will work through a study “What Does Prayer Have
them into more intentional followers to Do with Me?” in the midst of hay rides, campfire, games,
of Christ. Once the yard sale ends on hiking, and a host of fun activities. On Sunday morning, we will
Saturday afternoon the cleanup attend Connections Worship (9:00 AM) at FBC Chattanooga with
begins. This year over five our new friends from camp, and then return to FBC Decatur.
not-for-profit organizations and more Please contact Pastor Debbie to reserve your spot.
than 5 needy families came and sorted
through what we had left. They all Some December Dates….
found something that they felt like Yard Sale Prep 2008 December 5th is our annual Christmas Parents Night Out, FBC
they could use. All of our electronics Decatur’s gift to the community. This PNO has proven to be a
were donated to an organization that recycles them to help great outreach opportunity so mark your calendar and plan to
handicapped adults train for and find jobs. All of our clothing was volunteer.
and most of our household items were given to Goodwill. Our
leftover books were sorted through by three agencies, and all of our December 20th is Children’s Christmas Craft Day. This is a day of
leftover metal items were recycled. Once all of this took place we fun for children and a day for parents to take care of some of the
loaded all that was left up and took it to the dump --- and then busyness surrounding the season.
collection cycle begins again. We are now in full swing and hope
that you will allow us to have the things in your life that you no Upcoming Extended Session Volunteers:
longer need, and that you will encourage others to give us those
things also. This will allow us to head off on mission weeks and Sept. 28 Oct. 5 Oct. 12 Oct. 19
retreats over the next year. If you have questions or would like to Anand Hinkle Castleberry Stanford
schedule a pickup please contact Kurt. ~ Fisher Carter Clay Hayes
404-373-1653 Parker Salcedo Warshauer Fewell
Madden Hamrick Jones Duke

The Outlook, a publication of the First Baptist Church of Decatur,

Georgia, is mailed to members and friends of the First Baptist family.

Main Office......................................404-373-1653
First School ......................................404-370-7688
Activities ..........................................404-373-2442
FAX ..................................................404-370-7692
Debbie Britt .....................................404-373-1653
Sharyn Dowd....................................404-373-1653
Ryan Forbes.....................................404-370-7690
Julie Pennington-Russell.................404-370-7684
Kurt Varney......................................404-373-1653
Bob Williamson ...............................404-370-7687
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