Disciples Men’s Retreat
Men Serving: Church, Congregation, God

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Fifty five Disciples gathered at Christmount Christian Assembly on March 14, 15 and 16 for a weekend of fellowship, study and worship at the Georgia Men’s 2003 Retreat. The Kirk of the Corners was recognized for having eight present, the largest group from any congregation! The weather started a bit on the cloudy side but the spirit was present on Friday night. After a bar-b-que dinner, the men gathered to sing hymns under the leadership of Joe Kern with Greg Holmes on the piano.

S.E District representative Archie Jenkins brought our devotion before Dr. Charles (Charlie) Gaines brought the first of our programs. Charlie used 2 Timothy 1:1-14 to challenge us to be more active in sharing our faith with others. He shared The Mission Imperative of the Christian Church and pointed out how each of us must learn to witness if we are to fulfill this imperative. After the program, Dr Jim Caton brought Vespers based on the story of Gideon from the book of Judges. Jim said that, although Gideon would have been voted ‘least likely to succeed’ in his class, God chose him to defeat the Midianites. If God can empower Gideon, he can empower us to witness. The evening was brought to a perfect close with the traditional ice cream social around the fireplace at Christmount.

Saturday started with a good mountain breakfast followed by some rousing hymn singing to set the tone for the day. Our morning devotion was brought by Ed Tiller, the 2002 Layman of the Year. Charlie Gaines shared his second presentation using Ephesians 4:7-24. He pointed out how much society has changed. Christianity no longer dominates this country and our society is much more diverse and international today. As a result we can no longer assume that someone we meet, understands the Christian faith. We must be prepared to share and explain. Charlie then gave us seven reasons to share our faith

Saturday morning was also time for a business meeting. It was moved and approved to change the title of the secretary to secretary/treasurer. The new slate of officers were presented and elected. Charles Maddox was elected president, John Anderson secretary/ treasurer, Archie Jenkins president elect. Medie Still becomes past president.

After lunch some of the men went off to play Golf, some to hike, some to sit and some to town to explore. Although the day was cloudy, the rain held off.

After dinner, Interim Regional Minister Zena McAdams installed the new slate of officers. Then, in his third presentation Charlie pointed out that we Disciples don’t like to talk about salvation and conversion. But if we are to share our faith we must become more comfortable talking and sharing our personal faith journeys. Rev. John Novikoff brought our vespers for the evening. John used stories from his mission trips to Russia and Armenia to inspire us in our work for Christ.

After the ‘official’ program, Gerald Demorest shared slides from Guyton Christian Church’s Mission trip to Honduras last summer. Everyone was inspired by the work and mission of this group. Gerald is willing to share this presentation with groups and congregations if any are interested.

Sunday started with Joe Kern and Greg Holmes leading us in Hymns again. Rev. Jerry Gladson led us in Bible Study from Acts 17:22-34. Jerry helped us understand how Paul’s mission to Athens can help us learn to witness to may of today’s ‘pre-christians’.

Charlie then told us the story of Na’aman in his fourth and final program. Na’aman is a story for special meaning to men because, like us, Na’aman insisted on being in control. He had to learn to ask God for healing. And it was his servants who taught him that lesson.

Rev. Bill Thompson led our Sunday morning worship and Stan Hickman led communion. The retreat closed with the singing of “Surely the Lord is in this Place.” And surely the Lord was. Each of the Men (and the ladies that joined us) came away with a renewed enthusiasm to witness for the Lord. We also learned and shared practical ideas and techniques for witness.

If you missed Retreat this year you missed some wonderful fellowship, inspirational programs, moving worship, good golf and excellent food. Resolve to join us in 2004.

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