The Garden of Graces

Awake, O north wind; and come, thou south, blow upon my garden, that the spices thereof may flow out! (Song of Solomon 4:16).

“Sometimes God sends severe blasts of trial upon His children to develop their graces. Just as torches burn most brightly when swung to and fro; just as the juniper plant smells sweetest when flung into the flames; so the richest qualities of a Christian often come out under the north wind of suffering and adversity. Bruised hearts often emit the fragrance that God loves to smell.” (from “Streams in the Desert”)


Last Sunday we had parents with young children came to our house for breakfast. Galena and I were very pleased with a good number of families who came together for an early morning time of food and play. Trying to talk was not too easy because of all the happy voices of the kids playing with one another. I felt that it helped our church families to get to know each other better. Below are a couple of pictures from that event.

That same morning the older children from our church came to a big pool party in our neighborhood. I counted about twenty children in the pool. The weather forecast did not look promising but it turned out to be a very pleasant day for the kids and their parents. The Reynolds family was an absolute blessing for the Sunday events. They were cutting fruit, pouring water, delivering pizzas, etc, etc.

In the afternoon a group of the church youth came to that same pool for their own party. It was a busy but happy day. Thank you to everyone who helped with planning all these activities.

Enjoy a few photos below:


While we are raising funds for the new sanctuary and SS classes (Cornerstone Building Fund) many repairs and renovations are taking place in our existing building. On Thursday I walked into the kitchen and couldn’t believe my eyes! The new kitchen room floor looked absolutely wonderful. I can’t wait to see the new cabinets and other furnishings in the renovated kitchen. The Youth room upstairs is also under major renovation. David Denton is almost finished with the paint project. However he had great helpers working on this project. See a couple of photos below. The youth leaders and the youth itself wanted to be a part of this renovation. Thank you, everyone who helped to brighten up and to upgrade that room for our church youth.


This week we lost our dear church member, Shirley Schlender. She’s been an active member of the Ooltewah church for many years. The graveside service took place on Thursday. Pastor Fernando Verduzco officiated the service. The Memorial service is being planned for August 14 at 4 P.M. at our church. Please continue to uplift this dear family in your prayers.


We are only five weeks away from the opening night of the Healing in Jesus Bible seminar taking place at our own church. The first night of the seminar is on September 10. Here is a link to the additional helpful resources and the prayer schedule.

I believe you will be happy to know that Laura Standish is putting together a team to offer interactive Children’s Bible study class during the meetings. Invite your friends and family to attend. We all need healing.


Both worship services this Sabbath, August 7, will be led by the children and the youth of our church. I am looking forward to a dynamic and uplifting worship experience. Come and you will be blessed.

Church bulletin and other helpful links are available on the church website

Happy Sabbath. See you in the morning.

pastor Peter

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