RELIGION COLUMN: Why do you come to church?

Published 9:31 am Wednesday, May 1, 2013

By Emily Agee

“And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God. For verily I say unto you, that whosoever shall say unto this mountain, be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, what things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.” (Mark 11:22–26)

Thought for the week: “Prayer of Hope”

“God, please help me find my way and give me room to grow. Comfort me through every storm and guide me as I go. My heart is weary time to time from living all alone. I need you to be with me – please make your presence known. Life can sometimes take a turn upon a rocky road. I get worried and afraid to face this heavy load. Help me find an even ground to carry out your will. Let me find a purpose, Lord, your promise to fulfill. And may I never fall apart nor take my eyes off you. I am weak, but you are strong – please show me what to do. I give you thanks for this good day, no matter how I fare. For you, dear Lord, have heard my plea; my pain is yours to bear.”


The Rev. and Mrs. Melvin Hunter will celebrate his 36th pastor’s anniversary as pastor of Union Missionary Baptist Church in Clanton on Sunday, April 7, at 11 a.m.

The Rev. Barbara Hunter-Thompson will bring the morning message at 3 p.m. Taylor Thompson of Ohio will be the guest speaker. They are the daughter and son-in-law of Hunter. All ministers and churches are invited.

Worship services at Holly Grove Baptist Church in Jemison began with praise service of scripture, prayer and songs. The scripture was read by Chadrick Nunn with prayer by Kourtney Nunn and Pastor Dukes.

Songs sung were “Come and Go to that Land,” “This Little Light of Mine” and “Amazing Grace.”

Pastor Dukes brought the morning message. His theme was “What Can You Get Out of Church Service Today?” God has blessed and spared you (Acts 3:1–5). Sub: “At it, but not in it.” What’s the difference?

It is dangerous to just be at church. “In it” means I am serving you God, and you know who he is. Ask God to send me; I will go. Step out on faith when things are still good for you. We have all come short. Come based on your relationship with God, not people. Church is where you spiritually connect with God; to get filled so you can witness and be a service for God.

The attitude at church is routine and practice for life. Do you attend because you are used to going? Do you come for what the church can do for you? Do you think people can meet your needs? Only God can. Come for the purpose of prayer. Peter and John did. Look up; God is good. The church is here to introduce unsaved people to Christ. Benediction was by Pastor Dukes.

Our sympathy goes out to the families of Mary Brown Sexton, Larry Tyus and Mildred Lee in their time of bereavement. Funeral services for Tyus will be Saturday, April 6 at 11 a.m. at Agee Brothers Funeral Home Chapel. Brown’s funeral will be Saturday at 2 p.m. at St. Paul Baptist Church in Jemison. Funeral services will be held on Sunday, April 7 at 2 p.m. at Union Baptist Church in Thorsby. Agee Brothers Funeral Home is directing.

On our sick list, we ask you to remember in your prayers: James Singleterry, Martha Binion, Willie McGee, Mary Griffin, Harold Frazier, Sam and Vivian Hicks, Lee Anna Worthy and Evelyn Austin. May God heal, strengthen and keep them in his care is our prayer.

—Emily Agee is a religion columnist for The Clanton Advertiser. Her column appears each Thursday.