Greetings from Charlotte,
The end of the year is a busy time for many in our offices around the world. Government regulations and closing out books on income and expenses require extra work for those in the business and human resources offices. Mr. Mario Hernandez is back in Charlotte after visiting the Mexico City congregation with Mr. Cristian Orrego last Sabbath. Mr. Orrego will remain in Mexico for additional meetings. These trips can be very tiring, so please remember them both. Reports from the areas hit by fires in California indicate that all of our members there are safe. Mr. Martin Fannin (pastor in Knoxville, Tennessee) was released from hospital this week. He is still very weak and recovering from pneumonia. Mrs. Connie Breaux (wife of our minister in Jacksonville, Mississippi and other congregations along the Gulf Coast) is also out of hospital but recovering from blood clots in the lungs. Canadian Regional Director Stuart Wachowicz had a procedure this week to correct a problem he has been dealing with for several years, but is having some complications from the surgery. All three of these individuals need our prayers that they may make a complete recovery. Your prayers will also be greatly appreciated by other individuals that you may personally know.—Gerald Weston
LCG Webcast Live Stream of Sabbath Services and Bible Study from Charlotte Family Weekend
LCG congregations and members are welcome to join us “online” for the Charlotte Family Weekend Friday night Bible Study on December 21, and Sabbath services on December 22. The Friday night Bible study will begin at 7:30 p.m. (EST) and Sabbath services will begin at 1:00 p.m. (EST). To join, please go to www.lcgwebcast.org, and under “Stream Site” select “Charlotte Family Weekend.” Enter the password, your name (or congregation name) and the number of people viewing (for attendance purposes). Please note: this Internet broadcast is for LCG membership and you can find the password at your “MyLCG” account. (Just go to www.cogl.org and click on the “MyLCG” link.)
Charlotte Family Weekend (Friday, December 21 – Tuesday, December 25)—New Details
Please Read Where Applicable: We’re looking forward to seeing you soon! Be sure to make your reservations at the Renaissance Suites Hotel before November 30 to get the $99/night special rate, which includes breakfast for two adults. Also, Activity Registration is now live! To access the hotel’s special discount, register and pay for activities, and see a detailed schedule of events, go to: charlottelcg.org/cfw (not an official LCG website).
Games: Be sure to begin planning your Family Games and Basketball or Volleyball teams. We want everyone to join in the Family Games on Sunday! Family Games Teams should have 12 to 20 players, with a minimum of three pre-teens (ages 7–12), three teens (ages 13–17), three adults (ages 18–59), and three seniors (age 60+). Team registration will begin in the next couple of weeks. If you don’t have a team, come anyway and we will assign you to one.
Crafts: Take note all “Crafters”—We need your help! If you would like to donate craft items for the Craft Auction on Sunday, please contact Mrs. Jeanine Smith at 816-804-8535 or e-mail email@example.com.
Schedule: Some of the events for the weekend include:
- Bible Study Friday evening
- Sabbath Services
- Elegant Dinner Dance
- Family Games and Sports Day on Sunday
- Educational Seminars: Parenting, Teens, Singles, Mature Singles (Monday)
- Bowling Monday afternoon
- “International” theme dance Monday evening
- Tuesday Departure
More than 1,700 members have taken advantage of the “Life, Teachings and Ministry” class featuring Dr. Meredith’s lectures. Many have gone through Unit 1 and are now completing Unit 2. If you are finished with Unit 2, then you will be pleased to know that Unit 3 will be available beginning November 25.
If you haven’t checked out our new Children’s Bible Lessons, just go to lcgeducation.org! This week we are posting the following lessons:
Level 1: Lesson 3, “The Re-Creation: Days 3 and 4”
Level 2: Lesson 3, “The Angelic Realm”
Level 3: Lesson 3, “God Creates Angels”
Living Youth Program
Living Youth Friday Evening Study
The online Friday evening Teen Bible Study next Friday, November 23, will cover Matthew 14, and will be given by Mr. Sheldon Monson. Join us at 8:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The chatroom will open thirty minutes prior to the beginning of the study.
To join the study, just visit www.livingyouth.org, and follow the links to “Friday Evening Bible Study.” We’ll be utilizing a new streaming provider this year, so please be sure to check the links from the Living Youth website to join the study. This also means that e-mail alerts will no longer be sent when we go live. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. For those who are unable to make it to the study, archives of previous Living Youth Bible Studies, including last evening’s covering Matthew 13:34–58, can also be found on the Living Youth website.—Joshua Penman
God’s Perspective on Trials: Sometimes when we encounter trials and difficulties and even emergencies, we wonder what is happening and whether God has forgotten or forsaken us. However, in challenging times, we need to remember several fundamental scriptures. Jesus told His disciples, “In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). God has also promised never to leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). The Apostle Paul reminds us that “all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28) and that even in trials, God will make a “way of escape” if we look to Him (1 Corinthians 10:13). We are also told to “ask” God for help in time of need (Matthew 7:7-11) and that He will hear our prayers (Psalm 102:17). In the book of James, we are told that trials are opportunities to exercise faith in God and His promises and build patience—while we do our part to work through the challenges we face. Let’s strive to remember and maintain this godly perspective when we encounter trials, and as we pray earnestly for one another.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail
News and Prophecy—November 15, 2018
Deadly Antibiotic Resistance—Dangers Ahead: Britain’s Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) just put out a new warning about antibiotic resistance (The Guardian, November 7, 2018). Although antibiotic resistance warnings have been sounded for decades, the new, heavily researched OECD estimates are sobering. “More than 90,000 people in Britain will die over the next three decades unless action is taken to halt the rise in antibiotic-resistant superbug infections.” OECD also estimates “infections could kill about 2.4 million people in Europe, North America and Australia by 2050 unless more is done to tackle the problem, which it describes as ‘one of the biggest threats to modern medicine.’” Southern European nations could feel the impact of this drug resistance plague sooner than other nations.
Ironically, some of the most important actions that could reduce antibiotic resistance are quite simple, including more frequent handwashing by healthcare professionals and prescribing antibiotics less often.
From a prophetic perspective, Jesus Christ warned that “pestilences” (diseases) would be one of the major signs of the end of the age (Luke 21:11). Antibiotic resistant infections could be one of many types of pestilences that could fulfill this prophecy. To learn more about this impending crisis, read “Superbugs! The End of the Antibiotic Era.”
Screen Time and Unhappy Youth: Some question the media hype about an apparent connection between increasing “screen time” among youth and their increasing rates of unhappiness. However, a new study at the San Diego State University published in the peer-reviewed journal Emotion adds more weight to the connection between poor psychological health and screen time (Research Digest, October 2, 2018).
Researchers examined decades of data from the national Monitoring the Future survey of students in grades 8, 10, and 12. Results showed that after years of increasing wellbeing reported by teens, wellbeing (including happiness) began to drop significantly beginning in 2012. After testing for many different factors, screen time was determined to be the only factor consistently related to the decrease in youth wellbeing in the years since 2012 (Research Digest). Screen time includes time spent playing video games, texting, time on social media, and other activities performed on phones, tablets, and computers. However, time spent with friends, time spent playing sports, and even time spent doing homework appeared to have the opposite effect on wellbeing. Even more sobering, new research from the UK reports that the majority of three- and four-year-olds now own an iPad (The Telegraph, October 4, 2018).
While social media is designed to facilitate interaction among and between individuals, studies have shown it can cause feelings of isolation, which may be a cause of the unhappiness these researchers have noted. Wise King Solomon also addressed the issue of social isolation when he wrote, “Two are better than one… For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up” (Ecclesiastes 4:9–10). Many today have forgotten that God designed human beings as social creatures in need of interaction and social support, yet our modern world seems bent on increasing opportunities for isolation—which brings many negative results. For more insight about dealing with isolation and loneliness, read “Iron Sharpens Iron.”—Scott Winnail and Francine Prater