Volume 2, Issue 1 | January 2019
Lord Jesus, the Magi brought you precious gifts. Help me also give you my very best — always.
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Happy 2019 New Year! I trust all of you had a good Christmas season and are ready for the new year.

As I think about the beginning of the new year, I am reminded of a favorite passage of scripture. Philippians 3:13-14: “ Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” The Apostle Paul states that he had not yet reached that goal of “knowing Christ" (vs. 10), but he keeps striving towards it.

We probably can’t completely forget all that has happened to us in 2018. We may have made some poor choices, or failed in some areas, or wished we’d have done it differently. Whatever it was, we can’t change it. But don’t you think we can learn from it? Take some time and think through this past year and see what you can learn from all that happened in your life.

Paul says, “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”. He isn’t going to let the past keep him from reaching the goal of knowing Christ. I want to encourage you to consider this in your own life. Here are some suggestions that may help:

  • —  Seek the Lord first in all you plan to do.
  • —  Make your plans, but also wait for His leading.
  • —  Keep spending time in prayer and reading of His Word.
  • —  Follow through when you sense His leading.
  • —  Thank Him for what He is doing in your life.

There may be other ways you prefer to use, but whatever you do, keep your focus on the Lord and keep pressing on in your walk with Him. He knows your life and He is willing to guide you (if you let Him) to become the person He wants you to become. That is always the best way.

I’ll close with another favorite verse: “ Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9). Best wishes in this new year 2019.

Your Fellow Servant,
Bro. Loren
Upcoming Events
January 2019
NOTES:
--Our South Zone Pastor's Prayer group will NOT be
meeting this month.

1st - New Year’s Day (FRBA OFFICE CLOSED)
3rd - North & East Zone Pastor’s Prayer Meeting
7th-8th - FRBA Pastor’s Prayer Retreat (Alto Frio)
8th - OCL Meeting - 6:30pm
14th-15th - Texas Baptists Preschool & Children’s
Ministers’ Retreat (Summers Mill Retreat &
Conference Center - Belton, TX)
15th - FRBA Executive Board Meeting
9:30am – Fellowship
10:00am – Business Meeting
22nd - FRBA Tax Seminar
10:00am to 3:00pm (lunch included)
25th - 26th - A Godly Woman: Full of His Grace event
at Cowboy Fellowship (details below)
29th - Texas Baptists Worship Summit (Howard Payne
Baptist University - Brownwood, TX)

February 2019
5th - OCL Meeting - 6:30pm
6th - South Zone Pastor’s Prayer Meeting
7th - North & East Zone Pastor’s Prayer Meetings
8th-10th - Sustain Ladies Retreat (Alto Frio)
21st - FRBA CPR/1st Aid/AED Training
9:00am to 2:00pm
 
SAVE THIS DATE!!

May 3rd-6th - FRBA Ladies' Retreat
at HEB Foundation Camp
(details below)

PLEASE NOTE : FRBA will apply financial gifts postmarked by December 31, 2018 and received by January 6, 2019 to the 2018 calendar year.
After January 6, 2019 all gifts will be applied to the 2019 year.
Upcoming Events
10:00am-12:00pm - Session I
What’s New / Ministerial Taxation
(geared toward pastors and those dealing with pastor’s benefits packages)

12:00 to 12:30pm
LUNCH PROVIDED

12:30-3:00pm - Session II
Tax Considerations for Churches
(geared towards those responsible for church bookkeeping/accounting)

Each session will include time for individualized questions & answers.

This year's seminar will be led by Daniel Whitehurst, CPA .

Mr. Whitehurst currently serves Texas Baptists as a volunteer for the
Institutions Audit Group and as their outside consultant for minister and church taxation.

Churches have a special calling to handle God's money in a way that reflects true stewardship.
 It is important that church leaders stay up-to-date on important issues and changing laws that impact their churches. This seminar will provide all the information needed to do just that.

Topics will cover top legal issues facing the church, building/operational issues,
accounting and auditing of the church, as well as key concerns for pastors.
You'll learn about specific tax laws affecting pastors and churches
as well as new & revised tax laws/procedures for the coming year.

This seminar is for:
·   Executive Pastors
·   Business Administrators
·   Church Treasurers
·   Church Office Managers
·   Personnel Committees
·   Finance Committees
·   Building & Grounds Committees
·   Anyone else who may be interested
 
Registration cost for the seminar is $5 which includes lunch.
Participants may choose to attend one or both sessions
as applicable to their needs.

REGISTRATION DEADLINE: Thursday, January 17, 2019 at 5pm
Please contact Laurie Beth Scantlin at (830)334-2061 or
LBScantlinFRBA@outlook.com to register.
Click HERE for registration and all the details!
SAVE THE DATE & PASS THE WORD!!
Registration is now open!

Are you feeling like you're always rushing from place to place and never seem to get caught up?
Do you want to spend more time in God's presence, but feel like there's just never enough time?
Are you craving:
--a chance to slow down and unplug from your regular routine
--an opportunity for some much-needed spiritual refreshment
--fun & fellowship with other Christian women
--an opportunity to enjoy the beauty of God's creation
This ecumenical ladies retreat is just what YOU have been looking for!
Registration is all-inclusive for the entire weekend! (All food, lodging and retreat materials are included.)
We've got a total of 80 spots available, and they'll fill up fast, so be sure to save your place TODAY!
Registration Fees:
--Early Bird Registration (before March 1st) - $45.00 per person
--Early Bird Group Registration (before April 1st - for groups of 10 or more) - $40.00 per person
--Regular Registration (on or after March 1st) - $55.00 per person
--Group Registration (on or after April 1st - for groups of 10 or more) - $50.00 per person
FINAL REGISTRATION DEADLINE: April 22, 2019
CLICK HERE to register or contact Laurie Beth in the FRBA office for more information.
Around the Association
Wonderful, Wonderful Worship!

Join us for an eleven week course on worship, offered from 4:15 to 5:45 p.m., Sundays in the First Baptist, Devine fellowship hall (kitchen side), beginning on January 6, 2019 ! We will look at worship styles; music, drama, and children in worship; special events, worship space and places, trends, orders of service; and how to get more out of your worship experience.

If you pay to register for the Certificate of Christian Ministry program, you will receive the textbook and course credit. If you prefer, you may audit the course for free. 

Contact David Cooke at 210-319-0921 or davidglenncooke@gmail.com for more details.
Somerset Baptist Church is seeking a part-time paid youth minister. Resumes can be emailed to SomersetBCTX@gmail.com .
For an update from the Aitape West Translation Project in Papua New Guinea...
The FBC Pleasanton & Charlotte choirs sang together to present the musical, How Great Our Joy , at the Pleasanton and Charlotte Churches.
Handbell Ensemble performing at
FBC Charlotte .
On December 11th, fifty-four folks came together for the annual FRBA Christmas Fellowship ! Everyone enjoyed a wonderful dinner (by Al's Catering) , along with lots of laughter, Christmas caroling and blessed fellowship. We can hardly wait for next year.
Click HERE for more pictures.
On Sunday evening, December 9th, the Sanctuary Choir of First Baptist Church Devine presented the Christmas musical THE WINTER ROSE , by Joseph M. Martin. The choir of 55 did a beautiful presentation, and it was a great service of musical praise to our Great God. A church wide potluck supper followed in the Fellowship Hall. Thanks to everyone.


REMINDER: If you weren't able to join us for the Annual Gathering, we have plenty of copies of the Book of Reports available at the FRBA Office. The booklet includes an updated church directory as well. Stop by and pick one up when you’re in the area! 
Love in Action
FBC Pleasanton's Awana Clubs take Christmas treats to police and firemen.
Operation Christian Love
by Beth Ann Brundrett

As the volunteers began arriving in Eagle Pass on Tuesday, December 4, 2018, so did laughter & joy. Then the gifts started arriving at Iglesia Bautista Jerusalen . The volunteers organized the gifts as they arrived. There were pallets & pallets of new clothes, shoes, underwear, socks, blankets, handmade pillowcases, caps, scarves, myriads of toys, coloring books, crayons, & Bibles that made their way one trailer load at a time.
 
While some of the volunteers continued organizing the gifts, another group traveled to Piedras Negras, Coahuila, Mexico, to visit some of the orpha nages & ministries where some of these gifts would be going. Thanks to generous donations OCL was able to ensure warm days & nights for Casa Bethesda, Orphange for Children With Disabilites and Special Needs by giving Brother Paulino Esquivel a check for $1,000.00 to help with winter utilities. In addition, Brother Jose Sepulveda of La Mano de Dios soup kitchen received a check for $15,000.00 to complete the roof on their new facility. 
On Friday night, December 8th, the volunteers with gifts, Christ’s love, joy & excitement in hand, caravanned to the Kickapoo Reservation . There the tribe welcomed them & provided a delicious meal for all. A program & gift distribution followed.
 
On Saturday morning, December 9th, neighborhood children arrived at Iglesia Bautista Jerusalen for a puppet show about Jesus led by Norma & Roy Reyna from Hosanna Baptist Taberacle in Leming, TX . Gift distribution followed.
 
Saturday afternoon, Iglesia Vida Eterna in El Indio, TX hosted their first Gathering for Christ. The puppet show on Jesus was presented once again by the group from Leming. Gifts & refreshments followed.
Frank Banda has already had 4 Gatherings for Christ with more to follow. Banda Ministry left gifts at the prison for those who attend the ministry’s church there. The prison keeps them & then when the families visit for Christmas, the inmate can give his children their gifts. So far, the Banda Ministry has shared the birth of Christ & gifts with 680 people in need. They have also given out 18 bikes that were donated by Hillcrest Baptist Church of Jasper, TX & the Sam Craig ministry.

On Monday, December 10th, a Gathering for Christ was held at La Mano de Dios. Approximately 300 children enjoyed a program on the birth of Christ. The youth from the Frank Banda Ministry presented the program, and each child was given a gift & a meal.
 
The orphanages save the gifts for their own family-style Christmas & the numerous smaller churches host their own Gatherings for Christ on dates they choose themselves.
 
In late November, Jim Spicer, Founder and Director of the Living Stones His Island Night Shelter for veterans, entered heaven & is now singing with the angels, still proclaiming the news of Christ. Memorial Services were held at His Island on Thursday, December 13th, with Brother Larry Erwin, pastor of Christ Church, Devine , officiating. Jim, a veteran, was buried at Ft. Sam Houston. On Saturday, December 22nd, His Island hosted its “Jesus Birthday Party” for the poor in their neighborhood. Gifts for this annual event were donated by OCL. As Jim’s death saddens us, his life of service to others is an example of: “Serving God by Serving Others”.
 
May God Bless each of you as this year ends & another one begins. OCL’s first meeting will be Tuesday, January 8th, at 6:30 pm at the Frio River Baptist Association Resource Center (1716 Business IH 35E, Pearsall, TX 78061) . Please join us.

Click HERE for more pictures.
FRBA RESOURCE LIBRARY
This Bible study and many more are available
through our resource library!
Mom to Mom: Heart Talk on What Really Matters
by Linda Schultz Anderson
(12-session DVD study)

Click here to download one of our checkout forms. Then just complete it and
bring it by the office to borrow a Bible study to meet your needs.

We’re also accepting donations of used DVD Bible study kits.
If you or your church have some that you are no longer using, we’d love
to have them here to share with other churches in our Association.
Frio River Baptist Association | Phone: 830-334-2061 | Fax: 830-334-3025 | Email | Website
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