Week #53 - Give Someone a Lagniappe
Give Someone a Lagniappe
Have you ever heard of a lagniappe? A lagniappe is a “little something extra”
that is given freely and unexpectedly. For example, you might buy a dozen doughnuts at
a store and then be pleasantly surprised when the baker throws in an apple fritter for free
as a “lagniappe”.
This week wraps up the 2014 Church Challenge, where you were given 52 weekly challenges
to help you grow as a Christian. This 53rd challenge is a “lagniappe”, and
the challenge is to provide a lagniappe of your own this week. As you go through this
last week of 2014, any time someone asks you for something, do it, and then provide a
“lagniappe” of some kind.
I hope you have enjoyed the 2014 Church Challenge! Thank you so much for participating!
Week #52 - Read the Story of Christ’s Birth
Read the Biblical Account of His Birth
This week, as we celebrate Christmas with family gatherings, elaborate meals,
gift giving, etc., take a moment to remember the “reason for the season” and
read the Biblical account of the birth of Christ.
This would make a wonderful family tradition for each year’s Christmas celebration!
Week #51 - Make a Birthday Card for Jesus
Create a Birthday Card for Jesus
We are a week away from the annual Christmas holiday that celebrates the birth of Jesus.
Why not create a birthday card for Jesus and put it in your home on display with your
other Christmas decorations? You could even make it a holiday tradition and create a new
one each year.
Week #50 - Look at the Stars
Pick a clear night and look at the stars
When Jesus was born, God chose a star to guide the three wise men to his birthplace.
Too often, we go outside at night without really seeing the stars in the sky. This
week, pick a clear night and go outside and look -- really look -- at the sky and
marvel at the scope and grandeur of the universe that He created for us.
Week #49 - Plan for a Christian Christmas
Plan for a Christian Christmas
This past week was Black Friday, the traditional start to the Christmas shopping
season. This year, before getting bogged down in the yearly food preparation, party
planning, gift buying, and house decorating, make plans to do something Christian
to celebrate the holiday. For example, make a surprise donation to a needy family,
send a card to a shut-in, or help someone who is overwhelmed.
Week #48 - Give thanks on Thanksgiving
This week is the annual
It has traditionally been a time to give thanks for the year’s bountiful harvest and other
blessings. This week, take some time away from the turkey, football, and Black Friday sales to
give thanks to God for the blessings you have received this year.
Week #47 - Turn the other cheek
Turn The Other Cheek
It is so easy to go through our everyday lives being angry, miffed, or at odds
with someone else. However, Jesus did not intend for us to live like that: he
reminded us to “turn the other cheek.” Why not put that into practice
this week by thinking of someone that you are currently not getting along with,
and doing something nice for that person, pay them a compliment, or give them a
small token? You might be surprised what happens!
Week #46 - Pick a personal proverb
Pick a Proverb
Do you know what a “proverb” is? A “proverb” is a brief, pithy
saying that expresses a truth or belief. And the Bible has an
entire book of them! This week, peruse the book of Proverbs and
pick one for yourself. Then, pick one for a friend!
Week #45 - Remember former members of our Church.
Remember past members
Now that our Church Homecoming is over, why not take a moment this week to
remember the past members of our Church who are no longer there? Reach out to
the descendants of past members and share a story with them, or leave a small
remembrance at the grave of one of those members, such as a note, flowers, or
a small cross.
Week #44 - Attend Homecoming!
Today is our Church Homecoming service. Please attend!
Week #43 - Invite Someone To Homecoming!
Our Church Homecoming service is set for next Sunday (October 26th). Homecoming
is a special service that commemorates the history of a church, its founding
members, and former pastors and church leaders, as well as former members who
have moved away.
This week, why not invite a former Church member to come back for our
Homecoming service? It can be someone who has moved to a different area,
someone who now attends a different church, or even someone who has just
stopped coming. Reach out to them and invite them to our Homecoming service
Week #42 - What’s your Christian “Elevator Pitch”?
What’s your Christian “Elevator Pitch”?
At my first job in Atlanta, I had the pleasure of working with Jeffrey Hayzlett,
who went on to become the Chief Marketing Officer for Kodak. Several years ago,
he wrote an article for the Harvard Business Review entitled
Why You Need a Better Elevator Pitch.
In this article, he explains that most salespeople should be able to make an effective
sales pitch in the duration of an average elevator ride in New York City: 118 seconds.
Imagine that you just met someone new and wanted to explain Christianity to them
in just 118 seconds. How would you go about it, and what would you say? Take a look
at Jeff’s article and see what you can come up with. We would love to see your
responses on the Church’s Facebook page!
Week #41 - Read about disease in the Bible
See what the Bible says about disease
The arrival of the Ebola virus on American shores was a major news story this
week. Sometimes we wonder why God allows such diseases to spread in the world.
Why not look at some Bible verses about disease?
This is a good place to find some verses you may
wish to read.
Week #40 - Invite someone to revival!
Invite someone to our Revival!
Our Church revival begins in three weeks (October 19th). Let’s pack the church
this year - make it your goal this week to invite someone to our revival!
Week #39 - Clean up your language!
Clean up your language!
One of the top athletes in college football was suspended for an important game
this week because he jumped up on a table in the student center and yelled out
obscenities. I doubt that any of us would say the things he said, but we are all
guilty of saying things that we shouldn’t from time to time.
Take some time this week to look through your Bible and see what it says about
are some verses to get you started) and then try to put them into practice!
Week #38 - Put down your smartphone!
Millions of Americans ordered Apple’s new smartphone on Friday. These days,
too many people spend too much of their time looking down at the little screen on
their phone. Why not take a day to disconnect from the digital world and reconnect
with people? Put down your phone for a day and talk to someone, visit someone, play
with a pet, etc. Enjoy the world that the Lord made for you instead of a digital
world created by people in California.
Week #37 - Turn off your auto-pilot!
Turn off your auto-pilot!
This week, we watched an eerie tragedy as a small plane lost pressure and flew for
hours on auto-pilot before crashing into the sea. All too often, we tend to go on
auto-pilot in our everyday lives: going through the motions without conscious thought.
Turn off your auto-pilot this week and think about your life, where you are, where you
are going, and how you plan to get there!
Week #36 - Pray for someone new.
Pray for someone new.
It is far too easy to fall into predictable patterns when praying each day. This
week, shake up your routine and pray for someone you do not ordinarily pray for.
You do not necessarily need to pray for someone suffering misfortune - sometimes,
even people who seem to be happy and carefree may be suffering from some issue
that they do not express outwardly.
Week #35 - See what the Bible says about labor.
See what the Bible says about labor.
With the Labor Day weekend coming up next week, it is a good time to see what the
Bible says about labor. Take a spin through your Bible and see what you can find!
Some good verses to being with include Genesis 3:19, 1 Corinthians 10:13, and
Week #34 - Create your own personal creed.
Create your personal creed.
A creed is a list of the basic beliefs of a religion or system that guide the actions
or a person or group. There have been many famous creeds in Christianity, such as the
Another popular creed that respects
Christianity is the Auburn creed
at Auburn University.
Why not take some time this week to develop your own personal creed? List the things that you
personally believe in as a Christian, print a copy, and carry it with you or show it to your
Week #33 - Donate for relief for the sick.
Make a donation for the sick.
Jesus often helped heal the sick during his travels. You can carry on in His
tradition of helping the sick by making a donation to help assist with the
containment of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. One charity you might wish
to assist is
the group that has been in the news recently.
Week #32 - Make a T-shirt!
Make a T-shirt to show your faith!
Summer is a time for wearing light clothing. Why not design your own T-shirt? Get a
plain white T-shirt and some colored markers and create your own! (If you want to get
fancy, you can create your design using a graphics program and print it to some iron-on
This is a great way to promote your faith and your church! Make a T-shirt with your
favorite Bible verse, or draw a scene that depicts one of your favorite stories from
the Bible. If you make a T-shirt with a drawing of the Pembroke Christian Church, I
would love to see it - post a picture of it on the Church’s Facebook page!
Week #31 - Picnic with a shut-in
Picnic with a shut-in
The summer months can be rough for those who are shut-ins or are confined indoors (e.g., for
medical reasons). Why not bring some summer to them by having a picnic with them? Make some
sandwiches and a pie, grab a checkered tablecloth and a wicker basket, and bring some joy to
someone who cannot enjoy a beautiful summer.
Week #30 - Read about the first communion held on the moon!
Today (July 20th) is the 45th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. Did you know that astronaut
Buzz Aldrin conducted a private communion service in the LEM (Lunar Excursion Module)?
You can read about it in the following article that was originally published in Guideposts magazine.
The first communion held on the moon.
Week #29 - Read some summer Bible stories
Summer is traditionally a time for people to catch up on their reading. Why not
take some time to catch up on some of the stories from the Bible?
Here are a couple of interesting accounts you might read. If you know of any others,
please feel free to share them!
Bad kids, bears, and baldness.
The man who asked God
why there is evil in the world.
The entire Book of Revelation, that details the end of the world.
Week #28 - Give thanks for your freedom
Let Freedom Ring
As we celebrate the Independence Day weekend, take a moment to look at what the Bible
says about freedom. Write down the verses and make them part of your celebration each
year when you say your blessings on the Fourth!
Here are some verses you might begin with. (Links are to biblegateway.com)
Week #27 - Create a “movie poster” for a Bible story
The movie theatres are currently showing the summer blockbuster films, and they promote
them by putting movie posters in magazines, on billboards, at bus stops, etc. Why not
promote some of the stories in the Bible the same way? Your challenge for this week is to
pick a story in the Bible and draw (or Photoshop) a “movie poster” for it.
Some interesting subjects you might pick: David and Goliath, the Flood, Jonah and the
Whale, Job, the Ten Commandments, and the walls of Jericho. Don’t forget to share
your poster with others!
Week #26 - Midyear Checkup
It’s hard to believe that we are now at the middle of 2014. This would be a great
time to revisit your resolutions from January 1st. Are you still making progress on your
goals for 2014? Try to make time this week to work on each of your resolutions.
Week #25 - Honor Your Father
Faith of our Fathers
Today is Father’s Day! If your father is still alive, please talk to him,
spend some time with him, or do something to let him know you care.
Week #24 - Remember Our Veterans
No Greater Love
As we remember the 70th anniversary of D-Day, we should remember John 15:13:
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
Jesus certainly exemplified this as he sacrificed himself for us.
Why not honor our veterans by going out to the cemetery this week and placing a flower
on the grave of a Bryan County war veteran? Also, don’t forget to thank our
surviving veterans for their service.
Week #23 - Make Plans for a Productive Summer
How Will You Gather This Summer?
Proverbs 10:5 reads "He that gathereth in summer is a wise son: but he that
sleepeth in harvest is a son that causeth shame". Our natural inclination
is to relax and be lazy during the summer, but God wishes us to be productive. What
will you do this summer?
Now that school is out and summer vacations are here, why not make a list of things
you can do this summer to grow as a Christian and help your community and Church?
You could volunteer to help with a clean-up day at the Church; take some freshly
grown corn or squash to a shut-in; help out with the camp at Shellman Bluff; assist
with Vacation Bible School; or spend some time talking with your kids about living
a Christian life. The possibilities are endless - what will you do?
Week #22 - Thank A Veteran
Memorial Day Remembrance
As we remember and honor Memorial Day this year, please make a point of seeking out the
veterans in our Church and thanking them for their service.
Week #21 - See Through The Eyes Of A Child
Through A Child’s Eyes
Sometimes we need a fresh perspective on life, as if we were a child experiencing
things for the first time. Why not apply this to your Bible study
this week? Seek out a child in your family and ask them to tell you their favorite
Bible story - you might be surprised at what you hear!
Week #20 - Honor Thy Mother
Honor Thy Mother
When God handed down the Ten Commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai, one of those
commandments was to “Honor your father and your mother.” This Sunday
is Mother’s Day, so take a moment to honor your mother.
If you need some suggestions other than the usual dinner and gift, here is an article
about some thoughtful ideas.
Week #19 - NASCAR and Public Prayer
Learn about NASCAR prayers
NASCAR is the rare commercial sport that has a pre-event televised prayer.
With one of NASCAR’s biggest races occurring this weekend in Talledega, Alabama,
let’s take a moment to look at NASCAR and its support of public prayer.
An article about NASCAR and prayer may be found here.
Here is a good story about
who leads prayer for NASCAR.
Finally, here's a story about one of the more
in NASCAR history.
Week #18 - See “God’s Not Dead”
See “God’s Not Dead”
We’re blessed to have a Christian movie in theatres this spring:
“God’s Not Dead”.
Why not take your family or friends to see it?
After watching the movie, check out the
free online resources
available for the film, including a prayer guide, 3-lesson Bible study, and posters.
Week #17 - Celebrate at Sunrise
Celebrate the Son’s Rise at Sunrise
It’s Easter, the most important holiday in the Christian calendar. Please
remember it by participating in Pembroke’s annual sunrise service. If you
can’t make it, please celebrate in your own way at home.
Week #16 - Express Yourself In Song!
Express Yourself In Song
Here’s a fun exercise: each day for the next week, pick a hymn whose title
embodies the way you feel (or want to feel) about that day. Some examples:
“Oh Happy Day”, “Jesus Loves Me”, “Just As I Am”, “Love Lifted Me”,
“I Must Tell Jesus”, and “It Is Well With My Soul.”
Week #15 - What Did Jesus Think About Taxes?
Read what Jesus said about taxes
April 15th, “Tax Day”, is coming up soon. Why not take
a few minutes to read about what
Jesus thought about taxes?
Week #14 - The Original “Final Four”
The Original “Final Four”
College basketball is heading towards the annual “Final Four” tournament,
but the Bible has its own “Final Four”: the Four
Horsemen of the Apocalypse in the sixth chapter of the Book of Revelation.
at these mysterious, ominous beings. Can you name them?
Week #13 - Spring Cleaning
This week, we saw the first day of spring arrive, and for many of us, that means
it is time for spring cleaning. Why not perform some spiritual spring cleaning?
Think about your life and see if there is anything you can do to make it better.
Some examples: you might resolve to read your Bible more regularly,
abstain from gossip, stop being negative in conversations or online, or pray
Week #12 - Feed the Hungry!
Feed The Hungry!
The Church pantry recently ran low, reminding us that there are those in our community
who could use a good meal while they get back on their feet. Why not buy a couple of tickets
for the Church pork steak dinner and keep them in your wallet and purse, and give them out
to anyone you know or meet who would appreciate them? You would be helping both the Church
and your community, and that’s a great thing to do!
Week #11 - Stop Procrastinating!
We “lose” an hour this week as we set our clocks forward for Daylight Savings Time.
The result is that it’s later than you think it is. In that spirit, your challenge for
this week is to think of something that you have been putting off and finally do it.
Week #10 - Listen to “Alone, Yet Not Alone”
Listen to “Alone, Yet Not Alone”.
The annual Hollywood Oscars ceremony will be held Sunday night, but it will not air a song from a Christian movie that
was nominated for “Best Original Song” and later disqualified. Why not listen to it yourself? Here is
Alone Yet Not Alone
from the movie of the same name.
Week #9 - Read Ecclesiastes, Chapter 3
To Everything There Is A Season: Ecclesiastes, Chapter 3.
This month has been a month of contrasts: here in Georgia, we’ve seen icy and snowy roads
followed just days later by temperatures in the 70s and rising pollen counts. Overseas, we’ve
seen nations cooperate at the Sochi Olympic Games while uprisings occur in the Ukraine. It’s
a perfect time to read
Ecclesiastes, Chapter 3.
Once you have read that chapter, you may wish to listen to the popular song
Turn!, Turn!, Turn! (to Everything There Is A Season)
that was written by Pete Seeger based on that chapter (the provided link is to the cover performed by Dolly Parton).
Finally, you can read some of the history of the journey
from Bible verse to pop song.
Week #8 - See what the Bible says about sports
The Bible and sports.
With the Sochi Olympics going on this week, your challenge is to investigate what the
Bible tells us about sports. Search the web or peruse the concordance in your Bible
and look up some sports related verses. Hint: you might look in Timothy or Corinthians
for several great verses, or even search for quarterback Tim Tebow’s favorite
Week #7 - Attend a board meeting
Attend a Church board meeting.
Your challenge for this week is to attend the Church board meeting, Thursday night at 7 pm.
It will give you fresh insight into the problems and challenges the Church has: plans
for the future, management of present issues, stewardship over its finances, and the
use of the tithes it receives on Sunday.
\Week #6 - Take a photo
Take a photo that illustrates your favorite Bible verse.
Your challenge for this week is to take a picture that in some way illustrates your
favorite Bible verse. Share it with your friends.
Be creative! If you need some inspiration, take a look at
Week #5 - Describe Your Favorite Church Memory
Describe your favorite Church memory!
Your challenge for this week is to write a description of your favorite memory at the Pembroke Christian
Church. Share it with your friends.
Some suggestions: write about a favorite fish fry that was held at the Church
many years ago, a memorable summer at Church camp at Shellman Bluff, a rousing
Fifth Sunday night sing, a trip to the winter conference at Rock Eagle, the
time the Sunday school classrooms were added to the Youth Center, or the
remodelling of the Church to include the choir loft and baptismal area.
Week #4 - Write A Shut-In
Write a letter to one of our shut-ins!
The winter months can be difficult for many of our shut-ins: the holidays
are over and the weather is cold and dreary. This is a perfect time to
brighten their day by writing them a letter!
You could tell them about some of the events going on in our church or
Pembroke, such as the CWF meetings, Boy Scout troop revival, Pembroke
Christmas Parade, etc. Or, you could take pictures around town of things
that have changed or that they may not have seen (e.g., construction sites,
the paintings on the sides of the buildings on main street, etc.). Better
still, you could visit and get them to tell you some stories!
Week #3 - Invite Someone To Church
Invite someone to church this Sunday!
Is there someone in your family that hasn’t been to church in a while? A coworker?
Neighbor? Talk to them and invite them to join you for church this Sunday!
Week #2 - Stories Behind The Hymns
Did you ever wonder about the origins of the hymns we sing in church
each Sunday? Your challenge for this week is to pick one of your favorite hymns and
look up the story of how it came to be, then share it with friends and family.
Some great resources are
To get you started, you could look up
Mary’s Boy Child (a staple of our Christmas Eve service),
the Doxology that we sing after communion, and
the rousing closing hymn When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder.
Week #1 - Learn A Bible Verse
For 2014, we’re going to try something new! Each week,
we will post a challenge for you. Try it out, and post your
results on the Church’s Facebook page. We’ll start
with something simple this week.
Challenge #1: Choose a Bible verse and memorize it, then
share your verse on the Church Facebook page. Try to pick
a verse more challenging than John 11:35 (the shortest verse
in the Bible) or John 3:16 (because you probably already know it)!
You can find some suggested verses here,
here. Also, you might want to look at this list of tips for
memorizing Bible verses.