A Breath of Fresh Air
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A Woman's World
A Word in Season
Acting Up
Cyber Walk
Faith Seekers
Golden Apples
Heaven Bound
Just Between Men
Take it to Heart
Teen Truth
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The Treehouse
Through Their Eyes
'Tis the Season
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We Are the Church

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"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom,
and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. For through
me your days will be many, and years will be added to your life.

~ Proverbs 9:10-11 NIV ~

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas – plenty of rest, refreshment and recreation with family and friends.

Now with Christmas behind us for another 12 months, here we are at the start of a brand new year … and the start of a brand new issue of FaithWriters’ Magazine.

Although I’m not the best resolution maker in the world – as you’ll find out when you read my article, "Ready, Aim, Resolve!" – we have definitely resolved to give you a great month’s reading for our January 2005 Issue.

God’s a Garbage Picker
From Trash to Treasure, A Chance to Start Over
By Dian Moore

Throughout all time, God, most likely disguised as a bum, searches through alleys and ghettos and picks through the trash for treasure millions. He sticks His hands into piles of reeking refuse and selects from the garbage a discarded piece.

He constantly searches, looking for the vilest piece of rubbish He can find to take home and restore. He sees splendor where others see sewage.

What kind of rubbish does God look for? The stench-ridden, dirtiest, foulest pieces of junk He can find. Why?

Read Complete Article...

Here are just some of the things you’ll find inside …

For starters, we’ve included a very helpful Contents page to help you quickly and easily find the stories, articles, poems and authors that you want to read – without having to search high and low for them.

New Year is probably the most popular time for starting afresh, and there are a lot of stories and articles with that in mind in this month’s issue. But our Front Page Feature goes way beyond a New Year’s fresh start. I’m sure that Dian Moore’s ultimate starting over story, "God’s a Garbage Picker", will touch your heart. I know it certainly did mine!

Ladies … do you want to know a secret? It’s something that’s been kept closely guarded by our men folk for countless generations, and John Hunt is ready to spill the beans! Make sure you read his very honest article, "The Guise" in our Merry Heart department. It’s guaranteed to give you a smile.

In Acting Up, David Ian really challenges us to think outside the box when it comes to presenting the real Jesus in our dramatic productions. His article, "Jesus – Headliner" definitely challenged me to stop thinking in some of my old, sterile, preconceived ways. If you are responsible for the drama team in your church, then this will be excellent food for thought.

Ummm, have you defragged lately? If your answer is, "No," and you own a computer, then you must read Patricia Ouellette’s latest Step-By-Step Tutorial in Cyber Walk. I must admit I had been a bit slack in the old "defragging" department lately – but after reading Trish’s excellent article, I did it straight away. Trish also has a very straight and timely word to say about the hugely popular P2P programs for file sharing – if you have teenagers who download music in this way, then you really must read her article, "P2P – Is It Really Worth the Risk?"

Our new Department for January is one that I believe will be a delight for many of our readers. Through Their Eyes is a department totally devoted to the dramatic retelling of wonderful stories of faith. As the new Editor for this department, Kenn Gividen, put it, they are Bible Stories for Adults – through the eyes of those who were there.

A few months ago when I first read Debra Sparks’ beautiful story, "Winterpast," I found myself reaching for the tissues. Reading this sumptuously written piece again just recently as I prepared it for our Golden Apples department, I found myself doing exactly the same thing. This is a story for anyone who has been hurt or betrayed by the ones they love. (Just make sure you have the tissues on hand!)

Have you been following our "Desert Found Faith" series in Heaven Bound? If you have, then you won’t want to miss Part 3 of this true-life story in this Issue. This series is absolutely gripping.

A big welcome this month to a much loved favorite from FaithWriters – Rev. James Snyder. James’ stories from the parsonage are always a treat and I think you’ll enjoy his first magazine contribution, "You Know It’s the New Year When …" in our Just Between Men Department.

Fancy the task of raising seven children … and home schooling them as well? Meet our delightful new columnist, Kay Brown, as she steps out in fear and trembling to share a monthly lighthearted look at the tough job of parenting in our Parents’ Survival Guide Department. I think Kay’s column, "Joy for the Journey," will be a real encouragement for those of us who have just a few less family members! Kay’s first article, "Parenting in Fear and Trembling", says it all!

Our Editor for We Are the Church, Patricia Sheets, has a way of including more than a dash of humor in even the strongest of messages. Her column this month is no exception. Meet "Poor Ole Miss Minnie Mabel" – her story may sound very familiar.

I asked FaithWriters' members to share some of the things they've learnt during 2004, and you'll find their life lessons all through this month's magazine. No matter how much we've discovered over the last 12 months, one thing's for sure - we have a whole lot more to learn!

And while we're talking about "life lessons", make sure you check out the newest FaithWriters' Book - "Learning for Life". I know you'll love it!

And as always, there is SO much more! Plenty to keep you reading right through to the end of January.

So until next time, may God bless you as you step out into another wonderful year!

Deb Porter