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Henry David Thoreau said we fritter our lives away with details, and oh, how right he was.  When details start wearing me down and I begin to tire of life’s busyness, my heart usually leads me to the Great Smoky Mountains where Mother Nature promptly puts everything into perspective. But the last time I needed recharging, it wasn’t the Smoky Mountains that beckoned.   It was the simple, hardworking, and devout lifestyle of the Mennonites.
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Volume 1, Number 4
Summer 2014
The next Pastors' Gathering is scheduled for September 11, 2014 in Sevierville, Tennessee .
For more information, click here.
Shop for gifts in our Market.  Proceeds benefit Garlands of Grace Ministries.  Click here.
PASTORS' GATHERING
BIBLE STUDIES
A Quarterly Christian e-Magazine
1. YOGA FOR . . . STRESS RELIEF
Yoga reduces he physical effects of stress on the body.  By encouraging relaxation, yoga helps to lower the levels of the stress hormone cortisol.  Related benefits include lowering blood pressure and heart rate, improving digestion and boosting the immune system as well as easing symptoms of conditions such as anxiety, depression, fatigue, asthma and insomnia.  
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University of Tennessee
Knoxville 
Jack & Cynthia Heald
Don & Nancy Richards
". . . teaching will be as Garlands of Grace . . ."   Proverbs  1:9
Garlands of Grace     is trademarked.  We are not affiliated with other organizations who have taken the name.
"All Things Bright and Beautiful"
John Rutter
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Garlands of Grace Ministries © 2014.  All Rights Reserved.  Design by Elegant Events.
They sat side by side in the dark, holding hands.  My husband John, didn't see them until he flipped on the switch, filling the prayer room with light.

"I'm sorry," John said, " I didn't think anyone was in here."

"Not a problem," the old gentleman said with a wink. The two sit close together at the end of the pew that stretched along the far wall. He gathered his tiny, gray-haired wife a bit closer, and she smiled shyly, looking at her husband and then at the embarrassed youth pastor.

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Sometimes the answer to our prayers is “no” or “wait." There are situations when parents have to tell their children the same thing because the parents know what is best for their children.   The children cannot have their favorite dessert before dinner, and they cannot stay up late watching TV on a school night.  God, our heavenly Father, does the same thing for His children.  Sometimes, the very path that we do not want to take is the path that God has prepared for us. This can be very difficult when the path is cancer, a wayward child, or the death of a loved one. 

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WHEN GOD SAYS NO
By Carolyn Dale Newell
On their honeymoon, Bill and Pam Farrel were preparing for a night out. Bill was ready and waiting for Pam.  He lay on the hotel bed, content, watching his lovely new wife fuss with her hair and congratulating himself on his good taste in women. When Pam began to criticize her physical attributes, nothing Bill said seemed to comfort her.

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TWO BECAME ONE
By Joanna Weaver
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I have been a musician ever since I can remember! Maybe that’s because my innovative Christian mother thought (when she was pregnant with me in 1941-42) that if she sang, listened to good music and played the piano a lot it maybe, just maybe, could somehow help me to love music both before and after I was born. It worked!  From Day One I loved music and it has been my lifelong vocation.  

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TOP 11 REASONS TO TRY YOGA FOR LIFE
By Kay Morton

My invitation to Trinidad came out of the blue, God’s blue.  His timing and beyond a shadow of a doubt His calling.  It was in February of 2005 when the call came from a dear and long-time friend.  She asked after a brief conversation, “Hey, how would you like to go to Trinidad?”

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From the earliest of ages, most of us have heard to choose a path and follow it. Some always seem to do a good job at it, and others not so much.  Just like traveling down the highway, some of us seem to have a sixth sense when it comes to directions. Then there are others, who no matter how hard they try, can never seem to find their way even to the other side of town.

Have you ever been traveling down a road, with your destination clear, and with proper directions knew exactly where you are going, and then a detour sign becomes visible in the distance?
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DETOUR TO THE RIGHT PATH
By Harold Stockburger 
SHOP . . . YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO
Founder & President
Ecclesiastes 3:11a (ASV)
and enjoy life this summer!
LET ME BE YOUR MIRROR
By Joanna Weaver
IN PLAIN SIGHT
By Jo Harris
HOW CAN WE HELP PEOPLE TO STAY INTERESTED IN THE ARTS?
By Barbara C. Crouse
A glass of ice tea and a quiet summer evening allows us to fortify ourselves with music and a good read.

I encourage you to relish Robert J. Morgan's The Promise and Regis Martin's edited anthology of poetry entitled: Garlands of Grace.

While the kids are home this summer, seize every opportunity to make a real difference in their lives.
Strong Mothers, Strong Sons by Dr. Meg Meeker provides insights on how to raise extraordinary men.

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BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS 
By Joann Jordan
Try these recipes from Teri's new book - available Spring 2015!

APPETIZER:
Fried Green Tomatillos
ENTREE: 
Eggplant Lasagna
SALAD:
Watermelon & Fruit Cups
BREAD:
Zucchini Apple Bread
DESSERT:
Sweet Corn Ice Cream Cake

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TIME TO EAT Seasonal Food
By Teri Pizza
®
MY INVITATION TO TRINIDAD
By Elyse Casimir
Join a Garlands of Grace Bible study. For more information about studies in your area, please contact the National Office at 423.237.3623 or go to the Contact Us page.

Come, be a Garland Girl and learn to lead by learning to know the God you serve.  Women of all faiths, nationalities and ages are invited.  

Blessings, Joann
I love Summer, I think The Lord does too.  His beauty is all around us in the flowers, the sunrises and sunsets that seem to sparkle perfectly in the Summer heat.

I look forward to dressing cooler, spending evenings on the balcony and talking with my dear husband as the sun goes down.

God loves the seasons and each one is important to Him; but secretly, I think He loves Summer best - like I do. 
But, then again, He is Lord over all -- so, I guess that's why He made four seasons and so many interesting places like Trinidad and New Jersey!  Be sure to read how a Jersey Garland Girl found herself in Trinidad helping with VBS (Vacation Bible School).

Above all God's creations, He loves you and me.  Enjoy this amazing Summer edition with our talented writers, interesting books and a special article on music.  I encourage you to read and enjoy.

Blessings as you run to the beaches and put your feet in the sand or head to the coolness of the mountains and relax on balconies. There are so many wonderful learning and entertainment opportunities in the good ole Summertime. 

Our eMagazine has come full circle.  We have published four quarters beginning last fall.  Thank you for your faithfulness in reading and signing the Guest Book.  We have been watching our stats with great interest.  Since September 1, 2013, we have had visitors from 54 countries!

Please remember us in prayer as we continue to spread the Good News that Jesus loves you and me.

See you inside the eMagazine!
Although Independence Day is a celebration of independence, democracy, and the birth of a nation, we must never forget those who sacrificed the best years of their youth, and countless others who made the ultimate sacrifice so that succeeding generations may enjoy their freedoms.

Have a safe holiday and be sure to thank veterans and those currently serving in our military around the globe.
The first Independence Day Parade in the Nation marks its 39th year by honoring Military Veterans and other U.S. Military Heroes. The annual Gatlinburg (TN) 4th of July Midnight Parade leads off at 12:00 AM (midnight) on Friday, July 4, 2015.

Plan to join us for this award-winning parade.

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NEW BIBLE STUDY - PIGEON FORGE, TN
Monday, September 8
2:00 pm
United Methodist Church
Pigeon Forge, TN
Joann Jordan will be leading a 4-week study based on The Promise, a book by Robert J. Morgan.  You may purchase the book from Amazon.com in multiple formats or a local Christian bookstore. Everyone is welcome.   If you have any questions, please contact Joann Jordan by email at joynj99@aol.com.
SAVE THE DATES

March 27 - 29, 2015
Music Road Hotel
Pigeon Forge, TN

CELEBRATE OUR 20TH ANNIVERSARY!
Gather your girlfriends and plan for an inspirational weekend in Pigeon Forge, TN!  Bus transportation available from the Northeast and Midwest.
Please view this video about an exciting opportunity for you to help Cynthia Heald launch a new teaching series.
For additional information, click here.