The Witness

Volume 41, Issue 10

March 8, 2023

You Are Enough

The cry of the Israelites has now come to me; I have also seen how the Egyptians oppress them. 10 Now go, I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt.” 11 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” 12 He said, “I will be with you, and this shall be the sign for you that it is I who sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God on this mountain” (Exodus 3:9-12).

Have you ever doubted yourself? Felt insecure? Believed you were not good enough? As the above passage in Exodus reveals, even Moses, one of the most successful leaders of all time, had moments of self-doubt. Though he had experienced the miracle of God appearing to him in a burning bush, Moses was insecure about his worthiness to go and stand before Pharaoh. He did not believe he had the oral ability to speak to a king on God’s behalf (Exodus 4:10). He did not believe his message would be accepted. He did not believe he was enough to fulfill the call God had placed before him.

Like Moses, we have all had moments of insecurity. We have all experienced that sinking feeling that we are not enough to do the task set before us. Whether it is our own perceived lack of knowledge, skill, ability, or appearance, we know what it is like to doubt ourselves. Though many wonderful advances and new ways of communicating and sharing information have come through the Digital Age, for many, social media has also intensified their feelings of inadequacy. Whether it is not getting as many “likes” as someone else, making unhealthy comparisons to someone else’s perceived level of success, experiencing FOMO (fear of missing out) when friends post pictures of their outings, receiving hurtful comments, or developing body image insecurities by constantly viewing the unrealistic, filtered photos of others, the content of social media, pop-culture, and mainstream media is constantly telling us that we are not enough. We need to be prettier, thinner, richer, smarter, holier, happier, healthier, stronger, and all around better in order to measure up.

Though developing healthier habits and lifestyles is important for us all, there is an important message found throughout scripture that is easily missed in our self-help, DIY world, and that is you are enough. This is the message Isaiah described to the people of Israel, declaring, “For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I give Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in exchange for you. Because you are precious in my sight and honored and I love you . . .” (Isaiah 43:3b-4a).

By this point in Israel’s history, they had made many mistakes. The time of the judges and great monarchy had passed; the nation of Israel had divided into two kingdoms; the Northern tribes had made a deal with the Assyrians and were scattered as a result; the Southern tribes had succumbed to Babylon and the Temple had been destroyed. God’s people had broken every commandment, forsaken God many times, and repeatedly neglected the poor and oppressed. And yet, God’s message to them through Isaiah was that this same group of people was precious, honored, and loved.

Despite all of their mistakes and shortcomings, sin and brokenness, God not only declared his love for them, but he called them precious and honored. The Hebrew word precious is also translated, prized, highly valuable, and costly. That same word was used to describe the costliness of life (Psalm 49:8) and the prize of fine gold (Isaiah 13:12). Through the prophet, this is the word God used to describe his people. He wanted them to know that they were his treasure; they would always be enough.

This Sunday, we will begin a new series that will remind us of a biblical truth that can often get lost in our lives; a message that some have never been told and others of us so easily forget amidst the world’s criticisms and our own insecurities: You are loved. You are precious and honored. You are God’s treasure. You are enough.


This Sunday, March 12th

Please note: Daylight Savings Time begins this Sunday! Make sure to "spring forward" an hour in order to be at church on time!

This Sunday Travis will bring his message entitled, "You Are Enough"; the scripture is Romans 4:1-5, 13-17. We will also hear from the Pandemonium Steel Drum Band in both the 8:45 and 11:00 AM services. If you cannot join us in person, tune in through our website or Facebook group page. Reminder: Sunday School begins at 9:50 AM.

Wednesdays @ VBC

Tonight is our Ministry Matters meeting (6:15 PM) in lieu of Adult Bible Study. Dinner (5:30 PM for those who signed up), Youth Missions Group (6:00 PM), Children's Choirs (6:15 PM), and adult choir rehearsals (usual times) are all also on the agenda.

Next Wednesday, March 15th our dinner menu will be chicken alfredo, broccoli, bread, and dessert. Please be sure to make or change dinner reservations by calling the church office (540-343-7685) by 5:00 PM the Monday prior to dinner. Please note: effective March 15th, dinner prices will be reduced as a result of lower than anticipated food expenses this year. Dinner costs will be $6/adult (ages 13+), $4/child (ages 4-12), children 3 and under are free, and the max per family (living in the same household) is $18. First-time guests are complimentary.

Please note that there will be no Wednesday night activities (except Chancel Choir rehearsal) Wednesday, March 29th due to Roanoke County Schools' Spring Break.

JOY Seniors

Upcoming Events:

  • A trip to Thomas Jefferson's Poplar Forest is planned for Thursday, March 23rd. The cost of the tour is $15, plus lunch on your own at Liberty Station. We will depart VBC at 9 AM.
  • Pack your own lunch for our next JOY Luncheon, Tuesday, March 28th at noon in the gym. Dessert will be provided. Entertainment by musician Bryan Ratliff.
  • A tour of The Greenbrier is planned for Thursday, April 20th. We will have a private, guided tour of the bunker and interior. The cost is $60, plus lunch on your own at Cook's Country Kitchen.
  • Our first overnight trip of 2023 will be to Lancaster, PA May 9 - 11 to see the Sight & Sound production of "Moses." We will also enjoy a ride on the Strasburg Railroad through Amish Country, visit Landis Valley Farm & Museum, enjoy a dinner/show, and shop at the Farmer's Market. Pricing can be found at the JOY Senior table, and a payment plan can be set up (see Mary Kendrick).
  • Join us October 17 - 20 for a trip to the Ark Encounter and Creation Museum. This trip will also include a riverboat dinner cruise on the Ohio River. Find more details, including pricing, at the JOY Senior table. Payment plans are available (see Mary Kendrick).

WMU Reception

Please note that there is a WMU Reception in the small dining room Sunday, March 19th, 2:00 - 4:00 PM.

Also, the WMU would like to remind everyone that VBC is collecting for the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for North American Missions each Sunday in March. There is an envelope available in your box of envelopes, or you can find appropriate envelopes available in each pew. We hope to reach our church goal of $2,450 in support of North American missions, and we thank you in advance for your help.

Thrive Student Ministry

  • We will have all our usual events this Sunday afternoon (volleyball practice, Youth Choir, Extreme).
  • We're looking forward to DNOW weekend (March 17th - 19th)!
  • Also, mark your calendars for our Youth Mission Trip to Nashville June 18th - 23rd. Cost is $175/person. Please click here for all the details.

Passport Kids' Camp

This year's Kids' Camp will be June 14th - 17th at Eagle Eyrie. It is for all 3rd - 5th graders. The total cost is $175, $75 of which is due as a deposit by March 31st. Please click here for a packet with ALL the details!

Edible Easter Eggs

The Preteens are selling Edible Easter Eggs as a camp fundraiser. They come in 3 flavors - Reese's, Butter Cream, & Oreo - and must be pre-ordered. Eggs are $4 each, or two for $7. Please see a preteen or stop by the church office to place your order and make your payment. All orders are due by Sunday, March 26th. Eggs will be available for pick-up in the kitchen on Palm Sunday, April 2nd, 10:00 - 10:45 AM and 12:00 - 12:30 PM.

Supper Club

A new Supper Club/Life Group will begin later this month, with plans to meet once every month or two. This month's Supper Club theme will be GAME NIGHT, and it will be held in the gym Saturday, March 25th, 5:30 - 7:30 PM. We ask that each family group bring a dish to share, and dinner will be potluck style. Paper products and cutlery will be provided. Each person should bring your own beverage(s) in a cup with a lid. If you have a favorite game (& rules/instructions) - Monopoly, Pop the Pig, Uno, Sorry - bring it to share! We will have game tables set up and hope to rotate to play 2-3 different games during the evening as we fellowship. This will be FUN for ALL AGES!

The Dr. Charlie J. Lovelace, III

Memorial College Scholarship

Applications are now being accepted for the Lovelace Scholarship, which is awarded each year to a graduating senior who is a member of Vinton Baptist and who will be attending a four-year college or university. The $1,000 scholarship is awarded for the student's first year of school. An application can be printed by clicking here, or you can pick one up in the church office. Completed forms must be returned to the church office no later than Friday, April 7, 2023.

Journey to the Cross

Families, mark your calendars for Saturday, April 8th, 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM for our VBS-type children's Easter event! Families will move through stations, learning more about the life and death of Jesus and what that means for us.

We also need volunteers for this event (2 volunteers per station). Please click here to volunteer. Questions? See Whitney.

Vacation Bible School

It's official - this year's VBS will be STELLAR!!! Our dates are Sunday, July 23rd - Thursday, July 27th, 5:30 - 8:00 PM daily. We will have a volunteer meeting Sunday, March 19th at 12:15 PM in the gym. If you're interested in learning more about volunteer opportunities, please plan to attend. See Jessie Burgess, Christina Epperly, or Whitney Russell with questions.

Joe Brugh

316 E. Madison Avenue

Vinton VA 24179-4528

Thank you to the the Wednesday Women's Bible Study group for their donation to the VBC Food Pantry!

Thank you to the Esther Sunday School class for their donation to Homebound Easter Surprises!

Thank you to the Pete Creasy Sunday School class for their donation to the VBC Food Pantry!

VBC Easter Offering

This year's VBC Easter Offering will be distributed equally among the Boys & Girls Club, Keystone Community Center, and GraceInside Prison Chaplain ministry.

Christian sympathy is extended to Andy & Dottie Morris and Gerry Miller-Snyder in the death of Connie "Susie" Huffman.

Congratulations to Patsy Crowder in the birth of great-granddaughter Isla Faye Richlak February 28th, weighing 8 lbs., 1 oz; parents are Mike & Jayne Marshall Richlak, and big sister is Maeve; grandparents are Steve & Darlene Marshall, and proud uncle is Owen Marshall. Congratulations also to Barry & Carrie Robertson in the birth of their first grandchild, Eli Scott Phenes, on March 5th to Tyler & Ashlie Phenes; Larry & Sandy Bowyer are proud great-grandparents.

CONGRATULATIONS to Jean McGuire on her 90th birthday coming up on March 14th! Jean's address is Our Lady of the Valley, 650 N. Jefferson Street, #411, Roanoke VA 24016.

Blessing Box Needs:

Dish soap, peanut butter, lotion (any kind/size), Hamburger Helper meals, and pancake mix. Donations can be dropped off at the Missions Tables.

Homebound Easter Surprises

Donations of the following items are needed to assemble Easter baskets and boxes for our Homebound folks: small tissue packs, sugar free candies, fuzzy gripper socks, large print word searches, adult coloring books & colored pencils, travel size lotion, travel size comb/brush, travel size hand sanitizer, travel size lint rollers, band aids, and 300-piece puzzles. There is a bin available at the Missions Tables to drop your donations; please turn in all donations by March 19th.

These Easter surprises will be ready to deliver to our Homebound folks by Wednesday, March 22nd. If you would be willing to deliver a few baskets/boxes, please contact the church office at 540-343-7685. Questions? See Joanna Williamson or Rita Martin.

Bible Reading Plan

I don't know about you, but I've been struggling in Leviticus the past few days. Recent chapters about leprosy - and what to do in this situation and that situation - are quite tedious. From my perspective, it appears that the priests often double as doctors. Here's some insight from other sources:

The NRSV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible (2019) explains that the phrase "a leprous disease" (as in 13:2) is understood as "'a scaly skin condition.'" It's most likely NOT what we know today as leprosy; instead, it encompasses multiple skin conditions that have to do with scaliness on the skin. "Here the issue regarding a scaly (with lesions) skin disease is not infection/contagion in the sense that it would make other people physically sick. Rather, the concern is with protection of the sphere of holiness, centered at the sanctuary, from defilement by ritual impurity."

Fee & Stuart's How to Read the Bible Book by Book explains, "that clean here means acceptable to God in worship. Unclean means unacceptable to God and banned from the tabernacle, or sometimes (in the case of skin diseases) from the encampment itself." The instruction given in chapters 11-16 prioritize setting the Israelite people apart for service/devotion to God. "The laws seem to be partly a matter of simple hygiene and partly symbolic obedience, but always in light of the divine presence (15:31)."

Remember that God is still establishing his covenant with the Israelites, and what we're reading in Leviticus is simply part of that covenant. Fee & Stuart remind us, "Crucial here is the fact that Israel is still camped at the foot of Sinai - a wilderness area - where they will spend a full year being molded into a people before God will lead them toward the conquest of Canaan. Here they will need double protections - from diseases of various kinds and from one another!"

Click here for a printable copy of our Bible reading plan.

Thank you so much for the cards, flowers, and other expressions of sympathy in the recent death of Mark's father. The love and care of our church family means so much.

Kim, Mark, Cross, & Virginia Yonce

March 2023 Calendar