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Relationship help is on the way
Stephen Ministry
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When the words and phrases “delicate,” “fragile,” “cared for” and “precious” come up in conversation, many ladies think of their mothers’ china and crystal, newborns and a grandmother’s love and attention. Guys might think of special things in their lives such as power tools, favorite sports teams and their first car or truck — and we’re proud of that!  
Egos, after all, can be very fragile and sensitive, and most tangible items, like those mentioned above, need to be cared for.
What many people don’t realize is that these words can be used to describe relationships. Relationships are gifts from God and they are precious, delicate and fragile. They must be cared for.
Think for a moment about the relationship between husbands and wives, who pledge before God to love and honor one another.  Think about parents and their children — not just during the “growing years,” but for a lifetime. What about brothers and sisters, friends and people we work with or for?
It seems to happen to so many of us. We grow apart over time and lose touch with the values we thought we could and wanted to live by. We become apathetic and feel emotionally separated from those we are supposed to be in relationships with. We make poor choices, develop bad habits, neglect our loved ones and take too much or too little for granted.  
We find that excuses come easy — “There’s just not enough time;” “Things are just not the same as they once were;” and “It’s someone else’s problem!”
We separate ourselves from our family members and friends and the possibility of a close and lasting relationship. Our value systems have been diluted by every excuse or slight of personal ego in the book.  Does this life scenario sound familiar?
Stephen Ministers make a difference in relationships every day. They are trained to listen, understand and work through relationship issues with those who seek help. Sessions with Stephen Ministers are one-on-one, totally confidential and gender-sensitive. The counselors are compassionate, caring and faith-driven. The service, which is free, is in accordance with a value system designed and grounded by faith and Christian morals.  
In many cases, Stephen Ministers refer clients to other professionals and agencies that specialize in helping people with specific needs.
Stephen Ministers deal with a variety of circumstances on a daily basis. They find individuals and couples who are dealing with physical and emotional separation, and abuse in many forms (substance, physical, emotional, geriatric and child-related).  
These trained counselors can address problems pertaining to single parenthood,  such as children having problems in school or at home. The ministers talk with couples who are contemplating divorce or separation, or people who have gone through divorce and are having trouble coping. They can deal with the emotional and financial stress of job loss. Stephen Ministers will be there before and after babies are born, helping with pre- and post-natal issues.
They are there for individuals and families that have been torn apart and estranged because of misunderstandings, death, serious illness, communication problems, anger and stubborn attitudes. Stephen Ministers are also there for people who have separated themselves from the greatest relationship of all — their relationship with their faith and Jesus Christ.  
We are there for you. All of the circumstances mentioned above — and many more — can be dealt with. There is help for a path to recovery and reconciliation, driven by faith and God’s love.
Stephen Ministers are here for you and yours. They do make a difference everyday in many people’s lives. For an appointment for you or someone you know, call John at First Baptist Church at 320-7840.
For more information about the Global Stephen Program, go to
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