Basic Church Info

living_waters_church_of_God_2013Please see our Church Info pages for more detailed information about what we offer and to meet our leaders and teachers.

We are a family oriented church promoting growth and development in faith in Christ.

We invite you and your whole family to come visit us!

We hold regular services of worship each Sunday with Sunday School for all ages.

Sunday School – 9:30 AM
Sunday Service – 10:30 AM

On Wednesdays we hold the Christian Learning in Action (CLIA) Bible study in the sanctuary for adults and in classrooms for children and teens.

CLIA Wednesdays at 7:00 PM
Royal Rangers – Wednesdays 7:00 PMlivingthewordbold

Amped is our Youth Group for ages 12-18

We welcome you to join us or contact us from the Contact Us page link if you have any questions.

Church Office Hours:
Monday – Wednesday – Friday
8:00 AM to 4:30 PM
724-222-1558
965 Weirich Avenue Washington, PA 15301

There is joy in fellowship in Christ among His followers. We would love to have you join with us in worship whether just visiting the Washington, PA area, or if you are looking for a church home.

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Aug 02

An Example of Applying God’s Word to Your Life

In Matthew chapter 18 Jesus is responding to the question the disciples posed of who is going to be greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven. There is so much that can be learned from this chapter, but the goal here is to point out how at least one disciple paid attention and applied this word to his life.

Peter was obviously paying attention to the lesson. In Matthew 18:21 he asks Jesus a question about what Jesus just said about forgiving others. Peter wanted to know to what degree he should extend forgiveness. Different takes have been used when expounding this passage. Some may see Peter as wanting an out for how many times he should forgive someone. Maybe he just wanted clarification. We still do that today as we learn God’s word. We often want to know how much or to what degree or where we should draw lines.

Peter got his clarification on how many times he should forgive someone who sins against him. The common teaching of the day was to forgive three times. Peter went to a greater degree and asked Jesus if he should forgive seven times. Jesus, when he replied to forgive “seventy times seven times” (490 times) was not actually giving a set number for people to follow. Rather, he was teaching unlimited forgiveness in a way that could be understood by the degrees he and Peter were discussing. Remember, the teaching of the day was to forgive three times, Peter more than doubled the degree when he asked about forgiving others, and Jesus extended Peter’s amount another seventy times.

The entire chapter is about how every individual believer is supremely important to God. So much so that Jesus told Peter in Matthew 18:14 that our Father in heaven is not willing that even one of these little ones should perish. Not one! Peter took this word being taught in that moment and assimilated it into his being. How is that known? We see it when we read what Peter wrote much later when he was teaching the early church. Peter writes later in his life in 2 Peter 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”

Peter remembered the lesson Jesus taught that day. He remembered what Jesus said—the words quoted of him in Matthew 18:14. It became a part of him because he desired it and allowed it. If it were not part of of him, he would not likely have left with the Gentile men to go to preach the Gospel to Cornelius no matter what vision he had. He would have followed his own thought up degrees and boundaries rather than what Jesus taught him (Read Acts 10:1-11:18).

What are you allowing God’s word to accomplish in your life? What degrees have you set in following Jesus? What boundaries have you established? Are they based on God’s word? Do you even know what God’s word teaches about the issues that are personal to you and your walk in faith?

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1117

Jul 26

Fog

Fog at Cedar Creek Park. Sized and oriented for use as a background picture on a smartphone. Free for personal use. Click on thumbnail for full size image.

Fog at Cedar Creek Park. Sized and oriented for use as a background picture on a smartphone. Free for personal use. Click on thumbnail for full size image.

Fog is water droplets making a cloud formation at or near ground level. It is also appropriate to use when describing what happens to the bathroom mirror after you get out of a hot shower. Additionally, we correctly use the word to describe not understanding what someone is saying such as when we say, “I haven’t the foggiest idea of what you are talking about.” And, it applies to cloudiness or obscurity of thought too.

Fog obscures or clouds things, especially things in the distance. In most foggy situations I have been in, I could clearly see what was close to me no matter how obscure the things ahead of me were. Sometimes a little fogginess can help you see what is right in front of you clearer.

The fog takes away your distraction of what is out ahead. We see a demonstration of this when driving in fog. We get intently focused on what is just ahead—what is just at the limit of what we can see through the fog. We adjust our speed of progression—if we are wise—to the thickness of the fog too.

Fog rolling into our lives can be good or bad. It can help us see more clearly what the Lord wants us to see that is right in front of our faces. It could also obscure something we are by faith progressing toward, distracting us to focus too much on the here and now instead of walking by faith and not by sight. It takes some spiritual wisdom to figure out if that fogginess is good or bad.

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1108

Jul 21

Contact Info for Women’s Ministry

If you would like more information about the various women’s ministry events taking place, please contact Tammy Singo at lwcogwomensministry@gmail.com.

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1100

Jun 30

Wednesday Evening Classes Temporarily Halted

No air conditioning in the lower level of the church along with the summer heat continually poses an issue for Wednesday evening classes at Living Waters Church of God. The sanctuary and foyer are fully air conditioned and comfortable when it is 90 degrees outside, but not the lower level. The adult class meets in the sanctuary while all of the other age groups meet downstairs. It gets really hot, and the humidity makes it worse. We are cancelling Wednesday evening classes from July 16 – August 6, 2014. If temperatures are more agreeable for the week following August 6, Wednesday evening classes will resume.

This also gives a much needed break to our teachers who faithfully volunteer their services week in and week out year round. Teachers devote considerable time and resources toward preparing for each class. This break permits them to enjoy some summer activities with family and friends. Pray for your teachers and also for provision to get air conditioning to the lower level of the church.

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1090

Jun 14

OCD and Other Brain Disorders in the Church?

The Lord has placed something on my heart for some time concerning Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and other such disorders in the church. Mild cases of it are obviously rampant in the general population.  Quite a number of people who have the disorder suffer with it to a degree where it hinders functionality in daily life. Just a few questions reveals any tendencies toward it, and simple observation can reveal it in those taking great strides to conceal it. Not only is it easily found in the general population, but it is found within the church too.

Understand from the get-go, I have zero professional training in this. Anything I know or think I know is from the Lord and self-education. So, take that for what you think it is worth. The point is, this is something I feel impressed by the Lord to address. However, before doing that, I need to explain what led to my interest in this type of subject in the first place.

Going back to childhood I have had an interest in medical science. My parents had me later in life, and I spent part of my childhood and teen years caring for my father. Then, my mother’s kidneys failed. Learning about the Alzheimer’s my father suffered from and the kidney issues my mother suffered from helped me understand what was going on in their bodies. I had a desire to know how all things worked from my earliest memories, and this includes how our bodies and minds function. Wanting to know how things worked helped me hone observational and analytical skills over the years.

When my mother went on dialysis, my engineering mind desired to understand how the procedure worked. Whenever I wondered about anything from plaques causing brain dysfunction to how dialysis machines filtered toxins from blood, I would read books about it or ask questions of professionals who already knew. I still do that today. For every fiction novel I have ever read, I probably have read a dozen technical or professional books on various subjects. I worked seven years on the midnight shift as a security guard. That left  plenty of free time to read library books about any subject I was inquisitive about.

I like to know how things work as much as I like to fix things that are broken. The need to fix things myself was often due to interest as well as financial reasons. I remember learning how to replace the brakes on my car from books and asking questions of those who had done it before. The reason was because I could not afford a mechanic to do the work for me. I fixed things other people discarded so I could own some things I could not otherwise afford.

I did not have health insurance when I was first diagnosed with diabetes, but that did not stop the doctor from wanting me to come in for regular checkups. I could not afford to go, so the doctor stopped prescribing medication. In my case, the medication was insulin and syringes. I learned that the type of insulin I was taking did not require a prescription. It could be purchased over-the-counter. I could not get syringes in Pennsylvania without a prescription, but I could get them in both West Virginia and Virginia without one. I found a way to survive by educating myself. However, I also saw the severe limitations medical science had in fixing things that were broken. They fixed my mom with a kidney transplant, but they could not fix my dad. They could give me something to keep me alive, but they could not fix me.

When I believed on the Lord Jesus as my Savior, I learned more about who I actually happen to be. I am created to be an eternal being by God, but not eternal in this flesh corrupted by sin. I am alive for a time in this flesh—my body. I have a body, soul and a spirit. The body is my literal physical body. The soul refers to the mind. You can think of it as the seat of our intellect, emotions and etcetera—the control center of the body. Some of that mind is under my direct control, and some of it is autonomic and regulated by natural processes that God has created. The spirit is the eternal part. The actual who of what you and I happen to be.

There is a two way street between the spirit and the flesh, and that street is through our minds. As Christians, we know that this universe has been corrupted by sin. The bible is plain in that death came by sin (Romans 5:12). These bodies we are alive in are obviously corrupted. They are subject to illness and eventually death.

The physical mind (brain) is subject to this same corruption. Anything can go wrong from structural abnormalities to issues with neurotransmitter function. We hear a lot about  serotonin due to medications that manipulate it in the brain. Of particular note is the class of drugs known as selective serotonin reuptake inhibiters (SSRIs), which are marketed heavily to those who suffer from clinical depression even though they are also effective for OCD, anxiety and other disorders. However, there are many more neurotransmitters as well as issues that can occur in the brain that can interfere with its proper functioning. Brain injuries due to trauma from impact forces or chemical poisoning can radically change how our minds function, exacerbating the corruption that already is present due to the original fall in the Garden of Eden.

The bible tells us to walk by faith and not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7). The apostle Paul talked about bringing the body into subjection (1 Corinthians 9:27). We are supposed to be in control of our flesh. Many think of not giving into a standard list of temptations that includes sexual lusts, anger and other such things. This is true, but there is more we need to take control of. Something the Lord showed me some time ago through those who teach his word and self-study (do you see a trend here?) is that the mind is the pathway where either your spirit will rule your flesh or your flesh will ruin your spirit! OCD and other disorders can ruin your spirit if permitted to continue unabated.

Ephesians 6:11 says in the King James Version, “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” The word “wiles” is translated from a Greek word that is a compound word, which means “amid travel.” We understand the obvious definition of “wiles” in this context referring to methods of trickery perpetrated by the devil, and that is correct. However, there is a bit more to that word, and I believe the Lord has shown me an analogy to explain it. To understand what I feel is a deeper meaning, consider not only the wiles or methods of trickery, but the route used to accomplish them.

Imagine your mind as a pristine field of wheat with every stalk upright and growing strong. Imagine you are seeing this field from an elevated position. Now imagine a small animal, maybe a coyote, making its way from one end of the field to the other. In the process of its traveling over (this is part of the definition of “wiles”), it knocks down some of the stalks of wheat.

From your vantage point above the field, you can easily see the narrow pathway made across it by the meandering coyote traveling from point A to point B. The coyote’s footsteps have knocked down stalks of wheat along its path, making a clear pattern. Now, imagine a larger animal, maybe a deer, following that small path made some time ago by the coyote. The deer knocks down more stalks of wheat as it follows the path made by the coyote. Then, maybe a couple of deer try to squeeze through that path, making it  wider. They are followed by a large bear or cow that flattens a wide swath of grain. Now that the path is established, it can get bigger and bigger until a whole herd of buffalo can now easily travel back and forth across the field. Now switch gears for a moment and instead of animals and fields, it is the whispering of that old snake—our enemy,  the devil.

All distractions, obstructions and sin that hinder us in our walk with the Lord begin in our minds (James 1:14-15). They start out as small pathways that our enemy would like nothing better than to establish in our physical minds. These pathways give him access to us on the inside. Think about this for a moment. Would our enemy care at all to access us through these pathways if it would not damage the spiritual beings we happen to be? The mind, the physical brain, is all about knowing, and the original sin in the garden was about knowing. It was the first access granted to the devil to the spiritual eternal beings we are through the flesh we are alive in. The trick in the beginning was to manipulate free will into destruction, and it is the same trick he is using today.

Jesus has made it plain and clear that Satan has been conquered (John 16:33). Jesus has overcome or subdued the world. We can walk in this same victory. The kick in the teeth is caused by our own selves and our own free will to choose. Just because you are saved and filled with the Baptism of the Holy Ghost does not mean you relinquish that free will to choose. This goes back to Paul’s words of continually forcing his body (flesh) into subjection. As a Christian you have the instant justification of being declared not guilty of your sin through your faith in Jesus. His sacrifice, and your faith in it and his resurrection, make you sanctified (set apart) for God. Now, every single day of the rest of your life in the flesh is a process of growth referred to as continual sanctification.

Every individual believer in Christ walks in this to their own unique degree. The thing is, all of us can progress to a much greater degree. It all comes down to what you are going to do with your free will. Jesus has indeed overcome the world, and you should be of good cheer because of it. That was a statement to encourage us to accomplish in and through him what we could not do on our own. There is no need for our brains of flesh to control our spiritual freedom through how our minds function.

You have a literal brain made of flesh. An article published by the Scientific American in January 2011 titled “100 Trillion Connections: New Efforts Probe and Map the Brain’s Detailed Architecture” declares that the human brain has at least 100 billion neurons that make at least 100 trillion connections or pathways if you will. Your physical brain permits the functioning of your mind. Though it is a storehouse of memories and the functional means for you to do everything from breathing to feeling joy in the embrace of a loved one, it is not the whole you. You are body, soul (mind) and spirit. One day we are promised a new uncorrupted and incorruptible body, but for now we have to deal with these ones.

All that brings me to this conclusion. OCD is linked to functional disorders and even inheritable factors of the physical brain. The physical brain is not operating optimally. However, it is highly treatable. If there is no problem in going to the doctor for an influenza vaccine, to have a broken bone set or to get a prescription for antibiotics to treat a bacterial infection, then there should be no problem getting help for a functional  brain disorder. It is taking control of your flesh in much the same manner as the apostle Paul was referring to.

Even when King Hezekiah was granted 15 more years to his life, the prophet Isaiah said to put a “cake of figs” (a medical treatment) on the “boil.” The end of that verse says, “and he recovered” (2 Kings 20:7). This was just before the great miracle of time being reversed on the sun dial that Hezekiah chose as a sign to be sure what Isaiah said would come to pass. God has great things planned for your life no matter who you happen to be. You can do better, be better, get better and feel better. Pathways formed in your mind for myriad reasons over every moment of your life can control you, or you can be transformed by the renewing (renovation) of your mind (what you know, perceive, feel are aware of and will) (Romans 12:2).

Lord willing we can continue with this later. If you have any interest in pursuing this from a Christian standpoint to a greater degree, please comment accordingly.

 

Information about OCD that may help in spotting symptoms in yourself or a loved one. A professional opinion is required to diagnose OCD and any other disorders.

National Institute of Mental Health (NIH) Website – What is Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)?

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May 19

We’re Gonna Miss This Fellow Who Went Back to Michigan!

Brother Jeff Barksdale

Brother Jeff Barksdale

The oil and gas industry in Pennsylvania has a lot of workers that live in other states staying here for months at a time even though their permanent residences are in other states. Hotels, motels, long term recreational vehicle campgrounds, apartments and other places have filled up with workers who are separated from their families for long periods of time. Many of these men and women are Christians looking for local churches to attend. Others may only need to be reached out to with the Gospel message of Jesus, and they too will be looking for a place for fellowship and to receive God’s word.

At Living Waters Church of God, we are happy to have enjoyed brother Jeff Barksdale’s warmth and humor. Job changes have him going back to Michigan now, but he wants to come back. We got to meet Jeff’s wife, and now we think of them as family. We hope that, Lord willing, he and his family can come back to Pennsylvania. Every believer is a valuable member of the Body of Christ. We hope to see you, your wife and your family again soon Jeff! Pastor Mike welcomes you back even though you are a Cincinnati Reds fan! :)

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1070

May 18

Marriage Vow Renewal Service

Marriage Vow Renewal. From left to right: Drema Rhoades, Jack Rhoades, Missy Ealy, Joe Ealy, Brandie Ardeno, Terry Ardeno. Pastor Mike Singo in back.

Marriage Vow Renewal. From left to right: Drema Rhoades, Jack Rhoades, Missy Ealy, Joe Ealy, Brandie Ardeno, Terry Ardeno.
Pastor Mike Singo in back.

The Love Dare Challenge based on the Fireproof movie is over. Today we celebrated with three couples who renewed their sacred marriage vows during the Sunday morning service at Living Waters Church of God with Pastor Michael T. Singo officiating. Those who participated in the Love dare Challenge taught by Joe and Missy Ealy were treated to a buffet lunch after the service at the Ramada Inn in Washington, PA.

The three couples renewing their vows were:

Jack & Drema Rhoades
Joe & Missy Ealy
Terry & Brandie Ardeno

 

Portrait photos of couples and family below are cropped for 4×6 prints. Click on any image to have the full resolution cropped image appear in your browser. Right click and save it to your computer. You can then print it out at home or through photo printing services. If you would like to print a larger image, please see Cody for an image file cropped to the size of photo you would like to print.

Joe & Missy Ealy

Joe & Missy Ealy

Terry & Brandie Ardeno

Terry & Brandie Ardeno

Jack & Drema Rhoades

Jack & Drema Rhoades

Rhoades_01Rhoades_02Rhoades_03Rhoades_05

Stacy Dran posing with a copy of the poem she created for everyone who participated in the Love Dare challenge.

Stacy Dran posing with a copy of the poem she created for everyone who participated in the Love Dare challenge.

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1046

Apr 16

Hollywood’s Newest Interpretation of Noah

You might want to read “Sympathy for the Devil” by Dr. Brian Mattson before going to see “Noah.”

 

It is highly unlikely that there has ever been any Hollywood movie about biblical topics that was 100 percent biblical. Seriously, how likely is it that Jesus looks like James Caviezel in the “The Passion of the Christ” movie or Diogo Morgado in “The Bible” TV miniseries and “Son of God” movie? The success of biblical movies and shows has drawn the attention of Hollywood, but as usual the real meaning behind the success is lost. People are hungry to know God. It is in our DNA (Genesis 1:26-27). However, only those who know God, those who know salvation through the shed blood of Jesus, those who know the word of God (the Bible) are going to be able to create movies and TV shows about biblical concepts that even come close to satisfying this hunger to know God.

It is by no stretch of the imagination to see that there are going to be movies released in these times that will make an attempt to be biblical but fail miserably. As of this writing we have “God’s Not Dead” and “Noah” playing at the same time in theaters. “God’s Not Dead” is a positive movie of hope that directly speaks of Jesus as being the Christ. It talks plainly about what it takes to be saved. It is a winner as far as Christians are concerned when it comes to faith-based movies. “Noah” is not even touted as being biblical. Rather, it is being referred to by those involved in the project as an interpretation of the story from the bible that uses a lot of interpretive license. However, it seems that there is more going on behind the scenes of the movie than meets the eye. Is it downright Satanic in origin and intent? Is there an ungodly motive of the director/writer and other creative minds behind the movie’s inception?

Dr. Brian Mattson explains quite a bit about what he saw when he went to a viewing of the movie “Noah.” An article he wrote on his blog is quite revealing. The details mentioned in the article are discoverable through personal study. Though the exact doctrine of Dr. Mattson is not known by us (part of his education was at a Presbyterian theological seminary), his treatment of what he saw in the movie “Noah” is quite interesting. The title of his blog post about the movie “Noah” is aptly titled “Sympathy for the Devil.”

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1039

Apr 07

Randy DonGiovanni

Randy and Lori DonGiovanni

Randy and Lori DonGiovanni

Randy DonGiovanni is the guest speaker at Living Waters Church of God through Wednesday, April 9, 2014. The two powerful messages he delivered Sunday morning and Sunday evening are available at the Sermon Archives page. You can listen to them now, and we hope to see you out at the church Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 7:00 PM for the rest of the special services.

Click on the logo to go to Randy’s website.randydonlogo

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=1025

Mar 14

We Just Added Convenient Online Giving to the Website

We added the ability to securely give tithes and offerings online for Living Waters Church of God. This will be helpful for those who work different schedules and for those who may be on vacation and still want to tithe or give an offering. It is not about getting more; it is about offering convenience to those who do or were planning to give anyway.

There are those who wish to pay tithes in a timely manner who may have to miss service for one reason or another.  Special projects or urgent needs can also quickly be funded by not only attendees of Living Waters but others who have indicated a desire to give. We had this happen when we were raising funds for the Restavek children in Haiti. People who did not even attend Living Waters were wanting to make donations to that worthy cause. The online giving option would have made it exceptionally easy.

In the Main Menu at the top of every page, the Online Giving option now appears. At the Online Giving page is a link to our secure site for using checks, check cards, or Visa or MasterCard for paying a tithe or giving an offering. Take a few moments to register the first time you use the system. This way you can view or print a record of all of your online giving activity anytime you desire. The Quick Give option just requires an email address. If you do have a registered account under that email address, it will add the amount to your record. Those who wish to make sure that online giving amounts are properly credited to the correct user account should always login first and then give.

If you have any questions, please ask!

CLICK HERE to take a look at the secure online giving site, or click on Online Giving in the Main Menu at the top of the page. You can register now without needing to complete a financial transaction.

Permanent link to this article: http://livingwaterscog.com/?p=998

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