- Faith & Family
The Lively Stones Outreach Ministry kicked off its first Relationship Conference on Sept. 26-28 at 7:30 p.m. Rev. Shandett Cage, minister of New Birth Faith Tabernacle and the director of the event, said her vision was to educate people about the biblical standards concerning relationships.
“A lot of people don’t know that there are standards you should go by when choosing a mate and that God has a plan for their lives,” Cage said. “If we do it God’s way, we will
have a greater success and be happier in our relationships.”
One of the first things that was taught at the conference was that your relationship with God is the most important, followed by your relationship with yourself and then with others.
The conference began on Sept. 26. Hattie Lamb, a member of New Birth Church, was the speaker of the night. She focused on the single life and referenced the scripture Jer. 29:11. On Sept. 27, Rev. Sabrina James, pastor of Tag Team for Jesus Ministry focused on marriage, her title was “The Right Relationship” and her scriptural reference was Ruth 1:16.
On Sept. 28, there was a panelist discussion and attendees were able to submit questions for the panelists to answer. The panel included married couples: Pastor C. J. & Deacon John Kelly of New Birth Faith Tabernacle, who were married for 43 years and Pastors Camille and Windsor Ferguson of Kingdom of God Ministry, who were married for 27 years.
Diamonique Dixon, 17, a student at American High School and a member of the Lively Stones, said that she enjoyed Friday the most.
Seeing the panelists who were married for several decades inspired her. It made her think of the future of her current relationship.
“Maybe I could do that one day,” she said. “Maybe I can be [like] them.”
Dixon said she also learned that she should talk more with God.
“I should talk to Him more, see what He has for me and just wait,” she said.
Charles Valon, 38, a member of Antioch Missionary Baptist Church in Miami Gardens, said the conference was a great and uplifting experience. His girlfriend, Tiffinay Cage, 37, who is a member of Lively Stones, invited him.
He said he would use what he learned about relationships in his relationship with God, his girlfriend and everyone else.
He said he enjoyed the conference night on Sept. 27 the most because it made him feel that there was hope in Black relationships.
According to Valon, even though many people assume that Black relationships are not sustainable, he has learned otherwise at the conference.
“There is hope that we can make it,” he said.
By Malika A. Wright