Potomac Ministry Network
wim connection
In This Issue
Interview with Jodi Detrick
Christmas Joy
The Silence is Broken
My Joy - Thermostat or Thermometer
Unrelenting Joy
The Dance of Joy Brings Release
Singing in Shadowy Places
The Joy in Surrender
Connecting with the Culture
Connecting with Your Family
Connecting with Yourself
Think About It
Book Review
Connecting with Your Funny Bone
Looking Forward
Upcoming Events
Days of Prayer

Ladies Winter Conference February 21-22
DoubleTree by Hilton Williamsburg, VA

Women In Ministry Retreat  |  March 27-29
Potomac Park Retreat & Conference Center  |  Falling Waters, WV


Johnese Burtram

Back in the day, church music captured much of my focus. From sweet singing in the choir, to solo parts, to choir director, I was connected to the music ministry of the churches we served. I have probably sung every cantata written by John W, Peterson. (I told you it was back in the day.) I think I most loved the Christmas music.


December 1974 found me working hard on the cantata Get Ready for the Coming of the Lord. I was to sing the song of Mary. Mary had grabbed my imagination. I wanted to understand this young Jewish girl, pregnant outside of marriage. How did she feel about this unexpected chain of events? Did she wrestle with conflicting emotions regarding the steps the Almighty had ordered for her?

The challenging score solidified the small, albeit, mostly untrained, group of volunteer singers at Trinity Assembly of God in Lanham, MD. Camaraderie grew as we practiced. The sound of joyous Christmas celebration emerged. Excitement built as we eagerly anticipated the coming Sunday night performance. Performance night finally arrived. We had worked hard. We loved the music. That mix of thrill and trepidation pulsed as we took the stage. Singing with abandon, I sensed Mary's elated expectancy in the prospect of the coming of the promised babe. I was pregnant with Joy.

Indeed, I was pregnant with Joy. In January, 1975, I found out I was pregnant with our first child. After a season of barrenness marked by a discouraging medical diagnosis and endless worries about what protocol we would follow, I finally carried my own promised child. Like Mary, my heart held divine words of promise, a prophetic word given in a church service. As I thought back to the Christmas musical, I recognized the special sense of joy I had in singing Mary's song. God had regarded my low estate and given me the child for whom I prayed. Almost forty years later, I clearly remember my special season of joy.

Many thanks to all of you who shared your joy stories. I hope that at this season you will know the strength that comes through the joy of the Lord. Ken and I wish for all of you a Season of Joy. It is my joy to share with you the ministry of Potomac Ministry Network.

Unto you is born today in David's city a savior, Christ the Lord.

Joy to the world the Lord is come.

Virtual Prayer CirclesConnect with others in the Potomac Ministry Network as we prayer for network churches and ministries and events.  

Subscribe to Virtual Prayer Circles so you can receive updates directly to your email.

Interview - Dr. Jodi Detrick

Jodi Detrick

 Interview by Debbie Shank  


Jodi Detrick 

Speaker, 2014 WIM Retreat

The Jesus-Hearted Woman


Debbie:     What has God been speaking to your heart about the upcoming Potomac Ministry Network WIM Retreat?

Jodi:     First of all, I never take for granted those moments when women in ministry have the opportunity to gather in a retreat setting. God does some pretty amazing stuff when we get together to focus on Him and what He would say to us, so I have HUGE expectations for what He has up His big sleeve. God has been speaking to me about the incredible capacity of the human heart, both for good or for evil, and this verse really grabs me: (Proverbs 4:23) Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. So much of how we live and minister is determined by what is in our heart.

Debbie:     Our theme is The Jesus-Hearted Woman. How can the WIM from our District apply these words to our lives?

Jodi:     That is exactly what we'll be looking at when we gather--so there is much more to come on this subject. I would say that from my research, life experience, and (most importantly) God's Word, I found ten essential qualities which seem to most significantly impact how well, and how long, people lead. I love knowing these qualities (like confidence, authenticity, humility, stamina, resilience and courage-to name a few) can be developed in our lives; we don't have to be born with them, and most of us aren't. I truly believe, when it comes to leadership and ministry, if you have the heart, you can learn the skills. And it is from Jesus, that we learn to be leaders who have both enduring, and endearing, influence.

Debbie:     How do you think God wants to use the WIM in 2014?

Jodi:     I believe we are living in a season of unprecedented opportunity for women to minister and influence others for Jesus. As women, we really do breathe the freest air women have ever breathed in the history of this planet--despite the obstacles and challenges that still exist. So I think God wants women to use their leadership gifts as Jesus-hearted ministers with a gracious confidence in whatever realm of influence He's given them. I also think it's time to think outside the box when it comes to ministry. Ministry today can look so different than some of the traditional roles we are accustomed to, and it's time for women to have a pioneering spirit and to be willing to do ministry in non-traditional ways, if that is how the Spirit is leading.

Debbie:     What will the women gain from attending the retreat in 2014?


  I think that will be different for each woman, depending on what she is facing in her life, what she needs, and the openness of her heart to receive. I do know that God custom designs our experiences and meets us at our specific point of need. (I so LOVE that about Him!!) But I think those who come will be encouraged, challenged, convicted, instructed, stirred, blessed, and refreshed--depending on their need. But ALL of us should be ready to be hugged by God! I can't wait...and I can't wait to meet and hug my amazing sisters in ministry from the Potomac District, either!   


Jodi Detrick, D.Min is an author and religion columnist for The Seattle Times, one of America's leading newspapers. Her new book, The Jesus-Hearted Woman, was just released this summer. As an ordained AG minister, certified personal coach, and a speaker for many groups across America, Jodi loves to talk to people at heart-level about things that matter most.  She serves as national Chairperson for the Network for Women in Ministry and is an adjunct professor at Northwest University. Jodi lives with her husband, Don, in the rainy Pacific Northwest where lattes are always a good idea.  You can check out her new book at www.jesusheartedwoman.com or learn more about her at www.jodidetrick.com

Connecting with the Sistah's

Christmas Joy
by Laura Bilton Qualls
I have heard it said, Happiness is based on happenings; joy is based on a relationship with the Lord.


Christmas is a happening. It happens every year. To the believer, the story of Christ's birth never gets old. Our joy builds as we anticipate the celebrations and the making of memories.


However, most of our traditions create happiness, not joy. These moments are temporary and not lasting, albeit joyful at the moment. Keep reading...


Laura Qualls  


Laura shares in ministry with her husband, Jerry, retired Lead Pastor of Glad Tidings, Norfolk, VA.  Jerry and Laura co-host a weekly radio program, Heart to Heart, as well as present marriage seminars. Laura is experienced in church leadership, inspirational speaking, and teaching the Word of God.  She has been a public school teacher, holding a B.S degree from Virginia Commonwealth University and an M.A. degree from Regent University.


Jerry and Laura have been married for 50 years.  They have three grown children (one of them in heaven) and five grandchildren. 




You were born

In  a stable,  poor

And unknown; in the

Fullness   of  time   you

Gave up  your own; glory

And honor, made earth your

Home;  rejected and spurned,

Except by a few,  the words that

You spoke   brought   many to you;

"Don't worry,  be happy,  one day at a

Time, repent from your sins, a freedom

You'll find.  Take up your cross,  come  fol-

 low me; share in the joy like blind men who

See."  Rejecting the praises that   men   could

Afford, You gave up your glory in Heaven,   dear

Lord;   You took on yourself man's limitation,  and

Died as a slave cursing temptation; giving to  man  in

  His limited scope, a reason to live and have a new hope.

I   was   a  slave,

Dead in my sins,

           Fighting      a    fight   that   nobody   wins;   busy  by  day

Haunted   by night,  darkness    surrounding, needing

   The  light.    One  day  my  heart  heard    your soft

                                         Voice;   to  listen  or  not,  I  knew  it   my choice

                                          "Don't worry,    be  happy, one day at a  time,

                                                  Repent from your sins, a freedom    you'll

                                                    Find;      take   up   your    cross,   come,

                                                      Follow me;     share   in the joy   like

                                                        Blind   men  who   see."     I chose

                                                          to repent     and      follow  your

                                                            Lead,   step    out    in     faith

                                                              I    knew     I'd      succeed. 

                                                                You    would    not  fail

                                                                  A sinner    set   free;

                                                                    Because  of   your

                                                                      Love  You were

                                                                        Born  in  me,



                                                                                                                   -Laura Bilton Qualls

The Silence is Broken
by Heidi Houston

The Earth was quiet that night, as though holding its' collective breath.  No one had heard from God in hundreds of years and suddenly, in one night, all changed.  When the Christ-child was born, the first utterance from God was a breath inhaled, a wail, a sigh.  The silence was broken;God was with us.  Because that moment shattered the silence, nothing stands between us and Christ, our mediator - the one who stands before God to argue our case.  And whether we feel His presence or not, He is here, and there, before God.  Emanuel, God With Us.  He eagerly waits for us to tell Him of our love for Him, of our needs, so He can stand in our place before God and make our requests known.  Now it is up to us to break our silence.


Nativity 1.            Silent night, holy night,

               all is calm, all is bright

               round yon virgin

               mother and child.

               Holy infant, so tender and mild,

               sleep in heavenly peace,

               sleep in heavenly peace.


2.            Silent night, holy night,

               shepherds quake at the sight;

               glories stream from heaven afar,

               heavenly hosts sing Alleluia!

               Christ the Savior is born,

               Christ the Savior is born!


3.            Silent night, holy night,

               Son of God, love's pure light;

               radiant beams from thy holy face

               with the dawn of redeeming grace,

               Jesus, Lord, at thy birth,

               Jesus, Lord, at thy birth.


4.            Silent night, holy night,

               wondrous star, lend thy light;

               with the angels let us sing,

               Alleluia to our King;

               Christ the Savior is born,

            Christ the Savior is born!

Heidi Houston


Houston and her husband, Jason serve Trinity Assembly of God in Lutherville, MD as part of the congregation. They spent three years pastoring in Alaska and returned to the Baltimore area because of health reasons. She is part of the choir ministry. Mother of three little girls, she enjoys writing short children's stories, songs and poetry. I love the Lord with all of my heart.

My Joy - Thermostat or Thermometer
by Ruth Pino

Psalm 89:15 says Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! They walk, O Lord, in the light of Yourcountenance. Usually we attribute sounds to HEARING, but KNOWING the JOYFUL SOUND, puts a different light on this. The knowing is far more powerful than the mere hearing.
Keep reading ....

Ruth Pino


Ruth's husband, Nick Pino, went to be with the Lord in 2008. God blessed the Pino's with 43 years of marriage, and 34 years as appointed AGWM missionaries.   


They served in Chile 14 years, in Bible School, Co-Directors of the Chilean Task force, starting & building over 30 churches. I worked as leader in the Task Force in Child Evangelism. Later they transferred to Mexico and served there as Church Planters, in Evangelistic Crusades, Men's & Women's Conferences and as interpreters for US ministers in our crusades. God also helped us to build over 30 churches in Mexico.


Unrelenting Joy
by Heather Rogero

Holding your own precious newborn for the first time - an experience beyond words. I have known that joy of three times. I am indescribably blessed. But, I have also known the pain of a staggering diagnoses. Encephalopathy with "no cure." I know the journey into The Valley of Grief, the longing for clarity and understanding, the search for a place of hope.
Keep reading ...

Rogero family

Heather is an ordained minister with a master's degree in Biblical Literature and four other degrees including a bachelors in church ministries from SAGU.  She heads a non-profit, Intrinsic Beauty Ministries, to encourage women and teen ladies, has traveled and spoke in districts and churches,  holds certification in etiquette, and ran a School of Etiquette on Martha's Vineyard Island as an outreach to the community while pastoring.  She has over twenty years of ministry experience including teaching and pastoring.  Her greatest honor besides holding her children for the first time was praying with Mother Teresa in Calcutta in 1994.  She is open to the next season of ministry and resides in Arlington, VA.  www.LivingfullofGrace.com

She enjoys fresh, real food.  Crimson red and pure white.  Dark wood floors.  The beach.  Hugs from her children.  Coffee dates with her husband.  Sitting quietly in his Presence.

The Dance of Joy Brings Release
by Denise Ouellette

When I hear the word Joy the first thing that jumps into my thoughts is the verse of an old song Joy unspeakable and full of glory... This was the song that got me to dance before the Lord for the first time.  


The Word speaks of dancing before the Lord as an expression of worship: Psalm 149:3 Let them praise His name with dancing and make music to him with timbrel and harp.  
Keep reading... 


Denise Oullette

, a licensed Assembly of God minister of the Assembly of God, is the Missions director of Lighthouse Worship Center in Gloucester, Virginia. With a degree in Accounting, she runs her own bookkeeping business. She serves on the Board of Directors of two non-profit mission organizations: 'Africa Harvest Mission' whose main emphasis is to evangelize Africa, and 'Friends of TOUCH' which provides funds to care for African children. She is married with five daughters and eight grandchildren. On the side she writes plays and skits most of which are produced at my church.


by Rose Marie Cox

Aside from becoming the bride of Don Cox in August of 1967, the JOY of motherhood ranks high on my list of JOYS. Giving birth to our son after being in labor for twenty-four hours was the highlight of that day.  Philip Donald, weighing 8 lbs. 7 oz., adjusted quickly to life outside the womb. Now, at forty-two, Phil and his wife Lily have given us two wonderful grandsons, James and Micah.  Both were born in China where Phil met his wife seven years ago. Keep reading....

  Rosemarie Cox


Don and Rose Marie began full-time ministry in 1969. They have pastored in Florida and Maryland. In 1984 she was integrally involved in the founding of Bethel Christian Academy, a ministry of Bethel Assembly of God Church, Savage, MD where they served as pastors for twenty-one years. Rose Marie served as principal of BCA for twelve years. Don now serves full time as Eastern Section Presbyter. It's been a journey of ups and downs but God has always been faithful.

Married for forty-five years, Don and Rose Marie have two children, five grandchildren and 2 step grandchildren. She loves being a grandmother who spoils the grandchildren to Don's dismay!!

Singing in Shadowy Places
by Sandy Anderson


Our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His name. 
Psalm 33:21

In the hushed and darkened room, I am alone with my thoughts. Just before dawn, all is silent, except for the sounds as the birds begin to arise, singing songs of joy. What lies ahead for them? They do not know. Dangers? Hunger? Perhaps, and yet they sing a song of hope for the dawn they feel certain is coming. Although they are blanketed in the unknown; their joy sings! Keep reading....

  Sandy Anderson

Sandy lives near Richmond Virginia. Happily married to Lee for 30 years, they have two grown daughters, Lachelle and Janelle. She has a passionate desire for women to understand Papa God's unconditional love for them, to discover and walk out their unique giftings and for them to each experience an unequaled passion for Jesus Christ!  Sandy is a Licensed Minister with the Assemblies of God in the Potomac District where she is active in leadership, service, small groups, women's ministry and currently serves as her church's Community Director. She also enjoys writing. She is published in various online devotional ministries and in her spare time she loves to read and spend time with family and friends.
The Joy in Surreder
by Angela Donadio, from Living in Joy, coming in 2014


In the summer of 2013, I spent two glorious weeks resting and refreshing on the beaches of the South Carolina coast. On the last day, while sitting peacefully in my green lounger, umbrella overhead and intriguing book in hand, a little girl stole my attention. Her squeals of delight filled the ocean air, captivating my heart. She could not have been more than 5 years old. I watched as this blonde-haired girl attempted to tackle the waves licking the shore. Placing her fingers securely around her pint-size board, she ventured into the ocean, a few more feet each time, armed only with the hope of riding in on a wave. Keep reading...

 Angela Donadio
, ordained Assemblies of God minister, Mom to Gabrielle and Christian, has been the Worship Pastor at River of Life Worship Center in Fredericksburg, VA, where her husband Dale is Lead Pastor, for 19 years. In addition she now travels as a worship leader/artist, speaker, and advocate for missions projects in Africa. She has ministered in many churches and conferences across the US, Canada, Mexico and Africa. 

Angela loves speaking from the word and sharing her personal testimony of God's faithfulness through 2 life-threatening health conditions.  She has finished her first Bible study for women and is looking forward to publishing Living in Joy in 2014.

Connecting with the Culture

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug  
Video Movie Review 
Hobbit Stephen McGarvey and Shawn McEvoy from CrosswalkMovies.com dissect the positives and negatives in Part Two of Peter Jackson's adaptation of The Hobbit.

Jesus Calling outselling 50 Shades of Gret
by Stephanie Butnick, October 25, 2013  3:02 PM 

Jesus Calling The reclusive Christian writer whose devotional books are narrated by Jesus


The only person who can outsell the rabidly popular 50 Shades of Grey series? Jesus, apparently.


In today's New York Times, Tablet contributor Mark Oppenheimer tracks down the mysterious writer behind the 2004 book Jesus Calling
, the reclusive Sarah Young, who lives in Australia with her Presbyterian missionary husband, and whose devotional book has wrested book-selling success from the leather-gloved (possibly?) hands of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey. .... 
Connecting with Your Family
The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have passed at home in the bosom of my family.  
Thomas Jefferson
The Origin of Love 
Pam and Bill Farrel, Authors
December 09, 2013



.... We often have some unique views on love from childhood, like this cute quote:

"Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen."

-Bobby, age 7


Happy Birthday Jesus! 
Janet Thompson, Founder of Woman to Woman Mentoring
Monday, December 16, 2013

At our house, a large Birthday Bag for Jesus sits under the Christmas tree. This tradition started early in our marriage when we decided to throw a birthday party for Jesus. The first year, we invited a few family  

and friends and had the kids attending act out the manger scene. We had a birthday cake with candles and gave everyone a party favor that represented the true meaning of Christmas.... 
Our Annual Christmas IQ Quiz 
Dr. Ray Pritchard
How well do you know the Christmas story?


Most of us know the general outline because we've heard or sung it or watched it being enacted in the Christmas programs that most churches offer during December. We know about the shepherds, the angels, the "Wise Men," the star, the innkeeper, the long journey of Mary and Joseph, the baby in the manger, and we know about the gold, frankincense and myrrh. But how much of what we know is tradition and how much comes from the Bible? ...  

Connecting with Yourself
Fight Holiday Cynicism with Genuine Faith
Michael Milton, President, Reformed Theological Seminary (Charlotte)
November 28. 2012


scripture Have you ever seen Miracle on 34th Street? It's a Christmas classic. The 1947 novel became a movie the same year, earning the author an Academy Award for the Best Original Story. The film itself was nominated for the top picture. Edmund Gwenn, who played Kris Kringle, won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor. But who could ever forget the child actor, Natalie Wood, who won the hearts of viewers as Susan Walker, the little girl whose doubt in the existence of Santa Claus is transformed by her association with Edmund Gwenn's Kris Kringle..... 
Laughter and Joy During Christmas
Debbie Przybylski, Intercessors Arise
November 29, 2011

Joy "Create a habit of happiness and laughter instead of a habit of worry. When you laugh, it lowers stress hormones and relieves stress. Laughter also boosts the immune system, protects the heart, and improves overall health. Ten belly laughs a day are equivalent to getting a good aerobic exercise workout, and they're the ultimate 'stress buster.'" Don Corbert, MD

With Christmas right around the corner, many people are incredibly stressed out worrying about all the things they have to do, all the presents they have to buy, and all the places they have to go. ... 
Think About It


5 Suggestions for Finding More Joy at Christmas 
Joy Day! Used by Ron Edmondson in one of his sermons to combat holiday stress and increase joy.


  • Lower expectations of others - We shouldn't hold others to expectation we set for them. People, even the best of people, will disappoint us.
  • Increase your investment in others - Something supernatural happens when we share with others. We are to give and extend grace, as it was given to us.  
  • Examine your life and address known sin - You can't have joy with a holy God if you are living contrary to His desires for your life.
  • Change your Perspective - Choosing to be greatly joyful is not based on circumstances, but comes by perspective.
  • Set your eyes on the prize - If you're struggling to find joy in life, set your eyes on Jesus; the author and perfecter of your faith."
The word "joy" best captures the mood and the spirit of Christmas.  It means despite any circumstances in your life you should have joy.  This is supposed to be a joyous season. Jesus came so we could experience joy, the inner contentment and calm delight.  Find the proper perspective, regardless of your circumstances, and you will find the joy.   
From Monday Matters
   dale evans


I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.
Charles DickensDr. Seuss
Above quotes:
Christmas is the day that holds all time together. 
Alexander Smith

When we were children we were grateful to those who filled our stockings at Christmas time.  Why are we not grateful to God for filling our stockings with legs? 
G.K. Chesterton

Above quotes:
Book Review
you'll get through this
Cindy Smith  

You'll Get Through This: Hope and Help for Turbulent Times
by Max Lucado

Lucado's 2013 book, You'll Get Through This, released in time for gift-giving, will offer you the hope and strength to get through, not just the normal trials and tribulations spoken of in Scripture, but through irrecoverable losses where the grief goes on and hope has been deferred. Through an in-depth perspective into the journey of Joseph, favored son, betrayed brother, enslaved Hebrew, favored administrator, falsely accused prisoner, and finally the second most powerful man in his world, the author brings relevance to the trials we and our congregants face every day. You fear the trial will never end, the depression will never lift, the yelling will never stop, and the pain will never leave. But through it all, at some day of revelation, God weaves what was meant for evil into good. God is in the business of redeeming the broken! Notes and questions for group discussion make this resource an excellent small group study and whether you are facing financial woes, relationship valleys, or health crises, this study will offer hope and bring focus when it is difficult to hear God's voice

Connecting with Your Funny Bone

Christmas Joy I stopped believing in Santa Claus when my mother took me to see him in a department store, and he asked for my autograph.

Shirley Temple


You know you're getting old, when Santa starts looking younger.

Robert Paul


I once bought my kids a set of batteries for Christmas with a note on it saying, toys not included.

Bernard Manning


The first time I sang in the church choir; two hundred people changed their religion.

Fred Allen


Above quotes from: http://christmas.funnyquotesjokes.com/funnychristmasquotes.php  


Bulletin Bloopers 


-National PRAYER & FASTING Conference: The cost for attending the Fasting and Prayer conference includes meals.


-The pastor would appreciate it if the ladies of the congregation would lend him their electric girdles for the pancake breakfast next Sunday morning.


-Thursday night - Potluck Supper. Prayer and medication to follow.


-When parking on the north side of the church, please remember to park on an angel.



Looking Forward

The first quarter of 2014 celebrates Potomac Ministry Network WIM Connection's sixth year of publication. In our seventh year, we will visit some popular themes.


The theme for our first edition, Winter 2008 was Everything's a Love Story. The theme for 2014 Winter Quarter is The greatest of these is love. Love is the irrefutable proof of God's activity in our world. I'm sure you have a story about how love has been demonstrated in your life. Tell us a love story, yours or someone else's.


Please submit your 300-500 word articles by February 7, 2014.  We are also always looking for humor, poetry, book reviews, etc.


I look forward to sharing your love stories.





You are loved, 

Shine the light; defeat the dark