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A Woman’s Perspective
Mrs. Donna McCall
Where Are You?
Rev. Paul Ritchie
A Line in the Sand
Rev. Don Loss
The Power of Grace
TESTIMONY of a BETHEL GRADUATE
Women’s Campus Update
We’re Open !!!
Bethel Lawn Care
A Line in the Sand
I grew up in the 1930’s and 40’s, I was 10 years old when World War II broke out with the bombing of Pearl Harbor by the Japanese. It was a Sunday morning, December 7, 1941. It was a completely different world than what we have today. Women were respected as were school teachers, policemen and preachers. I lived in a village called Darrowville, about 15 miles northeast of Akron Ohio. There were no big stores. The gas stations were places where you could get your car repaired. Usually you bought groceries from a family owned store which may have a gas pump out in front and maybe a post office in the back as was the case in our village, just diagonally across the street from where our home was.
Things begin to change very drastically when the war broke out. Also the line in the sand began to move as the winds of war begin to shift the values of society and morality in a new direction. From then to now it is hard to believe all the changes in lifestyles, values and moralities. Of course that was 77 years ago so it didn’t happen overnight but some things changed overnight when war broke out. Young men couldn’t wait to get out of high school to join the fight. The draft was instituted and rationing became effective almost immediately. We saved every tin can and all cooking grease. Sugar, butter, gasoline, and tires were rationed. You could not buy a new car even if you had the money. Any vehicles of any kind were built for this giant war machine which had kicked into place.
Women came out of the homes and went to war in the factories learning how to become welders, riveters, lath operators or whatever was needed. Children went to daycare’s, grandmas or whoever could keep them as mama went to the factory. My wife’s mother went to work on second shift bucking rivets for building Corsair fighter airplanes. They sent them to the South Pacific Islands. The Japanese fighter pilots referred to them as ”coming death” as we finally had an aircraft that could out fight Japanese zeros. This is when woman found out they could do a lot of things that men had been doing . This most likely led to the women’s lib movement. If they can go to work and bring home a paycheck why do they need a man? The line in the sand is moving again. As we see these things taking place we also see moral values begin to slip. Hollywood took their part in the war effort and over time we saw the values in Hollywood change. Today we question if there are any values at all. Look at the percentage of movies today that promote death and terror, sex and ungodly language. That’s right down the devil’s alley. It has gotten so bad that the children’s films also feature violence and demonic figures. However, from time to time, somebody comes up with a really good film that is fit for children and the rest of us. If children should not see a film why do you and I need to be looking at this garbage? You say; I’m an adult. I can handle it; well it still feeds the same carnal nature and we get conditioned to that kind of mindset. As Vance Havner used to say, “getting used to the dark”. After a while we become used to it and it doesn’t seem so bad, what is the big problem? The problem is the line in the sand keeps slowly being blown way from godly values toward the values of the flesh.
This is why Bethel Colony has a waiting list and why we now have a women’s ministry. Pulling that line back into godly values will certainly change their lives. God does not intend for us to live just to satisfy our flesh but to give us a purpose and a place in His kingdom and to make a difference in someone else’s life. You may well be considered mentally incompetent if you believe in such a crazy story that Jesus Christ went to the cross to become the propitiation for the whole world and that He died and rose again and is coming back very soon. I might add to receive those who have put their faith in this wonderful true story. Isaiah 53:11 reports that God was satisfied with the labor or travail of His soul as He took upon himself the guilt and shame and penalty of the world. Now we all know that mankind, left to our own devices will degenerate into a sinful lifestyle. We see it over and over in history and we are at that point in our history that we are in desperate need of a revival. Let me put it this way, the revival fires that burn away the garbage in our lives are very badly needed. We have come to the place where we call good evil and evil good. In some schools children area assigned to dress up like Muslims and make a prayer rug but if you mention the name of Jesus Christ in the school, that is hate speech. Fallen mankind always rebels against anything that will put a perimeter around him which he does not realize is for his own protection. I’m not talking about legalism however the Christian lifestyle does have some do’s and don’ts. Because of these do’s and don’ts we find ourselves leaning back toward sin and that’s the reason for the propitiation, or the work of the cross of Christ, in our place. 1st John 2:2-5; “ And He himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world. Now by this we know that we know Him, If we keep his commandments (found in 1st John 3:23). He who says, “I know Him” and does not keep his commandments is a liar and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.” Any time that fallen man has restraints put on him for his own good he resents it and then calls it hate speech. Otherwise; leave me to my own destruction. There is great peace to be found when you accept the gift of God though the work of the cross. “Christ in you the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27) is the stabilizing force that can hold the line.
Pastor Paul Ritchie
The Power of Grace
The admonition to Timothy by the Apostle Paul in II Timothy 2:1 is “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” Grace is God’s enablement to do what would be futile without the infusion of grace into the soul. The grace of God is imparted to all those who are in Christ Jesus. The Apostle John records the words of Jesus in John 15:5, “I am the vine you are the branches, He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without me you can do nothing.” It is the power of grace that enables us to subdue sin, resist temptation, and to walk faithfully in the will of God.
“For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you should abstain from sexual immorality: that each of you should know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in passion of lust, like the Gentiles who do not know God.” I Thessalonians 4:3-5. This is the aim of all those who have the grace of God; to pursue righteousness which catapults a believer into greater measures of grace. The Puritan Welsh preacher Christopher Love writes, “Believers ought not to rest satisfied with the small measure of grace they have received. Though a little grace may bring you to heaven, you are not to recline there; but if you have gotten a little grace, labor for more.” It is not an option for the believer to neglect the pursuance of grace. As the children of God, we are to take heed to Paul’s admonishment to Timothy, “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” The purpose for this instruction is to obtain the stature of “faithful men who will be able to teach others.” II Timothy 2:2.
Grace that is strong will be a testimony to the power of grace. Consider the young men written of in I John 2:14. John writes “I have written to you young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.” They are young men who are “strong in the Lord and the power of His might.” Ephesians 6:10. They are obedient to the word of God. Grace flows with power into those who are disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ. They are students of the word of God. They listen to godly instruction concerning how to overcome the wicked one. “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.” Ephesians 6:11. Grace has taught them that this warfare against the soul has a spiritual dimension that all the wisdom of the world is blinded to. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12. But those who are strong in the grace of God, are not without knowledge and use the weapons of warfare to resist the devil’s devices.
Furthermore, they have equipped themselves to be soldiers of God by having become strong in the grace of God. They are able to handle the pressures, disappointments, and temptations that daily assault them. They persevere through the hardships they face. They must not falter and they will not, being strong in the grace of God in Christ Jesus. They have heeded the exhortation to, “You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” The soldier is no longer tempted by the former life he once lived. He has been enlisted into the army of God by the Captain of his salvation; a great privilege. His one and only desire is to please Him. “No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please Him who enlisted him as a soldier.” II Timothy 2:4.
The grace of God is the kingdom that the man of faith walks in. He has access to this grace by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand—.” Any who want to be victorious in Christ must press forward to “be strong in the grace that is in the Lord Jesus Christ.” Where are you today? Do you have weak grace or strong grace? One of my mentors made a revealing statement about one’s success in the Christian’s walk. “If we are failing it is our doing, if we are succeeding it is God’s doing.” If we are pursuing righteousness, Christ will strengthen us in His powerful grace. If we are disobedient to God, we are heading to failure because of quenching the grace of God. Get back under the means of grace if the latter is so.
Where the grace blows,
Pastor Don Loss
Associate Director / Director of Counseling
* If you would like to read previous Counseling Corners we are now archiving by topic/title for your future reference.Click on link: Counseling Corner Archives
TESTIMONY of a BETHEL GRADUATE
Early in April of 2014, I was about ready to walk into a job. While sitting in the parking lot full of fear and anxiety, knowing that my life was falling apart, (seemed like my whole life was always in some sort of chaos or despair.) I consumed drugs and alcohol to calm my fears and worries. I was always trying to fill that void that can never be filled except through the sacrifice on the cross, the shed blood of our Lord and Savior. Prior to the experience in the parking lot where God’s hand was at work in my life, (God is always in all our circumstances and in our lives working for good and His Glory – Rom. 8:28), I had met with a biblical counselor who suggested a place called Bethel Colony of Mercy. She told me the Lord is at work there and they minister to men like me. Our conversation stuck with me and at that point in that parking lot, the Holy Spirit moved me to seek out Bethel Colony for help. It was a long way from home, but I had the support of my church, my family, my wife and close friends. They all trusted in God that He would do a mighty work in my life. (and He did) My marriage was failing to say the least. We were not living together as she had asked me to leave and changed the locks. I was living at the church and a local mission. When I arrived at Bethel the first teaching I received was from Pastor Loss. He was teaching on Luke 8 where demons are cast out of a man. The story of Legion is repeated in Mark’s Gospel and Matthew as well. That Scripture is about a tortured man. It reminded me of me: a tortured man with a spiritual malady. The town’s people of Gadarenes tried to help him, but they could not. (man’s attempts all fail) Jesus ministered to Him and by His power, this man was made well. As verse 35 states the town’s people went out to see what happened. They found the man sitting at the feet of Jesus. Peace had come to him and “he was clothed and in his right mind” (restored and redeemed). The Word of God, the Power of Jesus’ words, His authority and His forgiveness wash us clean and restore us to right living (righteousness). Christ has accomplished this in my life as well.
My time was well spent at Bethel. I savored the Word of God. It comforted me and gave me peace. Jesus restored me little by little. My hope is in Him and Him alone. When I arrived back home in N.J. my wife, my family and my church saw a new creation in Christ as 2 Cor. 5:17 tells us; “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new”.
By the grace of God my wife and I began to reconcile. Day by day our Lord poured His love and mercy into our lives. Our faith, hope, and our prayer life began to grow and bear fruit. I was welcomed back into our church body with such love and encouragement. Immediately the church staff trusted that God had done a miraculous work in me. God provided a way for me to begin an addiction recovery group within the church which is still alive and well. Every Tuesday evening I lead a group of men and woman who desire to repent and trust in our lord and Savior. I also have the privilege to counsel men within our church. I am in the process of becoming a certified Biblical counselor through the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC). When we pray and trust in God, He opens doors for us, so He may be glorified. I also am pursuing an associate degree in Addiction Studies at a local community col
lege. God is so good. One thing is for sure – God has redeemed me, set me free from the chains of addiction, and set my feet on solid ground. Thank God for the men and woman of Bethel Colony who pour their lives into the lives of others. They are sharing the hope and life-changing message of the Gospel. The staff, along with the men who are presently there now and the men who are on the wait
ing list, are continually in our prayers.
“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life I live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and delivered Himself up for me.” Gal. 2:20
Update on Bethel Women’s Ministry
WE’RE OPEN !!!
May 11, 2019
Praise the Lord with us and please keep praying!
If God is leading you to support Bethel Women’s Campus,
please make sure you mark your donation for the women’s ministry.
Bethel Colony has only incurred debt twice in its’ history. The first debt incurred was to purchase the property for the Men’s Campus 70 years ago. The second debt incurred was to purchase the property for the Women’s Campus.
To prevent any penalties, we are only allowed to make double payments each month for the first 3 years. That amount is $5334.24 / month. Thanks to some generous donors, we have been able to make those double payments for the past year already. We are trusting the Lord to be able to continue to make double payments or pay the debt off completely.
If you would like to help alleviate this debt, please mark your donation
Women’s Campus payment for land.
Bethel Lawn Care is back in business!!!
Call Jeff Hollar at Bethel
for prices and to schedule an appointment.