April 7 – Our prayer requests included prayer for a good recovery for Darlene Sorensen’s father, Don Taschner, who had been taken to the hospital this last week, continued improvement for Joe Wood, traveling mercies for Joe and Linda for their trips to Springfield, and for Alan Stillings and his grandmother, Norma Stillings to have a safe trip to visit her sister, Anna and Pete Goos, in Lee’s Summit.
Kerry and Terri Psinas were the special guests at Bethany Baptist Church, Sunday. Their ministry is to organize “short term” mission trips to Grenada, which is an island in the Caribbean. Part of that ministry is to provide help to 5 pastors and churches on that island. They train teams of individuals and equip them to do Vacation Bible Schools for children in July and conduct evangelistic meetings for adults in January. They do full time deputation in the other months here in the United States in order to raise an awareness of the ministry and to raise money to support that.
Kerry gave his personal testimony of how he came to be saved. As he grew up he believed that in order to be a success in life and be happy, you had to have money. When he was twenty he took a job selling insurance and in his first year broke all sales records in that company. He broke his own sales record each of the next two years. By now he was making good money. He said that he acquired “land and houses,” but he was not happy.
Kerry said that he got the idea that he would enjoy scuba diving and became a certified scuba diver. He enjoyed swimming in deep waters alongside creatures that were bigger than he. But when he came up and put away his gear there was still this emptiness. He tried aviation and became certified for instrument flying, he enjoyed that, but when he put his plane into the hanger and walked away, the emptiness was still there. He purchased a franchise to open and operate a series of restaurants in Illinois. His life was to work and make more money. He did not think that he needed God in his life, and to look at him you would think that he had everything, but not so.
Then one day his CPA invited him to a poker game and that was the beginning of what resulted in a complete collapse of his empire. That poker game led to another and soon he was gambling at horse races, dog tracks, and Casinos. He lost it all. He was so devastated by his losses, that he attempted suicide.
After this, it just happened that he stumbled into an old fashioned Bible preaching church. The text for the message that day was Psalm 119: 71 that began, “It is good for me that I have been afflicted.” That caught his attention and the rest of the verse that said, “that I might learn thy statutes.” The preacher read some related scriptures about affliction and talked about Jesus and trust. When that service was over, Terry made an appointment to talk to the preacher and was led to the Lord that day.
His life was changed that day and has never been the same. He had finally found the happiness that money could not buy. It was some years later that he and his wife, Terri, had gone on a “short term” mission trip to Granada, fell in love the people there and again their lives was never the same. They were both in their fifties when they surrendered to become missionaries and enrolled in a missionary candidate school. Kerry said that it is never too late to do a work for the Lord, and to share the truth to others that, “Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it.”
April 14 –Several of our church members made some trips last week. Alan Stillings drove his grandmother, Norma, to Lee’s Summit for a short visit with her sister and brother-in-law, Anna and Pete Goos. Anna and Pete have lived in a retirement community for about a year and half, and Norma had not been able to visit with them until now. The homes there are beautiful with all the yards perfectly groomed. They have different levels of care available, restaurants, fitness centers, indoor swimming pools, and activities for just about any interest. Norma was most impressed with the friendliness of the residents there.
Terri Hall and Darlene Sorensen drove to St. Louis, so Terri could see Ali, and Darlene visited with her parents, Don and Doris Taschner.
Jim and Ruby Corder drove to Kansas City for a medical appointment.
Everybody was back home by Friday and went to the home of Pastor Bob and Darlene for Pizza and a Movie.
Our other travelers were Tim Henderson and Sally Sorensen who had driven from Camp COBEAC in northern Michigan to his parent’s home in St. Joe for a week-long visit with them before driving to Ava this Monday.
We are excited here at Bethany Baptist Church because there is a wedding planned for the first weekend in May.
Darlene Sorensen and Norma Stillings sang a special song, Sunday morning, before Pastor Bob brought a message about “The Spirit of Antichrist” from 1 John 4:1-3.
The apostle, John, warned that there were many false prophets that had gone out into the world. A true prophet will acknowledge the full deity and perfect humanity of Jesus Christ. The name “Jesus” means, “Jehovah our Savior”, and “Christ” means, “The Anointed One.” Any spirit that would deny that Jesus is God/Man has the spirit of “Antichrist.”
We now see this spirit of Antichrist in almost every part of our society today. We see it in our government evident in the lying, the corruption, the power struggles, and the “sell-out” to Socialism. We see it in our schools, our churches, and in our homes where God and the Bible are no longer seen as the authority for everything. The people who still believe that the Bible, the King James Bible in particular, is the literal word of God are held up for contempt and ridicule in this day and age. Our recourse is to pray without ceasing, remain faithful, and stand up for what is true, no matter the cost.