Good News Brief–May 3, 2022

RECAP: WANDERING NATION based on Joshua 1:1-9

It is not enjoyable at all to be in a place of wandering or to be stuck. Being stuck on a bus halfway up Afton mountain with a bunch of middle school children was not really the most pleasant experience I had on Friday! But that was only an hour and a half of being stuck on the side of the road. Now imagine being stuck in the same desert, wandering for forty years! It would be maddening or even deflating. Yet that was the experience Israel endured.

How did they end up in this place of wandering? Even though they had the instruction of the Lord to take the promised land, they allowed the fear generated by the spies’ report to take root. Instead of moving forward, they panicked, rejected God’s plan, and wanted to return to the place of bondage. Their disobedience and refusal to honor the Word of God resulted in a state of wandering. And we too end up wandering when we allow fear to dictate our lives over trust in God, when we disobey God’s plan, and refuse to walk into what God has called us to do.

We all from time to time allow fear to take root, exaggerate the obstacles and challenges, and discourage us from obedience. We all disobey or think our way is best at times. And we all have been stuck at one point in our lives. We could even say our nation right now is stuck and in an endless period of wandering. But how do we move on from the place of wandering? In the same way Joshua was encouraged to do so:

1) Take the step of faith. It was forty years later. Nothing in the promised land had changed. The obstacles and challenges were still there; the only difference was time. Moses was dead; the comfort of the people was gone. It was a new day, time to move forward and take the step of faith, or, as quoted in the movie Inception, “die an old man filled with regret.” Israel had two choices; they could either embrace their fresh start, take the step of faith and go forward, or they could reject it, refuse to act in faith, and remain in the place of wandering.

Do we want to leave our place of wandering? We need to take that step of faith, cross our river Jordan and watch what God can do! As soon as the priests hit the water, carrying the ark, the water at flood stage split in two like the Red Sea had done forty years prior. When we take the step of faith, we see God begin to work! Will we be strong and courageous to take the step of faith?

2) Remain faithful to the Word. When God spoke to Joshua, he did not discuss battle strategies; rather, the focus was calling the people back to faithful observance of the Word. Joshua and Israel were charged to be careful with keeping the entire law of Moses and not stray to the right or the left. Victory starts when we are obedient to the Word of God. Whenever Israel obeyed, they saw blessing; whenever they ignored the instruction, they saw consequence.

We need to remain faithful in order to stand strong. When we are willing to compromise, we say our faith can be negotiated. And it is through that weakness the enemy of our soul pounces! Part of the reason our nation is in crisis spiritually is that we have abandoned being faithful to the Word of God. Instead, we minimize it, delete the things we find uncomfortable, or even try to update it in the guise of “following the spirit.” But the Spirit (inner Word) will always be in harmony with the outer Word (Bible) and Living Word (Christ). Faithful observance leads to blessing!

3) Prioritize the Word. Being faithful to the immediate commandments was not enough; rather, the Word should not depart from the lips, and we should meditate upon it day and night, like how a cow digests his food multiple times by chewing the cud. The Word needs to become the centerpiece of our decision-making and how we live, the guiding principle behind all that we do. And that priority is for instruction in the Word as well. A reason why the church in the United States has suffered is the growing problem of biblical literacy and the lack of discipleship. The Word is no longer a priority; feelings have become the greatest priority! But when we put the Word first and foremost, we then have full access to the guide that lights the way and keeps us from sin. We can truly live!

4) Be strong and courageous. Three times it was stated to emphasize the importance of being strong. It takes courage to stand for Jesus and to do the right thing, even in the face of opposition! There are obstacles that want to keep us from achieving our promised land. But when we are strong and courageous, we can overcome any challenge because of our true source of power found in God!

Will we take the step of faith, be strong and courageous and live for God? Will we be faithful to the Word and restore priority to the Word? Or will be content to remain in a place of wandering?

Questions for Reflection

1) What fears are holding you back from taking a step of faith? Surrender them to God.

2) In what areas do you struggle in remaining faithful to the Word of God? What can help build faithfulness?

3) What adjustments can be made to your life to make the Word of God even more of a priority?

4) Where do you face the temptation to compromise and abandon doing the right thing?

Upcoming Service

This Sunday, Pastor Ryan will continue the series called “A Fresh Start” with the sermon titled, “A Wandering Nation,” based on Joshua 1:1-9. How do we stop wandering and move forward into the promised land God has given us? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!

Daily Bible Readings for May 3 – 9

May 3: Numbers 12:1-16 What contributed to the wandering of Israel in the desert?

May 4: Numbers 13:26-33 What contributed to the wandering of Israel in the desert?

May 5: Numbers 14:1-25 What contributed to the wandering of Israel in the desert?

May 6: Deuteronomy 30:1-10 What can lead to the way out from wandering?

May 7: Deuteronomy 30:11-20 What leads to spiritual wandering? What leads to a fresh start?

May 8: Joshua 2:1-24 What led to Rahab’s fresh start?

May 9: Joshua 4:1-24 How did Israel commit to a fresh start in the promised land?

This Week’s  Events:

Sunday, May 8–Mother’s Day & Child Dedication

Upcoming Events:

Sunday, May 15–Church Council Meeting after church

Thursday, May 19–Leadership Team Meeting, 7 pm

Sunday, May 29–Deed Signing

Sunday, June 5–Pentecost Sunday, Baptism & Summer hours begin

Announcements:

Council Meeting

We will have a brief council meeting after church on Sunday, May 15. There are three items on the agenda: adopt a new official name for the church, approve the new constitution (needed for incorporation & non-profit legal designation), and begin the conversation on the color for new road signs for the church.

Instachoir

The Instachoir will rehearse over the next few Sundays for a few moments right after church. The Instachoir will have an anthem on Sunday, May 15.

Call for Worship Leaders and Children’s Story

As we look at the ability to reopen in the coming weeks, we are in need of both worship leaders and children’s stories. We are looking for one person each week, rather than a month at a time. If you would like to serve, contact Alice Over (worship leading) or Tammy Stine (children’s story).

Call to Prayer 

Let us continue to pray for our nation in the following ways:

1) National return to God

2) Repentance of personal sin

3) Repentance of corporate sin

4) Healing for the brokenness of relationships

5) Our leaders

6) Revival

7) Guidance for our congregation in the days ahead

Idea Box!

What do you want to see at Beaver Creek? What are some ideas you have for the long-term growth of our congregation? Any outrageous outreach ideas? Please either email Pastor Ryan or write them down and place in the brown suggestion box in the narthex. Dream big!

Baptism Interest:

If you are interested in water baptism, please email Pastor Ryan in the next few weeks!

Nursery

The Christian Education Team is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour next year. If you are willing to help, even if it is just for a Sunday, please reach out to her and let her know.

Four Ways to Give! 

1) Mail your tithe into the church office

2) Drop it by the church office on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday, 9 am – 1 pm

3) Our online giving platform: https://beavercreekchurchva.churchcenter.com/giving

4) Drop off in the offering plate on Sunday!

Prayer Needs

Continue to Keep in Prayer our members in Skilled Care Facilities: Mary G Miller, Shirley Miller, Stanley Suter & Carolyn Wine

John Bennington (health)

Sandy Bennington (health)

Samantha Cooper (health)

Patsy Dastoli (health)

Elijah Tucker Dean (health)

Natalie Dodge (health)

Bill Eckard (health)

John Fix (addiction)

Cindy Heatwole (health)

Darlene LaPrade (health)

Alma Long (COVID)

Mark Martin (health)

Barbara Meadows (health)

Torrey Meyer (mental health)

Alda Miller (health)

Betty Miller (health)

Mary G Miller (health)

Marty Moore (recovery)

Tami Plaugher (health)

Lottie Ritchie (health)

Ann Simmons (health)

Crystal Smith (health)

Whitmore family (various)

Mary Whitmore (health)

Tom Wilfong (health)

Shelvy Wittig (health)

Joyce Wright (health)

Owen Wright (health)

Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek Church

Good News Brief–April 26, 2022

RECAP: HUMANITY’S RESET based on Genesis 9:1-17

God is in the business of granting fresh starts. This is a motif that weaves its way from Genesis through the book of Revelation. But there is no fresh start that is more drastic than the flood. For many, it seems inconsistent that a loving, forgiving God would destroy the earth by a universal flood. Why did God feel the need to destroy all of humanity? And so this has become a stumbling block, causing people to believe that the God of the New Testament is different than the God of the Old Testament, or teach we should only believe the New Testament, or discredit faith altogether.

Yet, the flood is consistent with the character of God. God is holy; that which is unholy cannot dwell in his presence. Sin cannot endure in the presence of God. Sin needs to be cleansed, washed away, purified; the ultimate expression captured by Jesus on the cross! In Genesis 6, we see that humanity was corrupted by the “sons of God,” causing men to pursue only evil all the time, to be filled with violence and corruption (see Genesis 6:1-12). This union resulted in offspring, known as the men of renown and the Nephilim. Any myth often has at its core a kernel of truth. In Greek mythology, it was commonplace for the gods of Olympia to have relations with human beings, producing demigods–half mortal, half immortal children. Some became men of renown (Hercules and Achilles), while others were accursed (Cyclops, Sirens, Medusa). The Greek myths (and others) reflect a reality that existed! When you look at other biblical texts that were considered authoritative during the time of Jesus on this earth, specifically the apocryphal text of 1 Enoch (still considered part of the Bible today by the Ethiopic church), the sons of God, or watchers, were the fallen angels led by Azazel (another name for Lucifer/Satan). The watchers are actually referenced in Daniel 4!  These fallen angels wanted to corrupt God’s creation as an act of rebellion, and so they came down to earth, mingled among humanity, and taught them many things, including how to make weapons of destruction and to change one’s appearance to erase the image of God within. The corruption ran so deep, that offspring were produced with a lust to destroy all of humanity and undo the goodness of God’s creation. These offspring, with a human body but immortal spirit, eventually became the demons after the flood.

Even though what is referenced above is not in our official Bible today, it was widely circulated during the time of Jesus and was not ruled out of the Bible until the Council of Jamnia in 95 AD.

God’s sorrow in creating humanity was the fact that humanity abandoned the good that he offered and exchanged it for the corrupt, violence, and wickedness. And those very characteristics still exist today.

How can we find a reset?

1) God provides the means of salvation. God called Noah to build an ark. Whether the construction took 100 years or only 5 years, Noah used that time of building to also share the message of the coming flood. The ark provided covering over the waters that cleansed the earth. But it also provided a means of salvation for those who chose to listen. The ultimate expression of his salvation through the cross still can cover and protect all, but only for those who listen and embrace salvation. But a rejection of salvation leads has significant consequences!

2) God signed the covenant. He made a covenant with humanity that he would not destroy the whole earth by universal flood again, sealing it with the rainbow. That sign served as a reminder to humanity of the surety of God’s word and promise. God always keeps his word! But a covenant is a two-way street; we have a part to play!

3) Be obedient. Our part to play starts with obedience. We have to bear fruit. Fruit here was more than population growth; rather, it encompassed every sphere. We need to be fruitful in our relationship with God, with each other, with ourselves, and our planet. Do we embody the fruit of the Spirit? What do people see when they observe us? When we are obedient, we see the favor of God!

4) Break the cycle with repentance. When we have been given a fresh start, we have a choice to either keep doing the old practices which led us down the road of destruction or to repent, make a change, and move forward. God instructed Noah to chart a different course. We too have that opportunity to break the cycle and chart a different path.

The end result? The blessing of God!

Sometimes, we need the reset. God provides salvation and seals it with his covenant. It is up to us to walk in the fullness of a fresh start. What will we choose?

Questions for Reflection

1) What in our world is destroying humanity? Is there anything that can be done about it?

2) Are we walking in the salvation of God? Does the evidence of our living match Jesus’ salvation?

3) Where do you find it difficult to be obedient to God? Why?

4) What practices are curses that need to be broken? What could use a fresh start in your life?

Upcoming Service

This Sunday, Pastor Ryan will continue the series called “A Fresh Start” with the sermon titled, “A Wandering Nation,” based on Joshua 1:1-9. How do we stop wandering and move forward into the promised land God has given us? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!

Daily Bible Readings for April 26 – May 2

April 26: Genesis 33:1-20 How did Jacob and Esau have a fresh start?

April 27: Genesis 40:1-23 How did a cupbearer come to a fresh start?

April 28: Genesis 50:15-21 How did Joseph grant his brothers a fresh start?

April 29: Exodus 15:1-21 How did God provide the nation of Israel a fresh start?

April 30: Exodus 33:12-23 How did Moses intercede for a fresh start?

May 1: Numbers 11:1-15 What contributed to the wandering of Israel in the desert?

May 2: Numbers 11:16-30 What fresh start did God try to bring the people of Israel?

This Week’s  Events:

Saturday, April 30–Men’s Fellowship Breakfast @ 7:15 am, Thomas House in Dayton

Saturday, April 30–Spring Festival @ Brethren Woods

Sunday, May 1–First Sunday Breakfast @ 9:15 am

Sunday, May 1–First Sunday Offering–Samaritan’s Purse (Ukraine relief)

Sunday, May 1–Josiah Whitmore’s birthday party celebration (immediately after church)

Sunday, May 1–Worship Team Meeting

Upcoming Events:

Sunday, May 8–Mother’s Day & Child Dedication

Sunday, May 15–Church Council Meeting after church

Sunday, May 29–Deed Signing

Sunday, June 5–Pentecost Sunday, Baptism & Summer hours begin

Announcements:

Council Meeting

We will have a brief council meeting after church on Sunday, May 15. There are three items on the agenda: adopt a new official name for the church, approve the new constitution (needed for incorporation & non-profit legal designation), and begin the conversation on the color for new road signs for the church.

Instachoir

The Instachoir will rehearse over the next few Sundays for a few moments right after church. The Instachoir will have an anthem on Sunday, May 15.

Call for Worship Leaders and Children’s Story

As we look at the ability to reopen in the coming weeks, we are in need of both worship leaders and children’s stories. We are looking for one person each week, rather than a month at a time. If you would like to serve, contact Alice Over (worship leading) or Tammy Stine (children’s story).

Call to Prayer 

Let us continue to pray for our nation in the following ways:

1) National return to God

2) Repentance of personal sin

3) Repentance of corporate sin

4) Healing for the brokenness of relationships

5) Our leaders

6) Revival

7) Guidance for our congregation in the days ahead

Idea Box!

What do you want to see at Beaver Creek? What are some ideas you have for the long-term growth of our congregation? Any outrageous outreach ideas? Please either email Pastor Ryan or write them down and place in the brown suggestion box in the narthex. Dream big!

Baptism Interest:

If you are interested in water baptism, please email Pastor Ryan in the next few weeks!

Nursery

The Christian Education Team is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour next year. If you are willing to help, even if it is just for a Sunday, please reach out to her and let her know.

Four Ways to Give! 

1) Mail your tithe into the church office

2) Drop it by the church office on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday, 9 am – 1 pm

3) Our online giving platform: https://beavercreekchurchva.churchcenter.com/giving

4) Drop off in the offering plate on Sunday!

Prayer Needs

Continue to Keep in Prayer our members in Skilled Care Facilities: Mary G Miller, Shirley Miller, Stanley Suter & Carolyn Wine

John Bennington (health)

Sandy Bennington (health)

Samantha Cooper (health)

Patsy Dastoli (health)

Elijah Tucker Dean (health)

Natalie Dodge (health)

Bill Eckard (tests)

John Fix (addiction)

Cindy Heatwole (health)

Darlene LaPrade (health)

Alma Long (COVID)

Mark Martin (health)

Barbara Meadows (health)

Torrey Meyer (well-being)

Alda Miller (health)

Betty Miller (health)

Mary G Miller (health)

Marty Moore (recovery)

Tami Plaugher (health)

Lottie Ritchie (health)

Ann Simmons (health)

Crystal Smith (health)

Whitmore family (various)

Mary Whitmore (health)

Tom Wilfong (health)

Joyce Wright (health)

Owen Wright (health)

Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek Church

Good News Brief–April 18, 2022

RECAP: WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH JESUS? based on Matthew 28:11-20

The resurrection was an event that changed history. For the women who came to the tomb to mourn and grieve, it was a burst of hope, and they became the first missionaries! For the guards, the resurrection meant they had failed in their duty to protect the tomb, and now their lives were in question. For the chief priests and Pharisees, the resurrection represented their worst nightmare coming true; the greatest thorn in their side was back! And for the disciples, the resurrection represented a chance to make things right and redeem themselves. Everyone has to respond to the resurrection! How can we respond?

1) Ignore the resurrection. The guards, fearful for their lives, went to the chief priests with their problem. By allowing Jesus’ body to disappear, they were guilty of a capital offense and likely faced execution and their families likely faced forced labor. So they went to the chief priests, who themselves viewed Jesus’ resurrection as a significant problem. But instead of submitting to it and learning the lesson, they tried to cover it up and ignore it. They paid a sum of money to the soldiers to keep quiet. No need to stir the pot!

Today many try to either ignore the resurrection or discredit it. We deny it because if the resurrection is indeed true, it requires life change, disruption to our status quo, a reorientation of our expectations, and a forced abdication of the throne of our hearts. To believe in the resurrection means we must have a changed life. And so it is easier to try to ignore, pretend it did not happen so we can live as we desire. But the day will come when we can ignore it no longer, and we will have to give an accounting for the resurrection, for one day every knee will bow to Jesus. If we ignore in the same manner we ignore a light on the dashboard of the car, we run the risk of allowing things to blow up!

2) Share the good news. The disciples, after meeting the resurrected Lord, we instructed to go and share the gospel. Like a little child cannot contain their excitement at good news, so too we should overflow with joy at the news of Jesus’ resurrection! We are to make disciples, tap others on the shoulders and invest in them. We need to believe in people, as Jesus believed in the twelve, sharing with them what it means to follow. We should reach out to all nations, sharing with any individual, for Jesus’ death and resurrection were for all!

3) Teach with your life. The disciples were encouraged to teach to obey all of Jesus’ commands. Just as an athlete or celebrity becomes an instant role model (even if they do not want it) because of their platform, so too people look at us for guidance. Can they tell by our living that we believe in Jesus and the hope of the resurrection? Do they know what we stand for? Can they see the hope dwelling within us? If we are obedient, it will show in our words and deed. But if we are not living in the resurrection, people will be confused by our presentation.

4) Dwell daily in his presence. Jesus promised that he will be with us always. Even though we may not see his face, he is there. Are we desiring to spend time with him? Do we allow him to challenge us to grow?

Jesus is our resurrected Lord. What will do with the resurrection?

Questions for Reflection

1) In what areas of your life have you ignored Jesus? Can you surrender that to him?

2) Are you willing to share the good news of Jesus? Who needs to hear it?

3) What adjustments might you need to make to your life to allow others to clearly see Jesus in you?

4) Where do you have the opportunity to spread the good news of the resurrection?

Upcoming Service

This Sunday, Pastor Ryan will start a new series called “A Fresh Start” with the sermon titled, “Humanity’s Reset,” based on Genesis 9:1-17. How did God and humanity rebuild after the flood? How can we live into a fresh start? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!

Daily Bible Readings for April 19 – 25

April 19: Luke 24:13-35 What was the response to the resurrection?

April 20: Luke 24:36-53 What was the response to the resurrection?

April 21: John 20:1-18 What was the response to the resurrection?

April 22: John 20:19-31 What was the response to the resurrection?

April 23: 1 Corinthians 15:35-58 How is the resurrection a promise for our resurrection?

April 24: Genesis 13:1-18 What was Abram and Lot’s fresh start?

April 25: Genesis 28:10-22 How did God provide a fresh start for Jacob?

This Week’s  Events:

Thursday, April 21–Leadership Team @ 7 pm

Upcoming Events:

Saturday, April 30–Men’s Fellowship Breakfast @ 7:15 am, Thomas House in Dayton

Saturday, April 30–Spring Festival @ Brethren Woods

Sunday, May 1–First Sunday Breakfast

Sunday, May 8–Mother’s Day

Sunday, May 15–Church Council Meeting after church

Announcements:

Call for Worship Leaders and Children’s Story

As we look at the ability to reopen in the coming weeks, we are in need of both worship leaders and children’s stories. We are looking for one person each week, rather than a month at a time. If you would like to serve, contact Alice Over (worship leading) or Tammy Stine (children’s story).

Call to Prayer 

Let us continue to pray for our nation in the following ways:

1) National return to God

2) Repentance of personal sin

3) Repentance of corporate sin

4) Healing for the brokenness of relationships

5) Our leaders

6) Revival

7) Guidance for our congregation in the days ahead

Idea Box!

What do you want to see at Beaver Creek? What are some ideas you have for the long-term growth of our congregation? Any outrageous outreach ideas? Please either email Pastor Ryan or write them down and place in the brown suggestion box in the narthex. Dream big!

Baptism Interest:

If you are interested in water baptism, please email Pastor Ryan in the next few weeks!

Nursery

The Christian Education Team is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour next year. If you are willing to help, even if it is just for a Sunday, please reach out to her and let her know.

Four Ways to Give! 

1) Mail your tithe into the church office

2) Drop it by the church office on Tuesday, Thursday or Friday, 9 am – 1 pm

3) Our online giving platform: https://beavercreekchurchva.churchcenter.com/giving

4) Drop off in the offering plate on Sunday!

Prayer Needs

Continue to Keep in Prayer our members in Skilled Care Facilities: Mary G Miller, Shirley Miller, Stanley Suter & Carolyn Wine

John Bennington (health)

Samantha Cooper (health)–testing Wednesday, April 20. As a result, Pastor Ryan will be unavailable on Wednesday.

Patsy Dastoli (health)

Elijah Tucker Dean (health)

Natalie Dodge (health)1

John Fix (addiction)

Cindy Heatwole (health)

Darlene LaPrade (health)

Mark Martin (health)

Barbara Meadows (health)

Alda Miller (health)

Betty Miller (health)

Mary G Miller (health)

Marty Moore (recovery)

Tami Plaugher (health)

Lottie Ritchie (health)

Ann Simmons (health)

Crystal Smith (health)

Whitmore family (various)

Mary Whitmore (health)

Tom Wilfong (health)

Joyce Wright (health)

Owen Wright (health)

Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek Church