Good News Brief–September 21, 2021

Note: Due to Pastor Ryan being on vacation, there will not be an email next week. If you have an emergency and need care between September 26 and October 2, please contact one of the deacons.

RECAP: NOT AFRAID based on Matthew 14:22-33

Following Jesus was a wild ride. The disciples had seen Jesus do miracles, heal the sick, and set the captive free. They witnessed him calm the storm at sea simply by speaking to the wind and the waves. They had even seen Jesus take a young boy’s lunch of five loaves of bread and two fish and feed over five thousand people with them, having twelve baskets full of leftovers! But now they faced a test: they had to cross the lake on their own, without Jesus. If Jesus was for them, what could happen, right?

Sure enough, the wind and the waves came again. And this time, it lasted all night long, from dusk until the fourth watch of the night, between 3 and 6 am. By that extremely late hour, they had begun to panic, and their newfound confidence because of Jesus was gone. And as they struggled in the boat, they could not see that Jesus was coming right toward them, believing he was a ghost.

Do we ever feel this way? Have we ever felt like we were set off on a journey of faith, inspired by God, and then all of a sudden, the wind and the waves come? The wind and the waves are often symbols used to describe spiritual opposition. When we do the work of God, we will find challenge. If we are not facing opposition, we are probably not in the will of God. Satan attacks anyone he perceives is a threat. He tries to stop us from fulfilling our call, to make us give up, to change our path, to distract, to confuse, to push us to compromise and to sacrifice our integrity. The winds and the waves are the fears that Satan plays upon, our vulnerabilities, to keep us from walking into the fullness God has for us. And sometimes, those storms go on for a long time, where it feels like we keep being hit by one bad thing after another.  We are bombarded by the waves of fear: the fear of failure, loss, consequences, pain, suffering, the unknown, and an unfulfilled life. Can we see Jesus in the midst of the storm?

So how do we not succumb to the wind and the waves? How do we get out of the storm of fear? Peter did five things, and we can do those same things:

1) Trust in the Lord’s voice. Peter knew the voice of his beloved master. He knew that Jesus never lied to him, never let him down, and if it was truly the voice of Jesus, he would ask him to come. After all, leaving the boat is absurd, for how can a human walk on water? But if Jesus said so, that was good enough! But that deep trust comes from a rootedness in Scripture and walking daily with God (Proverbs 3:5-6). Are we willing to allow our hearts to listen to where God might be leading us and trust it?

2) Get out of the boat. You can’t walk on the water and stay in the boat simultaneously! The boat represents our comfort zone. Are we willing to get out of what we think is safe and trust in God fully?

3) Keep our eyes fixed on Jesus. As long as Peter kept his eyes fixed on Jesus, he walked on the water. When we fix our eyes on Jesus, we are declaring that he will see and navigate us through the storms of life. We walk on the water not because we are able, but because we believe in Jesus, the God of the impossible. While the world says you can’t, God says you can because he lives within us! But when we focus on the winds and the waves, the fears and doubts, we begin to sink.

4) Grab hold of God’s hand. Peter did take his eyes off Jesus, and did begin to sink. But Jesus was there to offer his hand of salvation. When we are struggling against the winds and the waves, can we grab hold of the hand of safety? Or do we continue to struggle or push away our rescue? God will catch us even when we fall–as long as we are willing to grab a hold of his hand!

5) Silence the voice of doubt. Doubt says stay in the boat. Doubt says the wind and the waves are too big, that we should never try, that we should not have left the boat. And when we give into doubt, we sink, for we allow those waves to wash over us. Fear and doubt are companions. We might be bombarded with the lies that we are not good enough, not wanted, not qualified, and a nobody. We might face the lies of false security and not take a risk for Jesus. Tell those voices to shut up, and listen to the only voice that says, “Come!”

The storm eventually was calmed because of the presence of Jesus. But Peter was able to walk on the water, albeit briefly, for he was willing to trust in his Master. Can we trust in him, and see if he can take us above the wind and the waves? Can we set aside fear and doubt, and see where he takes us as a church?

Questions for Reflection

1) What stirrings exist in your heart to do for God? Have you acted on it?

2) Do you become paralyzed by fear or doubt? What holds you back?

3) What is your boat, your comfort zone, that you are unwilling to leave?

4) What do you fix your eyes on?

Upcoming Service

This Sunday, Lynne Lent will bring forth the word while Pastor Ryan is celebrating Joscelin’s adoption with the family! Lynne will be preaching from John 11:38-44 the sermon titled, “Take Off Those Grave Clothes!” How can we take off those grave clothes that keep us in death? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!

Next Series

When Pastor Ryan returns, he will begin a new series called, “What’s Next?”. The first sermon in the series is titled, “The Way Forward,” based on Hebrews 10:19-31.

Daily Bible Readings for September 21 – October 4

September 21: 1 Samuel 14:1-14 How did Jonathan show no fear?

September 22: Esther 5 How did Esther show no fear?

September 23: Acts 9:19b-31 How did Paul show no fear?

September 24: Acts 20:13-38 How did Paul further show no fear?

September 25: 2 Timothy 1:6-14 How can we live with no fear?

September 26: Hebrews 1 How is Jesus superior to angels?

September 27: Hebrews 2 How is Jesus superior to humanity?

September 28: Hebrews 3 How is Jesus greater than Moses?

September 29: Hebrews 4:1-13 How is Jesus the fulfillment of the Sabbath rest?

September 30: Hebrews 4:14-5:10 How is Jesus our great high priest?

October 1: Hebrews 5:11-6:12 Why is faithfulness so important?

October 2: Hebrews 6:13-20 How can we be certain we can rely on God’s faithful word?

October 3: Genesis 19:12-29 What was Lot and his family asked to leave behind? Were they able?

October 4: Exodus 3:1-10 What was Moses asked to leave behind and do instead?

This Week’s (& Next Week’s) Events:

Saturday, September 25–Alma Long’s 100 birthday celebration at Oakdale park from 1 – 3 pm

Sunday, September 26–Outdoor Worship (weather permitting)

Sunday, October 3–First Sunday Offering (Operation Christmas Child)

Sunday, October 3–Caleb Eckard Baptism

Upcoming Events:

Wednesday, October 6–Worship Team @ 7:30 pm

Tuesday, October 12–Called Leadership Team Meeting w/ District @ 7 pm

Thursday, October 21–Regular Leadership Team Meeting @ 7 pm

Sunday, October 24–Council Mtg (tentative)

Sunday, October 31–Love Feast (tentative) & Torrey baptism

Announcements:

Care for Members

As you know, many of our members have come down with COVID. Several have expressed a desire to help. Please stay tuned as the specific means of assistance become defined. I should know more by the end of the week.

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 story. 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).

Card Shower

On September 21, Alma Long turns 100! Let’s bless her with a card shower!

Thank You

From Reba Kline: Dear Beaver Creek Family, I want to thank everyone for the food, cards and calls during the passing of my beloved husband Garry. I am truly grateful. Thank you.

Call to Prayer & Discernment

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

Fidelis Class

The Fidelis Class will begin a new book study for Sunday School called Altar Ego by Craig Groeschel. If you are not actively involved in a Sunday School class, you are invited to participate in this book study! It will start October 3.

Nursery

Misti Wheelbarger is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour for 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)

Patsy Dastoli (health)

Elijah Tucker Dean (health)

Garland Diehl (COVID)

Bill Eckard (COVID)

Bonnie Sue Eckard (COVID)

Brad & Theresa Eckard (COVID)

John Fix (addiction)

Janet Good (health)

Cindy Heatwole (health)

Hensley family (COVID)

Jordan family (loss)–prayers for John and the family mourning the passing of John’s cousin Joe

Jason & Jay Jordan (COVID)

Amelia Kimmell (COVID)

Heath Kimmell (health)

Gene LaPrade (health)

Larry LaPrade (COVID)

Lent family (work)

Barbara Meadows (health)

Alda Miller (health)

Betty Miller (health)

Forest & Marlene Miller (COVID)

Mary G Miller (health)

Marty Moore (recovery)

Tami Plaugher (health)

Lottie Ritchie (health)

Chris Shirk (health)

Ann Simmons (health)

Crystal Smith (health)

Tammy Stine (broken ankle)

Alex & Cole Wheelbarger (COVID)

Mary Whitmore (health)

Whitmore family (COVID)

Tom Wilfong (COVID)

John & Joyce Wright (COVID)

Owen Wright (health)

Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek COB

Good News Brief–September 14, 2021

RECAP: CHANGING THINGS UP based on 1 Corinthians 9:19-27

We live in a day where many of us are greatly concerned about the future of our country, but also our church. How do we reach the young people? How can we bring people into the church again? Sometimes, especially lately, it seems like the language of the Bible is a foreign language to so many, falling on deaf ears.

The apostle Paul understood these same questions in his day. Peter and the other apostles had a radical encounter with Jesus, but their ministry mainly stayed within their own borders. Paul was the one who primarily pushed to gospel throughout the Roman empire. How did he see church growth? And how can we reverse the tide in our day?

1) Focus on the mission–making Jesus known. Paul was willing to become a slave to everyone so they can hear the message of the gospel. Is everything we do for others to hear the gospel message? Or do we put the gospel to the back burner, and allow the enemy to distract us?

2) Speak the message in a way others understood. Paul changed the delivery of the message, not the content, based upon whom he was ministering to. This is not a changing of the gospel or a watering down of the gospel. Satan wants us to compromise the gospel, saying we must change the message in order to be relevant. However, the truth of the gospel should never be changed. But some people need to hear it in a way they understand.

3) Keep your eye on the prize. The early Olympic athletes devoted their entire lives to win the prize and what that prize represented. Our ultimate prize is Jesus. If our focus is on anything else or any other prize, we are amiss. People need the hope of Jesus. If we are not focused on the hope that he brings, would people really want to see?

4) Don’t be disqualified. An athlete is disqualified if they take any substance into their bodies which are not approved or to engage in activities outside of the scope of the rules. The same is true in our faith; we become disqualified if we take in sin or participate in activities outside of the rules of God’s word.

The early church grew in leaps and bounds. They were focused on making Jesus known. They understood their neighbors and spoke hope in a way they understood. Their ultimate goal was Jesus and heaven, and they lived in such a way they never were disqualified. If we want to see that kind of move in our day, we need to get back to keeping the main thing the main thing!

Questions for Reflection

1) What happens if our focus is distracted?

2) Who can you relate to that others cannot? How can you share the gospel with them?

3) Can you honestly say that Jesus is enough? If not, what is holding you back?

4) What activities in your life trip you up from following Jesus fully?

Upcoming Service

This Sunday, we will worship outdoors and celebrate new commitments of faith through baptism (possibly). Pastor Ryan will conclude the Vision series with the sermon titled, “Not Afraid,” based on Matthew 14:22-33. What should our attitude be as we follow Jesus? And how can we leave fear behind? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!

Daily Bible Readings for September 14 – 20

September 14: Numbers 13:26-33 What was the difference of perspective between the spies?

September 15: 1 Samuel 8 What unhealthy perspective had Israel adopted?

September 16: 1 Kings 12:25-33 What unhealthy perspective did Jeroboam adopt for Israel?

September 17: Isaiah 39 What unhealthy perspective did Hezekiah display?

September 18: Galatians 2:11-21 What unhealthy perspective did Paul confront in Peter?

September 19: Judges 4 How did Deborah show no fear?

September 20: Ruth 1 How did Ruth show no fear?

This Week’s Events:

Sunday, September 19–Outdoor Worship Only (no Sunday School) & First Sunday Offering for the Food Pantries!

Sunday, September 19–Teacher Appreciation Sunday & New Member Sunday & Baptism (if possible)

Upcoming Events:

Saturday, September 25–Alma Long’s 100 birthday celebration!

Sunday, October 24–Council Mtg (tentative)

Sunday, October 31–Love Feast (tentative)

Announcements:

COVID UPDATE for worship (updated from Leadership Team 9/9):

As you know, we have had many within our congregation that have contracted COVID. The current amount of active cases in the entire congregation sits at 15 that we know of. Although many of the members who came down with COVID acquired it in the community, we can reasonably conclude that a few may have indeed contracted it through church or activities related to church. We have not had as many new cases this week, but there still have been a few.

In light of this, the Leadership Team last evening affirmed that every week we will evaluate current cases to see if the spread is slowing, making decisions for the following Sunday based upon current data. The current plan is to meet in person on Sunday, September 19. On that day, we will collect the first Sunday offering for the food banks, recognize new members and our teachers. We will also do baptisms if it is safe to do so, but it is more likely baptisms might not take place until October.

When we do return in person, we are going to have outdoor worship as much as we are able as the weather allows. Leadership team is asking that all wear masks, whether indoor or outdoor, and resume to socially distance. We are not going to tape the pews again; however, we are asking for the time being that all are spread apart and sitting by family groups. September 19 will be outdoor worship if the weather allows.

We have also, in light of current case count, decided that it would be prudent to temporarily suspend meal activities until the cases are back under control. The Men’s Fellowship spaghetti dinner will be postponed. The first Sunday breakfast for October will be postponed. Love Feast on October 3 will be pushed back to a later date.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Ann as chair or myself. We wish we could all be together in person, but for the time being, let’s be safe and stop the spread of this virus.

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 story. 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).

Card Shower

On September 21, Alma Long turns 100! Let’s bless her with a card shower!

Call to Prayer & Discernment

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

Fidelis Class

The Fidelis Class will begin a new book study for Sunday School called Altar Ego by Craig Groeschel. If you are not actively involved in a Sunday School class, you are invited to participate in this book study! It will start October 3.

Nursery

Misti Wheelbarger is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour for 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)

Justin & Maryissa Cooper (COVID)–Pastor Ryan’s brother and sister-in-law

Patsy Dastoli (health)

Elijah Tucker Dean (health)

Garland Diehl (COVID)

Bill Eckard (recovery)

Bonnie Sue Eckard (COVID)

Brad & Theresa Eckard (COVID)

John Fix (addiction)

Janet Good (health)

Cindy Heatwole (health)

Hensley family (COVID)

John Jordan (COVID)

Jason & Jay Jordan (COVID)

Amelia Kimmell (COVID)

Heath Kimmell (health)

Larry LaPrade (COVID)

Lent family (work)

Barbara Meadows (health)

Alda Miller (health)

Betty Miller (health)

Mary G Miller (health)

Marty Moore (recovery)

Tami Plaugher (health)

Lottie Ritchie (health)

Chris Shirk (health)

Ann Simmons (health)

Crystal Smith (health)

Tammy Stine (broken ankle)

Alex & Cole Wheelbarger (COVID)

Mary Whitmore (health)

Brian Whitmore and family (COVID)

Tom Wilfong (COVID)

John & Joyce Wright (COVID)

Owen Wright (health)

Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek COB

Good News Brief–September 7, 2021

RECAP: INNOVATIVE DISCIPLES based on Daniel 1:4b-20

No one likes nightmares. For the nation of Judah, the exile was a continuous state of nightmare. They were removed from their homeland by the Babylonians. Nebuchadnezzar destroyed the walls of Jerusalem and destroyed the temple. The people were displaced, and the young who were bright were forced into the king’s service to learn the ways and culture of the Babylonians. Judah ended up in this place because of their sin, their refusal to be fully committed to God. Now they were in exile, and the glory of the Lord had gone. Hope was lost. Do we feel this way? Does it feel like our nation is in spiritual exile, where the glory of the Lord is hard to find?

Yet despite the loss of hope and the nightmarish state of the exile, the book of Daniel presents four young men, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, who chose to remain faithful to God. They were able to stand strong in the midst of the exile in the palace of the king. They found a way through the exile, and provided a blueprint for hope. And we too can follow this blueprint and stand, even in the midst of our exile, and know God will point us through.

1) They stood for truth. They knew what the Law said. They were not allowed to eat foods that were not kosher. More importantly, they were not allowed to consume anything offered to idols. It was a common practice for any meat that was served was first offered as a sacrifice to the gods of Babylon. The meat would be blessed by the gods, and then became like ambrosia; the people would eat the divine food and be blessed. But these four had a relationship with God, and knew the truth–so they refused to eat.

They were men of integrity. Tony Dungy said, “Integrity does not come in degrees, low, medium, and high. You either have integrity, or you don’t.” Integrity is to be the same person, true to your character, in every sphere of life. Too often though we display different faces in different arenas. No one other than themselves would have known if they had eaten the king’s food; but their integrity mattered. They wanted to be faithful to God, no matter the circumstance.

Can we stand on truth? Can we be people of integrity in these days of spiritual exile?

2) They counted the cost. These four weighed their priorities and counted the cost. They understood that in life, you will always have to give up something when you make a choice to follow something. So they could have chosen to eat the food and gain the prestige in the king’s eyes, and so preserve themselves; but that would have been at the expense of their relationship with God and their eternal resting place. Or they could have chosen to be faithful to God, but risk their lives on earth. They chose to be faithful to God, no matter the cost. They later faced a fiery furnace and lion’s den; but it started with counting the cost.

There is always a price to pay for being faithful to God. We will face pressure from the outside world. We might face threats. We might be given a huge list of consequences. But what is more important–what this world values and what we can gain on this side of eternity, or our relationship with Jesus and eternal life?

3) They trusted in God. To preserve the life of the king’s official, they put God to the test. They trusted that God would show them favor for their stand on faithfulness through the consumption of just veggies and water. They rested their belief in God instead of trying to find their own way out of the predicament. And God rewarded their trust not just with favor and health, but they had new opportunities to make God’s name known.

We might be in a place of spiritual exile. But let us stand on the truth, being people of integrity,  let us count the cost and stand for God, and let us fully trust in Him! They still lived in exile, but through their faithfulness, they helped point the nation in the way out of the exile. Let us be found faithful!

Questions for Reflection

1) Why is it important to be a person of integrity?

2)To stand for truth, we need to know the truth. What do we have in place to grow in our knowledge of the truth of God?

3) What are you willing to sacrifice to follow after God?

4) Do you fully trust in God? If not, what would help you trust more?

Upcoming Service

This Sunday, we will worship outdoors and celebrate new commitments of faith through baptism. Pastor Ryan will continue the Vision series with the sermon titled, “Changing Things Up,” based on 1 Corinthians 9:19-27. How did Paul maintain the message of the gospel when the audience changed? And how do we speak the language of the gospel? Come or tune in Sunday to find out!

Daily Bible Readings for September 7 – 13

September 7: 2 Samuel 6:1-23 What innovative way was used to return the ark to Jerusalem?

September 8: Jeremiah 32 What innovative thing did Jeremiah do despite the pending exile?

September 9: Ezekiel 2:1-3:12 What innovative act of obedience did God ask Ezekiel to do?

September 10: Acts 14:8-20 What courageous act did Paul take for Jesus?

September 11: 2 Timothy 2:14-26 How can we prove ourselves to be faithful disciples?

September 12: Genesis 18:16-33 What paradigm shift did Abraham make?

September 13: Exodus 4:1-17 What paradigm shift did Moses need to make?

This Week’s Events:

Tuesday, September 7–Women’s Fellowship @ 6:30 pm

Thursday, September 9–Leadership Team @ 7 pm (note date change!) via ZOOM

Sunday, September 12–Baptism Sunday

Sunday, September 12–Outdoor Worship Only (no Sunday School) & First Sunday Offering for the Food Pantries!

Upcoming Events:

Sunday, September 19–Teacher Appreciation Sunday & New Member Sunday

Saturday, September 25–Alma Long’s 100 birthday celebration!

Sunday, October 3–Love Feast

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 story. 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).

Card Shower

On September 21, Alma Long turns 100! Let’s bless her with a card shower!

Call to Prayer & Discernment

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

Fidelis Class

The Fidelis Class will begin a new book study for Sunday School called Altar Ego by Craig Groeschel. If you are not actively involved in a Sunday School class, you are invited to participate in this book study! It will start October 3.

Nursery

Misti Wheelbarger is looking for volunteers for the nursery during the Sunday School hour for 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)

Cornwell family (loss)

Justin & Maryissa Cooper (COVID)

Patsy Dastoli (health)

Elijah Tucker Dean (health)

Bill Eckard (recovery)

Brad & Theresa Eckard (COVID)

John Fix (addiction)

Janet Good (health)

Cindy Heatwole (health)

Hensley family (COVID)

Amelia Kimmell (COVID)

Heath Kimmell (health)

Larry LaPrade (COVID)

Lent family (work)

Barbara Meadows (health)

Alda Miller (health)

Betty Miller (health)

Mary G Miller (health)

Marty Moore (recovery)

Tami Plaugher (health)

Lottie Ritchie (health)

Chris Shirk (health)

Ann Simmons (health)

Crystal Smith (health)

Tammy Stine (broken ankle)

Cole Wheelbarger (COVID)

Mary Whitmore (health)

Whitmore family (COVID)

Tom Wilfong (back/neck)

John Wright (COVID)

Owen Wright (health)

Pastor Ryan Cooper
Beaver Creek COB