Scripture says, “My word shall not return void.” I want to thank Wissinoming Bible Fellowship for their faithfulness in spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Sometimes we become discouraged and don’t see the results of our planting the seed of the Gospel. We want to give up, because we don’t see the result of our endeavors. But behind the scene God has been working. You planted, others watered, and others harvested. God’s word does not return void.
Back in 1972, I was a very confused, frightened teenager. I was starting to go down the wrong road. My close friend and neighbor Nina Schaeffer invited me to her youth group led by her pastor and his wife, Keith and Dorothy Yoder. I was a rebellious teenager and angry at God, so I would act out. Pastor Keith and Dorothy were always patient with me and showed the love of Christ. They should have kicked me out, but they didn’t. This broke through my hard shell. From the time I was a child I always had an awareness that if I died I was going to hell. I was afraid of dying.
The church I attended never explained the Gospel. It was all about works and sacraments. I knew about Jesus, but not that I could know Him personally. I thought God was harsh and waiting to catch me in some sin that I must then go and confess, a love-hate relationship. I was angry and frustrated. A vicious circle with no way out. Here is where your church comes in, Pastor Keith and his wife Dorothy.
On Halloween Eve, they had a youth meeting party on Halloween!? Not a good time for us death and hell-fearing people. But, it was the right time for me and God. Pastor Keith told me of a loving Father who sent His only Son Jesus to die for my sins. The great part was that Jesus went further and did the impossible and resurrected from the dead and defeated death. I needed to repent of my sins and give my life to Jesus. I no longer had to fear death, Satan, or demons. They have no power over me, because I am God’s child because of Christ, adopted into His family.
I did it and accepted Jesus that night. Whew! Did my life change. Fear of death was gone. It took a little while, but slowly my negative attitudes changed. I started to faithfully attend Church, respect my parents, and work hard at my studies. I graduated from college and met my wonderful husband, John. God blessed us with two sons and two granddaughters. John is a graduate of Westminster Theological Seminary and was called to be a pastor at Columbus Baptist Church across the river in South Jersey. We have been here faithfully preaching the Gospel for 40 years and will retire in July 2022. So you see you never know what God might be up to when you see a lonely, frightened teenager come through your door. God has used you and will continue to do so, as you serve Him faithfully.
by Maureen Callanan Grove