Please Pray for the Northcutt Family in Siberia, Russia!

Many I am sure have now heard about the fire that engulfed the dwelling of the Northcutt family in Siberia, Russia.
All Points Baptist Mission has set up a special fund specifically for them as they continue to go through what they were able to save, and look forward to the future. You may read about the details on their website. If you would like to donate to this fund, please let us know! All donations may be made out to All Points Baptist Mission, with a memo included to specify that the donation is for the “Northcutt Fire Recovery Fund.”

All Points Baptist Mission
PO Box 977
New Philadelphia, OH 44663

100% of all funds donated to All Points Baptist Mission are passed on directly to the missionary, without any fees. You will also receive a receipt for any donation given, as it is tax deductible. Please include your email address if you would like that sent to you electronically.

Please continue to look for new updates on the Northcutt’s page, as we will post them as we receive them. We can not thank you enough for the care you have for your missionaries!

 

Jon Black
Missions Office Manager,
All Points Baptist Mission
A ministry of Calvary Baptist Church

New Missionary – Ms. Mickle

We are pleased to welcome Miss Ruth Mickle as a missionary with APBM. Miss Ruth is planning to start deputation soon to work on an in-country Bible Translation project for a people with no scriptures.

Chaplain Joe Martin – Balance in Ministry

The battle for our attention between our ministry and our family is a brutal reality for the Lord’s servants. The Scriptures inform ministers to rightly divide the word of truth (II Timothy 2:15), to study their life and teachings (I Timothy 4:16), and to be an example to others (I Timothy 4:12). The public ministry of preaching, teaching, and counseling (among other activities) must flow from a life well lived for God in the private times of the minister’s life. However, the family of the minister is not to be neglected, but rather embraced. Providing physical support alone is not sufficient; we must also enable them emotionally and spiritually if the family is to be spiritually nurtured.  Any isolation of the wife or children will cause them to become hard-hearted toward the minister as well as the Gospel. Bickering, numbness, solitude, and bitterness will fester inevitably.

Only from the depth of our ministry at home can we expect to develop spiritual maturity in others. Charles H. Spurgeon spoke persuasively on the home in one of his famous lectures to his students. He adamantly believed that the effectiveness of their ministry to others swung on the hinges of the spiritual health of their home. He advised:

“We ought to be such husbands that every husband in the parish may safely be such as we are. Is it so? We ought to be the best of fathers. Alas! Some ministers, to my knowledge, are far from this, for as to their families, they have kept the vineyards of others, but their own vineyards they have not kept. Their children are neglected, and do not grow up as a godly seed. Is it so with yours?”

The critical component for maintaining ministry – both public and private – is gaining balance.

Imbalance results in catastrophic consequences. A sorrowful example is found in
David’s life. Without a doubt, David was a great king. Sadly, he was also a poor father. One of his most glaring failures was with his son, Absalom. Among the many things that David did wrong, one of the primary catalysts to the downfall of his family was due to David’s distraction regarding his assignments (II Samuel 13:1-3). His desire to show honor to Jonathan, David’s greatly beloved friend, resulted in the heartfelt and gracious treatment of Mephibosheth, the only remaining son of Jonathan. David was affectionate with Mephibosheth, but not with his own children. He prioritized his ministry over his family and, as a result, division was created within his home. David failed to realize that despite his success in the kingdom the misdeeds within his home would wound him deeply and enduringly. From David we must learn that the family must become a serious priority.

It’s time to level the scales.  In order to overcome the pitfalls of imbalance, we must turn to the Scriptures for guidance. First, ministers must address the needs of their spouse (Ephesians 5:22-23). A wonderful opportunity exists within marriage to learn about the precious person with whom we are sharing love, life, and ministry!  Those families who have been blessed with children can know a special joy as well.  Though many couples try to simply endure their children’s years of development, their time in our homes is critical to their development of their Christian identity and worldview (Ephesians 6:1-11).  By joining with the Lord to build our homes, we will have a family that is established on the Rock, but many marriages are ravished by Satan and selfishness and end up “dashed upon the rocks” (Ephesians 6:12-20).

Your home is the platform for all other ministries.  All ministry matters, but we prefer to think that our public ministry is separate from our home.  This is simply false.  The ministry of the home is a mirror of ministry in the church. It is foolish to expect our families to simply accept the fact that we must spend time with others when we neglect to spend time with them.  A burden for the welfare of souls begins with our homes and then radiates to other families.  the minister must ensure that both are set on a course to pursue holiness (I Timothy 3:2).

Through the power of the Spirit, the family can be a unified home under the headship of the Lord Jesus Christ and serve one another in love (Galatians 5:13-18). By solidifying his family’s pursuit of holiness, the minister will be liberated to invest liberally in the spiritual well-being of other families.  Through the eternal and indwelling Spirit we can experience victory in each area of our ministries despite being pull in this dynamic tug-of-war of ministry!

American by birth. Soldier by choice.
Lt. Joseph Martin

Endorsed by All Points Baptist Mission, serving in the Army

Bro. Russell Holland – A Personality Dedicated To His Purpose

Personalities fascinate me. We all have one and each comes with its own special strengths and weaknesses. Often, the differences between personalities can be the basis of conflict or of harmony. My personality may annoy someone and other personalities may aggravate me. However, our God never ceases to work with each individual to mold their unique personality to fit His purpose.  There seems to be three particular ways in how this conforming and transforming is manifested and three men from the Scripture from whom we can learn these principles.

1. Softens the Edges – Simon Peter

My baby girl reminds me of Peter; constantly trying to shove both her feet in her mouth! In the Gospels, Peter is consistently getting in his own way and opposing himself. Yet God got a hold of his heart and he later became one of the greatest disciples and witnesses for Jesus Christ. Eventually, he was even used by God to pen the books of First and Second Peter, throughout which his compassion and love for the Lord is clearly seen.

Peter is a reminder that no matter how rough my personality may be, or that of someone else around me, God can work and use that personality for His glory. Are we willing to allow him to soften those edges that need it?

2. Strengthens the Spirit – John Mark

John Mark would be the opposite of Peter. This is the guy who, from what we read in Scripture, doesn’t seem to be able to handle the difficult life of service to work with the Apostle Paul. However, through the working of the Holy Spirit and the patience of a man of God, John Mark eventually is built up to the place that Paul says, “…Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry.” God strengthened His spirit, and emboldened his will.

May we submit to God for the same. Too often I find my boldness for Christ lacking and my spirit is weak. My hope and prayer then is that, as in John Mark, God might mold and strengthen me to be “profitable…for the ministry.”

3. Sustains the Power – Moses

In Deuteronomy 34:7, the Bible records the death of Moses with some unique observations. The Scripture says: “…nor his natural force abated.” His natural power, boldness, and strength of personality did not fade away as he aged. This is in opposition to the natural flow of life. As we age, our natural force weakens and deteriorates. This is evident throughout our world. This did not occur in the life of Moses. He was as powerful of a man in speech and presence at 120 years old as at 40. How was this possible?  God sustained Moses’ personality for His purpose.

The lesson is this: Those aspects of ourselves which we have “put off” do not ever again need to be put back on.  God can sustain those good fixes. If we will be continually surrendered to Him. As we fulfill God’s purpose, He sustains who we are to accomplish His task.

More and more, I marvel that an almighty God would reach down and continue to work and mold me into His image. Even with all the personality traits that irritate, the prominent faults in temperament, and the battle against the flesh in day to day living, God can and will continue to conform me, and His willing children, to the image of Jesus Christ.

Russell Holland
Missionary to Norway

AMCT 2016 – Impact the World!

AMCT is right around the corner! Join us this year on August 7-12!

Be sure to register online if you have yet to do so!

This year is beginning to shape up to be the largest attended year of AMCT yet. Do not miss this opportunity to fellowship with others here at Calvary Baptist Church, and to learn from these great men of God that have come together to give of themselves.

II Timothy 2:2

“And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.”

To Download a flyer for this years AMCT, click the links below.

Full page – 18 mb

Half page – 2 mb

AMCT 2016 Flyer_

Bro. Steve Donley – The Worst Sound I’ve Ever Heard

The arctic is filled with unique sounds. Snowmobiles, outboard motors, crunching snow, ice popping under the stress of weight, and the sound of silence. Most of these sounds a person can get used to and even appreciate as an identifier of the far north. However, one sound that I will never get accustomed to is the sound of a handful of dirt thrown onto a coffin laying six feet deep in a grave.

Funerals of the Inuit, First Nations and Metis are not the sterile, orchestrated events that have become the standard for non-native people.

The typical northern funeral is held in the building with the largest seating capacity in the community. Usually this is the school gymnasium. 200 people is not unusual for even the smallest of hamlets and villages.

The coffin might be a beautiful hand made work of art constructed of wood by a local craftsman and the fabric lining the coffin is hand sewn and installed by women of the community which might include several family members.

The body is dressed by the family and may or may not be embalmed.

The coffin is transported sometimes by pickup truck. The pall bearers sit around the truck bed steadying the coffin and a slow progression is made to the cemetery.

Traditionally the grave is dug by the family. In permafrost they have to build fires to melt the permanently frozen soil and then shovel out the muck. The fire has to be rebuilt and the process repeated until a depth of six foot met.

The pall bearers carry the coffin to the grave where planks are laid across the grave and the coffin is places to rest on the planks.

Ropes are then threaded under the coffin and through the handles and slowly the coffin is lowered by hand after the planks are removed.

Once the crowd regathers at the grave side, the preacher stands at the head of the open grave. A prayer is given, some words of comfort are spoken and then it happens.

An un-unwritten code of the north requires that the preacher must repeat the old phrase, “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.”

The preacher then takes a handful of dirt and drops it on the coffin. The sound is haunting.

Dirt hitting a wooden casket is an awful sound. It sounds even worse in the frigid northern winter. It is a sound marking the end of life.

Family members then make their way to the casket and throw a handful of dirt into the grave and every time dirt hits the wooden coffin, chills run down your spine. The family usually begins to sob, cry, then eventually a wail erupts adding to the awfulness of the scene.

The men of the community then grab shovels and manually, shovelful by shovelful, fill in the grave. Sometimes the crowd sings gospel hymns. Sometimes the only sound is that of dirt hitting the casket until it is covered.

In defence of this stark and old fashioned way, I must say it does offer closure. There is no vagueness of purpose. When a grieving family member walks away from the graveside, it is over. Final. A hard event, but a completed one.

I’ve stood at the head of the grave while saved and lost were buried. As the saved are buried, I have confidence this is not the end. The dead in Christ shall rise. This horrible sound is not the end. I will hear them speak, see them walk, and worship the Lord with them.

But as the lost are buried, I know this is not the end either. The awful sound of frozen clumps of dirt hitting the casket is not the last horrible sound heard that will be associated with them. The future holds a great white throne judgment for lost men and women. The sentence will be exacted and lost souls will be cast into the lake of fire.

That, has to be the worst sight and sound ever.

Sterile and practised funerals offer a facade of peace and comfort. But the grave is only a temporary holding place for the bodies of the saved and the lost. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord, and conversely the first second after death a lost man’s soul wakes up in hell. Reunion with the body is either to the incorruption of salvation in Christ or the corruption of the lake of fire as Christ rejecters.

The greatest sight and sound is that of a sinner kneeling and asking God for mercy. On the mission field there are no buffers to reality. Life and death are real and raw. Our Gospel must be real, un-changed and at full strength to give hope to the hopeless around the world.

Steve Donley
Missionary to the Canadian Arctic