Can you believe that 2019 is almost here??

I want to personally thank you for giving and believing in Bethlehem Church- The Best is Yet to Come!

We have had some great opportunities to serve our community and our church family in 2018!

We have touched 1,000’s of lives in 2018- Your gifts made ALL of that possible!

God has given us a HUGE Vision for 2019!  Please pray with us about these 3 opportunities for the next year.

  • A New Campus in 2019.  We sense that God may open a door this coming year to begin another Campus to further the Gospel of Christ – Your Best Gift as we close 2018 will be the Seed to begin that new Work!
  • New Ministries to help our community.  God has opened SO many doors for us to serve people that are struggling in addictions, poverty, and hopelessness.  We have several new initiatives that we want to launch, and the End of Year offering will be crucial to us having the resources to do so.
  • New Tools to better communicate the Gospel.  We need to update our Audio/Visual equipment for our Online Worship Experience and weekend services.  This is essential for us to be able to effectively communicate the Good News in a rapidly changing world!

Would you consider giving your best gift before the end of 2018? The best way to do that is online- Click here to give safely and securely…Thank You!

We are SO excited about what God is doing and thank you for being a part of this Great Church that is making a Great Difference in our Community!

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

When people enter a real relationship with Jesus, they are never the same!!

Partyers don’t want to party the same way anymore.

Couples realize they don’t want to live together outside of marriage.

Business owners decide not to cut corners anymore.

And friends will be confounded because they don’t understand these new lifestyle choices.

Your family will be changed because you will look at your spouse differently. You’ll now see him or her as a precious child of God whose job it is of yours to serve — regardless of whether they serve you in return.

And you’ll see that your children are gifts from God and your goal with them is not to make sure they’re happy all the time; rather, it is to prepare them for an eternity with Jesus.

Get this New Year off RIGHT!

WE WILL BE LOOKING FOR YOU THIS MORNING!

North Campus at 8:30

West Campus at 10:15

South Campus at 9:30 & 11:00

God bless you for your GIFTS!!  God has given us and INCREDIBLE VISION for 2019 – Please click here to give online- We thank God for YOU!

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

God has done a great work at Bethlehem Church in 2018!  Let’s take a look back at an amazing year at Bethlehem…a year in which YOU played an important part.  Take a look at this short list.

TOP 18 THINGS THAT HAPPENED THROUGH BETHLEHEM CHURCH IN 2018

  1. Hundreds of people have placed their faith and trust in Jesus during services, outreaches, and mission opportunities!
  2. Abram, Katelyn and Briella were three of 400 preschoolers that learned “God made me…God loves me…and Jesus wants to be my friend forever.”
  3. We brought thousands of Operation Christmas Child boxes for children this year!
  4. We sent support to New York City and Boston to help plant Churches in the most unreached cities in America.
  5. Volunteers gave more than 25,000 collective hours of service in our church and in our community.
  6. We have seen literally hundreds of other people visit Bethlehem Church for the first time and are becoming a part of the family here!
  7. We have reached hundreds of teenagers from 15 high schools and 17 middle schools, teaching them about God’s grace and God’s goodness and His plan for their life.
  8. We have had hundreds of people become connected with groups/classes to deepen their relationship with Christ.
  9. Jakhia, Addison and Jesse were three of over 500 elementary children who learned that they need to make the wise choice in life, trust God no matter what, and treat others the way they want to be treated.
  10. High 5 sports had over 1,000 people participate in our recreation ministry and many of them have become an active part of Bethlehem Church.
  11. Our Care Ministry has served hurting people in our church; walking with them through life’s hurts, habits, and hang-ups.
  12. Our outreach ministry, The Dream Center, is mentoring children, working with single parents, and empowering people to get out of poverty. We have seen many get jobs, get hope, and a fresh start through the power of Jesus Christ!
  13. We have been able to do numerous updates to our facilities and our Audio Visual Ministry to serve people online.
  14. We have had over 260 worship services combined at our 3 campuses this year!
  15. Our attendance has been up in 2018!
  16. Partnering with Back Pack Food Ministry to feed over 28,000 meals to kids in need in Gaston County.
  17. We sent 1,000 Coats to Boston to reach the un-churched there!
  18. We gave over $15,000 to help people during the Christmas Season.

All of this has been possible because of your faithfulness to give to the Lord through Bethlehem Church!!!

That’s an AMAZING list, and those are just a FEW of the highlights.  You may never know how many marriages were saved.  You may never hear about how many children and teenagers were impacted.  We can’t measure the influence of the gospel being lifted up all around our city.

Tammy and I want to personally thank you for your sacrifice to make all of this happen.

You’ve heard me say it before, but real ministry takes real money, and we are honored that you would choose to partner with us in this way.  We consider you a vital part of our team, and you’ve got an important role in the mission.

As we look forward to 2019, we can’t wait to see what God does in our church and in our community.

Your best year end gift to Bethlehem Church is going to help us continue to reach our friends for Christ!  

I wonder what our Top Nineteen Things That Happen in 2019 list will look like!  Let’s find out together.

In Him,

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

P.S.  No matter how you give…online, in the service, through our free app, or through text giving…THANK YOU!

OUR SERVICE SCHEDULE IS THE SAME TOMORROW AS USUAL…GET UP AND GET IN CHURCH!!

Change requires making choices. It’s not enough to dream of changing. It’s not enough to desire change. In order for you to change, you will need to make a decision. You must choose to change.

Change is intentional. Are you going to be any different in six months? Are you going to be better a year from now? Are you going to be healthier, stronger, and more mature? Are you going to be happier? Are you going to be less in debt? Are you going to be more like God wants you to be?

I can tell you the answer right now: It will only happen if you choose to change, because it isn’t going to happen accidentally.

It requires a choice.

A lot of times we think we’re waiting on God to change us. No! God is waiting on you.

He’s waiting on you to say, “Yes, Lord, I’m willing to make these changes.”

We have to make intentional choices in order to grow. There is no growth without change, there is no change without loss, and there is no loss without pain.

If you are going to grow, you will have to change, and change means you let go of some old things in order to grab hold of some new things.

It’s like swinging on a trapeze. The trapeze artist swings out on one bar, and then he has to reach out and grab the other one. At some point, he’s got to let go of one to grab on to the other, or he’s not going to make it to the other side. If he thinks he can hold on to both, what happens? He gets stuck in the middle, and he’s going down.

Some of you are stuck in the middle, and you’re going down because you haven’t let go of the old patterns, the old habits, and the old ways of thinking. You have to let go of your old ways.

The Bible says, “Throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life” (Ephesians 4:22).

In other words, let it go.

Those old habits, those old hurts, those old patterns, those old sins in your life — let them go. The Bible says to throw them off and trust that God is working in you “to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (Philippians 2:13).

IT IS FRIDAY NIGHT!!  WE HAVE FRIDAY NIGHT CHURCH AT 7PM…PRESCHOOL/CHILDREN PROGRAMMING TOO!!

If you need prayer, email Tammy and me. I read each of these and pray over them daily.

We can’t wait to see you tonight!

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

Don’t miss an opportunity to give at the End of the Year! Click here to give online- God bless you!

I love this time of year – New Year Eve parties, Football Games, and the spirit of generosity that seems to swell up in our society.  There’s something about Peace on Earth and Goodwill towards Men that makes me think about other people a little more than usual.

I’m inviting everyone connected to Bethlehem Church to participate in our annual End of Year Giving.  This is the time of year where we put feet to our faith – where we show our community the love of Jesus.  The idea here is that as we buy gifts for other people, we want our largest, most extravagant gift to go to Jesus.

God has given us a HUGE Vision for 2019!!  Please pray with us about these 3 opportunities for the next year.

  • New Campusin 2019.  We sense that God may open a door this coming year to begin another Campus to further the Gospel of Christ – Your Best Gift this Christmas Eve will be the seed to begin that new Work!
  • New Ministriesto help our community.  God has opened SO many doors for us to serve people that are struggling in addictions, poverty, and hopelessness.  We have several new initiatives that we want to launch, and the Christmas Eve offering will be crucial to us having the resources to do so.
  • New Toolsto better communicate the Gospel.  We need to update our Audio/Visual equipment for our Online Worship Experience and weekend services.  This is essential for us to be able to effectively communicate the Good News in a rapidly changing world!

Would you consider giving the best gift you can before the end of 2018?

If you’re going to be out of town this weekend and would like to donate now, you do so online by clicking here. You can also download our church app…Bethlehem Church-Gastonia, or text giving (To: 77977 and Message: bcgive, then follow directions).  It’s safe, secure and simple to use.

Often during Christmas, we have members who donate stock to add to their charitable contributions for tax benefit purposes.  If you would like to donate stock, please call Adam Hines with Edward Jones 704-860-9216 and donate to account #287-04430-1-3.  If you need help, please contact Linda Black at 704-214-7032 or 704-823-1600.

Please pray about participating and jump in with us.  God has given us a great mission, and we’re blessed to be able to join Him reaching our community for Christ and advancing the Gospel around the world.

Blessings,

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

In Jesus’ most famous sermon, the Sermon on the Mount, he explains the choices that help us heal from our hurts and hang-ups, and the habits that mess up our lives.

Jesus said in Matthew 5:3, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven”.

What does it mean to be “poor in spirit”? Jesus is saying that nobody gets into Heaven who is full of pride. We get there by grace. To be poor in spirit, you must humbly admit you need help.

Jesus said, “The truth will set you free.”

But the truth is, we don’t like the truth.

We love the truth about everybody else, but we don’t like the truth about ourselves!! It feels a whole lot safer to avoid the truth about yourself because it is painful to face.

The good news is your habits and your hurts and your hang-ups can be healed. The bad news is it takes humility.

You’ve got to humble yourself and swallow your pride. James 4:6 says, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble”.

There are some facts that you need to admit about yourself if God’s going to bless your life, and the first one is this: You are broken.

We live in a broken world where nothing works perfectly. The economy doesn’t work perfectly, our relationships don’t work perfectly, and our bodies don’t work perfectly.

Everybody’s confused today. They don’t know what they’re supposed to be or what they’re supposed to do. We’ve confused attitudes, attractions, and addictions. Even our identities are confused.

The only hope we have as we enter 2019 is that God’s amazing grace will cover your brokenness, hurts, habits, and hang-ups. That is good news!

If you need prayer for anything in your life, email Tammy and me.

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

We pray you had a Merry Christmas! Thank you for your faithfulness to the Lord!

Turn on your television or surf the web this Christmas, and you’ll discover all sorts of Christmas messages. But for the One who invented Christmas, there’s only one message that really matters.

God wants to share eternity with you.

That’s what Christmas is all about. You weren’t created just to live 80 or 90 years on Earth and then die. You’re far more valuable than that to God. God has some long-range plans for you. He made you to live forever.

One day your heart will stop. That’ll be the end of your heart, but it won’t be the end of you. You’ll last for eternity — trillions of years! And God wants you to be a part of his family.

He sent Jesus to Earth as a baby so one day he could die for your sins, and then you can spend forever with him.

That’s the great news of Christmas. This offer is available to anyone.

The Bible says of Jesus, “But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12).

God wants to spend eternity with you, so he made the way to him simple: You believe, and you receive. You believe that Jesus Christ died for your sins, and you receive him into your life. God sent his Son to Earth 2,017 years ago to die for you. That’s God’s very first Christmas gift, sent to you thousands of years before you were even born.

Honestly, celebrating Christmas and not receiving the number one gift God has for you is dumb. Do that, and you’re missing the point entirely. Acts 10:35 says, “It makes no difference who you are or where you’re from — if you want God and are ready to do as he says, the door is open” (The Message).

No matter what you’ve done or where you’ve been, you’ve got a place in God’s forever family ready and waiting for you. The invitation is wide open. Just believe and receive.

Are you ready? Here’s a prayer you can start with —

“Dear God, I know that when I die I’m going to give an account of my life to you directly. I confess I have ignored you. I know I have sinned against you, and I have lived by my plan, not yours. I want that to change, starting right now. I want to turn away from my sins toward you.

Thank you for sending Jesus to die for all that I’ve done wrong so that I don’t have to pay the penalty. I know that I don’t deserve your forgiveness. I know that only your grace can save me, Lord. I could never be good enough to get into a perfect place.

Jesus, thank you for loving me so much that you took all my guilt on yourself. You made me acceptable for heaven, and I humbly ask you to save me. I ask you to save me from the sins and the habits that are messing up my life right now. I believe in you, Jesus. And I believe that you will keep your promise to save me instantly and certainly and completely and eternally. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”

Tammy and I wish you and your family a “Merry Christmas”- Email us with any prayer requests…We love you!

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

Did you know God likes to party? He’s constantly throwing parties. In fact, the Bible says that God’s angels throw a party every time a person trusts Jesus as the Lord and Savior of his or her life. They party for joy whenever someone turns away from self-centeredness and turns toward Jesus.

Christmas is a partya birthday party for Jesus.

It’s why we say “Merry Christmas.”

Yet, we often leave the guest of honor out of our Christmas parties! Thinking about this irony, I started asking people, “What are you celebrating this Christmas?”

This is what a few of them told me:

  • “What am I celebrating? Not a lot.”
  • “The blessings that we’ve had in our family this year.”
  • “Just the Christmas spirit.”
  • “Being home and not being on the road for the holidays.”
  • “This Christmas? I’m celebrating the birth of Christ.”
  • “Nothing. I just want to get through it.”

This last comment is true for a lot of people. Christmas may be a season of celebration, but they feel they have nothing to celebrate. Perhaps that’s true of you, too. You’re thinking, “I just want to get through Christmas. I just want to survive it. I’ve got nothing to celebrate. It’s been a rough year, and I just want it to be over.”
We stress over our circumstances or get so busy simply getting ready for the celebration that we lose sight of the joy.

God’s good news is so much more than our circumstances!

The joy of Christmas is based on the truth that God loves us, God is with us, and God is for us. Can you hear the celebration in that?

Don’t miss our Christmas Eve Services TODAY at 2PM and 4pm. Call a friend, and invite them to come with you.

We can’t wait to see you!!

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

Merry Christmas!!

I would like to personally invite you to join us today at one of our 5 Christmas Services this morning at Bethlehem…it will be a celebration about what Christmas is all about!  We have added an 8:45 service at our West Campus today!

Christmas is all about good news. But it’s not the good news of special gifts. It’s not the good news of a big meal. It’s not even the good news of spending time with friends and family.

Christmas is about the Good News of God’s love.

The Bible says all of us are lost without God. We’re directionless. We’re without protection. Our potential eternal impact upon the world is unrealized. We’re without real joy. Our eternity in Heaven isn’t secure.

The Good News about Christmas is that God sent Jesus to seek and save the lost. The Bible says, “There is only one God, and Christ Jesus is the only one who can bring us to God. Jesus was truly human, and he gave himself to rescue all of us” (1 Timothy 2:5).

If you’ve ever spent time in church, you’ve likely heard the word “salvation” many times. But you may not know what it means. The word is like a diamond; you can look at it from many different angles.

  • Jesus came to rescue us. We can’t solve all of our problems on our own. Without Jesus, we’re trapped in the expectations of others. We’re trapped in living for the approval of our peers. We’re trapped in addictions. We’ve tried to change over and over again, but we don’t have the power needed to escape. Jesus came to give us that power.
  • Jesus came to recover us. We all long to recover parts of our lives that have been lost. Without Christ, we long to recover our strength, our confidence, our reputation, our innocence, and our relationship with God. Only Jesus can do that.
  • Jesus came to reconnect us. Many people think that God will scold them if they come back to him. But God isn’t mad at you. He’s mad about you. Jesus came to Earth on the first Christmas to reconcile us to God, to give us harmony with him again.

Jesus came to Earth to give us the gift of himself. Too many of us celebrate his birthday without accepting this free gift of salvation. It goes unwrapped year after year after year. That’s not smart! You were made by God and for God. Until you understand that, life will never make sense.

This Christmas, open up the most important present you’ve been given: a new relationship with God through Jesus.

I would love to see you today at one of our 5 Services- We love you!

If you need prayer, email Tammy and me.

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

Click here to give online safely and securely- God has blessed us to bless other people- Thank you for your gifts!

We will have services tomorrow at our North Campus at 8:30.

We will have services tomorrow at our West Campus at 8:45 & 10:15

We will have services tomorrow at our South Campus at 9:30 & 11:00.

INVITE A FRIEND WITH YOU TOMORROW!!

We love our Community!

As much as we love our area, there is no denying the wide array of problems. Some of these challenges are easily visible- homeless families struggling to get on their feet, cycles of poverty, and so many in our community struggling with hurts, habits, and hang-ups. Gaston County is ranked 112th out 115th in per pupil educational spending in North Carolina.

While living in Gaston County is great, there is no question it could be better. Our Community is crying out for Renewal!

Fortunately, there is Hope! We believe that God desires Gaston County to be a community marked by His perfect peace, compassion, justice, mercy, and filled with brotherly love. We believe that God’s vision for Greater Gaston County involves a meaningful spiritual connection with Jesus, reconciled relationships with each other, phenomenal educational opportunities, and a renewed vision for the future.

We are so excited about what God has done though His Church in 2018 here at Bethlehem!

The name “Bethlehem” literally means “House of Bread”. Our vision is to offer the “Bread of Life” to our whole area! “Bread” sustains us, it energizes us, and it empowers us!

We are excited about our ministries to Preschoolers, Children and Students…literally hundreds of young people are being reached every single week! We help folks that are unemployed through Jobs for Life career placement programs, marriage and parenting classes, financial counseling, 12 step groups, The Dream Center Academy, High Five Sports Ministry and much more! The Gospel of Jesus Christ was shared in all of these events.

These are the types of things that we believe Jesus, if He were here in Gaston County, would use to transform a City, and these are our Visions for our Church.

We need YOU! As we end 2018 your financial support is critical. There are a lot of good places that you can invest your money, but I truly believe that Bethlehem Church is an investment in eternity, in our children, and in our community. We are trusting God to radically change our area spiritually, relationally, educationally, and economically. Our Church has a holistic approach to ministry and we really seek to minister to people’s spiritual, emotional, and physical needs.

Your best gift at the end of this year will enable us to move forward! You can give in many different ways. You can always give securely online by clicking here, or you can mail your gifts or give them at our services tomorrow.

Thank you for your prayers, your service, your support, and your gifts! YOU are making a difference!

Trusting Him,

Pastor Dickie and Tammy

If you need prayer, email Tammy and me.