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Back To Bethany, My Short Story
Update to this story is at:
"And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy: And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen." Luke 24:50-53
Hello, my name is Joseph Cavin, I am a member of Bethany Baptist Church. As the web designer of this site it is a privilege and honor to bring you the information about my church. I am so glad my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has put me in a ministry that allows me the privilege to serve him.
While working one of our web sites, I happened to notice that I was putting the Back to Bethany link on the bottom of the pages, so that you could click to return to the main page. The more I thought about Back to Bethany, the more I thought about my own life, so began the idea of doing this page.
I have the good Lord, then my mother and I guess my younger brother to thank for why and how I am where I am today. It is a long story so I will only give the highlights.
My younger brother was born in October of 1967, you may be thinking what has this got to do with... just bare with me a little while... My brother being born in late October meant that he was just a few days to young to start school in 1973 and he would have to wait till next year to start. My mom did not want any part of this, she tried everything to get him in school. She did just that, but not in Enochville, NC where we were living, she was so determined that she and my brother went to live with my aunt in Baltimore, MD.
Now, I know this seems to still be the long way but trust me it will not be much longer. Well after a week in Maryland the schools in NC would take him because he had a school record, or so it seemed, my mom and brother came back to NC and he began public school. That did not work out either, for some reason, I do not remember, but any way. My mother hears about this school in Concord, NC by the name of Bethany Christian School. It was part of Bethany Baptist Church. Well my brother was able to go to school and my mother was happy. Well almost, after my brother had been going to school for about a week my mom starts to think.... I wonder what these CRAZY BAPTIST are putting into little Johnny's head, after all we were semi good Lutherans and my mom did not like Baptist. So to shorten this story...
The next Sunday we all were loaded in the car and off to Old Airport rd and Bethany Baptist Church in Concord, NC. That is how I first came to Bethany Baptist Church. I guess the rest is history would be a good line to use... but it would not tell all. Something happened and we became some of them crazy Baptist.
Bethany Baptist Church and Bethany Christian School back in the 70's
My mom once told me that she had never learned more from a preacher than Pastor Gene Woodall. I can say that I believe she was right. I do not want to take anything away from anyone else’s preacher but he was such a big part of my younger life, even though I have had other wonderful pastors. That were truly a blessing to hear and taught me Gods word. I still thank God for giving me the privilege of sitting in a pew and hearing God's word preached by him.
There is an old song that says:" I can tell you the time.. I can take you to the place... where the Lord saved me... by His wonderful grace" Well I can't tell you the exact time or the exact date I accepted Jesus as my personal Savior, but I know the place. It was at the alter, just left of the pulpit, at Bethany Baptist Church on Old Airport rd in Concord, NC sometime in 1974 - 75. I wish I had the exact time and date.. I can only tell you that it is written down in the lamb’s book of life in heaven, and that is all I need to know.
I attended Bethany Christian School in fall of 1974 and went there for 6 or 7 years. My childhood is all but a faint memory. I do not remember all my younger days. I do remember that I heard a lot about Proverbs 22:6 "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." and I finally have come to know the real meaning of this verse in these last few years. Even though I had heard it preached and taught for most of my life.
Although I was brought up in a Christian home, when I was 19 or so I quit going to church and began to forget about all the things I should not have. I got caught up in the worlds crowd and for many years did not even step one foot into a church. I went on with my life, I got married (I'll give you one guess who was the preacher that married us, yep Bro Gene Woodall) and things just seemed to fade from my mind year after year.
My wife would mention that she would like to go to church every now and then but I would just shrug it of. I knew I should be in church but I hadn't been in so long… the little voice had always been there saying you know you shouldn't be doing this or that.
The went by … a few later and my health was not what it used to be… in fact I started having problems and I can't do the things I did just a few years ago. I began to go see specialist: neurologist, urologist, oncologist, psychologist, surgeons, pain care specialist, this specialist that specialist.
I no longer could do the work like I had. I had to cut down on my hours, my pay was cut, my position reduced. Then I was cut. Things here and there just seemed to not work out. I wondered what is going on, but still deep inside that still small voice was still there… Only now it was getting louder and I started to listen.
The next time my wife said you know I miss going to church… I said well if it would make you feel better… The only question "Where would we go?" The Church's I had went to in Concord and Statesville when I was younger had closed their doors. Well, that is only part true, Preacher Woodall took over another church in another state. Then came back to NC, and started a church around 1991. They moved to Kannapolis in a building right beside where my wife worked. One mile from where we live and had been there for 9 years. So, this is the whole reason for the story… "Back to Bethany" and back to Bethany I went…
I know this story may seem kind of silly to some. Some even ask well did it cure your problems? The answer is no and yes.. I haven't had some miraculous cure. Even though my Lord is able. I still have my pains and all my prayers have not been answered, YET.
It may be that I never have my health completely restored, it may be His way and will for me. I do though have my life back on the right path…I do believe God has plans for me. I am "back to the way I was trained up to be"… and as a 42 year old child of God, I have decided "I shall not depart from it."
How about you my friend, have you been far from home?
Are you like the prodigal son?
Have you found yourself thinking about church? About God?
Have you thought about Heaven? Hell?
What happens when you die?
Did you maybe ride one of those old blue Church buses years ago from Bethany?
Did you go there and for some reason or another just found yourself not going anymore?
Isn't it about time for you to go back to your BETHANY?
Update to this story is at: