Devotional for August 2020


(5) For they that are after the flesh – do mind the things of the flesh – but they that are after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.(6) For to be carnally minded (or, fleshly minded) is death – but to be Spiritually minded is life and peace.(7) Because the carnal mind (or, the fleshly mind) is enmity against God – for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. (8) So then, they that are in the flesh cannot please God! (9) But ye are not in the fleshbut in the Spirit if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you! Now, if any man have not the Spirit of Christ – he is none of His!” [Ro.8:5-9]

(16) “This I say thenwalk in the Spiritand ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. (17) For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit – and the Spirit against the flesh – and these are contrary the one to the other so that ye cannot do the things that ye would! (18) But if ye be led of the Spirit – ye are not under the law.” [Gal.5:16-18]

(19) “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these: Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness (20) idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, (21) envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like – of the which I tell you before, as I also told you in time past – that they which do such thingsshall not inherit the Kingdom of God!” [Gal.5:19-21]

Dear ones, the Word of God is a mirror from which we can see the spiritual reality of our own lives. Are we walking after the flesh, or after the Spirit? Whichever is the reality between the two – the flesh or the Spirit – will be the foundation of all our thinking and living while we are in this fleshly, fallen-in-sin world. Only by beingspiritually minded – will we successfully walk right through this worldly waste land and ultimately right into the eternal Kingdom of God! To be spiritually mindedis to have the mind of Christ! [see: 1Co.2:15-16]  This should be the earnest prayerful plea of our daily lives right now – that we be granted the grace of God to  persevere and continue being led through this world by the Holy Spirit of Christ, our Lord and God.

If we are walking through this world after the flesh” –  then while we are walking physically – we are, nevertheless, spiritually — dead! At the same time, if we are walking through this world after the Spiritwe are experiencing through God’s grace spiritual life and peace. Is.26:3 declares dogmatically: Thou wilt keep him in perfect peacewhose mind is stayed upon thee”. Remember, the fleshly mind is enmity against God! There is no peace in being God’s enemy!

Quite simply, the “flesh” pertains to anything and everything that is a part of this sinful and cursed world. This is why 1Jn.2:15-17 says: Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the worldthe love of the Father is not in him. (16) For all that is in the worldthe lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of lifeis not of the Fatherbut is of the world. (17) And the world passeth away, and the lust thereofbut he that doeth the will of God abideth forever.” This world is not our home. This world is a battleground that is entirely behind enemy lines! All of us were born into this fallen-in-sin world as fit sinner constituents to populate it – because we are all sinners! This world is the very stage upon which is being lived out all of the works of the flesh of this age of sin and death.

May the Holy Spirit of our God bear witness with our spirit that we are truly His children and heirs of His Kingdom [see: Ro.8:16-17]. Then also, we shall know that we are being led by Him.

For Christ’s Glory Only!  -John Carpenter


Praises and Prayer Requests for July 2020

Well, dear ones, by this time in July, Camp Del-Haven would have already had three full camp sessions. We would have had a younger children’s camp (age 6-8); an older girls camp (age 9-12); and an older boys camp (age 9-12). However, by virtue of God’s sovereign, all-governing will and direction – where not only our regular camp schedule is concerned, but where the state of our whole world is concerned – for the first time in our history – our general agenda of ministry has had to be abandoned.We definitely need to include in our prayers right now — for sovereign God to rule over our country and its leaders at all levels to lead us to a peaceful resolve regarding all the restrictions that are presently upon us. Nothing is too hard, or too wonderful for our Almighty and merciful God!

Of course, we also need to band together and be in prayer for all the boys and girls that make up our campers – for all the young men and women that make up our staff – and (perhaps even more especially) for all the moms and dads; all the grandmas and grandpas; and all the care providers of the children to not succumb to all the fleshly fear that is so prevalent at this hour so as to not respond to our invitation to the families to come to Camp Del-Haven for just a day. A day of fun, relaxation and rest – with a focus upon the word of the truth of the gospel. [see Col.1:5]

Dear ones, thank you so much for continuing to stand with us in all of your prayerful support! Whatever the coming days unfold to us – we know without a doubt that the wonderful message of Ro.8:28 remains eternally true: And we knowthat all things work together for goodto them that love Godto them that are the calledaccording to His purpose!” Praise His Holy Name!!

Here is an email we received when we went to confirm addresses for our summer newsletters.  What a joy it was to hear from a former camper (Lacey) whose son and nieces are current campers.

Hey Sheri, yes our address is the same. Leland, Destany, and Aliyah were all sad they can’t go to Del-Haven this year. They really look forward to going each year as did I when I was a camper. They are actually planning their own backyard camp to do with arts and crafts, nature walks, swim time, singing the camp songs, and Bible study. We’re going to set up a tent in the yard. Destany and Aliyah are making a schedule they are going to follow. They told me they have to have peanut butter and jelly sandwiches the first day and pizza on Wednesday and even end with a campfire. Hope you guys are doing well.  Lacey 


Devotional for July 2020

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. (2) Set your affection on things above – not on the earth.(3) For ye are dead – and your life is hid with Christ in God.” [Col.3:1-3

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world – the love of the Father is not in him! (16) For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life – is not of the Father, but is of the world. (17) And the world passeth away and the lust thereof – but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever!” [1Jn.2:15-17]

“For what the law could not do — in that it was weak through the flesh — God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh – and for sin – condemned sin in the flesh (4) that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us – who walk not after the flesh – but after the Spirit. (5) For they that are after the flesh – do mind the things of the flesh – but they that are after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.(6) For to be carnally minded (or, fleshly minded) is death – but to be Spiritually minded is life and peace.(7) Because the carnal mind (or, the fleshly mind) is enmity against God – for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. (8) So then, they that are in the flesh cannot please God! (9) But ye are not in the flesh – but in the Spirit – if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you! Now, if any man have not the Spirit of Christ – he is none of His!” [Ro.8:3-9]

The evil man (or, woman) of this world is described in the Book of Proverbs in this way: as he thinketh in his heartso is he!” Therefore, from the above descriptive declaration he would fit the bill of one who loves this world and the things of this world. The way of this world – and the desires of this world – are motivated by -and oriented towards — what the Word of God refers to as the flesh. The flesh of this fallen world and its corrupt system. However, everyone whom God the Father has sent God the Son into this sinful world to seek and to save them from their sins has been united with the Lord Jesus Christ in His sin atoning death and resurrection. Therefore, if we have been raised up with Christ – then we will not seek the things of this sinful world, but rather we will seek those things which are above where Christ sits on the right hand of God the Father! We have died with Christ and our new life is hid with Him – where He now is – in God.

This is why we, who are Christ’s, do not love this sinful world – nor the fleshly things of it. The things of this world are not at all the things of our holy God – nor the things that are in our holy God! For “the world passeth away and the lust thereof – but He that doeth the will of God abideth forever!” And, the He that doeth the will of God – is the God/man, Christ Jesus, our Surety – in whom we have been placed from before the foundation of this world! [see Eph.1:3-5]

This brings us to the Ro.8 context and its wonderful descriptive declaration. When God gave His Law unto Moses on Mt. Sinai, He did not give it in order for fallen sinful man to achieve keeping it in their fallen and sinfully fallen flesh. No! It was to manifest clearly and completely how miserably weak our sinful flesh really and truly is! As God’s Word declares from Ro.3:20: Therefore by the deeds of the Law there shall no flesh be justified in His sightfor by the Law is the (full) knowledge of sin.” This is why God sent His own Beloved Eternal Son – in the likeness of sinful fleshand for sincondemned sin in the flesh! He condemned His people’s sin – in His own Son’s flesh – so that – the righteousness of the Law might be fulfilled in uswho walk not (right now, through this sinful, fallen and passing away world) after the flesh, but after the Spirit!” Praise the Name of our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus! We shall continue to elaborate on this wonderful pure gospel truth in even more detail. Until then – may God be glorified!

For Christ’s Glory Only! – John Carpenter

Praises Prayer Requests for June 2020

Dear friends, once again – this is a history making year for the ministry of Camp Del-Haven! We earnestly need your prayers! For the first time, we are unable to launch our camp season on time. And so we have to switch gears a little bit – and make a new approach to things. The one thing, however, that is not new – is our need to plead and pray for our sovereign Lord’s faithful leading! He is our Savior! He knows and answers our needs Before we call out to Him! Praise His Name! [see Is.65:24] We serve the only true God with whom there is nothing too hard, or too wonderful, for Him to do! [see: Jer.32:17] So, please pray with us for the wisdom of God to guide us during these uncertain circumstances.

Of course, we must not let down our constant and persistent petitioning of our Lord God for Him to care for and meet the many needs of each of our children. The hateful and wicked Enemy has had his evil eye on the children right from the start! And, these times of riots and looting are not only dangerous, but they also spread a dreadful contagion of rebellious thinking and acting. And our young, impressionable Staff and Camper alike need our prayers for stability and safety! Our Great God can preserve them and provide for them and protect them (as well as us).

Our current ministry plan for this summer includes the following efforts to keep in contact and continue to minister to campers and their families. At this time we will be serving our previous campers from last summer, but we will also add new campers and families as opportunities are presented to us.

  1. We will be sending out 6 newsletters over the summer to the campers. The newsletters will contain content with a Bible devotion, a daily Bible reading plan through the Gospel of John, a memory verse with learning activities, nature study, at-home craft ideas, Internet links to child friendly Christian websites and Christian sing-a-longs, etc. 
  2. Sometime in the summer we will put together a small care package to send to campers. The care package will contain small gifts such as religious themed items: tracts, book marks, coloring books, stickers, crafts, small toys, etc.
  3. Beginning in July we will also start inviting families out for one family a day to do some fishing, boating, swimming, using the basketball court/playground, and cooking some hot dogs and marshmallows. We will be able to interact with them during the day to continue to build relationships and share the Gospel.  Many of our current campers come from families whose parents have also attended Camp Del-Haven as children, and we are excited to see how the Lord will use this opportunity to minister to entire families.

Please be in prayer with us as we desire to continue to serve children and families during this time.


Praises and Prayer Requests for May 2020

Well, dear ones, the restrictions due to the virus seem to be lessening a little bit – which is good. However, we are still not sure when we can have camp this year! Please be in prayer with us over this issue. And, when you pray for all the boys and girls that are currently a part of the family of Del-Haven Camp Ministries – including both our campers and staff helpers – please pray for their rescue from the restrictions of individual freedoms that we all normally would have apart from this virus. It has created a disturbing — and even a destructive divisiveness – in all of our normal activities! Let us prayerfully seek our Lord’s specific deliverance – as only He can per-form — from these oppressive circumstances that we all are presently being subjected to!

Our freedom to gather together and worship our Lord God in Spirit and in Truth is definitely under attack! The fervent prayer of the righteous is by far the most effective offense that we can wage against the enemy! In this way, the best defense — is a good offense. Pr.18:10 immediately comes to mind: The Name of the Lord is a strong towerthe righteous runneth into it and is safe!” In addition, is Ps.56:9, which says: When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back! This I know; for God is with me.” Praise His Precious and Protective Name!

Dear ones, on April 29th there occurred a Bitter/Sweet event. A most wonderful preacher and pastor, brother Don Fortner, of Grace Baptist Church of Danville, KY – by God’s great grace and perfect timing – was completely delivered from this wicked world – and was divinely ushered and received — into the heavenly glory of his blessed Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ! Don’s passing away is Bitter – only because we will greatly miss him and his ministry unto us! We need to remember to pray for his precious wife, Shelby, that the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfortwill be extra close unto her – embracing her in His everlasting and loving arms.

But, his passing is also Sweet — because our dear brother has been completely rescued from this sin troubled and turbulent world. Praise the Name of the Savior! Don was one of the greatest warriors among us for his faithfulness to proclaim the pure Truth of the gospel of God’s sove-reign grace that this world has ever had! He leaves us a valuable legacy of recorded messages and many published works that are filled with the riches of a right and an accurate understanding of the Word of God. Thanks be unto God for what He has given unto us through His faithful servant, Don Fortner! I, therefore, conclude this Del-Haven Prayer/Newsletter with this blessed reminder to all you. It is a reminder that I can just hear my dear brother, Don, echoing to us all –  right directly from the Word of God:


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