The Contender
A Cry from Jack's Heart

April 2023

Amos 1:1, 2, 7-17 “The words of Amos, who was among the herdsmen of Tekoa…And he said, The LORD will roar from Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the habitations of the shepherds shall mourn, and the top of Carmel shall wither…Thus he showed me: and, behold, the Lord stood upon a wall made by a plumbline, with a plumbline in his hand. And the LORD said unto me, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I will set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them anymore: And the high places of Isaac shall be desolate, and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste, and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword. Then Amaziah the priest of Bethel sent to Jeroboam, king of Israel, saying, Amos hath conspired against thee in the midst of the house of Israel: the land is not able to bear all of his words. For thus Amos saith, Jeroboam shall die by the sword, and Israel shall surely be led away captive out of their own land. Also Amaziah said unto Amos, O thou seer, go, flee thee away into the land of Judah, and there eat bread, and prophesy there: But prophesy not again any more at Bethel: for it is the king’s chapel, and it is the king’s court. Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet’s son; but I was an herdsman, and a gatherer of sycamore fruit; and the LORD took me as I followed the flock and the LORD said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel. Now therefore hear thou the word of the LORD: Thou sayest, Prophesy not against Israel, and drop not thy word against the house of Isaac. Therefore, thus saith the LORD; Thy wife shall be an harlot in the city, and thy sons and thy daughters shall fall by the sword, and thy land shall be divided by line; and thou shalt die in a polluted land, and Israel shall surely go into captivity forth of his land.”

1 Corinthians 10:11 “Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition (warning), upon whom the ends of the world are come.”

Micah 6:1,2 “Hear ye now what the LORD saith; Arise, contend thou before the mountains, and let the hills hear thy voice. Hear ye, O mountains, the LORD’s controversy, and ye strong foundations of the earth: for the LORD hath a controversy with his people, and he will plead with Israel. O my people, what have I done unto thee? And wherein have I wearied thee? Testify against me.”

Micah 6:5 “O my people, remember now what Balak king of Moab consulted, and what Balaam the son of Beor answered him from Shittim to Gilgal; that ye may know the righteousness of the LORD.”

Your Tekoa Moment

Just days ago, I preached at Coatesville Bible Fellowship (one of our precious, supporting churches) and lovingly reminded all of us to never hesitate to personally and corporately glean unchanging truths from the examples of those who have gone before us. (Note 1 Corinthians 10:11 above)

The urgency of the knowledge and understanding of “the righteousness of the LORD” will never be disappointed!

A slow and prayerful reading of the quoted scriptures ought to awaken us to the imminent ‘plumb-line’ raised by the LORD against the compromised wall of our own nation.

To me, it is astounding that the LORD took Amos ‘the herdsman and gatherer of sycamore fruit’ from Tekoa and gave him the message: “Woe to them that are at ease in Zion…they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph.”  (Amos 6: 1-6)

To the dear ones who choose to read, perhaps this is your own “Tekoa Moment.” O, that the same LORD of Amos might find us “grieved” for what breaks the heart of Him who alone is Righteous!


Fourth Sunday Night Meetings


Mark your calendar and invite others to the Campus at Old Mill at 6pm on                                        

  • June 25 – John Snyder, Pastor of Christ Church in New Albany, Mississippi
  • July 23 – Jordan Thomas, Pastor of Grace Church in Memphis, Tennessee
  • August 27 – Don Hayes, Chief of Police, Alexandria, Virginia


Checklist for Prayerful Consideration

Please PRAY for each of the concerns below and write: FYI (For Your Information) or FYA (For Your Action) in the area provided. Every line is written to invite your deeper inquiry and participation. Thank you for responding as God may guide you. I welcome hearing from you:


___ Fourth Sunday Night Meetings, June, July and August – 6pm

___ Pointman Leadership Institute’s ‘Train the Trainer’ Jack/Sue in Iowa – April 26-29

___ National Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial (provide chaplain care) May 12-16

___ Re-Opening of Prison Chapel and God’s Blessing Upon Chester County Prison

___ Summer Camp Needs: water shoes, meal sponsors, and a new 16 passenger van

___ Fiscal Support for Summer Staff and the Steve Mayo Family (arriving June ’23)

___ Housing for the Steve Mayo Family after September of 2023

___ Jack’s continued strength and healing (4th Stage Prostate Cancer)

___ God’s protection and safety in all Summer Camp activities

___ Church Plant, Providence Church of Coatesville and Pastor Joshua Crans

___ Children, Youth and Families of Coatesville and the Bridge Academy Community Center

___ Strategic Partnerships with participating peers, churches and loving individuals

___ Thankfulness to God for all of God’s provisions and His watchfulness over CCGM

___ CCGM’s Board of Directors (Wisdom and Understanding)

___ Work Teams/Individuals … skilled and unskilled to assist at Campus at Old Mill

On a More Personal Note

God has continued to give me physical strength since the diagnosis and continued treatment of 4th Stage Prostate Cancer. As you, I have no guarantee of tomorrow, yet, I live each day with the understanding of three vital truths:

(1) Life is brief; (2) Life is frail; and (3) Hope is found in the LORD! (Psalms 39:1-7)

Quite frankly, demands have increased; and opportunities continue to abound. I am very aware of my own need for healing, for availing of my attentiveness to Him who has called me into this mission’s work; and I live each day with a ‘short’ and ‘long’ view of what’s before me!

Sue continues to be my most faithful encourager and fellow-laborer. Quiet time seems more elusive, yet, more needful! On May 7, Sue and I will thank God for 52 years of marriage and at least that many years serving together in the work-of-the-Gospel.


Please come alongside of us in what’s yet to be accomplished for His purposes and His glory! Our 4th Sunday Night Meetings in the Summer of 2023 will all be vital towards this end! 


Jack Crans, Debtor to Jesus Christ and Grateful Recipient of Your Prayers!


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County Corrections Gospel Mission exists to biblically and effectively address the spiritual crisis as reflected through the urgencies and heart-cries of the Criminal Justice System.