Man Donates Liver to Fellow Church Member He Barely Knew

An Ohio woman has a new lease on life thanks to a priceless gift from a fellow church member she barely knew. When Jason Stechschulte sat down and started reading the bulletin before the Sunday service at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Van Wert, Ohio, he read something that arrested his attention and felt God-calling him to make a life-altering decision, CBN News reports.

Stechschulte read that Carole Motycka, a 44-year-old mother with four sons, had stage 4 colorectal cancer and needed a liver transplant to survive. He said, “I just had this feeling come over me that this is going to be me, that I need to do this. I was called to do it. Answering the call was not easy for Stechschulte, who has two pre-teen children of his own. The 41-year-old would have an eight-hour surgery to remove the left lobe of his liver, which comprises about 40 percent of the organ. Another team of Cleveland Clinic surgeons skillfully transplanted the liver into Motycka during a 12-hour procedure that was necessary to save her life.

Motycka did not know she was suffering from cancer until she struggled to complete a 17-mile hike with her family. She dealt with severe pain in her back and shoulder during and after the hike, so she went to the hospital the next day. There Motycka learned the shocking news… she had stage 4 colorectal cancer and it had spread to her liver.

Motycka underwent chemotherapy and it seemed to stop the spread of the cancer. Then, a doctor with the Cleveland Clinic performed an operation in which she removed the colon and liver cancers. However, her liver was severely damaged due to a genetic disorder and her health continued to decline.

Doctors told Motycka that she had one hope to prolong her life, a liver transplant. Not wanting to be one of the 3,000 people a year who die while waiting on a liver transplant, she sought a living donor who would be willing to help her. When Motycka, the church’s youth director, placed a notice in the bulletin, Stechschulte did not hesitate to help.

He said that he remained composed throughout the time leading up to the lengthy surgery. He said, “I was really calm throughout. I wasn’t worried or nervous. Everybody was really professional, really helpful.” He views the surgery in a positive light, noting that his family and the Motyckas have become close through the process. “I gave her a liver, and I received a relationship with Carole and her family in return. That was a pretty good trade off.”

Motycka’s health continues to improve and she has lived to see one of her sons graduate college, two begin college, and another graduate high school.

She remains grateful to Stechschulte and is thankful for his sacrifice. She said, “I can’t ever do or say, or give enough to thank him for what he gave to me: My new life.”

Source:
https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/scott-slayton/man-donates-liver-to-fellow-church-member-he-barely-knew.html

Chick-fil-A Worker Prays over Customer in Viral Pic – the ‘Spirit Led Him’

The list of ways Chick-fil-A workers go the extra mile for customers now includes prayer.

Brittany Calden was eating at a Chick-fil-A at Madison, Ala., earlier this month when she saw long-time employee Stephen Spray talking to another customer. Soon, Spray put his hand on the customer and began praying for her, Fox 5 Atlanta reported.

Calden, a professional photographer with Brittany Calden Photography, snapped a photo of the interaction. It has gone viral.

“As a photographer, it was instinctual for me to document this moment,” Calden told Fox 5. “I find myself always searching for things that move me, and this was one of those instances.”

The moment caused Calden to tear up.

“He’s a hard worker and was wiping tables minutes before approaching the lady,” Calden said.

“Mr. Steve” as he’s known, has worked at the restaurant for nine years.

“Mr. Steve never fails to walk up to your table and ask how your day is going and always tried to make your day better than it was before you saw him,” Calden said.

Spray told Calden the “Spirit led him to pray for her.”

“I work at a place where if I’m led to pray for someone, I’m able to do that and I’ll do it right on the spot,” Spray told her. “People need prayer, encouragement, and love. That’s what we try to do here.”

Chick-fil-A was No. 1 in the 2019 American Customer Satisfaction Index, which surveys customers on their opinions about restaurants.

It’s not the first time Calden has seen Chick-fil-A workers assist employees in unique ways.

“As soon as we enter we are greeted by our names, it’s seriously unreal,” she told Fox 5. “They hold my baby when my hands are full and go out of their way to make us feel good. The other day we were leaving and an employee ran for the door to hug my daughter before she could leave. They don’t do what they do for recognition. These employees have hearts that are led by Jesus and its evident every time we enter their restaurant.”

Chick-fil-A became the third-largest fast-food restaurant this year. Its corporate purpose is “to glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and to have a positive influence on all who come into contact with Chick-fil-A.”

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Source:
https://www.christianheadlines.com/contributors/michael-foust/chick-fil-a-worker-prays-over-customer-in-viral-pic-the-spirit-led-him.html

Beth Moore Challenges Christian Leaders to Condemn White Nationalism

Following the tragic shootings over the weekend that left nearly 30 people dead, Christian author and speaker Beth Moore took to Twitter to implore pastors to condemn white nationalism.

In a series of tweets on Tuesday, Moore started off by noting that Christ of the Bible, simply cannot be the same christ who the El Paso shooter reportedly invoked. According to Baptist News, the alleged shooter, 21-year-old Patrick Crusius, wrote in his Twitter bio that he was a “proud God loving Christian.”

Moore wrote, “Any “Christ” that can be invoked in support of white nationalism is a false Christ of the highest, most hellish order. An anti-Christ. A wholly-opposite christ. No such christ is the Christ Jesus of Scripture who taught His followers a love that sacrifices life & limb for others.”

The Breaking Free author then issued a challenge to all followers of Christ, asking them to declare the same sentiment. She wrote, “Let it be known, let it be declared by genuine followers of Jesus, that the man who opened fire in El Paso may invoke a christ of some kind but it is NOT our Christ. His christ would be unrecognizable to us. Unrecognizable in Scripture. We claim no christ of white nationalism.”

Moore concluded her statement by speaking directly to Christian Leaders. She wrote, “Christian leaders, LEAD. Do not shrink back in cowardice. Be bold. Be clear. Do not assume people know where you stand. History will prove this to be a most critical hour and our silence to have been our shameful complicity.”

Moore is only one a many influential Christians who have spoken out against racism, white nationalism and white supremacy following the mass shootings in Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas.

As Christian Headlines previously reported, Executive Director of the Billy Graham Center, Ed Stetzer wrote on Sunday, “Racism, white nationalism, and white supremacy all make no sense if you are a Christian. Christians literally worship a dark-skinned, Jewish savior from the Middle East. Not only is racism sinful, it is remarkably stupid for anyone who identifies as a Christian.”

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary President Adam Greenway echoed these sentiments in a tweet on Sunday writing, “As president of @SWBTS, I want to be clear that we condemn in the strongest possible form any and all ideologies of racial/ethnic superiority/inferiority that fuel the kind of hate evidently motivating the #ElPaso shooter to commit such a horrific act of violence in our state.”

As Christian Headlines Previously reported, on Saturday a gunman opened fire in a local Walmart in El Paso, Texas killing 20 people and injuring 26. In the early morning hours the following day, another shooter took up arms and opened fire on a crowd of people outside of a bar in Dayton, Ohio. He killed 9 people and injured 27 before being shot dead by police.

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Vice President Mike Pence Is Criticized for Saying He Prays for His Critics

Vice President Mike Pence, who has been routinely criticized for his faith, said he handles such attacks by praying for his critics—which garnered him a few more.

“No. 1 is, spend more time on your knees than on the internet,” Pence said during an Aug. 6 Q & A session with Michael Farris, president and CEO of Alliance Defending Freedom. The gathering included ADF staff.

The vice president went on to talk about the power of forgiveness.

“As a Christian believer, we’re charged to pray for our loved ones but also pray for our enemies,” Pence said.

“You have lots of opportunities in politics to do that,” he said. “But I would say that forgiveness is a great gift, and my wife and I literally try to work through forgiving people who might speak woefully against us or might mischaracterize who we are and what our family’s all about,” he said.

Since taking office Pence has been targeted numerous times for his biblical approach to living.

As covered by Christian Headlines early in the Trump administration, the vice president was ripped on social media for saying he protects his marriage by avoiding situations where he is alone with a woman.

Earlier this year, 2020 Democrat presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg, who served as mayor of South Bend, Indiana while Pence was governor of the state, challenged the vice president’s biblical view of marriage and mocking his Christian faith, Christian Headlines previously reported.

And in January, Pence’s wife, Karen, was criticized for taking a teaching job at a Christian school in Virginia that has a “moral purity” policy that prohibits LGBT students and faculty.

During his talk with ADF, Pence admitted he and his wife were taken aback by the reaction to her job.

“We honestly didn’t see that one coming,” the vice president said. “Our kids went to the school when I was in Congress.”

Not long after the conversation with ADF, Twitter users began mocking Pence’s comment on prayer, some twisting the intent of spending “more time on your knees.” Comments quickly turned sexual, including an obscene cartoon of Pence with President Trump, and a retort by Monica Lewinsky, the intern who had an affair with President Bill Clinton while he was in office. Others made reference to the NFL players’ protest of taking a knee during the national anthem.

Author Sasha Strachan used the NFL controversy as a backdrop to challenge Pence’s faith and call the president racist.

Another user, calling himself the Tattooed Theologian, also took a swipe at Pence’s faith and integrity, saying: “On your knees…That sounds pretty authoritarian to me. I don’t have to be on my knees to pray.

“@VP should spend some time reading the #Gospels. If he did, he wouldn’t be supporting @realDonaldTrump.”

Comedian and atheist Paula Poundstone dismissed praying outright saying, “I will spend no time on my knees.”

During his conversation with ADF, Pence said that when he’s in the midst of criticism he tries “just focusing on the cause.”

“I really do think it’s important that we stay focused on things that are more important than ourselves, that are more important than any intermittent controversy that might arise,” he told Farris. “And for me, that’s about being a part of an administration, standing next to a president that’s rebuilding our military, who’s revived our economy, who’s appointing a historic number of conservatives to our federal courts, who’s standing, as I said, for our first freedom, for religious liberty, for the right to life. I get up every day and I just… I feel incredibly blessed to be a small part of an administration that is making America great again. So focus on the positive.”

Ironically, a portion of the discussion at the ADF event also included the topic of religious liberty and free speech, especially on America’s colleges and universities.

“Whenever I was governor or vice president… I see somebody waving an unflattering sign, or we… Some people shouting something out. I always look at my kids and I say, ‘That’s what freedom looks like.’
“That’s what freedom sounds like, right? And the ability to disagree, the ability to be critical of people that are in public life, that’s at the very center of what the people that founded this country had in mind and has been preserved through the generations. And we have to make sure it’s preserved on the campuses of America.”

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