Joyously serve your spouse, family, friends and neighbors; seek out ways to reach out to someone desperately needing to experience and feel Christ’s love, to be drawn into relationship with Him.
A popular reality TV show, where lies, deception, and self-centeredness are the rule, proudly boasts its slogan as “Outwit, Outplay and Outlast.” Representative of today’s culture that focuses on individual triumph at any cost, the heart of that maxim stands in stark contrast, especially in this Christmas season as we celebrate why Christ came to earth and what He taught: “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
Such unconditional love was lived out in the life of Betsy Teuton, who was called home to glory 13 October after faithfully serving the Lord with husband Hank at the United States Coast Guard Academy as the OCF field staff rep couple. Over the past four years since coming on staff, Betsy and Hank lavishly, bountifully funneled Christ’s love and His truth through them and into the lives of the cadets they discipled, mentored, encouraged and challenged toward growth as Christian military leaders.
Throughout her journey of the last couple years while resolutely fighting cancer, Betsy inspired hundreds, if not thousands, by how even on the darkest of days the love of Christ brightly glowed through her. Ever mindful of the cadets they had the privilege of serving, when asked how best to pray for them as they sojourned together through Betsy’s health battle, Betsy and Hank’s response was always to pray for the cadets, in particular, those they had not yet reached for Christ. But their hearts were heaviest for the cadets who had moved on in their careers and lives, asking others to pray they would stay in the faith.
Betsy Teuton’s final hours on earth was the unfolding of a beautiful love story as Hank and over 100 Coast Guard cadets, leaders, and friends streamed in and out of her hospital room, witnesses to Betsy’s impending birth into the heaven side of eternity. They sang worship songs; they spoke loving words of thanksgiving to her, for the gift she’d given them as mentor and friend. I believe the best testimony of Betsy’s eternal effect on so many was captured in a beautiful letter written by a cadet, which the young lady read aloud to Betsy that day, as excerpted here: