I’m so thankful for the grace of God. I’m so thankful for the grace of God that saved my soul. I am also so thankful that God has continued to bless us with so many more things than salvation. He didn’t have to grace us with salvation, but He didn’t just stop at salvation. He’s done so much more. He’s done exceeding, abundantly above everything we could ask or think.
I think of my brain tumor a year ago. A month ago my wife and I took some time of remembrance of what occurred a year ago. I could have been blinded, paralyzed, and so many other things – I could have even died – yet the Lord saw to it to heal me. Looking back, we discussed how bad off I was: I lost 20 pounds from my already slim frame because I couldn’t eat; I could barely walk; I couldn’t hold my eyes open; I couldn’t tolerate sound; and oh so many more things. I was asked by a concerned individual yesterday how I was really doing. My honest response is that God has healed me. I cannot smell. I have memory issues and balance issues sometimes. But that’s nothing compared to what it could have been, and what others are currently going through. An MRI a couple months back revealed that it is not yet growing back, and that the only thing showing up is both the damage from where the tumor used to be, and the surgery. Please continue to pray as I still struggle with shingles in my eye. But please understand most of all that God has been so good to me!
He’s been so good to me to provide me with a wonderful wife. In October, if the Lord keeps our babies healthy, we will have 5 children 4 and under. Please pray for us. Please pray for Bethany that she will not deliver them too early as that is always a concern with twins. We found out that we will be having a boy and a girl. It is so exciting, but with this excitement comes new challenges that are simply impossible for us to meet. We are so thankful for a God who gives strength and who provides help from so many in our family and church family.
I want to mention again a very important request that we ask you to pray for. Please continue to pray for our housing situation. We will very soon outgrow the place we are living in. We have to move. It’s not reasonable for us to continue to rent as I don’t believe it would be the Lord’s will for us to rent for $800-$1000/month, and that is what we would need to pay for a place big enough for our family So, we are looking into purchasing a home, but that will be put on the back burner until after my next tax return. Being out of commission for 6 months last year because of the brain surgery greatly affected our income, and so I’m unable to get a mortgage until I can prove more stability – which will be most likely proven on our next tax return. In 6 months we will be actively seeking a home to purchase and we are currently in a competitive market, so please be in prayer for this matter. Please be in prayer that we will know the home the Lord provides when the time comes, and that we will not step outside His will on this. This is a huge deal.
Related to this, please pray that the Lord will replace our current vehicle with a larger vehicle. It will barely fit 5 car seats – so it’s big enough – but that is not conducive for traveling long distances. I really appreciate you guys praying for the brass tacks things. I know it’s not as exciting to pray about, but they are very important. We just lost a supporting church – one of our biggest supporters who has faithfully supported us since the Lord sent us to China. We know that the Lord will provide our needs, but we ask that you would pray for the matter of our finances. We started in the ministry of evangelism over 3 years ago, and for most of it I’ve required additional work to supplement our income – a situation that seems to becoming more and more prevalent amongst evangelists. I teach English online from my home. Please pray for my wisdom and energy for balancing the hours worked, with the ministry, and with the increasing demands of our growing family.
OK – now that I’ve gotten the brass tacks out of the way let’s talk about what’s been going on with the ministry. It seems that though we do not typically have much on our schedule, the Lord always uses me in different ways here and there. He always adds things to our schedule from one prayer letter to the next. Always! In early June I preached in a church in MD, and then helped with our home church’s Bible school in late June. In the middle of July I was so happy to have the opportunity to preach a full Sunday in Holland, MI, and then in late July my wife and I were used by the Lord for our home church’s teen girl camping trip. Directly after that I had the opportunity to preach the morning services at a church in Interlochen, MI. In all of these cases the Lord used the power of His Word to bring conviction and encouragement to the folks attending. I thank you for your prayers that I would preach spirit filled. Only eternity will show the difference your prayers made in the lives reached through this preaching ministry. And if you prayed on that account, and supported us in other ways, then you take part in reaping the blessings and rewards for that. Thank you!
On August 18th I ask that you pray as I’ve been given the opportunity to preach at a pastors conference at Melvin Baptist Church. If you are in the area, then stop by and hear the many preachers that will be preaching that day. I have no doubt that God’s messengers will be a blessing to you if you come with a heart yearning for the preaching of God’s Word.
Please continue to pray for open doors. In regards to the ministry, this has always been at the top of the list for our prayer requests. Understand that I’m as fully recovered as I’m going to be and physically capable of preaching full revival meetings. Please don’t hesitate to contact me for preaching opportunities on account of my health. I’m healed. Please also forward my name along to other pastors. One huge way that you can help our ministry is to simply forward my name along to other pastors. It may reap immediate results, and it may take years, but simply put – pastors need to trust an evangelist before they invite him in. If someone whom he trusts recommends an evangelist, then it makes a huge difference in the kind of open doors that would be provided for us (see Acts 9:27). Ultimately, the biggest difference you can make is simply your prayers that the Lord would open doors that no man can shut. Please pray for us on this account. It is my greatest desire to be used more often in preaching – every week. But that’s obviously not the Lord’s desire right now or He would make it happen. I am so thankful for the opportunities He does provide, and, by the Lord’s grace, am thankful for the opportunities he doesn’t supply. Thank you for your faithfulness to our ministry.
“Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the LORD.” – Lamentations 3:40