It's Holiday Bible Club time! We are able to get going on our HBC this morning. We are having a four day club this year. It's already interesting as our two youngest came down with chicken pox. So, sadly for them they aren't able to attend. Thankfully, they are doing well despite their itchiness. We're excited about what the Lord is going to do this week and appreciate your prayers.
God gave us a good Sunday. We had great attendance for our AM zoom service. We had good attendance that evening as well. Our treasurer, Tommy, was unable to attend as he and his wife are in mandatory isolation. Their son-in-law has covid and they were in close contact with him. Lord willing, Tommy will be able to help with the last day of our HBC.
I preached a message on prayer entitled, "Ringing Heaven's Bell." The text was a prayer of David in Psalm 86. There was a really good spirit Sunday night. Margaret, our new attendee, is going to follow the Lord in believer's baptism. She's excited and is going to have the friend that led her to the Lord with her on that night. Please pray for good weather on 8 August.
Thank you for your prayers. We'll let you know how things get on this week.
Tommy helped me finish Loanhead today. We put out around 450 Gospel flyers. God gave two great divine appointments. One was with an elderly man who lost his wife two years ago. The other was with a young lady who lives in the village where our church is meeting. Please pray that God will work in these two hearts as well as in the many hearts of those who received the Gospel flyers. Thank you for praying for our evangelism.
Kay Lee and Benson are into a day camp week at the Bill Rice Ranch. Last week Benson enjoyed being a camper for the week. Unfortunately he had a significant knee injury (tore his MCL) this past Wednesday. He said everyone heard the crack of whatever took place. His knee has been popping out of joint since then occasionaly. Your prayer is appreciated for his healing and for God's blessing on this week of camp. (They are both loving their summer of ministry at the Bill Rice Ranch.)
We still didn't have everyone in church, but we had most everyone there and that was a blessing. I would imagine that it would be unusual for any church to have all their members on any one Sunday. Thank you for praying for our attendance.
Our visitor is going to keep coming. She wants to follow the Lord in believer's baptism. Please pray for courage for her. We're excited that God has brought her our way.
We added two members to our church this evening. Lewis and Stacy were baptized last month. They are excited to be a part of our church and we are very thankful for their being a part of our churrch.
I enjoyed preaching a message on, "Trouble Free Living" from John 14. (Currently uploading to Sermon Audio) That text is a blessing. It teaches that you will have trouble in life. But, you don't have to BE TROUBLED in life. Your soul can be floating on still water despite you body being in the storms of life. My heart was encouraged through this text and I believe it was an encouragement to our church as well.
Thank you for praying for our day. God gave us a great meeting.
It's an incredibly beautiful week here. Don and I put out flyers this morning in Loanhead. God gave us a really good divine appointment with a young man who is 18. I asked him if he believes in God. He said that he didn't until his gran passed away. He said that he went through a very difficult time and through that came to believe in God. Please pray for him to come to a knowledge of saving faith. I'd love a future opportunity to speak with him.
God gave some encouragement at a very interesting moment. I was watching a man read the flyer we had put through his door. He looked accross a car park at me, crumpled it up and put it in his recycling bin. As that happened a young man doing a home repair was taking a stick of wood out of his van. We spoke with him and he said, "You spoke to me about ten years ago." I said, "Wow, you must have been a child back then." He's maybe in his early twenties. He wouldn't remember meeting me before if God hadn't written something in his heart. Please pray for his salvation.
Update from last week at Don's. Tommy contacted Don by text. Please pray for Tommy to visit the Dillman's church.
God's good to encourage us when we need it. Evangelism works and will be fruitful in God's timing. Please pray for God to help us to continue to sow in faith.
I actually got hot today as I put out flyers. This has been a cool summer, but not unusual for us. We've not had any days over 70 yet. However, my thermometer says, "69.9" just now. :)
After last summer in the States, I'm thankful (as many of you would be) to have cooler temps. At least when you are cold you can put on a jacket!
I had a divine appointment this morning with two young men. Evangelist Jonathan Washer, myself and Benson, spoke with them both in Loanhead about 4 years ago. God has helped me keep one of these young men's names in my mind and I have had multiple follow up opportunities.
He really engaged with me today and I'm praying that God will open His eyes. It reminds me of what Isaiah said, "Having eyes they see not, having ears they hear not (paraphrase.)" Please pray that the God of this world will lose and that these two young men will trust in Jesus.
I spoke with a couple other men who remember speaking with me at other times. Please pray for God to awaken Loanhead. We love the place and the people but NEED GOD TO BREAK THROUGH.
Katie and I enjoyed visiting the woman who attended our church for the first time on Sunday. She is a dear soul who is only recently saved. She has tried to share her new found saving faith with friends of hers at her church, "Church of Scotland." She can't understand why they can't see the Gospel and why her former minister does not preach the Gospel. Please pray for her as she plans to leave that church to attend our own.
Thank you for praying for God's power in our evangelism and ministry. We need it. (Psalm 62:11 God hath spoken once; twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God.)
God gave us encouragement tonight as we had a first time visitor. She had received a flyer at her house 7 months ago and has been wanting to come, but kept putting it off. She has to drive for quite a while to get to church as she lives on the other side of Edinburgh.
She got a flyer, because we gave Mac a violin for Christmas. (confused?) I had to pick up a violin for Mac for Christmas and decided to put out several hundred flyers in the area where I got his violin. She got a flyer. She is an older woman, but a young believer. She got saved 4 years ago. Please pray that our church can be a good church family for her as I believe she is going to keep coming.
We had a good Sunday, but sickness and other things are still hurting our attendance. Please pray that we can get everyone back to faithfulness in God's perfect timing.
I preached a message that challenged me and helped me this past week as I studied it. I preached on "Not Ashamed" from Romans 1:16. (Upload should be done in the next few hours.) It's amazing how no matter how often you do evangelism, you still have to ask God for boldness to share the Gospel. Please pray for Gospel boldness for our church family.
Thanks for praying for our day. God continues to give us all the encouragement we need.
The weather has shifted and we've had a lot more rain recently. I was able to get out Tuesday afternoon to put out some flyers in Loanhead. I normally go in the morning, but had to adjust because of the weather.
Yesterday Don and I did evangelism in front of a Mall near their church location. I met a middle aged man, Tommy, and spoke with him for 20-20 minutes. We sat on a park bench while I went through the Gospel with John and Romans booklets. I believe he may be saved, but has never been discipled. He had an experience about 2 years ago and it may have been a conversion experience. It definitely has impacted his life and changes have been taking place.
I hope that he went home and made sure of his salvation. Please pray that he will make some tough decision to separate from sin and follow the Lord. I really encouraged him to join with Don's church and follow the Lord in believer's baptism.
Don had a good opportunity with a woman who refused a tract. She did so, and then sat on a bench not far from us to eat. We joked a wee bit with her about an opportunistic seagull who was eyeing here food. She went back into the mall, but later when she came out she spoke with Don.
One more fun story - yesterday afternoon, my wife had 3 girls over for baking. I took my boys and a teen boy in our church cycling nearly 20 miles around a path in Falkirk. It was more like a cycling scavenger hunt because of the joining trails being so poorly marked (not marked at all) and the map was not the best. You really would be shocked (if you saw what we went through) that we completed our journey in the same place from which we started. I thought one man may have been an angel sent from God. He actually helped us back to the path and got us going again. I told him about, "The Journey" online. He found it and messaged me (I guess he wasn't an angel) from the Youtube Channel. Please pray that God will work in Moray's heart. (We had prayed for God to get us around the path and for opportunities to speak to someone.)
God gave us a wonderful time on our anniversary Sunday. We started the church on 4 July, 2010. It was a blessing to have Sunday fall right on the anniversary date this year.
We had a special day as we got together for a church picnic. God kept the thunderstorm away for a little while and then we were chased inside to finish our games. (It was a blessing to hear some thunder as that can be pretty rare here.)
I preached a message from Isaiah 35 on, "A Great Day Coming." If you want an encouraging passage to meditate on, it is excellent! Although the ultimate fulfilment is future - it has happened, is happening and will happen. It is a great revival passage. We need revival! Please pray for God to do that in our church and in our community.
We have some things that we are praying about regarding a church buiding, but nothing substantive yet. Last night the church voted to allow me to make an offer on any property of interest to the church. Formerly we had only voted that I could make an offer on the bank property. This way we don't have to wait two weeks to move forward.
Two things we are really praying about. 1) If God doesn't have anything for us in Loanhead THEN He must have something for us elsewhere. (It's a very difficult consideration, yet God has already moved us at least temporarily out of Loanhead.) 2) If there is nothing available, we may need to consider building a church property. With that in mind, I'm going to investigage something which has been of interest to us since before the bank property. Please pray.
Thank you for holding the ropes in prayer and for your love for our family and church ministry. We much appreciate it.
This morning I put flyers out in Loanhead for about 2 hours. I enjoyed catching up with several friends in Loanhead. One elderly Christian couple, Robert and Ruth, have been precious friends since we arrived here. Robert has terminal cancer and ended up in hospital a month ago. Please pray that God will allow him to come home. The Covid rules here still do not allow for hospital visits. I prayed with Ruth and she is demonstrating sweet confidence in the Lord.
Thank you for praying for our building need. The primary burden may be different from what you think. Many would naturally think that we are burdened primarily to own a building. However, though we desire that, it is not our primary burden. Our primary burden is that we are not currently able to meet in our original church location. (We are 3 miles away from Loanhead.) Secondly, we are not able to meet together for all of our services because the rental facility does not have our hours available. I would say that thirdly would be our desire to own a buildling and have 24/7 access. We appreciate your continued prayers.
God gave us a good weekend. Katie and I did door to door on Saturday. We had one interesting conversation with a young father. He grew up evangelical and through higher criticism became a staunch unbeliever. Please pray for God's grace to awaken His heart. It reminds me of what Hebrews says about casting off the crucifixion of Jesus - there is no second option. If you reject the remedy you perish. Please pray for his salvation.
While we were knocking on doors, we walked up near a small primary school building that closed this past year. Workmen were there emptying the building and we enquired if it was going to go for sale. As it turned out, it is going to be a school for special needs children. We're glad that they are going to use it for those kids. We asked because it is one of the building we thought may come available in our area.
This past week I also enquired about a Catholic school property in Loanhead. The response was basically, there is no chance that we are going to sell this as we just refurbished it. :)
We are aware of church properties in our area that are going to be for sale in the near future. Our concern is their location. Please pray for great wisdom. When you plow fields in an area for a decade, you don't want to give up establishing your farm there. We are looking to God for His provision.
Thanks for praying for our services. I preached on, "What You Hold in Your Hand" (The very word of God) from 1 Peter 1.We had a LOT of illness/jobs/isolation requirements/covid/chicken pox impacting those who could come yesterday. Please pray for God's grace to get us all back together. Next Sunday is our 11th anniversary as a church and we are planning a church picnic.