God blessed our travels and we are safely back home! Praise the Lord. Thank you for praying for God's grace to do international travel. Now, we have a two week quarantine before we can depart from our home. Hopefully, it will pass quickly and be profitable.
Our flight to Amsterdam could seat 310 people and was only at 10 percent of capacity. Wow - we aren't going to want to go back to normal travel. It is nice to sit wherever you want to sit and to lay down accross three seats with the cabin crew encouraging you to do so.
The Andersons also safely made it back to the USA and are adjusting to the time zone there. We so appreciate their great encouragement to our church family. They will be missed.
Well, it seems I've not updated in quite a while. Lord willing, we'll get back into the rythm of regular updates next week. We are very thankful for God's grace and goodness to us these three months. We have had a wonderful furlough.
God allowed the final service for the Andersons and us to be special services. The Andersons had the visitor from last Sunday return with two more visitors. I also met a man yesterday afternoon who came out to hear me speak last night. (He is a believer who attends another church in Des Moines.)
Our final service was at my Grandma's church here on the South Side of Des Moines. I enjoyed preaching all the services yesterday as we updated the church on what God is doing in our ministry in Scotland.
We have begun our return to Scotland as DHL just collected two 66 pounds boxes of stuff to ship back to Scotland. On Wednesday we will drive nearer Chicago to my Aunt's home. We will fly out on Thursday and get back early Friday morning. The Anderson will depart tomorrow from Scotland.
I've let them know of our appreciation for their ministry. Our church is very fond of this couple and we are very thankful for how God used them in our absence.
Thank you for your prayers for this furlough. There were so many things that we had to pray about and God gave us very clear answers. We praise God for His great goodness and your support on this journey.
One other answer to prayer: Kay Lee is very confident that God wants her at Ambassador Baptist College in Lattimore, NC. We are excited to see God's leading in her life. Lord willing she will begin there in the fall of next year.
We've had a very interesting week as we were in Pensacola from Sunday evening to Thursday morning. Hurricane Sally was just off shore for most of that time, before coming on shore on Wednesday morning. God answered prayer for us in a very specific way and allowed us to move in with a church family on Tuesday night. The right eye wall of Sally went through our location with around 100 MPH winds (category 2). There were trees down everywhere, including many on the church property, but the trees around our trailer didn't come down.
We praise God for safety even as we chased hurricane Sally all the way to Greenville, SC on Thursday. We saw downed trees and power lines for about 100 miles. We also saw several hundred power company vehicles on their way South to restore power.
The family we stayed with had a generator and water purification system. So, we had all the comforts of home while many were facing difficulties from the storm. Their power was restored on Thursday evening.
Our travel trailer suffered some damage from the storm and it is currently at the shop. Please pray for wisdom as they assess any damage. That process has gone well and God has been guiding. That was our last trip with the trailer as we plan on staying with family for the rest of our furlough travels.
God gave us a great time last Sunday with two of our supporting churches in FL and AL. This weekend we are with two more supporting churches in GA. Thank you for your prayers. God has kept us safe thus far from Covid, a hurricane, a lot of travel miles (we saw a car crash into a wall in Atlanta on our return this past week).... We've also enjoyed each ministry opportunity and thank you for your part in the effectiveness of our ministry.
I believe we will be able to begin meeting as a church again next Sunday. The Glencourse Centre in Auchendinny (across from our home) has a time slot on Sunday PM available. We're going to change our meeting schedule and have a 5:00PM Sunday School and a 6:00 PM (Sunday AM in the PM) service. Our 11:00 AM service on Zoom will continue as well.
Please pray for our church as we make this necessary adjustment. Our church family has expressed excitement that we are about to begin meeting again. Thank you for praying for our church location need.
God gave us a wonderful day yesterday. We are now down South after traveling this past week. We had a 9:00 AM drive in service at a church that is like a home church to us. It is the church Katie and I attended and ministered at while we were in Bible college. It was our first drive in service. I preached from the church steps over a FM radio transmitter. God also gave us a last minute meeting at another dear church in Lavonia, GA. This pastor has taken our family on for support at two different churches. We thank God for his interest in the work God has called us to do.
Our meetings next Sunday are in Dothan, AL and Pensacola, FL, and Prattville, AL. While on that trip we are going to visit Pensacola Christian College. Thank you for praying for our travels and ministry.
This past week we have been in Iowa. Our time with Mt. Olive Baptist Church in IL last Sunday was a blessing. The church is out in the corn fields of IL. You understand why when you see the date the church began - 1860's.
Last night we were at Fellowship Baptist in Marshalltown, IA. The Derecho (inland hurricane as they call it) a few weeks ago really devastated much of their area. Corn fields were flattened, trees snapped off and structures were damaged. It looks like a tornado hit. That church was also a great blessing to our family and thank the Lord for His help in our ministry.
On thursday of this week we do the trip South again. We'll be in Demorest, GA on Sunday. This is a special church to us as we participated in this ministry when we were students at Bible college. This will be our first drive in church service as Covid-19 is impacting their area. Thank you for your prayers.
The Lord gave us a great day at Fellowship Baptist in Taylors SC. The church provided some wonderful meals for all of us including extended family and friends. The fellowship at Fellowship was great. We were blessed to be with them.
Tomorrow we have a meeting at Martinez, GA and then Sunday we are in Chandlerville, IL for an AM meeting. The following Sunday we have a meeting in Marshaltown, IA. We appreciate your prayers for our furlough ministry and travels.
If you are interested in the latest Covid-19 stats from Scotland, here is a link to a BBC article.
We have just completed our first of three months of furlough. God has been very good to us. We have seen all of our immediate family and are enjoying great times with all of them. Our meetings are going very well.
This past Sunday we had a meeting at Grace Baptist in Pelzer with Pastor Ziskowski. On Sunday evening we were at Tabernacle in Greenville with Pastor Logan. Both churches encouraged us and we enjoyed sharing in their ministries.
Our family is enjoying doing special music as we travel. Logan has also been piping at each church. Pastor Logan called our Logan up on the platform on Sunday PM and had him end the service with piping. He was teasing Logan (14) as he came up there that there were only 8,000 people listening in online. :) Logan did a great job and I recorded a small portion to share with his pipe band and teacher in Scotland.
Our next meeting is at Fellowship Baptist in Taylors. We're going to go to that meeting with a lot of kids. We'll be watching 5 nieces and nephews this weekend as their parents help their oldest sibling move into the dormitory at her Bible college. So, we'll have 11 kids at church with us! We appreciate your prayers for each meeting.
Our church continues to meet online in Scotland. The committee at the center we rent has not yet allowed outside groups to come back. Thank you for praying for the Andersons as they continue with furlough replacement in Scotland.
We are now down South in North Carolina. This past weekend was a busy travel weekend. On Saturday we went from LaCrosse, WI to Fremont, MI. We enjoyed spending the weekend at Katie's home church. It was a blessing to get to know the pastor and get caught up with the church family. We also enjoyed having two Aunts and a cousin attend a service.
On Monday and Tuesday we drove down to Lattimore, NC to spend time with my sister's family. Their pastor kindly invited us to share our presentation with their church on Wednesday night. We actually know the pastor at their church as my father preached a week of meeting for him when I was a child. It was fun to catch up with him. Speaking of "catching" the pastor took myself and my boys and nephews fishing this morning. That's one of the extra blessings of furlough.
Tomorrow, we pull out for the Greenville, SC area. We have a meeting at Grace Baptist in Pelzer on Sunday morning and one at Tabernacle in Greenville Sunday evening. All of Katie's immediate family are in the Greenville area. So, we're looking forward to seeing them all tomorrow night. Thank you for praying for our travels.
God has blessed our 5 meetings thus far. We had two this past Sunday. The first was in Sauk City, WI. Please pray for God's provision of a pastor for this dear church family. Their former pastor (Pasotr Lyndsey) and his wife are going as missionaries to Liberia next month. Please pray for the Lyndseys as well.
In the evening we were ar Fort Atkinson with Pastor Neal and his church family. This church is dear to us as they were the church family to our family (my mom and dad and sister's family) for the past couple of years. It was fun to connect with them and thank them for their ministry to our family.
This week we are parked (travel trailer) next to my brother's home on his wife's family farm near La Crosse, Wi. I have a lot of memories from this location as I grew up hunting on this farm. We haven't seen my brother and his family for almost 6 years. So, it is a lot of fun for us and our children to spend some time together. Tonight we have a meeting at Temple Baptist in La Crosse.
This Saturday we travel to Fremont, MI, my wife's home church and the church where we were married. We're only there in the area for two days but are also looking forward to connecting with Katie's Aunt's and Uncle's
On Monday we head South to my sister's in Lattimore, NC. Our midweek service that week is at Fellowship Baptist in Taylor's SC. Please pray for safety as we have a lot of travel to do this weekend.
We appreciate your prayers. God's hand has been evident in our furlough. Thank you for praying.
The article I wrote for our county newspaper came out yesterday. A lady in our church bought a copy and sent us a picture. Please pray that God will use the paper article and the online copy.