Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.”
It is a joy for Betty and me to greet you this New Year in the blessed name of Jesus. We pray the New Year will bring you much happiness and health.
We are happy to be back in the office and to begin a new year of service to our Lord Jesus and looking forward to the teens coming to be trained at the Lord’s Boot Camp. There are over 500 registrations at this time.
Our director, Bob Bland, has asked us to return to Europe to our ministry there. To say the least, we are very excited about going. God is so good to Betty and me, and we praise Him.
December was busy with the staff Christmas party, my family reunion/Christmas party and the activities with the whole family and friends. Forty-eight in all came to celebrate our 60th wedding anniversary in Tampa. Betty and I can’t remember having such a happy and joy-filled day. We were blessed with overwhelming love, great food and games for the children. We old guys played cutthroat croquet and it all happened on my brother Jack’s 10 acres where there is plenty of room for everyone to play. There are no boundaries, you play the ball wherever it lands when someone drives your ball. I came out the winner, but it was a struggle, they kept driving my ball, every time they hit it hard to keep me from hitting the stake. It takes about 2 1⁄2 hours to finish the game.
Those who came the furthest were: Sheri, our niece from California; Bill and family from Texas; our youngest son, Stanley and wife Janet from Virginia; my younger brother and family from Tennessee; and our special granddaughter, Bonnie from Portland, Oregon. It was a blessing to see them all. It gave Betty and me a most memorable day to remember. We are sorry some didn’t make it—they were missed.
The following week Betty and I flew to the Bahamas on Teen Missions business for five days. We were able to make contact with pastors and missionaries to arrange for Teen Missions teams to assist them. Sometimes Betty and I have to sacrifice for the Lord (ha, ha). The trip was very successful and the beaches and water were beautiful. We thank God for this opportunity to continue serving our Lord Jesus in this ministry. Medically, our doctors have given us the ok to travel. We are both feeling well at this time.
January 16th we head north to teach Leader Training Seminars in Atlanta, Lancaster and Ohio. We usually celebrate Betty’s birthday on the road and have a great meal at an Amish restaurant in Pennsylvania.
Betty and I watched our two youngest great grandsons take their first steps. Brenan, our granddaughter Desiree’s son, patted me on the chest and said, “Pa Pa” for the first time, before he said Mama. That was precious. Betty and I keep him twice a week while Desiree attends college. She is studying to become a nurse. He is such a blessing to us and we enjoy him. His smile will melt your heart.
Well, we didn’t make it to Key West in December—another time, Lord willing. One Saturday morning we had eighteen men and ladies from our staff remove the old shingles and install a new roof for Betty and me at our home. It was a great blessing for us and now when it rains Betty won’t have to put out her pots to catch the drips in her kitchen. Betty and I can’t say thank you enough for their help. Family and friends are the most important people in the world, and we love you all.
For all of you who made it to the family party at our 60th anniversary, we thank you. It was a big success—THANK YOU Debbie, Rhonda and Mike. For those of you who didn’t make it, you missed the party of the century. Thank you for your cards and gifts, you were missed. God has blessed Betty and me with great family and friends and we give God the glory. As we begin a new year of service to our Lord Jesus, we want him to have first place in our lives. It’s not important that God is in our life plans, but our life plans are in God’s plans for our lives.
Prayer requests: • Our health • Safety in travel • Our families’ salvation • Wisdom in decision making • Support for our ministry overseas
If Jesus Christ is God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for him. (C.T. Studd)