This two-month stretch started out with Linda and me going out to North Platte, Nebraska, so I could teach Proverbs at the Great Plains Baptist College, preach the graduation service for the college, and preach in the church services. This is our second year in a row with Pastor Bill Reeves and the people of the North Platte Baptist Church. Just like last year, they treated us like royalty during our stay with them. They completely surprised me with a special honor. I was overwhelmed by their generosity toward both Linda and me. If you would like to see the video, just click on this link, https://youtu.be/taWk1hH9l4w, or copy it to your browser. They even gave both of us iPad minis. Brother Bill is trying to convert me into becoming an Apple man. We will see.
First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana, had honored Mrs. Siegwart (her husband had just passed away in an accident) with a missions trip to Mexico. Her son, Pastor Matthew Siegwart, was able to go with her, and he had me preach at his church. His fine people worked hard in his absence to bring a lot of visitors to the services. God blessed the preaching, and 9 souls were saved during the morning service. Another 2 got saved between Sunday school and the morning service. Praise the Lord for hardworking laymen and the power of God to convict sinners!
As many of you know, I am the field service coordinator of the Western Hemisphere for the FBMI mission board. We held the annual Candidate School the first week of June. It was a great time of fellowship and learning for the new candidates, those on deputation, and those veteran missionaries in the States on furlough. I was able to teach three of the classes. Since three of our children live in the area, we were able to stay with our daughter Susanna and her husband Nathan for the week, throw a birthday party for our son Jim, and visit with our daughter Rachel. It was a tiring but blessed week for us, both professionally and personally.
Two pastors in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan scheduled me to come preach for them. One pastor, Brother Lon Russel, holds a service at the veteran’s home where Linda’s brother lives. We are so thankful for this fine pastor and how he ministers to these men, many of them having fought in our wars. Since we were in the UP area between those Sundays, I was able to visit two additional churches whose pastors I had never met. Not only did we have great fellowship with the pastors and church people for whom I was preaching, but we were also able to get to know the other two pastors. Both of them invited me to preach for them sometime in the future. My being able to preach in the UP gave us the ability to visit with Linda’s brother Bob. We believe he is exactly where he should be. This facility is geared toward veterans. They have activities, give the residents physical therapy daily, and treat them all with dignity. We praise God for such a facility!
I would appreciate your prayers for my upcoming trips. Just in the past two weeks, another opportunity has come up for me to add another country to my African trip. This is not confirmed, so I ask you to pray for guidance as I work on this aspect of the trip.