Nathan Goodpaster Prayer Letter:  Church Anniversaries, Audrey, and Dengue Fever8-Year Anniversary

We thank God for His continual faithfulness to Harvest Baptist Church of Silay City, as we celebrated the church’s 8th anniversary on July 14. Our main church pulled together to serve our community once again. There was no special promotion other than the obligatory boxed lunch, as is customary in the Philippines for such events. The greatest gift we gave all who were present was the Gospel. This year, our church family invited their friends, coworkers, and neighbors. Our goal was for everyone to bring a personal visitor. In the crowd was a parent whose son committed suicide earlier this year; another mother was present whose three-year-old son passed away from cancer just a couple of years ago. No doubt others were present with various “unseen” battles and heartaches. The Gospel is the answer for all of this life’s problems and the hope for the life to come. All in all, we had 43 decisions slips for Christ turned in, and 3 new converts followed the Lord in believer’s baptism. To God be the glory for what He has done and is doing!

Brief Trip to America

At the end of July, our oldest daughter Emily, Jonathan, and I took a brief trip to the U.S. for Jonathan’s annual checkup at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. He had many follow-up appointments with all of his doctors there, as well as his regularly scheduled full brain and spine MRI. We thank God for clear scans and a good report of Jonathan’s improvement in so many areas since a year ago. We certainly don’t take a single clear scan for granted.

Audrey Sick With Dengue Fever

Our island of Negros has been the hardest hit this rainy season with the dreaded, annual outbreak of dengue fever, a mosquito-born virus that dangerously affects the blood. Many in the Philippines die every year from it, especially the children and the elderly. In all the years we have lived here, we have thus far been fortunate to avoid it . . . until a couple of weeks ago when Audrey was suddenly struck with high fevers, chills, weakness, severe lung pain, and body aches as her initial symptoms of having contracted it. What commenced from there was a very stressful and unpredictable couple of weeks, with many trips to the doctor and daily lab work to monitor her falling platelet count. Her doctor initially wanted to admit her for fear of her condition worsening at home, but due to so many dengue patients at the time, we were on a waiting list for beds to open in the hospital.

Adding to our stress was worrying about not being able to find donor blood for her in the event she needed a transfusion, because of her rare Type O blood type being extra rare amongst Asians. God’s grace is always there, especially in times of trouble, we need only trust Him. It worked out to put her up in a hotel close to home, where she could rest well and be in constant air conditioning to help avoid the serious dehydration dengue causes. It took 11 days for the virus with its high fevers and debilitating symptoms to finally leave her. Though still not back to her full strength yet, she is happy to be home, and we are so thankful her platelets never got too dangerously low and she was able to recover out of the hospital.

2-Year Anniversary Mission Church

In September, I am excited to have the privilege of preaching for our church plant’s 2nd anniversary in Bago City. We are committing to sending a group each month from our main church in Silay to serve with and encourage Pastor Jesse Leones and the Harvest Baptist Church Southpoint. Also beginning this month, we are going to add a second Sunday morning service to help better accommodate our Sunday morning crowd and hopefully make a bit more room for growth in our current auditorium. Construction on our Sunday school building has slowed as we channel all funds into preparations for our upcoming missions emphasis in October. We are very excited about expanding our missions program.

Come Visit Us

We are currently working on our 2020 church calendar and would love to have a visit from you. We are considering conducting a medical mission in May (don’t worry—that’s not at all during the dengue season). There are limitless opportunities to minister for the Lord here. Please reach out to us if you are interested in coming for a visit. Grace and peace to you in the precious name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

For God’s glory,

Bro. Nathan Goodpaster