Thursday, July 24, 2008

On the Way East

Well, here we are in Alamogordo, New Mexico...We have picked up the Jeep, and all the towing equipment is installed and tested. Tomorrow we have a full day of driving ahead of us. We hope to make it most of the way to Denver, and since this is our first extended drive with the Jeep in tow, we appreciate your prayers for our travels.

On the way here we stopped off to visit with Joel Tetreau and his family for an evening and left after breakfast for New Mexico. As always, an evening with Joel leaves my mind buzzing with ideas. It is exciting and refreshing to see God working, and we are grateful for the generosity of His people (thanks especially to Southeast Valley Baptist Church). We cannot help but praise the Lord for his provision.

While we were here in Alamogordo, we were invited to minister with my Sister and Brother in Law's church, First Baptist Church in La Luz. We were here nine months ago, and this dear church family was tremendously encouraging to us. This visit was no exception, and it was great to be back. We really have fallen in love with this area!

As always...thank you so much for your prayers. We still have to sell our vehicles soon so that we can finish paying for the jeep and a few things that it needs: tires, AC, and a few other things. Especially, please continue to pray that the Word of God would be made clear and come alive in the hearts of those to whom the Lord allows us to minister.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Weekly Update

Last week was an adventure, full of fun at camp and a great time with the kids. The theme was "God of Wonders" and all of the preaching was based upon selected Psalms (8, 16, 22, 77, and 139). The word, both preached and sung, was well received by a very attentive group of kids, and I have learned that one young man now believes God may be calling him into full time service and another accepted the Lord on the way home.

Praise the Lord for His work in the hearts of these precious young people. There are a few more kids that we are praying for specifically, and we trust that God will continue working with them as they grow in knowledge and wisdom. God allowed us to spend a good deal of time with a few of these kids, and it was a joy to minister for the Lord with these young people.

Sunday we were at our sending church in Tracy, California one last time; it is always a joy to fellowship and serve with our friends there. This week we have been working on a vehicle to tow. Some may remember that we decided to tow our Dodge Durango, but there have been some concerns regarding the weight of that vehicle (empty it weighs in around 4600 lbs, which is really pushing the limits a bit). Sunday we were offered a minivan to tow in stead of the Durango, but it was not towable without modification.

So we began looking at potential vehicles and decided that a Jeep Cherokee would be the ideal tow vehicle. It doesn't seat our whole family, but anything that can seat the whole crew weighs too much. So we decided that the Cherokee had the right mix of cargo space for storage, durability, ease of repair, and towability.

My brother-in-law found one near him in Alamogordo, New Mexico and agreed to pick it up for us. I will post pictures when we pick it up next week. Now we need to sell both the Durango and the Minivan so that we can pay for the Jeep and all the towing equipment. The tow equipment cost 2650, which was 450 dollars more than we paid for the vehicle!

In any case, God continues to provide for our every need, and we are looking forward to making our way to Rockford, Illinois via Denver. This week we are doing some painting and house / kid sitting for our pastor while they are at Junior camp (with a couple of our kids and one of theirs). On Saturday we will be with the Mission Peak Baptist Church (in Fremont, California) and we look forward to the ordination proceedings for our friend, Will Dudding.

When we leave there we will head south, pick up our trailer, tow that to Alamogordo, New Mexico and trade it for our Jeep, which is currently being outfitted for towing. By a week from this Friday we will be pulling into Denver, Colorado to be with Jason Janz, who is planting the Providence Bible Church there.

From there we will be heading to Rockford Illinois to be with Bob Bixby and the Morning Star Baptist Church. We will be basing there for a while as we fill up our schedule, finish recording our next album, and complete building the Counseling class for Veritas School of Theology.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Manor Baptist Church

Wow...so much has happened! Last Sunday we were at Manor Baptist Church in San Leandro, California, and we had a great time (complete with lots of ice cream). They have really fixed things up since the last time I had visited there, and it was exciting to hear what God is doing in this town.

Things became a little nerve racking when our wireless quit working Sunday morning. Thankfully we were only doing an offertory in the AM service, so after lunch I had to go out and buy a new wireless system. The only problem was that we couldn't find one that used the same type of connector for my vocal mic (a Countryman E6), so we had to use the stock lapel mic. This was ok because the auditorium allowed for it, but we really missed the other microphone, and we knew that the camp auditorium (low, wide, and hard surfaces) would not be very forgiving.

One of the churches who came to camp is pastored by a good friend, Charlie Eldred. He graciously consented to pick one up on the way to camp Monday morning, so we have been able to use the wireless with our microphones. It has worked well, and we are thankful for the good friends that God has given us.

It has been fun at camp, and I always enjoy watching another friend, Jon Cook (Youth Pastor / Assistant at the First Baptist Community Church of Los Gatos, California) work with the teens. He is running the camp program during this week, and his genuine love and care for the young people is refreshing.

Please be in prayer for this week of camp, that God would touch the lives and hearts of these young people!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

A Towing Update

My previous thoughts of getting a tow dolly for 1500 bucks were only partially accurate. It is, indeed, possible. However, such a dolly is not rated for the 6000 lbs that will be towed (Dodge Durango is not a small vehicle). We do believe that we can tow the Durango "4 wheels down" provided we get a towbar (about a thousand dollars), and this looked excellent until we realized that we would need a braking system, which is considerably more.

So, for now, we are going to drive the Durango up to the SF bay area for the next month's meetings and pray for the funds to buy a towbar and brake system. We will leave the motorcycle in San Dimas to be sold as partial funding, but we will need another 1500 to pay for the brake system. We will update as we have more information!

As always, thanks for your prayers!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Wow!

We just got the print order for our brochure, and they look wonderful! We owe a debt of gratitude to Rebekah Keller for her graphic design expertise. God continues to provide for us as we endeavor to get rolling down the road.

On another note, we are working on getting rigged up to see if we can tow our 98 Dodge Durango. The lack of a car while we are out has been problematic, so we are looking to purchase a tow dolly, which will cost around 1600 dollars or so.

As always, we are appreciative of your prayers!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Answer to Prayer!

This past week was a real nail-biter for us as we had the propane system develop a leak and the "reefer" (refrigerator) quit working on electricity. We took it in for an estimate yesterday, and the work was done by the end of the day! That was half a miracle by itself, but on top of this, we are so grateful to the Mountain View Baptist Church for their generosity to us by taking care of the repair bill. Praise the Lord for His provision through His people.

And thank you all for your prayers!