Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Living on Borrowed Time

The longer the nation is shutdown, the more I forget what day it is. Time has moved by quickly since I last posted. Much is happening in our world and nation which tells me that Jesus is coming soon. I recently learned that Israel has been performing what they call mock Passover sacrifices for nine years in Jerusalem. This year, they requested to perform the ceremony on the Temple Mount. I had been told they received the permission and held the ceremony, but after much searching on the web, I could not find an indication  that they had completed the ceremony. God is allowing man and nature to push the world towards the return of Jesus, the rapture of the Christians, and the tribulation of the world. I truly believe Jesus could come in my time.

Our church and many churches have tried to follow the precautions for the coronavirus, but churches across the nation are finally realizing that politicians are using the virus to achieve evil against Christians and against America. Small business owners and other workers who have been out of work are also fed up with the lies and deceit being used to keep control of people. After two churches in Mississippi stood up for being allowed to have services, had the fines, which the mayor had imposed on all of them, dropped, Michigan marched in their capitol. Over the next few days other churches and states began marching, and this past Monday, we along with many pastors and business owners marched in our state capitol. If you were to believe the news reports, they say we only had 200 people, but that would be the minimum  which stood on the street. There were hundreds of cars with at least two people, and most with whole families in them as well as a few large vans with 8-10 people in them. These cars created a motorcade which circled the governors house. The very least amount of people that could have been present was 400, but I would guess there was quite a few more than that. My prayer for the effects of these marches across the nation is that they will encourage all Americans to stand up to protect our freedom which has been stripped away over night, and that Christians will wake up and realize that we have a very limited window of time in which to reach people with the Gospel. If we lose our freedom to practice religion as we believe, it will hamper us in getting the Gospel out.

My dad found a way for us to have small groups in our church services, and we had the first two on Sunday. We may have to do  small groups again this week, but hopefully the governor will get the message that our state needs to reopen, and we will be able to quickly get back to normal. Throughout all of this closure, my dad has encouraged those who are older, immunocompromised... to stay home to protect themselves from getting sick.

I have been helping dad with video services. We are not quite ready for livestream due to some sound issues we have been trying to work out. I am learning a lot about how to trim, merge, and split videos as well as a lot about sound systems. Please pray that we can get everything worked out so our members, who can't be with us even in normal times, can enjoy the services.

Please pray for Pastor Martinez, his family, and their ministry in Puerto Rico.  The school parents were already struggling to pay school bills due to the island being closed after the earthquakes we had in January. Now with this lengthy closure which began in the middle of March, they are struggling again. The government has asked private schools to give a discount,  so please pray that God will provide the means to meet all the needs of the ministry.

Please pray for the children#should home in Nepal where I helped a couple years ago. They are still in the midst of their building project for a larger school and dormitory building. They have been OK during the shutdown as far as health, and put I  their own well in order to provide water for the home.

I still have my plane ticket booked to England for late June. Please pray that the world will settle down by then so that I can travel without any problems.

Please pray for my sister Joy who is due in June. Pray for my family to stay well. Pray for our church as we move forward that the visitors who were coming before all this happened will return, and that our members will be faithful.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Jesus is coming soon!

The signs of the times are becoming more and more evident: more earthquakes in various places. multitudes hearing the Gospel via internet, illnesses of all kinds, extreme measures being taken in the name of health which I thought would take a military coup to produce. I truly believe Jesus could come in my lifetime.

Due to the Corona virus, the lock downs, limited travel... Pastor Martinez felt it would be wise for me to leave Puerto Rico earlier than planned. I had asked God to show me whether I should stay to finish out the school year, and He did so by having school close for two more weeks, and now for the month of April. I returned home last Sunday night.

So far the rainy, cold weather has kept me mostly indoors, but I was able to go shopping for the first time in two weeks on Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday, we had our last church service for two weeks. At the end of those two weeks, my dad will see how the land lies. Hopefully, the governor will allow churches to meet within the guidelines of the limited numbers without an issue, but if not, my dad plans to petition to open as he feels church is a necessity for people in times of trial. please pray that God allows the church doors to be open.

My plane ticket to England is still reserved for mid-June. Please pray that the doors for travel abroad will be open by then. Please pray also that God continues to keep me healthy. In all the places I have traveled, I have never been extremely sick just simple colds due to weather changes. I take high doses of vitamin C especially when teaching school, so I believe that is what helps keep me healthy along with the prayers of my supporters, friends and family.

Please pray for several missionaries who are dealing with different issues with this virus. I know of two in Thailand who have it, also a preacher from Texas. One of my friends in Brazil lost a cousin to it. A pastor's wife in Guatemala has cancer and isn't doing well. Due to the virus, they sent her home from the hospital. Missionaries and the people of Venezuela have already been through a lot with the political and economic situation, and now the virus and low oil prices have caused them more economic problems. According to the news, the Philippines is taking drastic measures which you would find in a communist land instead of a free one.  Please pray for all the missionaries around the world for health and finances as I am sure support will suffer due to churches being closed. Many people do not understand that the tithes and offerings are still needed even if the building isn't open.

Please pray for my finances as well. Two different situations have occurred which could be a hindrance later. Please pray that God will continue to supply for me to help get the Gospel around the world. Even with these two situations, I have had someone decide to support me as a family, and two older ladies have provided small gifts even though they are on fixed incomes. It amazes me how God continues to use even the smallest gifts to show me that He wants me to continue as I have for  the last 5 years.

My last prayer is for our nation. I never thought that the American people would allow fear to bring them to the point we are at today. Although martial law has not officially been declared, that is basically what we are living under. The Constitution is being trampled in the name of health. I do not deny there is an illness, nor do I deny that people are dying, but I know from friends who work in the medical world, family who have been through the virus and recovered, and reading from doctors and nurses who believe in telling the truth, that those who hate our nation are using it to bring our nation closer to a socialistic, communistic ideal. We have seen our nation go from some of its greatest economic highs to a very low low. We have seen the lowest unemployment rates in years suddenly be very high due to the closure of businesses. We have seen our congress give themselves a 25 million dollar raise while barely giving the people who pay their salaries a minimum wage check, and in most places less than minimum wage. While many say this is to protect us from illness, spreading illness... They do not realize the impact it will have in the future. The door has been opened, and I fear it will always be slightly ajar, and much easier to open the next time we have people, who hate what America was built on, in office. I am praying for a few more years to continue to get the Gospel across America and around the world. Time is getting short. Perhaps God will not answer this prayer as I would like. Perhaps He is ready to allow persecution in America so that Christians will hurry to get the Gospel out, but I pray that He will give us more time. I also pray that Christians and Americans will wake up and realize that our freedom of religion, pursuit of happiness, and even life are very near to being taken away.

Revival begins with God's people. I am in need of a revival. Our churches are in need of revival, and America is in need of revival. May we all pray for it. I pray it does not come out of persecution, but out of thankful hearts because we are given more time.