Feb-May 2018 update (←a printable update letter link)
Dear Pastors and Churches,
So much has transpired since our last update. Through it all we have seen the Great Hand of our God working on our behalf.
In March we came to the realization that we were not going to be able to accomplish mutually agreeable terms with the building owner of the building we were trying to purchase. However, we were not without hope; a much better building that had previously been well out of our price range had now been reduced to a price that we were able to consider. The owner of this building met with us and we discussed possible financing options. We came to an agreement. Knowing his parameters, we officially gave an offer that was immediately accepted! We have a closing set for mid-June. We are planning for a grand opening service on the 15th of July. Please pray for all things to continue to proceed as necessary.
We had a 6-week period of March and April that saw four dozen people trusting Jesus for salvation. We had first-time visitors come to church in every week of April. In the middle of May our church had its first missions conference during which we had over 50 in attendance for EVERY service: SS, AM, PM, MON, TUES & WED. Our people are excited about supporting missions. On May 20th we had a new record of fifteen first-time visitors to our church. Praise God for all these many blessings.
Please keep the following things in prayer:
Scheduled closing for our building, June 14.
Much work in the new building to be accomplished and safety doing it.
Scheduled building ‘Grand Opening’, July 15.
Souls to continue to get saved as a result of our soulwinning efforts.
A man named Steve, who I recently won to Jesus, to be baptized.
Our church to be unified during this transition.
Thank you for your faithful prayer support and financial support. May God bless you as richly as He has blessed us.
Andrew G. Logue, SR. and Family
Nov-Jan 2018 update (←a printable update letter link)
November 2017 – January 2018
Dear Pastors and Churches,
We have reached the end of January and God has blessed and helped in a GREAT WAY; beyond what we asked or even thought.
What a roller coaster it has been these last few months. Here are some of the high points:
- We had a delightful time of celebration and thanksgiving with over 30 of the people of our church joining us for a wonderful meal on Thanksgiving Day.
- My mom came to stay with us for a week and spoke to our ladies at the Christmas ladies’ meeting in December. What a delightful time of visiting we had.
- We had opportunity to see 12 people saved in one special meeting around Christmas time.
- At the end of December and the beginning of January we had people get baptized 3 weeks in a row. How exciting!
- We had a ‘Watchnight’ service on New Year’s Eve. The heartwarming testimonies we heard gave testimony to the spiritual growth of many.
- Through both our family as well as others in the church there have been over three dozen people saved in these last months since our last update.
- Our building fund has grown extremely fast. People all the country over and even from a couple other countries have made and filled commitments far exceeding our expectations and in such a way that God alone receives the glory for what He has unmistakably done. Thank you to each who has given and to those who have prayed for this very need. Thank you for being yielded to the leading of His Spirit.
So, you may wonder what the corresponding downs to these roller coaster highs have been:
- Since we exceeded the needed funds for the proposed down payment, we offered, through the sellers agent, EXACTLY what the seller had lined out as his terms for financing (i.e. down payment, interest rate, years to payoff, etc.). We were met with MUCH greater demands if an agreement was to be reached. This was a total surprise to us as we were given confident information that the owner would likely accept a substantial amount less in terms. (A few industry professionals have even said that the counter terms are “totally ridiculous”. Certainly God knows and so we are begging Him to intervene on our behalf. The terms have been changed enough times now that we have oft thought of Jacob and Laban from Genesis 31:7 & 41. I am seeking to find other financing options than the current owner due to his erratic behavior.
- On last August 13, I baptized a father and son on the same day. Just yesterday we conducted the funeral for the father, ‘Big Jim’, who was 47 years of age. It was a completely unexpected death. ‘Little Jim’, 10, said, ‘Pastor, I guess you’re just going to have to also be my dad now.’ ‘Little Jim’, his mom and his aunt are still faithful members of our church. While we are so glad for Heaven, it was a sobering reminder to each of the folks in our few numbers of people of how frail our life on this earth really is.
Aug-Oct 2017 update (←a printable update letter link)
Dear Pastors and Churches,
I have tried to write this update a number of times recently. Each time I would get it partially written there were building offer(s) still unsettled of which I wanted to tell. Even now, I anticipate developments in the next few weeks that I will just have to wait to tell of in the next update.
We had nine attend a youth conference at the end of July. Of those that went, two surrendered their lives to full-time work. PRAISE THE LORD! In October we again had a youth activity and added two young people new to our youth group.
In August, our quarterly ladies meeting was once again a success with 18 ladies enjoying the fun and teaching.
We just recently had our third men’s prayer breakfast. This has been a wonderful addition to our monthly schedule and we’ve seen a steady growth in our church since beginning it in September. That is answered prayer!
Since our last update we have had a couple of baptisms; one Sunday, a father and son together. As well, since July, (27) have been saved through the soulwinning efforts of our church, (23) of them by our family.
We are now in the midst of a Fall Attendance Program and have had awesome attendances the last three Sunday mornings: 40, 39 & 41. Pray that these who’ve attended will continue faithfully. On last Sunday a family of 6, transferred here by the US Navy, joined our church. Hallelujah!
Here are a couple of things about which we ask that you pray earnestly:
Recently our van needed $800+ for power steering pump and line replacement. Thankfully it has yet to let us down in the regular performance of hauling things to and from services as well being our main people pickup transport. Please pray that our transportation will continue to hold up.
We have placed a number of offers to rent spaces for a more permanent meeting place but have either been outbid, or tuned down, or turned away due to being a church. As disappointing as each refusal has been, I believe that God has been guiding us to this property I recently looked at. It is offered for sale and has a fantastic building in which our church could meet and grow for many years, AND it includes a house that would well accommodate our family (our current house lease expires in May of next year). On top of this, the owner is willing to finance it for us. This is an Amazing Opportunity and one which we would like to capitalize on ASAP. The only thing we currently lack are the total funds for the needed down payment ($70,000). The church has over the past year raised about $20,000, and we are feverishly trying to raise the remaining $50,000 by the end of January. Please pray for us to reach this lofty goal and prayerfully consider, if you would, helping us to raise these funds in this short amount of time…
A blessing… Recently, a dear saint whom I’ve not seen in almost two years called up and said that God had laid it on her heart to send us some money. When she told me that she would send around $5,500, I was nearly speechless. What a blessing that news was to me! And it came at a moment, I’m sorry to say, in which I had begun to wonder if it was totally ridiculous to even consider reaching such an ‘unreachable’ number (the downpayment needed).
March-July 2017 Update
Greetings to each of those who have been awaiting this long overdue update.
My apologies for my shortcomings in keeping you up to speed on all that is going on in our ministry here in Suffolk, Virginia. Though I have been around the ministry and active in independent Baptist churches all of my life, these last few months have pushed me beyond my abilities. It has been with great dependance on God that we have seen Him do mighty things for us and our church. He has been Faithful and True.
We are doing great, although very busy.
Since our last update:
- We had a family conference at the beginning of May with excellent attendances. Melissa’s parents came. Dad Owens preached the services and Mrs. Owens spoke at the ladies meeting. Since then, we have had great reports from our people of their families growing to be more of what honours God.
- We recently had a Saturday with a record number of people show up for our soulwinning meeting and go out with us. (24!)
- In this past month alone, our family has had the privilege of leading eight to Jesus Christ for salvation. Others in our church have added an additional six to that number as well.
- Even through the summer we have had steady attendances in Sunday school and in church.
- We have one adult, and possibly a second, lined up for baptism this coming Sunday.
- A couple Sundays ago a man, wife and daughter visited church who we had reached during our Saturday soul winning. They have joined us again since then.
- Last Wednesday we had two visitors.
- Sunday we had one adult visitor.
- We had a church picnic on the 8th of July with 41 in attendance.
- Our youth will go to a youth conference in July.
- A building that we thought would be a great fit for our church, and about which I had been negotiating with the owner/realtor for two and a half months, recently ended up not working out, literally at the last hour. At this time there are two slight possibilities for a more permanent meeting place. Please continue to pray for God’s guidance in our search for a building.
- Please pray for 3 different families. All three are at this time considering our church for membership. They are either recently moved to the area, not going to church at all or are considering moving closer.
January:February 2017 update
Thank you so much for your support and prayers. We have seen God blessing in a great many ways during these first two months of 2017. We have experienced His comfort and His protection and believe that it is because of the faithful prayers of God’s people. There have been numerous items of interest since our last update. Please allow me to share them by way of a bullet points list:
- At the end of December, the hotel where we meet for all of our public services offered to us the opportunity to present the Gospel by way of the Christmas story to sixty people at a Christmas party that they put on for some disadvantaged people of our city. During the hour that we were given, our church members gave multiple gifts from our church to each adult and child in attendance, including a Bible. We were able to see nineteen people at that meeting trust Christ for salvation! Praise God for this unsolicited opportunity.
- We have had baptisms at Suffolk Bible Baptist Church on two occasions with a total of three people being baptized. Please pray for those baptized to remain faithful.
- In addition to those baptized, we have welcomed to the membership of Suffolk Bible Baptist Church three other adults who have already been saved and baptized and are ‘re-enlisting’. Praise God for answered prayer for labourers.
- We have seen more than two dozen people come to salvation, not only through our family’s soulwinning efforts, but also through the soulwinning efforts of the people of Suffolk Bible Baptist Church. Please pray for their growth.
- On the 25th of January, the dear wife of the founding pastor of our home church stepped over into Glory. We will surely miss Ruth Heflin but are sure that the reunion she has had with her husband and many others now in Heaven has been sweet. She and her family have worked tirelessly to be sure that our freezer and pantry never wanted for food. Please pray for the entire Heflin family.
- On our way home from the home-going services for Mrs. Heflin, the transmission on our van went out. Pastors Kirchoff and Nettesheim both jumped to help out with a place to stay for the night and transportation and towing. We were able to get the van to a service center that was able to install a replacement transmission and get our van back to us inside of a week. (Thankfully all parts were covered under the warranty as we had replaced it only two years and 50K miles before.) Praise God that no one was endangered and our home and sending pastors and their families were SO GRACIOUS to help us.
- In regard to our housing; God has made provision for us again. Thank you to those who have been faithfully praying with us about this! We have just been given notification that we will be able to remain with our current housing arrangement for at least another year. This is a HUGE weight lifted and a wonderful display of God’s provision. Praise the Lord!
- We are thrilled to be about the Father’s business here in the Hampton Roads/Tidewater area. We have a very busy spring in store and I look forward to being able to share the highlights with you again soon…
These past two months have been a flurry of activity for us and our church: we celebrated our one year anniversary here and had 50 people in attendance on that Sunday; the children’s choir was and is a fantastic success and is scheduled to sing again on Christmas Day; at Thanksgiving time, we invited to church and gave gifts to every employee of the hotel where we meet for all of our church services (13 employees and family members visited and we are even now still seeing results from this!); a wonderful ladies’ meeting at the beginning of December in which many of our ladies were involved in its many facets. Throughout, of course, we have had all of our regular services as usual and attendances have been steady to strong! Thank you for your part in helping us to be a tool that God is using to change lives, grow people and build a church for His glory.
Thank you for your support and encouragement over this past year. We have received many blessings that are no doubt because of the prayers of some Godly people on our behalf. Thank you. Please continue to pray for us as we are work diligently to establish the Suffolk Bible Baptist Church as a lighthouse for souls in the Tidewater/Hampton Roads region.
Our journey toward church-planting that began long ago, but started to materialize four years ago with my dad, William (Bill) Logue, going to Heaven, has been realized more by us in this past year than ever before. Praise God for all of His blessings to us!
Some of the highlights of this year for us have been: the sale of our house in WV in which we came far closer to breaking-even than expected considering that market; the establishment of a full range of regular service times at church, SS, AM, PM, WED, SW; the salvation of over 50 souls through our family’ soulwinning efforts (and many others saved because of our church’s collective efforts); the steady growth of our church week by week both numerically as well as recognizable spiritual growth in the people of our church.
Our family considers that we are greatly blessed of God to have a group of family and friends such as you. We are so thrilled with the opportunity to be working for the LORD. That we get to do so on the behalf of so many of our friends is the joy of our lives. Truly, we have not had a more fulfilling year in our lives. What a JOY it is to serve!
Please keep praying for us. We have some exciting plans and expectations for this coming year, should Jesus tarry His return…
We are doing so well. Thank you so much for your prayers and support.
Our split Sunday school classes have been well received and to no-one’s surprise, are both growing. Our SS average has increased since the split by almost ten per Sunday!
Our second ladies’ meeting, held in September, was attended by thirteen ladies and teens and was received with great excitement. We coupled with it a baby shower and Mrs. Logue taught our ladies a lesson in hospitality and 4 families signed up to provide meals when the baby was born. (SBBC welcomed its first newborn on 15 October, Naomi Ruth.)
The children’s choir practice is going very well and they are scheduled to sing twice on Anniversary Sunday, the 20th of November. We have a special fellowship scheduled for that evening after church.
- We continue to see great numbers of our people showing up on Saturdays for soul-winning and many are learning and growing.
- Our family has witnessed the salvation of 14 in our personal work since our last update.
- A family of five, transferred here by the military, joined our church recently.
- We hosted Bro. Russell Anderson for one Saturday and Sunday and our people were taught about Soulwinning and Biblical business practices. This was a blessing to our people and came at no cost to our church! Praise God!
- Hurricane/Storm Matthew flooded many in our area but we were still able to have church and ended up with a record SS attendance on that day!
- Before each service I ask one of our men to join me and we spend a couple minutes in prayer for that service. This is one of my favourite times of all!
Your patience as you’ve awaited this update is appreciated. This month has seemed to be the busiest of our young ministry as our church prepared for our move, and then moved, and now is settling in to our new location very nicely. Thank you so much for your prayers, support and encouragement.
The move to our new location went smoothly, in answer to many prayers. To our knowledge there has not been one person who accidentally went to our old location, also an answer to prayer. We were blessed by a couple families from out of the area who came to help us on the Moving Day weekend for the finale of our efforts to pass out flyers announcing our move. On the first Sunday of our move we broke all previous attendance records for Sunday school and church (55 in attendance on Sunday morning). We had 12 first-time visitors attend that day! The new Wednesday evening Bible Study has been very well attended for which we are so glad. We are laying a Biblical foundation for our church as well as for the hearts, minds and lives of the people of Suffolk Bible Baptist Church.
In the month of September we are:
1. Going to split our Sunday school into two classes: Melissa will teach the 6th grade and below while I teach the youth and adults.
2. Going to begin working with the children on Wednesday evenings before the regular service to form a children’s choir. The faces of many of our young people begin to beam with happy smiles as I have announced this upcoming addition.
3. Going to host our second Ladies’ Meeting. There is already much excitement amoung our ladies.
Our family has seen 6 souls saved in personal soulwinning this past month. Thank you for your part in helping us to be here reaching the people of Suffolk, VA. Our church has had first-time visitors every Sunday, except two, since the beginning of May. (And on both of those Sundays we had second-timers.) Much spiritual growth is evident amoung our people.
Our monthly support is at 55%. Our current housing arrangement has allowed us to get by without the remainder of our needed support for the time being, however, we have not been able to set many funds aside to allow us to secure new housing in advance of when this agreement ends in April. So, we really need this to be increased dramatically ASAP.
It is absolutely fantastic (nearly unbelievable) all the great things that God is doing with and through and in spite of us. Our church has been experiencing growth in multiple ways…
In June, we at Suffolk Bible Baptist Church had our very first ladies meeting. Eleven ladies from our church attended. It was a great success and we heard from our ladies that they thoroughly enjoyed it.
Also in June, we had our very first youth activity. Melissa and I hosted the seven youths that attended as we went bowling and consumed pizza. I also challenged them to seek God in their youth, Ecclesiastes 12:1. It was a fun time for all.
At the beginning of July our family hosted our church folks at our home for a church-wide picnic in celebration of Independence Day. We had 35 people from our church attend. Wow!
The past four Sunday’s attendances have been steadily well above our average. During this time we saw our second highest AM attendance ever, as well as twice setting a new PM attendance record, all three of these events happened without any special push or promotion. At this time of year there is no feasible explanation why all the attendances would be up other than to bring glory to God. We are thrilled to be a useful tool in the Master’s hand.
A young man who began attending our church a couple months ago is evidencing great spiritual growth. He has faithfully been attending Saturday Soulwinning with us. He won his first soul to Christ recently, a coworker. The following Saturday he led three other people to open their hearts to Christ for salvation while out with our son Timothy. Pray that his zeal and knowledge will continue to grow proportionally and that any detrimental outside influences will be overcome.
On August 14 we will move our church meeting place from our original/current meeting place to a different one and will then also be able to begin midweek services. Please pray; for a smooth transition, for us to leave/lose no one, that we will have a ‘big’ day on the day of the move, and also for greater spiritual growth as we then increase our teaching/preaching times by 25%.
Since our last update our family has seen eleven people saved in personal soulwinning. Our family has also recently been taken on for support by one other church, as well as having received some one-time gifts from some churches and individuals. This is of GREAT help to us. Thank you!
May God bless each of you as you serve Him where you are called while we serve Him where we are called!
What a whirlwind has been this last month! But, Oh, what a good whirlwind it has been!!
We have gotten closure on our WV house. The closing happened quietly and without fanfare on 29 April 2016. We celebrated with ordered-out pizza, shared with missionary friends, The Andy Sharpeta Family, who had planned to be with us and help on our church’s ‘big day.’
Hallelujah! What a weight lifted!
Thank you so much to those of you who have prayed faithfully for this to come to pass. We ended up with a deficit of $5,110.48. As large an amount of money as that is (to me anyway), it really is greatly less than we had expected to have to pay, due to the sluggish recovery of the real estate values in that rural area, when we began the process of selling many months ago.
At Suffolk Bible Baptist Church growth and steady faithfulness has been seen throughout this month. We have seen the average attendance of each service increasing little by little. We had a Spring Attendance Program at the end of April and the beginning of May. During that three-week period our church had over twenty first-time visitors. What may be one of the most exciting things is that; two of our church folks that were saved in the past few months, went out soul-winning with us four weeks in a row and through their efforts a man and his two teen-aged youths came to visit on a Sunday morning and then have returned again once since. We’ve also had others from the church come soul-winning for their first time recently too.
A sweet lady in our church, Bettye, spent many hours the week of our ‘big day’ (probably 20-30 or more) calling well over fifty different households (many of them three or four times until she got an answer) encouraging and inviting people to be in attendance. I thank God for this dear gal. Though her physical condition limits her ability from going door to door often, her spirit has experienced no such boundary. She has been such a great encouragement and help to this young preacher.
A special thing that happened near the end of April is that our home church, Green Valley Baptist Church, had an all-time high attendance as they celebrated their 30th Anniversary. It is encouraging to hear of God’s working in that place. We dearly love those good folks and miss them much.
Our family has seen 11 people saved in personal soul-winning since the April update. Praise God! Please pray that these and the visitors that we’ve seen will come to church and continue and grow in the Lord, as well, pray that God will grant wisdom to help each of them with their specific needs.
Some things about which you and we prayed, and about which God has GREATLY answered!
- Praise God for the growth of His people!
- Praise God for the many souls saved!
- Praise God that the Suffolk Bible Baptist Church attendance program was greatly successful!
- Praise God for closing the deal with our house!
- Praise God for a measure of wisdom in dealing with His church!
PLEASE CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR US!! THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!!
God’s Timing is impeccable.
This month we made a trip to WV to our ‘old house’ to make some house inspector discovered repairs and adjustments in preparation for the upcoming closing. The closing is now moved up to 29 April. Wednesday night, after a wonderful revisit with all the folks at Green Valley Baptist Church, on our way back to the ‘old house,’ we stopped at the hardware store, (imagine that someone in our family tightened down a plumbing fitting, of which I had no extras, too tight), as I walked into the store accompanied by one child, one of the cashiers recognized our five-year-old son, Jared, and greeted us warmly. He had been in the same store the evening before, BUT WITH MY WIFE ALONE! She had only seen him that one other time EVER. I was impressed by her ‘people’ personality and I commented on it and complimented her on her great people skills. Melissa soon joined us (I think she was outside looking for wilted plants to barter for) and we gathered our few needed items and checked out with the same cashier. I gave her an invitation to church, better known as a gospel tract, and as she studied it I explained why we were in the area so far from home. I then pointed out that not only was the tract an invitation to church, but that it also showed one the Bible way to Heaven. Without any customers to distract us for ten minutes or so, and with Melissa and Jared warding off or entertaining the other store employees, I walked with her down the Romans Road. She was an exceptional listener. Just at Romans 10:13, a customer arrived to check out, probably the only other one in the store judging from the parking lot when we arrived (the devil’s timing for sure, thankfully he’s a defeated imitator). We had to leave off, though she wasn’t uninterested and had showed the most rapt attention I’ve seen in some time. She went to checking out the customer and we walked out. But, the holy Spirit was not yet finished. After that customer got done, I walked back in and was of course greeted with a ‘did you forget something’ look. I said, “No, I didn’t forget anything, but wanted to be sure you had opportunity to trust Christ alone for salvation.” With a quick glance to check for any oncoming customers, she nodded, said she’d love to, stepped out from behind the counter, walked over toward me, and waited expectantly. After a quick review to be certain we were back to where we left off, we both bowed our heads and all of the world seemed to fade away into the background as she humbly prayed aloud with me to ask Jesus to save her sin-cursed soul. I doubt that I will ever see Ty, her nickname, here on earth again, but as sure as one can be of another, I know I’ll see her for all of eternity. And the score of things that brought us to that exact place at that exact time were so many beyond our control, it was all because of HIS Timing! Hallelujah.
Although we’ve loved our property, and its situation was well suited to our purposes over this past decade, there was an indescribable and nearly unexplainable peace when driving away for what will likely be the last time! Nary a tear was shed by any. Of our children, I wonder if any have even given a second thought to the whole ordeal… To Melissa and I, that it will soon be sold seems almost surreal… Our thoughts and cares though are all toward what God has for us now and in the future. It is God’s hand of grace and mercy upon us no doubt.
Last month we asked you to help by praying with us about 6 specific items; wisdom, growth, souls, our first PM service, our house sale and van funds.
Wisdom; we’ve made some decisions to the best of our ability this month that afterwards we realized turned out better than we could have planned. That’s God answering your prayer for us to exercise wisdom. Thank you.
Growth and our first PM service; these have gone hand-in-hand as some of the folks have returned to our new evening services. It is exciting and humbling to see them taking steps toward a more Christ-like life. Some have even gone soul-winning with us on Saturdays.
Souls; our family has seen four souls saved in personal soul-winning since our last update three weeks ago.
Our house sale; this is progressing very smoothly and quickly. The appraisal was exactly as needed. Thank you so much for praying about this MAJOR need. Our realtor’s comment at one time this month was that it must certainly be something very noble to which we are aspiring because it is miraculous how things are working out for the sale to go through as they have been. I did and do give all the credit to God because of the prayers of His people on our behalf. We had our house on the market privately for many months before contracting with a licensed realtor, but God knew the perfect timing, His Timing.
Our van; has been running well and for this we are very thankful. A few folks gave extra towards this need. Thank you so much. If you are wanting to give toward our van’s repair cost you may do so by sending it as with any support through GBT.
My apologies, sorta, for my wordiness… But, we really do want you to feel like you are here with us. You are a such a VITAL part of our ministry whether you helped to form our character, taught us God’s Word, trained us to help people, support us financially, call or write or text us encouragement, or if you support us through prayer. Keep up the GOOD WORK! (or, as Jared would say, “You do good job.”)
Wow, it has already been two months since our last update! We’ve had some awesome answers to prayer. God has and is blessing us beyond our ability to fully describe. Thank you so much for praying. That you are here checking up on us is indeed, to us, one of the greatest answer to our prayers.
We finally got all the little things done at our WV house and placed it with a licensed realtor on the 3rd of March. We received an offer on the 11th of March. That offer is now a ratified contract and we are working through the process toward a closing in May. For this progress towards a sale we say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
We have seen souls saved in door to door soul-winning each week in the Suffolk area. On one Saturday in February, while soul-winning I had the privilege of leading a dear lady, Francine, and her 8 year-old niece to Christ at their front door. They have both faithfully attended Sunday school and church since that day. For these souls we say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
There is a wonderful group of not only churches but also some dear individuals who have been faithfully supporting us through the last many months. To those of you who have sent support to us through our sending church, Grace Baptist Temple, thank you. For you we say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
On Sunday, 14 February, during our AM service we had a celebration to recognize those folks from GBT that had helped our church since its inception, but who were about to return to their home church full time. We called it, “Give ‘em the Boot Sunday.” On that day we honoured Bro. Randy and Annette and their daughters Hannah and Grace as well as Bro. Ben and his fiancé, Amanda. Through the generosity of the good folks in our church, we were able to give each of them a giant boot filled with all sorts of goodies and snacks as well as some other small gifts. Also, a sweet lady from our church was able to help us to acquire for each of Bro. Ben and Bro. Randy, an official certificate of recognition from the City of Suffolk, signed by the Mayor, recognizing them for their sacrificial selflessness in giving to the people of Suffolk. For their service and the growth of our folks we say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
On the way back to Portsmouth one Friday in February, our van engine with 265,000+ miles finally gave up. We sought counsel and God’s direction on the matter and concluded that the best option for us was a remanufactured engine with a 3-year, 100,000-mile, nationwide warranty. We picked up our repaired van on the 14th of March. The final cost was over $8,000. There is still a deficit of funds that we need to replace ASAP. Please pray with us that God will help us to meet this need soon. Our transportation has really been very reliable. That we had a breakdown so close to home rather than many states away is no doubt the providence of God and His wonderful care. Thank you to those folks who were aware of the need and have already helped us. A huge thanks to Pastor and Mrs. Nettesheim who loaned us their personal van for a month while ours was in the repair shop. Even in troubles we find it easy to say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
The one thing about which I’m most excited is that we’ve finally reached an agreement with the manager of the Motel 6 where our church is meeting and we will be able to begin holding evening services in the same location on the 3rd of April! I believe that this will be one of the greatest contributors to the growth of our people. I say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
Over the past many months I’ve worked an abbreviated schedule in Northern Virginia, but today, I worked my last day with the electrical contractor that has faithfully employed me for nearly a decade. It was a bittersweet time as I said goodbye to some of the hardest working folks I’ve known. I pray that God will bless them in like kind as they have been an incalculable blessing to me, to my family, and to so many of my friends. For RCD, inc. Electrical Services, I say, “Praise the LORD!!!”
I hope that I’m sounding like a broken record. God has blessed us immensely. He deserves all the praise and the glory.
So many things have transpired since our update at the beginning of December 2015. Most importantly, we’ve seen 4 people saved in personal soulwinning.
We at Suffolk Bible Baptist Church are meeting in a hotel conference room on Sunday mornings for Sunday school and church. During the month of December we averaged over 30 people in attendance each Sunday morning. Praise the Lord, we saw no decrease in attendance around the holidays but rather just steady faithfulness and even a slight increase. In February we intend to begin a Sunday PM service.
During this month it’s been especially exciting to see some of the folks my wife invited to church a couple months ago continue to return to SS and church. Also, it was awesome to have first-time visitors to our church as a result of Saturday door-knocking. A beautiful family, Justin and Samantha and their two children, are one such example. Pray for their return and growth in Christ. We have had 17 first-time visitors to Sunday services since last update.
This month, for a couple days, as they passed through enroute to visit other family, we were able to entertain my brother and his family, Ben, Becca, Philip, Joyanna, and Ethan. Was a great time for us, and our church folks were helped as Ben taught our adult SS class how that they’ve stayed on topside through what seems to most to be insurmountable struggles. Two of their children have what we on earth tend to call a terminal illness (but in light of eternity we know it’s really only temporary). You can read their story if you’d like to at: Ben and Becca’s Blog.
The last day of 2015, we hosted an ‘open-house’ in our home for folks from our church. It was a wonderful, sweet time of fellowship. Melissa and I shared our salvation testimonies as did some others who attended. Melissa and children did a fantastic job of preparing a special activity book for each attending child, as well as spending many hours of preparation time in the kitchen to quite adequately feed us all. As we were about to part, to end the year, we all spent a season in prayer and then sang an hymn.
Last Sunday, 3 January, it was my privilege to receive ordination into the Gospel Ministry! (Conducted by Pastor Kirchoff and Pastor Nettesheim.) Our family was thrilled to have a special visit from my mom for this momentous occasion and she was able to stay with us for almost a whole week. It was extra special to us in that she is most normally, these days, anchored to her own home in NY where she cares for her mom who is in the throes of dementia. (Thank you to my siblings and their families who helped care for Grandma in mom’s southern absence.) On Saturday, as my mom went out soul-winning in Suffolk, with our family, I was once again reminded of the GREAT heritage that’s been given me, and my responsibility to pass it along intact to the next generation of Christians as well as our own children!
We have a great work to do!
(Or so it seems to us…)
We’ve been actively working for nearly a year to transition to full-time church planting. While our WV house sale has not yet taken place, we have been able to get moved to Portsmouth. To those of you who don’t already know, God provided us with a beautiful, more than adequate, house in Portsmouth in which to live until May 2017.
We had our last Sunday at our home church, Green Valley Baptist Church, in November. Since we first arrived there we have been filled with innumerable blessings, growth, and opportunities. We’ve been presented now though, with a challenge to step up to the work for which God has specially prepared us and as we embark upon this next ‘chapter’, we will sorely miss the wonderful fellowship of some of the sweetest people we know. On the 29th of November, GVBC and Pastor Tim Kirchoff presented me with a License to Preach. What an insurmountable responsibility! Thank you to the wonderful people of Green Vally Baptist Church!!! We love you!
We were at the church plant in Suffolk two weekends in November. On the two Saturdays that we were there, our family was instrumental in seeing five people saved while out door-to-door soulwinning. Also, five people from three different families that we’d invited, attended church on one Sunday, and some returned the next week!! What a blessing to see fruit for our labours so soon! We are excited about the GREAT things that we are sure that God has in store for our future here.
P.S. My official ordination into the Gospel Ministry is scheduled for 3 January 2015…
What a joy it is to be a child of ‘The King.”
Since our last update…
Our house not yet having sold, we have continued to travel with the intent to be a blessing to churches which share our burden and goal; that being, church-planting, both here in the USA and abroad. We continue to be greatly blessed by God, as we have traveled, with safety and provisions. Hallelujah!!
Our family was in a public place recently and we were approached by some very nicely dressed ladies who asked where we went to church. Mia, Talia and Zion had noticed and were impressed by the behavior that they had seen exhibited by our children. Praise God! We had a pleasant conversation with them and we all rejoiced that they had been saved previously. That evening they joined our family in the Missions Conference in which we were presenting our ministry. After the service, as Mia and I talked, she said to me that she had gotten saved at a Baptist church as a young person but that later had felt a need to join a Pentecostal church because that all of the Baptist that she had known had had no vision for reaching the people outside of their own church. What a sad indictment! The church at which we had just attended the missions service, was a vibrant, soul-winning, on-fire-for-God, fundamental, Baptist church with a fantastic vision for lost souls. Her comment to me about it was, “I’m so glad to see that the Baptists in this area are reaching out to a lost world with the Gospel!” Praise God! May it be said everywhere that this is read, and everywhere that we go, and everywhere that you go, that the Baptists are indeed, reaching the lost with the Gospel.
On our way to one out-of-state Sunday-morning meeting this month we left early in the morning, but still a few minutes later than we had hoped. In order to still arrive early for the scheduled service, I decided to forego the planned stop to pick up breakfast. As we neared our destination, we passed a disabled vehicle on the side of the road that had a couple people attempting to pour gasoline into the tank from a can. Seeing no other vehicles nearby and thinking that they may need further assistance, I pulled over and backed up to where they were stranded. Attempting to start their truck after giving it all the gas in the can revealed a battery run down after some hours of running the hazard flashers while they had walked to get fuel and a can. I turned our van around and we pulled out the jumper cables and spent a few minutes recharging their battery. Then, following the prompting of the holy Spirit, I invited them to salvation. The man hung his head, and the lady said, “I got saved a long time ago and I’ve been trying to get him to get saved…” After a few moments, I softly asked Tyron what was holding him back from receiving the free gift of God. I explained briefly the gospel and in a few minutes he said he was more than ready to be saved and wanted to wait no longer. There beside the interstate, Tyron bowed his head and sweetly placed all his trust for eternal life in the shed blood of Jesus Christ alone. What a great start to a Sunday, and we all better understood the words of Jesus to his bewildered disciples when they offered him food that he no longer needed after witnessing to the woman at the well, “I have meat to eat that ye know not of.”
We have, as yet, scheduled very few meetings or prospects of meetings throughout the month of December, so, if your church would be interested in us paying you a visit, please do not hesitate to contact us. If you would like to join us in the blessings of God upon our ministry, PLEASE PRAY for us! If you would like to support us financially as we plant a church in Suffolk, Virginia, please send support to our sending church.
THANK YOU TO THOSE WHO ARE PRAYING AND THOSE WHO HAVE ALREADY GIVEN!!!
In the month of September we were in a half a dozen churches. October promises to be even busier.
We were able to deliver another load of household belongings to our home in Portsmouth as we were passing through headed to North Carolina. We have been referring to this house as our ‘new house’ and our house for sale in WV as our ‘old house’, so, some of our younger children have come to ask when we say that we are headed home, “Are we going to our old house or our new house?” We all anxiously await the day we can be completely settled with our house in Virgina as our permanent home. There has been much interest so far, but please pray for our ‘old house’ to sell soon (in God’s timing, of course) and pray that it’s sale will bring enough so as to pay all sale fees and the mortgage associated without leaving us owing. Thank you!
At a church in Virginia at which we had been asked to present the work that God has laid on our hearts, the pastor and his family took our family out to lunch after the AM services.
In the course of conversation with our waitress, I discovered that she had been widowed thirteen years before when her husband had died from cancer. I was able to identify with her in that my dad had died from cancer just three years ago. She said she hoped to see her husband again someday. I was able to show her what God has provided as the only way for any of us to see our loved ones again in Heaven. What an awesome privilege and responsibility to lead our sweet 67 year old waitress to Jesus at our lunch table with the pastor and both our families silently praying and many other restaurant patrons looking on. Praise God for the stirring of the Holy Ghost in the hearts of the unsaved. Please pray that we would always be submitted to His leading.
One of the most exciting things, to us, that happened in the month of September is as follows…
Our young son Jared has been asking questions for many months about salvation but hasn’t seemed to quite grasp it up until now. One Wednesday night after we had returned home to our ‘old house’ from church and all had gone to bed, Jared came into our bedroom and asked if I would show him how to be saved. This I did once again, and then invited him in his own words to ask Jesus for salvation. This time he was ready! He prayed one of the sweetest, simplest sinners prayers I’ve ever heard… Glory to God!! Since then he has asked about many people we meet, people we already know and certainly people of which we hear of their death, “Are/were they saved?” He’s already soul-conscious! Praise God for an unspeakable blessing!