Dear Family and Friends:
A verse that has impressed me in the past but has become more real in recent months is Psalm 61:2 “…when my heart is overwhelmed: lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” Many things can cause being overwhelmed: fear, a loss, the news, a personal hardship… Our response to being overwhelmed can either lead to multiplying fear or to peace from hiding behind God. It is from the place of God’s peace we can say, “The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower (Psalm 18:2).”
Right before a recent Wednesday evening service, Paul stepped outside to greet people listening from their cars. A lady and her son were in their van and motioned Paul over. Ida has come to church periodically for years and her son Cyrus (now in his early 20s) has come since he was young. Cyrus had concerns about assurance of salvation. Paul sensed he might not be saved. Cyrus had a Bible and so Paul took him through several verses in Romans and John. Meanwhile, Ida wrote down the references and indicated they would look at the verses again later. For several years Cyrus has had attitudes of hardness and disinterest and became involved in some dark things. This time though he was different: a tender heart, openness, and expressing a desire to be right with God. When they reached Roman 10:13, Paul asked Cyrus if he would like to do what the verse said. Cyrus said he would. After Paul prayed, he asked Cyrus if he would like to pray too. Cyrus said he just did. Please pray for Cyrus. While God was definitely working in his heart, he seemed to lack assurance or complete understanding. Also, please pray they would be faithful in coming to church.
We are thankful for the church people who have faithfully come during the last few months. Even though some stay in their cars or listen at home, it is encouraging to see their desire to hear God’s Word. Kat, a lady who is visiting the area has been coming every service. Please pray for her salvation. She listens attentively and we have had some good talks with her, but she seems a bit confused on salvation. Kat and Ida, just last week, went with Mrs. Messick to the ladies retreat at West Branch. Pray for Simon who just got out of jail. Pray for Markina (new Christian who needs to grow and make some right choices).
This month we were working on a song to sing as a family. The song we sang speaks of heaven and the reunion we will have with the Lord Jesus and saved loved ones. As we sang, Hannah, who is now five, said, “I want to get saved right now. I’ve been thinking about it all day and I want to get saved.” We immediately took the opportunity to talk with her and explain what salvation means. Then without any guidance on what to pray, Hannah prayed a simple prayer of faith.
Please pray for Paul’s Mom. She has been fighting leukemia for over a year and has become very weak. As we send this she is back in the hospital. Paul is thankful for a godly mother who is an example of loving God with all her heart.
With fewer services and less time with the people we have had more time to catch up on some work around church. Paul built a new sign which will hopefully draw people in. The old sign was falling apart
due to the weather and hot sun. The new sign is designed to be easily repainted and allows for changing service times as needed. While installing the new sign, a Roman Catholic man
(John) walked by. We encouraged him with the thought that salvation is a gift that Jesus gives. Please pray for John and for future opportunities to talk with him.
Once again, we are thankful for each of you. Thank you for faithfully praying for the ministry here, for giving sacrificially, and for sending thoughtful notes.
- God at work in people’s hearts: Cyrus, Ida, Kat, Hannah, and others
- People still faithful even though there are many excuses to stop coming
- Andrew continues to develop: pushing up on his hands and knees Prayer Requests:
- Another couple to join us in the ministry here
- Salvation and spiritual protection for our children
- Native American adults and children to be saved and follow Jesus
- For several church people to choose to be faithful and come to church
Wisdom with the modular building
All for Jesus,
Paul and Naomi Sondergaard
Ruthanne, Nathan, Hannah, Aletheia, and Andrew