October 2013 Letter from Steve & Sherry

Dear Praying Friends and Ministry Partners,

  Romans 10:14-15 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
  We have wrapped up a great summer of ministry on the Hualapai Indian Reservation here in Northwestern Arizona. Our home church youth group came out to help us with backyard Bible club and VBS early in July. The girls in the group taught the Bible clubs each morning while the boys helped us paint the church. They also put in some fruit and nut trees at our house. We are looking forward to many great harvest in years to come. The VBS was well attended and two young people accepted Christ as Savior!
  We want to clear up any lingering misunderstandings regarding the home-going of Dustin De Ford. Dusting was one of the 19 firefighters lost in the devastating fire near Prescott, AZ. His family are friends of ours and there was much confusion because Dustin’s dad, Stephen, is a Baptist pastor in Montana. Many thought we had lost our son in the fire. Please, continue to pray with us for the Stephen De Ford family in the loss of their son.
  In August, we attended our annual IBIMI conference. This year Brother Gary Messick hosted the meeting at the work in Verde Valley, AZ. It seemed God had a special meeting planned for us as circumstances prevented most of our plans from happening. We were encouraged by many of our men to continue for the Lord in the ministries in which He has placed us. God also brought Brother Garry Locklear and his wife Sheril to visit with us. The Locklears are Lumbee Indians from Fairview, NC and travel all over the US supporting Indian missions through preaching, building, and a ministry of encouragement to missionaries. They were a blessing to our entire mission family! Sherry and I also celebrated our 25th anniversary. The mission family surprised us with a beautiful cake and many cards. A couple of weeks later, Paul and Betty Hiscock were with us for a crash course on music! They brought our a Christmas program for our church to begin working on and walked us through it step by step. We loved our time of fellowship with them. And look forward to their next trip west!
  September brought us back to the beginning of another year of home school co-op. I also drove to Pensacola, FL to take our son Immanuel to college. Sherry had a hard time letting him go, but Manny is adjusting very well to college life.
  We did have the sad duty of removing one of our families from the membership roll. Please keep Danny and Ruth in your prayers. Satan has gotten a hold of this couple and is trying very hard to destroy them. They had been members of our co-op as well, so their children are back in public school. We are grieving over this family and pray they return to us quickly.
  Now, we look forward to fall and all the ministry opportunities that await this wonderful time of year. Thank you for your continued prayers and support of this ministry. We are truly grateful for your part in the Lord’s work among the Hualapai!
For God’s Glory,
The Steve De Ford family
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June 2013 Update from the Grammer’s

June 2013

Dear Friends in Christ,

 

We are diligently preparing for this summer’s VBS program and it’s a pleasure to watch God working to meet each of the needs and workers for each position that needs filling. Our program this year is “Kingdom Chronicles”. It is a study of the battle between the Kingdom of Darkness and the Kingdom of Light and how we need to put on the armor of God and prepare for battle. Many of our people are very aware of this battle in their homes and personal lives and each battle differs as Satan attacks our weaknesses. We pray for them in their trials and our goal is to train them in God’s Word, which is His armor.

 

2 of our families are talking about removing their children from the public education system and starting home-schooling this coming fall. They hope to meet at the church and work together in this endeavor. This is a new challenge for them and they are looking at various curriculum and trying to prepare themselves. Please pray with us for these two families regarding what materials to use, how to schedule their days, how to adjust their budgets to include the added expenses… but especially how to encourage their children to live lives that are God-honoring.

 

We had 4 teen girls go to Christian camp this past week and they all seemed to enjoy themselves and have shared how God has challenged them in their personal lives. We have some jr. campers that are anticipating their turn at a week of camp that is planned the week just prior to our VBS. Pray for their safety and for God to work in their hearts as He sees the needs.

 

The plan is for Sam to have some teeth again this coming week. Pray that they will be a good fit. We are thankful that God has provided a dentist that is willing to take payments to pay for this final step. He has proven Himself so faithful-over and over again.

 

Thank you for your prayers each month, as well as the financial help you send to enable us to continue in this ministry.

 

In Christ,

Sam & Janet

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Velduis May 2013 Prayer Letter

Dear Family and Friends in Christ,

The last few months’ opportunities and pleas for salvation or growth were so convicting one can only marvel and grieve as Jeremiah did at how a whole nation could “…reject the word of the Lord…and provoke [him] to anger with their graven images, and with strange vanities” (Jeremiah 8:9, 19)

Yet this was the response as a whole to the most impassioned, Biblical invitations to true salvation and discipleship heard at our Native tent meeting and at Heritage and Maranatha Baptist’s revivals January through March, 2013.

The medicine man promises the “…peace, peace; when there is no peace”, but “…they have provoked [God] to anger with their graven images and strange vanities” (Jeremiah 8:11, 19). Cocopah traditions that promise “cleansing” through the sweat lodge or “Indian power” through the eagle or gourd dances, are as destructive a trust as faith in their annual casino/conference center income.

February profit-sharing checks were largely squandered on cars, entertainment, trips, and ungodly activities. None of four professing Christians gave God so much as a tithe. Others were distracted from our meetings, ending up hospitalized, fleeing the law, or destitute even of electricity. Harry’s unreached aunt perished in a careless car wreck.

Alex, Angelina, Ashley, Clarissa, Daren, Dillon, Harry, Hilda, Jesse, Julia, Kelsie, Matthew, Millie, Omar, Robert, Roxanna, and Wanda are among those enslaved by immorality, substance abuse, tradition, or violence. Some of these are also awaiting trial in our Yuma county detention center.

PRAY for true repentance and saving faith in our Lord for Cocopah on our reservations like we’ve in non-Indians in our detention center the past year.

How we BLESS our Lord for Eric, Mark, Ricky, Hubetha, and Janelle’s conversions in detention and growth thereafter through Bible studies at home, the detention center, or in state prison. PRAY as much for each person’s deliverance from the physical and emotional ravages of years of substance abuse as you do for their growth. Mark’s witness in detention saw Ricky saved months ago, Chris converted April 26, and Rudy professing faith in our Lord Jesus Christ May 1, 2013.

PRAY for wisdom and strength juggling the demands of two or three days a week prison ministries with the challenge of discipling Cocopah who have moved far away. Tri-weekly services, and at least three days a week vehicle, visitation, cactus, and family responsibilities, make heartfelt timely correspondence an almost unrealistic goal.

On the other hand, each obstacle to winning the lost reminds us of the incalculable value of the individual soul as well as of our Lord’s promised provisions for victory over “… the rulers of darkness…in high places” (Ephesians 6:12). Your prayers and support are more critical to breaking the adversary’s death grip on natives than we will know in this world.

Only our Lord could have overcome the tribal Chairwoman’s opposition to our March 11 -16 tent meeting and blessed with perfect weather, safety, and twelve Native or non-Indian preachers. The McIntyres from New York State and the Hendersons former missionaries to the Crow nation, helped us make the most of your support. Heritage, Maranatha, and True Vine Baptist churches’ help with housing, meals, music, and fuel unified all labors into a successful whole.

“Cocopah Revival” banners close to the tribal sweat lodge “Gathering Grounds” sign gave Cocopah a clear alternative to pagan creature worship (Romans 1:25). Four Gospel messages per day echoed from Brother Jason’s improvised sound system to within yards of the “Gathering Grounds” and to more homes than ever.

Bless the Lord for His encouragement of church people and visitors in attendance, but PRAY for eventual repentance and saving faith in the lost who heard the word. P.T.L. for the greater number of visitors and nominal “believers” who also heard similar gospel messages and challenges to growth at the Resurrection Day service, March 31 or the Ladies’ Bible study and craft day May 4.

How almost unbelievable and appreciated the Lord’s additional provisions were for tires and a fuel pump for our bus as well as for sandstorm repairs, property taxes, Lydia’s Bible college, Andrew R and Silas’ college, and major Dental work in Mexico for three of us. May our Lord richly bless you as you thank Him for His seen and unseen work as you PRAY for summer’s opportunities.

PRAISES:

· The many nominal, saved, or unsaved Cocopah exposed to the gospel and biblical precepts.

· Spiritual well-being and fair hearings and sentences for Claude, Eric, Hubetha, Janelle, and Mark.

· Jolie, Julia, and Wanda’s first steps of repentance at church or our local mission.

· Reconnection with Daren, Valerye, and the Thomas clan through the ladies craft day and other natives.

· Our daughter Lydia’s improved lung function test May 8 and college graduation May 11, 2013

· Lori’s successful heart valve replacement early May.

· Relocation and return of Lori’s children to services.

PETITIONS:

· Repentance and deliverance of almost all young adults from substance abuse and immorality.

· Return of the Golding, Sanchez, Sereno, and Twist young people to our Lord and church.

· Lasting Fruit to God’s glory through Neighborhood Bible Time, June 16-21 2013.

· Conversions and growth of young people through Calvary Navajo Youth Camp, July 22-27 2013.

· Spiritual and physical needs of saved and unsaved Betty and Millie, elderly ladies battling heart failure and arthritis.

· Alex, Arturo, Ashley, Clarissa, Delsie, Joshua, Karen, Kelsie, Laura, Loren, and Roxanna’s cold or lost states.

· Final preparations of vehicles and workers for summer ministries and weather.

 

Gratefully yours in Christ,

Michael, Dawn, Lydia, and Silas Veldhuis

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May Newsletter Steve DeFord

Dear Friends,

 

Micah 6:8b What doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?

 

The words of Joseph before Pharaoh “It is not in me.” is our theme for 2013 at Hualapai Baptist Church. Together with the words of Micah we have been challenged to humble ourselves before God every moment of every day. God has been blessing this attitude in His people.

 

April was a great month especially for our youth. Eight of our teens attended the annual youth conference at West Coast Baptist College in Lancaster, CA. This conference is a highlight for them each year. The preaching was powerful and the breakout sessions were a great help to Steve and our Youth Leader who accompanied the teens to California. Please remember to pray for our youth. We are thankful that our two homeschool Seniors have been accepted to Christian college for the fall. Chastity will be attending West Coast, and our son, Manny, has been accepted to Pensacola Christian College.

 

Our ladies attended a one-day ladies retreat in Flagstaff, AZ. They came back with testimonies of how God used the services in their personal lives. We do not take for granted the resources we have in Bible colleges and camps. These ministries are a huge help in the church planting ministry to which the LORD has called us.

 

Our sending church in Indianapolis flew Sherry in to speak at their annual Ladies’ Conference. The theme was “Bringing every thought into captivity”. While in Indianapolis Sherry was also able to see her parents who drove over from Ohio. Before coming home, she was excited to go to North Carolina and visit with our daughter, Jackie, and her family including our little grandson, Nathan! It was a great trip for her, but Steve and the kids were very eager for her to get back home.

 

Our youngest son, Joshua, turned 16 on the fifteenth. Mom and Dad are trying to adjust to our “baby” driving. We are most blessed to have the family and ministry God has given. We truly are thankful for His goodness and humbled before our great God.

 

Do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with thy God! Thank you for your prayers and support.

 

For God’s Glory,

The Steve De Ford family

 

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Grammer’s April Newsletter

 
April 2013
 
Dear Friends in Christ,
 
The calendar says it’s spring!? But it’s a bit questionable. We had 12 degrees one night and then it was in the 60’s and no need for a jacket when walking outside. What fun guessing what to wear each day.
 
Last Sunday we had another baptism. A SS teacher used Easter Sunday to once again explain what it meant to accept Christ’s gift of salvation. At the end of class, she told her students to come talk with her if they had any questions or wanted to be saved. Her own son responded and the following day, in their home, she led her son to Christ! He seems to be quite aware of what happened and wanted to be baptized. What a privilege for any parent-especially one that has brought up his name for prayer for the past couple of years!
 
We have recently had new prayer cards printed and have sent a few to each supporting church. If you didn’t get one, but want one, please send us a note. Also let us know if you need more for your church.
 
Sam has completed his 9th oral surgery and presently has no bottom teeth. The surgeon has told him not to return until he’s had his dentures and then just for a check-up! We are so thankful that he still has good speech with only an occasional lisp for his “sh’s”. He also doesn’t have much swelling or discoloring so is still able to preach and teach.
 
God is good and we’re thankful that He never leaves or forsakes us. God provided a surgeon who gave us a 40% discount-but still the cost to this point was over $4,000. Just over $3,000 was given to help us with this financial need! Thank you to each of you that have helped us. We don’t know just what the dentures will cost but confident that God will continue to keep His promise to supply all our needs. Thank you so much to each of you who have been used by God in supplying. We are looking forward to the end of this “journey”.
 
We are very aware of your part in our ministry and thank you for both your prayers and your gifts.
 
In Christ,
Sam & Janet
  

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March-April Newsletter Brian Shannon

 

Dear Supporting Church Families & Friends,

 

“…they said unto them, Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen:…” Luke 24:5-6

 
Hallelujah! He’s alive! I’m so thankful to be serving a living God! I pray we celebrate His
resurrection every day by submitting ourselves to His will. We are thankful for the great time He
gave us as we celebrated with our church families here during the special resurrection celebration
time!
 

Thank you for your prayers for Louann as she recovered from her surgery. We are very thankful for
the Lord’s healing! She is feeling much better now!
 
We were blessed with several visitors during the past two months, for whom we are very grateful.
These visitors included dear friend and supporting pastor Terry Bunch and his family from East TN,
who came and preached (and sang) in both churches; a young lady, Emylee Parks, from a supporting
church near Pittsburgh, PA, came out for a week and took part in teaching the children at each service, serving in the ministry, etc…; the Waddells, another family from the same church near Pittsburgh stopped by for a visit; and the Billy Ford family from East TN also came out on a survey trip, seeking the Lord’s will for their lives as they surrender to full time mission work for Him! (Please pray for this dear family as they soon begin the deputation process.) We are very thankful for those the Lord sent our way over the past few months, with just the encouragement each of our family needed!

 

We are thankful that Lilly was blessed to attend a regional youth conference in Tucson, and was also
blessed to travel to the West Coast Baptist College youth conference with another church family that’s part of our mission board, Pastor Steve Deford! We are thankful for good friends willing to take her, and for the Lord making provision for her to attend these great meetings. Please pray for Lilly, as she desires to serve the Lord with her life! I’m weary of seeing teenagers, with so much potential, waste their lives on “riotous living.” I’m thankful for Lilly, and pray the Lord will use her greatly as she yields her life to Him!

 

We were blessed with two wonderful church trips during the past month. 3 men from the reservation

churches, along with 6 from sister churches, were able to hike down into the Grand Canyon for a four

day camping “men’s retreat.” What a great time of seeing the sights and fellowshipping together!

We were then blessed to take a group of 23 from both churches here on a 3 day Grand Canyon &

Sedona trip. For many, this was their first vacation! We enjoyed each other’s company and seeing

the wonderful sights of our Lord’s creation!

 

April brought some strong winds that blew the roof off of the reservation church in Ak-Chin, and

damaged the roof of the Sunday school building as well! We are thankful for the Lord’s protection

during this time, and that the damage wasn’t as bad as could have been. We are also thankful for

insurance, and a new roof has been put on the building now! God always knows just what we need,

and when!

 

A current study of the 10 commandments led us recently through the commandment concerning

adultery. Within a week of hearing this message, a young couple in Ak-Chin who have both been

saved surrendered to the Lord’s command and were married! We praise God for their obedience to

His Word and their desire to grow and serve him! Please pray for this young couple and their infant

son as they begin pursuing a Christian home!

 

Rebecca celebrated her 8th birthday this past month! Wow, they grow up so quickly. Time is fleeting,

we must love and serve while we can! The rest of the family here at home is doing good. Everyone

eagerly anticipates the school year ending in May! Thank you for your continued prayers for our

family and the ministry and people here in Southern AZ!

 

Working together with you for HIM,

Brian & Louann Shannon & family

 

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