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Monday, June 13, 2016

Just a Trip to see a Few Friends

ThroughoIMG_0372aut our lives, we are touched by many people who help us encourage us in our walk with the Lord. Some are recent and some are friends of long ago. Mels Carbonell always sends me a little note that says, "Be Encouraged". Simple, but powerful. My emails are designed to encourage. I pray they are. Betty and I just recently rode around to not only see how some are doing but what they are doing. Each one was a great encouragement to us.
Rick DeJesus has a beautiful home on the top of a mountain in North Carolina. Rick and his wife Sharolyn are both alumni of Florida Bible College. You talk about "Bed and Breakfast", this was wonderful. I also met her brother. Do pray for Sharolyn who is having some health issues. Rick brought many to Florida camp and sent many students to FBC.
When I went to Minnesota back in 1969, I led many to the Lord. Two were Clint Smith (left of his wife Judy) and his sister, Karen (middle). We wanted to encourage Karen who has serious terminal cancer problems. She was so full of joy and excitement knowing that she would soon meet the Lord. She encouraged us to stay faithful. What a beautiful testimony.
IMG_0396a Ben Darlington has been like a piece of granite since leaving Florida Bible College. We wIMG_0397aent into Indian Bible Camps together in 1968. Benny could make a piano dance while Lilly (his wife) would sing. Ben has been teaching for over 40 years. Two weeks ago I spoke in their school chapel with 4 trusting the Lord. Still going strong. And yes, he still works on cars.
It was great to visit with Wayne Porter (right) who is still working in the ministry that was started by his brother, Bruce Porter, down in Islamorada, Florida. He was excited to be working in the church and the Christian school.
My good buddy, IMG_0414aDr. Scudder, is settling down to his semi-retired life down in Key Largo. He is a Florida Bible College graduate who has been used by the Lord to build a great ministry in Lake Zurich, Ill. The Quentin Road Baptist Church is also home to Jim_Scudder_and_Pastor_Arnold_baptizing_in_JordanDayspring Bible College.
His son, Jim Scudder, has been raised up to continue this great ministry. This is young Jim and me baptizing in the Jordan River. I am looking forward to speaking at the coming "Grace Conference" on July 7-8 in Chicago. This is an experience for everybody to enjoy; great messages, music, fellowship and food. Call Jane at 847-438-4494 x 1040
Do you remember Mike Floyd from FBC? He probably worked with Dr. Scudder for over 35 yIMG_0415aears. This is a picture of his son, Matt, with his family. He started a new church in South Florida on May 29th. Pray for Matt and his family.IMG_0434a
David and Lisa Cannon  both graduated from Colorado Bible College. He is the pastor of Grace Bible Church in Palm Bay Fla.
Does this look like a preacher to you? Betty said that when she dies I can get me one. Have you seen a lot of old men in their 90s riding a motorcycle?
We stopped at the HeIMG_0431aritage Baptist Church for an evening service in Titusville and was totally surprised to see that Mike Eccleston from FBC IMG_0443awas the pastor. It's great to see many of our alumni staying true to the gospel and still running well.
IMG_0447aI have visited with Jerry Lloyd many times. Before we headed back home to Tampa, we had some great Mexican food in St. Cloud, Fla. It's a joy to see what others are experiencing in the ministry.
We can't always wear a smiley face due to the fact that many times we face disappointments, despair and death to our visions. The older we get, the more we sit in judgment on our ministry and personal achievements. We must be careful not to exalt or humiliate ourselves. Just seek to be faithful where you are, doing what you can, with what you have for the glory of the Lord.  Remember what Paul said in 1 Cor. 4:5,

"Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God."

Before we seek to produce new soldiers for the firing line, we should endeavor to support those who have been in the work for many years with love, encouragement and understanding. Pray for those you know. Take no one's faithfulness for granted. Be nice to everyone because everyone is having a rough time. Let's run well and finish well.

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