On July 4th, we celebrate a wonderful event, the establishing of our nation, a nation dedicated to freedom. To achieve that freedom over 23,000 colonists died. Many others lost their homes and fortunes. On September 2, 1945, World War 2 officially ended, freeing the world from the threat of Nazi and Japanese domination. That freedom cost over 417,000 United States soldier’s lives. Freedom has a tremendous price! We owe a debt we can never repay to those who purchased our freedom with their lives!
Jesus told us in John 8:34-36 that He could give us “eternal” freedom. The Bible tells us that we are all slaves to sin, which separates us from God and ultimately destroys our lives for eternity in hell. He said if He, God-the-Son, would set us free, we would be free forever! But what was the cost of that freedom? Would God just close His eyes to our sin and rebellion?
Because God is both loving and just, the penalty for our sin had to be paid to win our freedom. This meant His only Son, Jesus, must leave His heavenly throne and come to earth as a man. He would experience the same temptations and struggles each of us face, yet without sinning. Therefore, He could take the place of you and I, and pay the penalty for our sin with His blood. His resurrection proved that the justice of God was satisfied and we don’t have to live in bondage to sin any longer. Jesus’ freedom accomplishes something that even our bravest freedom-fighters couldn’t, it lasts forever! Have you entered into that freedom? If not, will you turn to Him now?
June Happenings: May ended with two wonderful services in Pitkin, CO. The attendance was smaller than usual due to the virus. Our service at Tin Cup, June 7, was cancelled due to virus concerns but we’re scheduled to hold two services there at the end of the summer. I recorded 2 devotionals for our local radio station which replays them throughout the year (Please pray the Lord will use them). We helped with two funerals, and conducted worship services by video as well as in the parking lot of a local hardware store. In addition, we were able to send 50 Police New Testaments to a church in Michigan to be distributed to their local sheriff’s department. A special highlight was listening to Tony, our retired pharmacist, preach for our Saturday Night Worship service. Tony has been studying theology with us in our West Elk Bible Institute. He is a great example of someone who never quits learning and serving our Lord!
Upcoming: Lord willing, I will conduct a Celebration of Life in Denver for Kam Cranor, a godly wife and mother (7/9), speak at a men’s retreat in Westcliff, CO (7/10-11), (our Cattleman’s Days rodeo has been rescheduled so that service will be postponed as well). In August, Melva and I hope to take some time away, and upon our return hold services in Tin Cup (8/30, 9/6). In November (11/15) we are scheduled in Josephine TX near Dallas and possibly in Guthrie OK. Please pray for us as we share God’s glorious gospel!
Finances: Recently, a pastor emailed me. He noted that most ministries like ours have to continually ask for financial support. “But yours”, he noted, “seem to focus more on giving than receiving”. I responded that we felt it was a wonderful privilege to be a channel of God’s blessings. Each of you have a part in every New Testament that goes out and every message of salvation we share through your prayers and support!
“The generous man will be prosperous, and he who waters will himself be watered.”. Proverbs 11:25.
“Alumni Missionaries”: One of our alumni missionaries, Cisco, just went through a major earthquake in southern Mexico. He and his family are alright and appreciate your prayers. Cisco mentioned he had been concerned their support would drop during the pandemic. Just the opposite happened with Christians being even more generous! Corey and Tiffany are coming home on furlough from the Rift Valley Academy in Kenya and would appreciate your prayers as they spend time with family and hopefully get to visit supporters. Rich and Shelba are serving as assistant pastor in St Louis and have really encouraged their church in evangelism and church growth! Diane, inner-city Jackson MS-Child Evangelism Fellowship, had a rough month with pneumonia and the virus. Please join us in prayer for Diane.
Family: Tim, Sara and Elizabeth are doing well with Sara in her 6th month of pregnancy. Please pray for a healthy baby and mom. Steve, Annie, Samuel and Abigail are heading this way to spend a month out of LA! Nick, Rebekah and Kailani are doing well in Edwards, CO and appreciate your prayers for their health and that of their restaurant employees. Stephen, Joy, Hannah and Bethan in Scotland are staying busy with school online and serving the Lord locally. Our family really appreciates your faithful prayers!
Prayer Requests: Please pray for the Holy Spirit’s anointing as we share the wonders of His love. For good health for our family and our missionaries. For Sara and incoming baby girl. For the Lord’s chosen helpers to assist us and for a more permanent location for our Bible Institute. Each month we are supported by wonderful churches around the country. This month, we would ask you to pray for Abell Community Church and Pastor Montie Campbell as they seek to reach folks in a rural area near Guthrie OK.
Thank you!!!! “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”
Rick and Melva Barton
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Rick Barton Ministires