What are you grateful for? Family, friends, turkey? When’s the last time you and I sat down and made a list of at least 10 things we’re grateful for; and then paused in prayer thanking God for each one of them? Melva and I really enjoy Thanksgiving because it helps us remember just how blessed we are. It’s easy, isn’t it, to get caught up in immediate concerns which takes our hearts away from realizing our blessings.
True Confession: Several years ago, I realized how ungrateful I can be. I asked the Lord to help me develop an “attitude of gratitude”. To give thanks in and for all things (1 Thessalonians 5:18, Ephesians 5:20), even when they involve trials and disappointments. Of course, the only way I can do this is to trust that God has a purpose in these things and will cause them to work together for my good (Romans 8:28).
One of the things Melva and I are grateful for is each of you who pray for us!
October happenings: On October 1, Melva and I had the privilege of leading a worship service at the Youth With A Mission (YWAM) base an hour away from us. YWAM disciples and equips young men and women for Christian service. October 7th, we had the privilege of sharing at Rocky Mountain Chapel near Cripple Creek, CO. Melva and I have been sharing at Rocky Mountain and its predecessor (Open Air Chapel) for over 30 years. What a blessing to join in worship with old and new friends! One of our “alumni” attends the church and serves as EMS medical coordinator for several nearby towns. Donna requested fire and EMS New Testaments/devotionals to distribute to her co-workers. Following Cripple Creek, we headed to Greely, CO. On the way we stopped at a Walgreens where the manager turned out to be a new believer.
The next morning, we were on our way to Estes Park, CO where 150 “Heroes of FCA” (Fellowship of Christian Athletes) gathered. These men and women were instrumental in the early days of FCA and included several college Hall of Fame coaches, former pro athletes and a host of coaches and families who helped establish this great ministry. Melva and I were privileged to back up Ray Hildebrand, FCA’s longtime song leader. Ray reached out to me shortly after I gave my life to Jesus and helped establish me as a worship leader. What a blessing to join these “heroes”!
Leaving Estes Park, we returned to Gunnison where we led our Saturday Night service and visited hospice patients. Then it was off to Las Vegas for Melva’s Kauai High School reunion where we were able to connect with three of Melva’s classmates who have come to the Savior and share with at least one non-believer!
Finally, we were able to drive to Los Angeles to see our new granddaughter Elizabeth! As you may remember, our son Tim and wife Sara had lost a child almost two years ago. This time the Lord miraculously brought little Elizabeth into our family. What a cutie! We are sooooo grateful to Jesus and to each of you who prayed for her.
New Testaments: During October we received requests for fire and police New Testaments and devotionals from fire chaplains in Colorado, Chicago, and Canada. What a blessing to be able to send these out at no cost to 1st Responders. You are our co-laborers in all these ministries!
Family: Steve and Annie, also living in the Los Angeles area, are doing a great job raising 18-month-old Samuel. What a joy to see him grow up! Stephen, Joy, Hannah and Bethan in Scotland are staying busy with the girls in school and Stephen preaching somewhere in the UK almost every weekend. Recently, he was invited to preach in the church where Charles Spurgeon received Christ! Rebekah and Nick are taking their “between seasons” break from their restaurant and heading to Hawaii. Melva and I continue to enjoy our 47th year of marriage and growing in our love each day!
Upcoming: October 26 we returned from Los Angeles and leave for MO and OK the 28th. After a two day stop in Branson, MO to visit past members of our ministry, we head to Central Baptist Church near Crescent, OK. We’ve never been to this church before and are excited to share God’s word with new friends. We return on November 10 to resume our normal ministry opportunities locally. On Thursday November 15 I’ve been asked to share again on the “Lord’s Roundtable”, a live, national radio program reaching out primarily to truckers. Please pray for the Lord to speak to me and through me!
Finances: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning, great is Thy faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23) The Lord continues to provide abundantly through your prayers and support! Thank you for standing with us!
Prayer requests: Please pray for the anointing of the Holy Spirit as we share the Good News of Jesus locally and around the country. Please pray for continued healing for little Elizabeth as well as Owen Pennington, the son of Christian workers Daniel and Krista. Owen has had a difficult 8 months and still needs full recovery. For each of our family that we will turn our hearts to Jesus daily and follow Him. For God to raise up the co-workers He has prepared for us and the right location to establish our Bible Institute. For the Lord to use each of the thousands of fire, police, cowboy and motorcycle New Testaments, you have helped us send out!
We thank our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for each of you! May God bless you and may you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Rick and Melva Barton
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Rick Barton Ministires