The Need for Good Input

The Need for Good Input

I suspect that it may be the same for you as for me – that I sense an increased need for good, positive, clarifying, upbuilding input in the wake of all the outrageous, vile, crazy, brutal and bloody news reports of these past few years – right? So here are some things that are helping me cope:

Since we sold our lighting business nearly four years ago, I’m not having as much person to person contact with other human beings as I had for many years – but the positive side of this is that I’m able to have more time with Della than in any other season of our married life. She walks with a cane now and I am trying to be close by much of the time to protect her from falling again. Also, it’s so good that our son, Randy and family, only live three miles away, our daughter, Sandy and family, are only two miles from our home, and our very good friends, Jim and Kim Scott, only live 2 ½ miles from us. Also, we signed up to serve on the prayer team for Eagle Christian Church and the Tuesday afternoon prayer meetings are so uplifting! Earnestly praying people and ECC staff members also make good friends and lots of positive input!

For much more good input, I’ve increased my personal Bible study time and devotional reading and prayer time with Della. Then there is also the great input from books, magazines, mission reports, radio, and great DVDs for positive entertainment!

For books that give much clearer insight about the “woke” cultural warfare along with evolutionism, Marxism, etc., I want to highly recommend: The 21st Century Handbook, by Dr. Robin Johnson (What a powerhouse of pertinent information!), The Trojan Mouse (How Disney Is Winning the Cultural War), by Samuel Lively, and He Spoke and It was Done (A Biblical and Scientific Critique of Evolution Theory), by Thomas L. Hamilton. Both Frank Sherwin of ICR and field paleontologist, Stan Lutz, consider this book the epitome of clear refutation of evolutionism. If you want to get a copy of any (or each) of these books, feel free to contact me for more info.

For magazines, I truly enjoy getting three full-length Creation magazines plus three more shorter ones! And for input about cultural warfare on many fronts, we get Decision magazine, The Stand (published by American Family Association), Truth & Justice (published by Alliance Defending Freedom) – plus “The Lively Letter,” “Foundation for Moral Law,” “Knowlesletters” and One Body, Voice of the Martyrs, and several others.

For positive radio input, both Della and I really enjoy Rejoice Radio and occasionally she also listens with me to messages on several stations from preachers such as John MacArthur, Charles Stanley, Charles Swindoll, Erwin Lutzer, and rebroadcasts of Adrian Rogers. We also get great input from Eagle Christian Church through uplifting worship music and inspiring, expository preaching by Steve Crane.

For entertainment, most evenings (after our bodies and brains are too tired for productive work) Della and I settle in to watch a DVD of an old movie or episode (usually westerns) where integrity and courage are honored, and evil is exposed rather than glorified. (We very, very seldom watch TV!) Recently we have been rewatching the powerful Christian films of God’s Not Dead and The Kendrick Brothers productions worthy of watching over and over to absorb the full impact of Biblical truth. (We rewatched Fireproof, and Courageous with our grandson, Scott, while he was staying with us for a weekend. Scott also recently had an excellent presentation for his senior thesis at Nampa Christian on the subject of Creationism vs. Evolutionism. Are we proud of our grandson? You can guess!)

I invest hours of time in correspondence with ministry partners in Ukraine (and elsewhere) plus with some prisoners as well as doing outreach locally, so I sometimes find it hard to keep up with all the prayer requests from ECC (usually 12 to 15 pages when printed). Do I ever get bored? Are you kidding? I find it hard to imagine how anyone can get bored while walking with the King of the Universe! So, if you have wondered what I’ve been doing with all my spare time since we sold our business – I would ask, “What spare time?” Jesus said we are to work while it is day – the night is coming when no man can work! In the new world in our resurrected bodies, we will have eternity to relax and enjoy the wonders of His vast creation – but we won’t have the opportunity to evangelize so that souls will be saved, and lives transformed by the love of God in Christ! Therefore, we try to remember to pray each day: “Lord, please fill us with your Holy Spirit and give us wisdom in our priorities – to take one task at a time and do it with joy. Also, please put us in the right place at the right time with the right words to glorify You!

Sabina

The Voice of the Martyrs’ movie, Sabina, is a true story drama and is potent in portraying the transformation of evil hearts to loving witnesses. How do I know? Our good friend, Al Cinnamon (preacher/pastor of Heritage Christian Church in Emmett, ID), told me that the owner of the Frontier Cinema in Emmett was offering free admission to see Sabina on Sunday evening, March 13, and again on Thursday evening, March 17. We decided to go see the movie Sunday evening. To our surprise, when it was time for the movie to start, Roy (the owner of the theater) walked to the front with two microphones in his hands and was accompanied by two pastors – Al Cinnamon and the local Baptist pastor. Roy told the audience that he was not going to show any previews so that we could go directly into the Sabina movie – but he did have an announcement first. He told them that a missionary to Ukraine was present and that anyone who wanted to help Ukrainian people should give their donations to Al and he would get the funds to me to funnel to the destitute refugees from the war. Then he handed a microphone to each of the pastors and had Al tell them about his background with me. Al told them that I was his first Bible teacher when he was a new believer stationed in Germany and I was serving Alpine Christian Mission in Germany. The Baptist pastor, Lance, also shared a few words about the movie because he and Al had sponsored bringing the Sabina testimony to Emmett.

Thank you, Lord!

Sunday evening the viewers donated $197 for hurting refugees from Ukraine, and on Thursday evening another $276. Praise God! We are also very thankful for International Disaster Emergency Service (IDES), Samaritan’s Purse, and other ministries that get the funds and supplies to the hurting people. Government to government funds too often end up in the pockets of corrupt officials. We are very thankful that our co-worker, Stephen, has the contacts and ability to get funds and supplies to those who desperately need them! So far in the month of March, we have sent $20,545 to help provide for destitute people in Ukraine. Praise God for generous donors!

How to Communicate with Us

If you desire to communicate with us, please don’t make it a text. That is the least effective means of communication with us. I do not send texts – and neither does Della. Sometimes we get texts, but we still use and prefer our small flip phones (which have very small screens and number buttons). So, we much prefer phone calls, email messages, letters by US post – or even better – personal visits! 😊 (Admission: actually, my eye-hand coordination is not good enough to send texts! 😊) I admire the dexterity of you well-coordinated individuals! 😊

Blatant Hypocrisy

It seems to me that those who reject Christ (pretend to be righteous so that they don’t need a Savior – “I’m good.”) often delight in exposing hypocrisy in Christians, especially prominent Christians. This seems to salve their consciences and justify their rejection of Christ and their need for Him. Hypocrisy is serious – very serious and needs to be exposed and rejected.

But hold on! Whoa! Are Christians the only ones guilty of hypocrisy? What is hypocrisy? Isn’t it pretending to be something or someone we are not? Don’t we all need to examine our own hearts? Aren’t there any non-Christian pretenders on barroom stools spinning tall tales to promote themselves to “friends” while pretending to be something they are not?  Is there no hypocrisy on social media?

Could the most blatant and dangerous hypocrisy currently in the world be coming to us from the Left? (By the left, I mean the Marxist philosophy, which at its core is not only atheistic and anti-Christian, it is Satanic. It is aggressively competing against a Biblical Christian worldview!) Historically, in country after country where Marxism has conquered, the promoters have promised utopia and delivered poverty plus slavery (except for the ruling elite).  I have seen the sad results in many former Soviet nations!

Could the most blatant hypocrisy be coming from the Biden Administration pretending to be compassionate toward Ukraine while ignoring the devastation and destruction they caused in Afghanistan? Did you notice that at the same time they are pretending to be compassionate toward Ukraine’s borders they continue ignoring the thousands of illegal aliens flooding across our own southern borders – including drug dealers, sex traffickers, terrorists, and other known criminals? Did you also notice that they allowed floods of the unvaccinated illegals to be transported at taxpayers’ expense to locations all over our country while mandating vaccines for millions of US citizens?  Compassionate?  Your hypocrisy is glaring!

The Most Dangerous Hypocrisy

Concerning the hypocrisy of the Left – your slip-ups are showing! It is an obvious fact that the Biden Administration is forcefully pushing both abortion and the transgender insanity (rebellion against God’s created order of male and female)! On page 3 of the February 2022 issue of Decision Magazine, there are three brief news articles about these issues. Two of them are about transgender issues – “Alaska: Court Upholds Religious Freedom for Christian Women’s Shelter,” “United States: Swimming Official Resigns in Protest over Transgender Athlete.” The leading article of the three is about abortion – “World: Abortion Leading Cause of Death in 2021… As of noon Dec. 31, an estimated 42.6 million abortions had been performed during 2021… Additionally, deaths from the coronavirus totaled around 3.5 million globally in 2021, according to the World Health Organization… ‘Once again, abortion was the leading cause of death worldwide in 2021,’ March for Life tweeted. ‘This is the greatest human rights abuse of our time, and it is our responsibility to stand up and say ‘no more.’ Lila Rose, founder and president of the pro-life organization Live Action, urged Americans to take notice. ‘Abortion is a uniquely serious and urgent crisis,’ she posted to Twitter. ‘It’s the legalized killing of the most vulnerable. It’s the leading cause of death in America. It is responsible for more bloodshed than anything else. Stopping the incessant bloodshed should be our top political and social focus.’”

The Biden Administration in our nation used the cloak of “Covid” (Coronavirus) to violate our God-given rights to freedom of assembly, freedom of religion, freedom of choice about what we allow to be put in our bodies, and destroying businesses of thousands of small business owners! While parading under the banner of compassion for those getting the virus, they have been aggressively trying to bankrupt and destroy the country our founding fathers bequeathed to us while simultaneously aggressively pushing abortion. Did you notice the statistics? There were 3.5 million deaths from Coronavirus globally in 2021 – and an estimated 42.6 million deaths globally by abortion in 2021. Compassion? Hardly! Blatant hypocrisy! Jesus aggressively and repeatedly exposed the hypocrisy of the ruling elite in Israel. Shouldn’t we be doing what Jesus did in our country?

Wonderful Sunbreaks in a Very Dark Sky over Ukraine and Russia

First – Recently, early on a Saturday morning, I got a phone call from one of our emotionally adopted daughters (who had been my interpreter for several years). Her purpose – to encourage me! She said that my heart must be breaking. I told her that I was thinking the same about her and had intended to call her. She told me: “The churches in Crimea are really coming alive!” How does she know? She has inside information!

Second – Today on Compassion Radio, I heard another of my former interpreters tell about helping refugee college students get to safety across the border.

ThirdWe are getting other reports of spiritual awakening in Ukraine and Russia. Please keep praying!

FourthAll four couples who are on our Overseas Outreach coalition team are safe!

FifthWe have co-workers who are able to get humanitarian aid both to refugees from Ukraine and destitute people in Ukraine!

SixthFor over a month now, we have been praying for God to put a hedge of protection around believers in Ukraine – especially our co-workers there. We want to share with you this amazing testimony from a co-worker couple with cute young daughters:

We are happy to hear from you and apologize for not responding right away. The internet connection is very poor here. We were in Kharkiv for the first 5 days of the war, but then it became super dangerous there because of the bombing and we left to my parents to Cherkassy region, in the central Ukraine. It’s safe here. We help the local church to minister the displaced people from Eastern Ukraine. Some people from our church did not want to leave the city and now are helping to deliver food to the old people and share Gospel. We send medicine, food and other necessities to them. It’s so terrible, none could even imagine this hell….. Sometimes I think it’s just a nightmare, it’s not real. My country was so beautiful and now many cities are just piles of trash.  But God has been protecting us in a miraculous way. On the third day of the war we went to buy some groceries, since it was quiet all night long. Kids were home alone, when we heard blasts. We came home in a few minutes and found a missile a few meters from our house.  It was God’s shield. The missile damaged our water pipe and electric wires. We were able to fix the electricity ourselves, but there is still no running water in the house, because the services don’t work. We are praising God that He preserved our kids and the house is not damaged. There is a gas pipe 3 meters from the place of the missile, it might have been a huge explosion. Praise the Lord! We decided to stay in Ukraine and to help as much as we can. God bless you, M……. and V…”                  Wow! Praise God!

The Stark Reality of a Very Dark Sky

These wonderful sunbreaks remind us that our Awesome God is still in control, has a plan, and He does answer prayer! However, we must also remember that He wants us to be informed, stay alert, and keep praying earnestly for massive spiritual awakening! He is the One Who tells us to watch and pray! Therefore, we are passing on to you the prayer alert that we sent to our Overseas Outreach prayer team and consultants on Wednesday, March 23:

“Dear Prayer Team and Consultants, we got a text message this morning at 6:53 from Stephen with an urgent message, so we are passing it on for you (and any others you want to help) to earnestly pray today! I started fasting yesterday and if you are healthy and able to join me in fasting and praying, great! Let’s ask for God’s intervention in this man-made, huge catastrophe brought on by a tyrant crazed with egotism and lust for power. I recently heard a radio commentator liken Putin to Stalin. Who was Stalin? One of the worst mass-murderers in history! Is it time to pray: “Oh Lord – if Putin doesn’t repent, please take him out!”? On the phone a couple days ago, a preacher friend told me he was praying for God to let the worms get him – like He did with Harod. Here is how David prayed in Psalm 70: “Make haste, O God, to deliver me! O Lord, make haste to help me! Let them be put to shame and confusion who seek my life! Let them be turned back and brought to dishonor who delight in my hurt! Let them turn back because of their shame who say, ‘Aha, Aha!’ May all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you! May those who love your salvation say evermore, ‘God is great!’ But I am poor and needy; hasten to me, O God! You are my help and my deliverer; O Lord, do not delay!” (ESV)

Stephen’s text message: “It’s getting worse in Ukraine with nearly 10 million displaced people and more every day.  The war is intensifying.  The churches/Christians have asked for a day of prayer for the people of Mariupol.  No one is coming to help them, and they believe that their city will be leveled – carpet bombed in the days to come….  They are praying for a safe corridor to leave.  The soldiers will stay behind and defend the city to the last man…. they will not surrender!”

May the resurrected Lord Jesus be always your joy, your hope, your comfort, your strength and victory!  May you come to know Him deeper, love Him dearer and follow Him nearer!

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all peace and joy as you trust in Him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

Respectfully yours & His, Rick”

Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain…. Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.” 1 Corinthians 15:58; 16:13-14 (NIV)

From Our Mailbox

“Dear Rick & Della,

Thank you so much for meeting the need of pastor Nurlon and other pastors in central Asia. Your gift is making a big difference for all of them. Thanks to your support these pastors and their families will feel much safer when they are bringing the unreached people of their countries to Christ.

May God richly bless you! Valentin Siniy (President of TCI)”

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

“Rick,

Once again I can only say thank you very much – and may my Beloved Lord bless you greatly for your repeated kindnesses. Thank you for these latest sermon CDs – the preaching series through Hebrews is most helpful. And thank you for the various articles/newsletters from those several other ministries. In answer to your question – no, I do not receive the “Eagle Forum” … until you sent it to me, I was not even aware of it – but it certainly is valuable – I am planning to subscribe – thank you. Also, thank you for checking about John Murphy’s book – A Dumb American – for me – also for making me aware of his book on Islam. Since you only had a digital copy available, I assume that printed copies are not available – I wish that they were.

In the world in which we live – at this time in our nation – how very much are two things needed to be declared and held tightly – those two things are certainly tied together and are essentially one: Truth and the Gospel. May my Lord Jesus find me – find us – faithful in holding to – and declaring – both.

I hope that you and Della are doing well. I pray daily for you both. Thank you for the printout on Covid prevention.

Ken Morris (Minister)”

Luis Palau’s Testimony

March 1, 2021

Note: Eldon is the Eagle Christian Church pastor who oversees our prayer teams and I have permission to share this letter.

Dear Eldon and Jamie, more than likely, this is the last letter you will ever receive from me. If the doctors are right, I’m days away from glory. And I feel it. All medication stopped. At home with Pat, on palliative care. Family close by. It’s just a matter of days. My time here on earth is done.

God is Good

God is good. I have no regrets. There is nothing better than serving Him and sharing His Good News Gospel. Thank you for standing with me over these years. Thank you for giving to this worthy cause. ‘This service you have performed is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.’ 2 Corinthians 9:12  Don’t ever forget that truth. God delights in using you. He takes pleasure in your service. He is smiling down on you.

To Encourage You

I believe the Word of God and am eager to finish the race. I see the finish line right before me and trust I will win the prize God has offered up to me. But please, if you are to be impressed by anything about me or my life, then be impressed with this . . . I’m not all that special. I simply obeyed. I gave it my all. Praise the Lord . . . He loves to use weak people like me to bring glory to Himself. This has to encourage you. And it’s the truth!

To Challenge You

If I could challenge you in one way right now . . . as I face eternity and you continue on . . . it would be this: Never let the fire of evangelism fade. Stand strong for the Gospel! There is nothing better to put your life toward. A life poured out for the Gospel. For His glory. As our son Andrew so often quotes, we are joining with God in rescuing those being led away to death. Holding back those staggering toward slaughter (Proverbs 24:11). It’s a glorious endeavor. There is still much work to be done. If this evangelistic work ends with me, it will be a shame. Yet I know it won’t. My sons have built a strong team. They will continue to press on . . . to reach the lost . . . to give their all. I pray you do the same. You have been such an encouragement and blessing to me. Please continue in that same manner with Pat . . . with the boys . . . with our team . . . for the work . . . for the lost. As my energy fades and my body falters, I’m happy to see the end come into view. I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race. By God’s grace, I have kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7). But you . . . You are still running. You are still fighting. Keep at it! Please remember . . . just because I am done does not mean the work is over. I leave it in your hands. I entrust you with it. If by chance I’m still around in a few weeks, nothing would bless me more than to hear from you. Let me know you’re committed to stay the course . . . to stand strong . . . to continue on in the fight as a friend and financial partner. It would be such an encouragement in my final days to be able to read your words and hear of your commitment.

I challenge you in this way only because I know it is for your own good. You can send your note back in the envelope provided. And if I’m already gone by the time you get this . . . send your note anyway. Will you please? It would bless Pat and the boys and the entire team to hear from you and to know you are committed to stand – shoulder to shoulder – in this fabulous, wonderful, eternal, God-given work.

I’m excited for heaven. I truly am. I know where I’m going. That’s because Frank Chandler shared the Gospel with me when I was 12 years old. I’ll never forget that night, sitting in the rain at summer camp. He shared the Gospel with me clearly, boldly, and lovingly. And he gave me an opportunity to respond. It was that night when I accepted Christ into my life and began to serve Him. And it is because of that decision that I know I will close my eyes to this world and open them to glory . . . to the face of my Savior. I can’t wait! No more pain. No more tears.

Of course, I’m sad to be leaving family and friends. Pat especially. She has been my faithful partner and friend for 60 years! A gift from God. We love each other so much. And of course the boys . . . their lovely wives . . . the grandkids. I hate to think I won’t be able to pick up the phone and talk to any of them. But I know where I’m going is better by far (Philippians 1:23). And I’ll be waiting for you there. In the meantime, I can’t encourage you enough . . . Stay the course. Don’t give up the fight. Stand strong for the Gospel. Share the Good News unashamedly.

Particularly Potent, Pertinent Principles

Attitude

 by Charles Swindoll

“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company… a church… a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… We cannot change the fact that people will act a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude…  I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you… We are in charge of our ATTITUDES.”

Victorious Resurrection Power

By the Holy Spirit via the Apostle Paul

Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me...

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain

Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love.” 1 Corinthians 15:1-8, 58; 16:13-14 (ESV)

Prayer Requests

  1. Please pray for God to end this war by driving home deep conviction to Vladimir Putin and his comrades so that they repent and are truly converted. If they refuse to repent, that God will take them out somehow!
  2. For the comfort of the Holy Spirit for grieving souls.
  3. For the funds and humanitarian aid to get to the destitute people, both refugees and those still inside of Ukraine (rather than lining the pockets of greedy officials).
  4. For Russian soldiers to rebel against ungodly orders. (If anyone, anywhere gives you an ungodly order, remember: “We must obey God rather than man”!)
  5. For American military and police officers and the sheriff’s department to do the same – and to remember that our law in USA is the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. Let’s pray they never forget that they have pledged loyalty to our Constitution and to defend citizens against all enemies – both foreign and domestic!
  6. The Congressional Confirmation Hearings exposed that Biden’s choice for Supreme Court Justice is extremely lenient toward pedophiles and child pornography pushers (plus other serious flaws). The big problem is that the Democratic Party is determined to confirm Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson anyway – and they have the majority vote. All of this fits their Marxist agenda! Please pray for God to intervene and save us from this hell-bent plunge!
  7. We desperately need spiritual awakening! Please pray!

Things to Remember in Troubled Times

Recently I read the following statement in “Mornings with Jesus” (Devotional Book).

“I asked Jesus why He was taking me through troubled waters.  He answered, “Because your enemies can’t swim.”

The following verses from Isaiah 43 amplify on this thought:

“But now, O Israel, the Lord who created you says: ‘Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.  I have called you by name; you are mine.  When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you.  When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown!  When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.  For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior….”  (vs. 1-3 (NLT).

Our Unique God

Quoted from Bob & Geri Boyd’s First Quarter 2022 Issues in Education Newsletter

  • “God has never lost anything.  He has never worried about anything.
  • God knows every detail in the future as if it had already happened.  Amazing!
  • He has never run out of ideas or resources and never will.
  • He is a God of incredible creativity, of infinite energy and endless power.
  • He knows everything and always has.  He has never made a mistake or been surprised.
  • God tells us to live with faith in His power and ability not by the things that are seen.

God is a God of inexhaustible imagination!  He’s a God of incredible creativity and infinite resources. You can trust your life to Him!”  

I am reading “The Red Sea Rules”, and in it the author, Robert J. Morgan, mentions several scriptures about God’s promises to deliver his people in the day of trouble, and then he asks the question, “But does He still?”  His answer, “Yes, absolutely.  But we must have God’s perspective on deliverance, for He doesn’t always view things as we do….” Then he goes on to say, “He designs a unique, tailor-made deliverance to every trial and trouble.” As in the quote above from Bob and Geri Boyd, let’s remember “He’s a God of incredible creativity and infinite resources.  You can trust your life to Him!” 

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The Compassion of God’s People Is Amazing!        

So many people have sent donations for Aid to Ukraine! 

We want to thank every one of you who have responded so generously.

We have been able to send a total of $20,545.00 to help

those who need it so desperately.

The Refugees from Ukraine have had to leave everything behind and just go with what they were able to take with them!  And they don’t know if they will even have homes to go back to in the future.  Please continue to keep them all in your prayers!!!

“Those who oppress the poor insult their Maker, but those who help the poor honor Him.”  Proverbs 14:31 (NLT)

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