We have been so blessed to be an encouragement to our own church family as well as enjoy some experiences with our own families. This year Karen’s parents celebrated 60 years of marriage. Definitely a milestone in this day and time! We had a family gathering very much like a reunion that was enjoyed by all. Also this year Karen’s grandmother went home to be with the Lord. At 96 years of age she received her reward for walking with Jesus all her life and being an awesome prayer warrior for us. The time with family at the funeral was precious! We saw cousins that we had not seen in many years. We reminisced about our times while young at the lake or at grandma’s house. One of Charley’s dear cousins also received his heavenly reward for a faithful life as a minister of the gospel. His impact on our lives through the years was great and we miss him so much. We think often of how he was Father’s instrument of teaching and blessing in our personal lives and in this ministry. We would go by to see him in these latter years and just talk about Jesus. We would pray for him and encourage him. It was hard for him not to be busy about the work of the ministry like he had for 50 years. He touched people’s lives where he was but he missed his pastorate. Our son who had spent 7 months defending our country in Iraq returned to the states and came to visit with us. What a joy to hold him and see he was safe! We had another family reunion to celebrate his return.
Some dear friends who minister in Mexico came to spend a few days with us and we attended a conference in Denton with them. We met many new pastors and enjoyed the fellowship and teaching afforded by this opportunity. We had spent many years visiting with them at their home and working with their ministry. It was a joy to share our home and life with them. One of the couples we had grown close to in Florida spent part of their vacation with us. It was so good to see them and hold the children. By the time they left for the remainder of their vacation, we were family. They are now adopted!
Isn’t it interesting that when we surrender our lives totally to the Lord and His way of doing things, He will lead and guide us in the path that He will choose? For over 6 years we have not been home for more than a couple of weeks at a time. We have seen the glowing aspens of Colorado, the snow capped mountains of California and Oregon, the golden glow of Tennessee and Virginia in the fall and the comfortable mountains of North Carolina. We have spent days working on a cotton farm in Alabama and seen the joy on the faces of young and old alike as they chose their Love Bear. We have sown cross bookmarks in this country and around the world as several ladies in California chose to be obedient to the Lord and make them daily. One of those ladies has now gone to her reward in Heaven. We had the privilege of visiting with her on our western journey.
We have so many memories of lives changed by the power of God and hearts mended by that same power. If you do not know it, Jesus is alive! He lives today in our lives and in the lives of the many believers around the world. Do not lose heart weary one! Jesus will return soon for us. He promises in His Word that He will come again and take us home with Him. Our hope and prayer is that you will be ready to go. Until that glorious time comes, we must be busy about our Father’s work.
The face of Christ’s Kingdom Ministries is changing! The journey continues, the Enduring Journey, but new things are being added. We will continue to travel extensively but we will also spend more time with pastors than previously. We will be not only a safe ear, a prayer warrior but a physical and financial help to the churches. What the Lord has shown us is expansion of our time and energy spent in personal ministry to these servants of the Lord and even more encouragement and blessing will be sown into their ministry. We await the provision needed to do this work. Our Father is in control and we have given Him the reigns of our life. We have said for many years that we do not leave home until He tells us. We spend time with Him in daily devotionals and prayer. As Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
No Doubt or Fear
How could we ever doubt or fear this journey when Father tells us this truth? He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us! He has reminded us that we are His children! Jesus died for us that we might have life and have it more abundantly! He lives today to keep us safe and secure in His arms of love!
Thank you dear friends and prayer partners for almost 7 years of support and encouragement as we have endeavored to follow the Lord on this journey of faith! We have had valleys to go through and mountain top experiences to enjoy while our Father has been with us every step. His strength, love, joy and peace have been a part of our lives not only in this journey but also throughout our lives. As we approach our senior years we have more confidence in the living hope of our Lord Jesus returning than ever. We see the signs of the times before our eyes and we know He is coming. The old song, ‘We'll work till Jesus comes’, is on our lips and in our hearts.God bless and keep you all as you seek the Lord with all your heart. The scripture verse Father gave us for this ministry is Matthew 6:33.
Then we must go back to the previous verses to see what 'all these things' means. Matthew 6:25-32 in the Word says:
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ Or ‘What shall we drink?’ Or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.
We pray you will continue to come along with us on this journey of faith until the Lord Jesus comes to take us home. It will be a glorious ride!
Charley & Karen
Christ’s Kingdom Ministries
Check out our website and enjoy not only our ministry blog but also the Seasons of a Servant journal and the Love Bears web page. See the pictures from our many travels and the bear photo album. God is good!