First and foremost, Mary and I want to thank you for your faithful support to the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. For the past seven years we have preached in many places and have taught evangelism to thousands of people. It is humbling to think of how many people are carrying out the Great Commission as a result of your faithful support to this ministry. Please, please pray that the ministry of Balanced Evangelism will go worldwide in 2014. Now let me share with you some of the blessings from our last trip.
Our 16 stops
Our first stop took us to Jim and Mardell Dennison in Byron Center, Michigan. Thanks for their support they provided night lodging and meals. They also purchased us a GPS which we are so very thankful for. As a token of our appreciation for their support and a reminder to pray for the ministry of Balanced Evangelism, Pete made them a redwood clock.
Our second stop took us to First Baptist Church where Pastor Jim Barrett resides in Carson City, Michigan. Pete trained Jim in Balanced Evangelism when he was an intern from Baptist Bible College when I pastured at the Emmanual Baptist Church in Toledo, Ohio. At First Baptist Church Pete taught Sunday School, the A.M. Service, and a Balanced Evangelism seminar which is four hours long. They are very friendly and receptive to the ministry. They have implemented the Balanced Evangelism ministry and I am looking forward for our return to take them to the next level in the fall of 2014. The church has multi staff and a Christian school.
Our third stop kept us in Carson City, Michigan where I taught the Central Pastors Association. I taught Doctrine related to evangelism and the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. There were pastors who have called to invite me to come to teach Balanced Evangelism and preach at their church in the fall of 2014. This was the second time I was asked to preach and teach on evangelism to a large group of pastors in the state of Michigan.
Our fourth stop was in Ann Arbor, Michigan to see Geoff and Peggy Zahn. We took them a clock and thanked them for their faithful support to the ministry of Balanced Evangelism for the past six years. We encouraged them to continue serving the Lord in their ministry at their church in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
Our fifth stop took us to Calvary Baptist Church in Mikado, Michigan whom the Pastor is Tim Steiner. Pastor Steiner heard of our ministry three years ago from a couple in Florida. When he contacted me, I went. I preached on a Sunday, taught his children’s’ workers and taught a Balanced Evangelism seminar and the church began supporting us. We went back to Mikado, Michigan and I preached for Pastor Steiner in the A.M. service and gave the church our missions update in the P.M. service. Pastor Steiner is an expositor of the word and is thankful for our help to his church. While we were there we gave Pastor Steiner and his wife a redwood clock for their support.
Our sixth stop took us to the First Baptist Church in Fenton, Michigan with Pastor Josh Gates. On our first visit to the First Baptist Church last year I taught Sunday school, preached in the A.M. AND P.M. service, did a four hour Balanced Evangelism seminar, and disciple two men. The first man was Paul; he heads up the men’s evangelism ministries. Mark was the other man who is carrying on the ministry of Balanced Evangelism and is considering becoming a staff member to teach Balanced Evangelism. We met with Pastor Josh Gates and the church is on a five year budget plan to add Mark to the church staff in five years. On this visit I had very encouraging discipling times with Paul and Mark. Paul told me he had organized and saw the Lord bless two men’s evangelistic ministries and was planning the next one. Paul works in the planning office of the Chrysler Corporation, God is blessing his ministry. With Mark I have realized that if I can stay with a person for a couple of years, it is a great help to them and the church. Like the disciples, it takes a lot of discipling to see evangelism equipping established in a church. That doesn’t surprise me as the Lord took three years to disciple his disciples. Mark has now taught Balanced Evangelism twice and is preparing for the third time. He has been called by God to a full time position in evangelism at the First Baptist Church in Fenton, Michigan. I am so thankful to God for our small role in this.
Our seventh stop took us to Emmanuel Baptist Church in Toledo, Ohio to be with Pastor Shane Miller. Pastor Shane graduated from seminary and I began discipling him six years ago. He is very thankful for the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. It set him straight doctrinally and provided a way for him to equip people in evangelism. Pastor Miller is now teaching Balanced Evangelism to churches in the Mid- West.
It is thrilling and beyond my imagination to consider the scope of the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. We spent some critical time together planning for the global ministry of Balanced Evangelism. Unfortunately, when we arrived in Toledo, Ohio we had car problems at the expense of $2,700.00.
Our eighth stop was back to First Baptist Church in Fenton, Michigan. I received a phone call from Pastor Josh Gates asking me if I would preach for him the next Sunday. I was looking forward to a Sunday off, but I could not say no. I have done a lot of counseling with Josh and Mary has spent a great deal of time with Andrea, his wife. I do a lot of counseling of pastors’ on every trip that we take. If God brings Josh to your mind, please pray for him. His load is heavy. He just had thyroid surgery and is not feeling very well.
Last year I preached at a large gathering of preachers in Lapeer, Michigan where I met Pastor Barry Ruff. Our ninth stop took us to his church Marimont Community Church in Pontiac, Michigan. Pastor Barry asked me to come to his church and I accepted his offer and did a Balanced Evangelism seminar there. Pastor Barry was very thankful. The response of the church was normal. They were moved by what they were taught and eager to take it to the next level in their church. I then responded to Pastor Barry’s request for me to spend some time with him. While our meeting was confidential, I was able to be used by the Lord to help him. He is committed to learning and teaching the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. He graduated from the Masters Seminary, completed and was licensed by NANC to be a counselor. He is now going to be teaching Balanced Evangelism. Praise God.
Our tenth stop was to Millersburg, Ohio to see James and Margaret Robinett. When I was Pastor of Evangelism at the Emmanuel Baptist Church in Toledo, Ohio we trained several thousands of pastors, missionaries, and lay people in Balanced Evangelism. One of them was a quiet, uneducated tall man by the name of James Robinett. He who is eighty-two years young heard I was teaching Balanced Evangelism. He and his lovely wife Margaret began supporting us for $25.00 a month. I honestly don’t know where he gets the money, they have very little means. James has trained many people through the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. He now lives in Millersburg, Ohio and works and witnesses to the Amish people. He has seen some of them trust in Christ through his witness. Margaret has a lot of serious health issues and is in a wheel chair. We stopped by to be an encouragement to James and Margaret and to thank them for their support to the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. The sacrifice of his support to us reveals the depth of his appreciation for what Balanced Evangelism has taught him. Mary and I love this couple and are very humbled every time we stop and see them.
Our eleventh stop was in Springboro, Ohio to see Dan and Tami Colvin. We wanted to thank them for the many ways they have helped us and for their faithful monthly support to the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. We gave them a redwood clock that we made and thanked them again for their support. While we were with them for three days, Tami completed the PowerPoint ministry of the Balanced Evangelism manuals. This will greatly assist many who are now teaching the ministry of Balanced Evangelism in their church. Dan and Tami have been a great help to us throughout the years.
Our twelfth stop– we began our trip home. Unfortunately we ran into an ice storm in Texas and was laid up for a few days. It was so severe it broke the back window out of our car and rained in on all our clothes. When we arrived back in Santa Clarita, CA we had more expenses to the tune of $1,613.00. Our car has 186,000 miles and these things are to be expected. We are grateful to the Santa Clarita Baptist Church who provided this car for us when we began this ministry and faithfully continue to support us. Without this support we would not be able to carry on this ministry the way we have for the past seven years.
Our thirteenth stop took us to the First Baptist Church in Walnut Creek, CA. Shortly after we got home after driving some 12,000 miles we accepted an invitation to preach and teach on evangelism. I gave my testimony and my vision for the availability of the ministry of Balanced Evangelism to be made available around the world by way of videos. I asked if they would pray that God would make this available.
A man by the name of Josh came up to me and said he was going to provide the funds for this. We met with Pastor Shawn Hull and he was thrilled to hear this. During the month of February we traveled on Friday and taught on Saturday and Sunday. All eight weeks were videotaped. They are editing these now and hope to have them ready by the summer.
Our fourteenth stop comes along the route to Florida, which will take place this spring, where we are the key note speaker at Maranatha Baptist Church. But first we will be stopping at Fairview, Texas where we will visit and thank John and Cheryl Thomas for their faithful support to the ministry of Balanced Evangelism. John and Cheryl were the first ones to support this ministry eight years ago. We will leave them a redwood clock and thank them for their friendship and support. Then we will leave and head down to Sebring, Florida we will teach Sunday school, preach in the A.M. and P.M. service and preach again on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night. Then we will go down to Fort Myers, Florida and visit my sister who is quite ill. Next we will head home for a few weeks and rest before we go to Walnut Creek, CA where I will once again teach the ministry of Balanced Evangelism.
Our fifteenth stop takes Pete to the Fred Hilst Bible Church where he will be discipling four men to teach Balanced Evangelism. He will teach for four hours once a week during the months of June, July, and August. On another day of the week he will be discipling men to teach Balanced Evangelism at the Fred Hilst Ministry and church in Venice, CA.
Our last stop was in Sebring, Florida where I was the key note speaker at their Annual Bible Conference. I spoke nine times in four days; Mary and I were overwhelmed at their response to our teaching and their generosity to our ministry. They gave us a $3,000.00 love gift and $1,100 to cover travel expenses.
This summer I will be doing a wedding in North Carolina. I also will be discipling men at the Bible Tabernacle to teach Evangelism. I will be ministering in two churches in the San Fran area as well.
In our spare time, I will be preparing for our fall ministry in the Mid- West and in CA. Mary will continue to be writing on how to evangelize children. She hopes to have it completed and printed by the fall.
Mary and I keep thanking the Lord for the thousands of people we have had the privilege of teaching Balanced Evangelism to the past seven years. The magnitude of this ministry is beyond our imagination. It is very humbling to think of how the gospel is being shared around the world as a result of this ministry.
I can with my deepest appreciation say thank you for your vital role in the Great Commission ministry.
Some prayer requests we have are:
- That we would have time to prepare for our Fall ministry
- Completion of the video-taping of the ministry
- Needed funds for the ministry. (App. $800 more a month)
Grace and Peace,
Pete and Mary