There was the stone of a delayed operation, then the stone of discouragement with the reappearance of prostate cancer, then the stone of bereavement on retirement and of leaving the job and church family I loved so much, then the stone of disappointment of not being able to do the Foreign Missions pastor’s job I was so looking forward to, then the stone of the debilitating effects of six month cancer treatment, and now the stone of the destabilising effect of moving from our home of 34 years. I also face the demands of conducting my father’s funeral on Thursday. So you can imagine my delight when Steve Rouse, the preacher at the Easter service this morning, began speaking on ‘He still moves stones’, and drew me in with a wonderful message on the power of the ‘tomb buster’ to remove stones – and praise God I believe He’s done it for me.
No stones in front of us now. Just the freedom to come out of this dark time and move forward into all He might want for Ann and I. We move with HOPE and hope has a name – JESUS!
Thanks for praying us through these tough days and holding our ladder. It looks like our last night in our home here in London will be Wednesday 10 April.
Saturday’s ‘good bye’ open house encouraged us so much – we were packed out with friends coming to share testimonies of how they met us and how God touched them. Some had travelled a long way to be with us and say good bye personally, and we heard God story after God story – across the generations and nations – of what the tomb buster had done. Many had been baptised by us and couples had met through us! So many ‘thank you’s.
At a prayer meeting for the Congo here earlier in the week we were so humbled to learn of developments deep in the rain forest conflict area bordering Rwanda, that are helping stop the raping and violence due to the prayers and undercover support of our church. We were left no longer crying that our work here was over, but smiling at so many lovely and beautiful KINGDOM things that have happened since the emergence of All Nations Church.
As we move ahead, please pray that the shadow of doubt doesn’t cross our path, during this time of recovering and rebuilding. Pray we’ll keep believing that God will open something new up to us… and if you know a church that is looking for a Foreign Missions pastor please let us know!!!
We sang this song at our ordination service when we were sent to London 39 years ago, and it’s still on my heart today:
‘I do not know what lies ahead, the way I cannot see;
yet One stands near to be my guide, He’ll show the way to me:
I know who holds the future,
and He’ll guide me with His hand;
with God things don’t just happen,
everything by Him is planned.
So as I face tomorrow,
with its problems large and small,
I’ll trust the God of miracles,
give to Him my all’.