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March 11, 2009

March 2009
In Like a Lion!

An Astronaut, a Bronc Rider and a guitar player: What a wonderful, blessed time we’ve had. I returned last weekend from helping out at the High Ground, men’s Bible/ski retreat. It’s truly a privilege to ski with and lead these 80 men in worship. This year’s group included Charlie Duke who walked on the moon, Tex Brown-a retired three star general who survived the Pentagon attack, Dr. Walter Bradley from Baylor University, Jason Brown-former world champion bronc rider, missionaries, businessmen as well as me and my guitar. What great fellowship and encouragement!

Are you ready to share? In Luke 12:35, Jesus tells us to “be dressed in readiness and keep your lamps lit.” Before I went to help with the retreat, I challenged our “called to the ministry group” and our adult Bible study to pray for the opportunity to share the plan of salvation. We each took a few copies of the Four Spiritual Laws, read through it, and asked Jesus to lead us to someone ready to hear. 10 minutes after leaving the Bible study group I had given my first one away. During the retreat the Lord led me to a resort worker who was reading a Bible. I asked him if he had given his life to Jesus. He said he was “trying to”. I was able to give him a “4 Laws” just as a group of customers arrived. In all, I was able to share or give a tract to at least 4 people that week! Will you pray for an opportunity to share, and be ready to take that opportunity?

More answered prayer: Rocky Mountain Chapel in Cripple Creek had 45 fire, police and EMS workers show up at their outreach dinner. They used the firefighter Bibles and materials we sent and gave the remaining ones to a church in Woodland Park, CO to help them do an outreach. Southern seminary contacted me and they’ve decided to accept some of my Denver Seminary DMin. work. This will cut my class time by 25% as well as help with the cost. Joe Bugg, who we prayed for in OKC, just received word that the cancer is gone! The ski area contacted me and said I have completed the requirements to keep our health insurance. Of course I will keep teaching skiing until the area slows down at the end of March. Melva arrived safely in Scotland to visit Joy, Stephen and Hannah. And sooo much more!

Coming up: Lord willing, I will preach in Gunnison on March 8, speak to a chapel service for the AZ Wildfire Academy March 15, preach at a rodeo benefit service in Monte Vista, CO March 22, speak at the college March 27, and join Melva and our new granddaughter in Scotland March 30. While in Scotland we have been invited to speak and sing. In between I will continue working with our college ministry and teaching skiing.
In late April, I travel to Indianapolis to meet with the Fellowship of Christian Firefighters Board. They’ve asked me to serve as ambassador at large in the wild land fire service. Then it’s back to Gunnison for a week. We travel to Guthrie, OK, May 10-17 for services. After that it’s fighting forest fires as well as other meetings in CA and elsewhere. We’ll keep you posted.

Family: Melva, Joy and Stephen are enjoying Hannah in Scotland. Bek tore her ACL and has surgery the end of March. Steve is still doing a great job with the community church here and Tim is working hard in LA.

Finances: As you may have heard, the country’s in a recession! That has impacted many of our supporters. We pray that God will bless and richly provide for you and your families. We know our needs will always be met as we trust in Jesus; and we are grateful for each of you who are part of His provision. It seems when one supporter has to cut back another steps up. If you are one who is struggling we fully understand. We pray that your needs will be abundantly met. Our biggest need always is for your prayers!

Prayer requests: For the anointing of the Holy Spirit to continue and increase as we seek to serve Jesus. For Bek, a successful surgery and a renewing of her walk with Jesus. For those on the mission field that are feeling financial pressure. For Mike, a wonderful pastor friend who has faced a lot of medical and financial needs this past year.

Thank You! For your love, your faithful prayers, and your investment in our work here. It is paying wonderful dividends! May the Lord Jesus richly bless you and your family,

Rick and Melva

Rick Barton Ministries • 401 Ute Lane Gunnison, CO 81230 • • (970) 641-3583