May 15, 2009
“Showers of ‘International’ Blessings!”
Hi Everyone! We’re back, well sort of. We leave Inverness, Scotland tomorrow and return to Colorado the 15th of April. What a wonderful time with our daughter Joy, Son-in-Love Stephen, and granddaughter Hannah (born Christmas Eve)! Melva was able to spend 6 weeks helping out and I was able to join them for the past two.
March: While Melva was gone I was busy teaching skiing at Crested Butte, working with our college ministry and helping with ministries in Arizona and S. Colorado.
At the ski area I was able to follow-up with a fellow instructor named Bruce. He had asked me for a ride one day and then opened up with questions about Jesus and the Bible. In our last conversation Bruce told me that he had decided to give his life to Jesus! Another instructor I have been sharing with for two years seems to be opening up more and more, and a third asked me for prayer over the loss of a loved one. The ski instructing doesn’t pay much, (aside from the blessing of health insurance), takes a lot of time, and is hard on my body. But, there aren’t a lot of folks in professional skiing doing outreach and I feel it’s an open door for now.
Our main work at the college was small in numbers this year. However, the group of students involved in our weekly, “called to ministry breakfast”, has continued to grow. We now train over a dozen students who are sensing God’s call to missions and ministry. This includes leadership from Campus Crusade for Christ and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Your prayers and financial support underwrites these breakfasts as well as the materials we provide for training. You also support two students as interns; one who leads FCA and the other who helps lead Crusade. (See the attached notes from the student leaders.)
In mid-March I was asked to speak at a chapel service for the Arizona Wildfire Academy. What a privilege. Approximately fifty firefighters were present and the Holy Spirit moved in a wonderful way. One young man, Oscar, left immediately following the service. A few minutes later he returned and asked for prayer. He said he had wanted to reconnect with Jesus but left instead. When he reached his car a song came on the radio and said, “You can get in your fast car and drive away, or go back and change your life forever.” He came back. The next weekend I shared at a rodeo chapel. A cowboy in the back gave his life to the Savior.
Since we arrived in Scotland, the Lord has opened doors as well. Rich, a Jehovah Witness, came up to me in a store and I was able to share the good news with him. Lyn, a cleaner at our hotel, was distressed and I offered prayer for her family. A few days later she shared that she was involved in a “spiritualist church” and talked with her dead loved ones through a medium. I was able to share the Lord with her. Melva has been sharing with a Filipino cleaner as well. Please pray for the Spirit to open their eyes to the Lord.
We were privileged to share in three church services while in Scotland. At one, a college student came and asked for prayer. He said he’d become lukewarm in his walk and felt Jesus calling him to make a full commitment as well as start a ministry on his campus where there is none. Please pray for Mark and his fiancée.
Upcoming: I teach a forest fire class the fist week of May and then Melva and I head to Oklahoma City for our RBM Board meeting (May 8) and a week of services in Guthrie, OK (May 10-17). We will be preaching in Pitkin, CO, Memorial Day weekend. In June I teach a fire class the first week and teach at the Horizon School of Evangelism in San Diego. In between, I will be fighting forest fires and preparing for my next Doctor of Ministry class. Please pray for God’s anointing in these meetings!
Family: Joy and Stephen are excited being new parents. Stephen is one of two finalists being considered for an assistant pastor position in England. Bek is recovering from knee surgery. Thank you for your continued prayers for her. Steve is busy doing a great job with worship and ministry arts at a local church. Tim is still working at a Christian credit union in Los Angeles. My dad is still in an Alzheimer’s unit in Denver; my mom is going strong although she may need back surgery in the next few months. Thank you for praying for each of us!
Finances: Thanks to the faithfulness of our Father, and of each of you, we’re still moving forward. As I’ve often said; your love, prayers and support have allowed us to stay here and do this work. Each of you is an important part of anything good that comes out of our 40 years of ministry. Thank You! A special note: Melva and I don’t use ministry money when we take these trips to Scotland and Hawaii, even though we always preach and share in churches while there. The money I earn fighting fires, teaching skiing and Melva’s substitute teaching goes toward these trips. You investment with us goes directly into ministry related expenses.
With Melva being gone for six weeks and my being helpless, some of you may have not received your newsletters or receipts yet. Please let us know if you still don’t receive them.
Thank you! May the Lord richly bless you and yours.
Rick and Melva
Some notes from two of the student leaders you help support!
Stephen Newman: Student Leader of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes
“Dear RBM Supporters,
I am writing to thank you for your financial and prayer support. Receiving monthly support from this ministry has allowed me to focus the talents and gifts that God has given me toward ministry at Western State College. God has given me a heart for the students here.
I transferred to Western State in the fall of 2007. I immediately connected with a great group of students who invited me to the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Rick was speaking the first night. At the end of the first semester one of the graduating leaders, Josh Dayton, invited me to meet with the leadership team. As I realized that most of them would be graduating, I sensed that God had bigger plans in store for my life.
This year has been difficult at times but I have been able to grow and share my faith with several students, specifically four who I have been praying specifically for and now have shared the gospel with.
God has put a new fire under my feet and a passion in my life. I thank each and every one of you for supporting us.”
Dan Blackman: Worship/Student Leader for Campus Crusade for Christ
“I would like to thank everyone who has made donations towards Rick Barton Ministries. Because of your financial gifts, I have been blessed with a monthly scholarship that allows me to focus fully on ministry here in the Gunnison Valley. Without this scholarship, I would have to work full-time, and this would cut significantly into the ministries that God has given me a heart for. The ministries that I am currently part of are the leadership team for Campus Crusade for Christ at Western State College, attending Thursday morning prayer breakfast at the Quarter Circle with Rick Barton, and being a youth leader for a youth group called Awakening. I also play guitar with the worship team at Bethany Baptist.
The scholarship I receive allows me to be constantly part of those ministries, with the main goal being the advancement of the Kingdom of God. Again, I thank you so much for you financial contributions. “
John O’Neal: former Campus Crusade staff.
“Your scholarship allowed me to fulfill a longtime dream, to attend the Act 1 conference on Christians in movie production.” John has been involved in production for Crusade and recently won a screen writing award.
Thanks to you, we have been able to help develop leaders who in turn are impacting many for Christ. Thank You!