Uploaded: January 6, 2010
New Years 2010
Blessed New Year!!
On New Year’s Eve I stood with 75 of our ski instructors on top of Crested Butte Mountain. Most were talking, some laughing, others passing a bottle around. A general spirit of revelry persisted. Then the ski school director called for quiet and asked me to give a prayer for the New Year. I’ve been asked to do this for over 25 winters. Suddenly the group became very still. As I prayed for each of us, our students, those suffering around the world, and for us to remember the God who has blessed us so much, the Holy Spirit came over us. As I closed in Jesus’ name the instructors began to break away to a ridge overlooking the valley below. There, in a wondrous silence, we watched the sunset envelop the mountains surrounding us. There was an awe-filled awareness of God and His creation. Please pray that this awareness will ignite a desire within each one to know the Creator, and that we who know Jesus will have the opportunity to share with them.
As early as the week before Christmas I was still in a cast. I tried in vain to find another believer who could give the annual prayer and had to trust the Lord to heal my Achilles tendon so that I could ski down an advanced run in the dark with a highway flare in each hand. On December 22 the doctor approved my skiing and I was on skis the 23rd. So far my recovery continues, thanks to your prayers for my tendon and sore knee (4 surgeries).
Other Ministry: We finished our first semester of the West Elk Bible Institute with 6 students completing the course. Our “Called to ministry” group finished the fall strong with 15-20 meeting each week. The Saturday Evening Worship service we started for Trinity Baptist seems to be gaining momentum with up to two dozen in attendance. On Christmas Eve we held a service for Trinity. This was the first one they’ve had for several years and we were unsure as to the turnout. The sanctuary was filled and the most exciting thing was the number of un-churched folks, including many friends of ours, who attended. Please pray that the gospel will find a home in each heart who attended. We had the privilege of caroling with the college students at the nursing home and assisted living as well.
Family: My mom, Steve and Bek were able to join us for Christmas. Tim and Sarah may come our way in January. Joy, Stephen and Hannah are back in Scotland and experiencing above normal snowfall. Stephen’s job ends this month and they’re praying about the next one.
Upcoming opportunities: Ongoing work with students and services in Gunnison. High Ground Men’s Retreat in Beaver Creek, CO. (February 24-26), dinner with supporters and friends in Colorado Springs (April 6?), Board of Directors meeting in OKC (April 9), Special meetings in Guthrie, OK (April 11-18), serving as a guest speaker for the Fellowship of Christian Firefighters in Indianapolis, IN (April 22-24). Various other meetings are still pending. Please pray for each of these meetings. Our desire is to lift up Jesus and share God’s word in Spirit and truth.
Prayer Requests: Please pray for the Lord’s anointing as we serve in our various ministries. Please pray for continued healing of my Achilles tendon and knee as well as safety and health during the ski season. Please pray for Stephen (Scotland) and Steve (LA) that the Lord Jesus will direct them to the right places of ministry and work. Please pray for Bek to renew her walk with Jesus. As you know, when the Lord begins to move the enemy tries to resist.
Finances: The Lord continues to show that He is Jehovah-Jireh, the God who provides (Genesis 22:14). In these days of uncertain economics our God continually meets every need. Not only have our personal and ministry needs been met, we have been able to assist other ministries working on campus. Your prayer and faithful support has been the Lord’s instrument in so many ways. Thank You! Thank you also for those who sent personal gifts this year as well. They are never expected but always appreciated!
WE RECEIVED AN ENVELOPE ADDRESSED TO THE MINISTRY THAT WAS DESTROYED IN THE MAIL. IF YOU MAILED A DONATION POSTMARKED DECEMBER 24TH WITH A 42-CENT STAMP AND TWO 1-CENT STAMPS, WITH NO RETURN ADDRESS ON THE ENVELOPE, PLEASE BE AWARE THAT IT WASN’T RECEIVED.
Rather than asking the Lord to give you a “Happy New Year”, I pray that He will give you and yours, “A Spirit-filled New Year”. A year that will bring many opportunities to grow close to our Savior and have an eternal impact on many lives. Please pray the same for us!
You are loved,
Rick and Melva Barton