Rick Barton Ministries, PO Box 1155, Gunnison, CO 81230 | 970-641-3583 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank God for the HOLY Ghost!"
Soon many stores and residences will have ghosts hanging around. The goal of these "ghosts" is to frighten. Fortunately, we have someone who is much stronger than they; someone who has a much different mission. When Jesus prepared to leave this earth and return to the Father, He promised His distraught disciples that the Father would send the "Holy Ghost" or Holy Spirit to empower, comfort, walk alongside of, lead, convict, teach and give us new birth! (1 John 4:4, Acts 1:8, John 3:3-8, 14:16, 26, 15:26-7, 16:5-15)
Yet, many Christians know more about "Casper the Friendly Ghost" or "Samantha" of the old TV show than they do of the Holy Spirit. Francis Chan's excellent little book, "Forgotten God" highlights this beautifully. We are ignorant of Him; as third Person of the Trinity, of His work, gifts and fruit. As the poet Anne Dillard said, "We are itsy, bitsy people, living itsy, bitsy lives, raising tomatoes when we should be raising Lazarus!" Melva and I are becoming increasingly aware of our need to be filled daily with the Holy Spirit, the "Holy Ghost", and to allow Him to guide and empower us to His glory!
September Happenings: Much of the month was spent involved with family; Nick and Bekah's wedding in Vail, CO and Steve and Annie's wedding in Los Angeles. But, we had some other wonderful opportunities to share as well. The Lord gave us a great service at Cripple Creek, CO, a good time of ministry at our Saturday Evening Worship services, men's breakfast and "Called to Ministry" breakfast.
Some Wedding Happenings: The Lord Jesus brought many blessings to us during the weddings. Of course, it was great having all our family together (with the exception of my mom who the doctor suggested stay home). It was wonderful seeing both Bek and Steve happily married and watching the continued blessing of Joy and Stephen (with grandkids Hannah and Bethan) as well as Tim and Sara's marriages. (We hope to have pictures to share with you soon!)
You could see the hand of the Lord at work as we travelled to the weddings. We prayed with folks at the Calvary Chapel in Vail as well as the widow of a ski instructor I had shared with several years ago. She was doing the wedding party's nails when Joy mentioned that I was a ski instructor. The woman said she'd like to meet me. She came to our hotel and Melva and I were able to talk and pray with her. In Los Angeles, at Steve and Annie's wedding, we were able to pray with a discouraged Haitian missionary and a few days later we were able to pray with some of the staff at the Mt. Hermon Christian Conference Center.
Special Prayer Requests: Two of our Board members, Dr. Jack Hough and Archer Stotts, recently suffered serious strokes in Oklahoma City. Both of these godly men have been part of our Board of Directors since its inception many years ago. Please pray for them and their families. I hope to travel to OKC to visit and pray with them. My mom continues to recover and really appreciates your prayers.
Upcoming: In the next few weeks I have the privilege of doing a memorial service for a firefighter's family, teach our Saturday Evening Worship service and our Ministry Breakfast, join Rich in teaching our West Elk Bible Institute and hold a chapel for a group of hunters. At the end of October, Melva and I travel to speak in Gallatin, TN and attend a conference on preaching at Southern seminary in Louisville, KY. In November I've been asked to do a college football team chapel. During the weddings I was called four times to go on forest fires in the western US. If I'm still needed, I'll try to go in between ministry assignments.
Finances: During September our accountant advised me that things were getting very tight. We told no one but the Lord about it. As we prayed some of you felt led to send special gifts and once again the bills were all paid by the end of the month. Praise the Lord, and thank you for being sensitive to His leading!
Missionary Miracle! Two missionaries from Gunnison, former local business owners Mark and Karen Higgins, came home from Mexico and shared that the building they and two other ministries are using was for sale for $38,000. They had $500. We felt led to pledge $2000 from our Saturday Evening Worship group toward the cause. Others caught the vision, including a church who pledged 30% of their own building fund receipts, and when the Higgins returned to Mexico they had half the needed funds in hand! As Philippians 4:19 says, "And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus." Please pray for the Lord to provide the rest of the funds needed.
Rich and Shelba, Paul and Sarah: Paul preached at Pitkin, CO a few weeks ago and he and Sarah are teaching Sunday School classes as well as working on their Liberty University Bible courses. Rich and Shelba have been busy teaching and preaching and working on their Liberty courses as well. Rich even climbed a mountain! Shelba and Sarah have started a Bible study for young wives and a women's prayer group!
Ski Area, Doctorate Update: As I mentioned a couple of months ago, the ski area dropped our health insurance effective this month and we went on the COBRA plan. That was an answer to prayer since it allows me to cut back on the number of days I teach skiing and focus more on the Doctorate. We really appreciate your prayers that I can finish the degree soon.
Please pray and vote! I strongly believe that our country is at a moral as well as economic crossroads. One party's platform promotes homosexual marriage and abortion; the other opposes both. Melva and I consider ourselves independents, voting for the character and stands of the candidates. Please pray that God will give us His choice of leaders; then prayerfully vote!
We love and appreciate each of you. We enjoy your letters and pray over every prayer request you send us.
May the Lord Jesus richly bless you!
Rick and Melva