Rick Barton Ministries, PO Box 1155, Gunnison, CO 81230 | 970-641-3583 | firstname.lastname@example.org
January 7, 2013
A New Year Means New Opportunities to Share Jesus!
Blessed Christmas and a Spirit-filled New Year to you!! December gave us many amazing opportunities to share our Savior's love. I taught skiing through the Christmas break and was able to share my love for the Lord with many as well as give away a firefighter devotional to a fireman from FL. He's promised to show it to his department and call us for more copies to give away. On New Year's Eve I had the privilege of praying with 50 of our ski school staff before we skied down in a torchlight parade. This was the 30th (or so) year I've been able to share a prayer and once again several instructors were touched by the Spirit!
On a more somber note, I conducted another service for a rancher who died suddenly. That's two in recent weeks and both were well-loved. Literally hundreds of people attended the services. As Melva drove home, the Lord revealed to her that we had been able to share the gospel with more un-churched folks in those two services than in many of our "evangelistic meetings". Please pray for the families who lost their loved ones and that the Scriptures we shared will touch many lives.
On Christmas Eve we held a service in the Crested Butte South fire station. 20 attended, most of who live in CB South. Now we've started a Sunday Evening Bible Study and are praying the Lord will establish a Christ-centered, Bible-teaching, Spirit-led church in that community. Please join us in that prayer!
Returns on your investment! This past month we received word from Dean and Janie Mueller who are coaches and now serve on the Colorado Springs Board of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Brent Kinseth is helping lead worship at his church in Colorado Springs. Ruthie Montano is now serving through Young Life in Pueblo, CO. Today I received a letter from a firefighter in Washington State thanking me for holding a fire chapel in South Dakota and for sending him a firefighter Bible and devotional. He sent a check to help us give out more copies. And those are just reports from last month! Your investment in the Lord's work is bearing wonderful "interest"!
Paul and Sarah graduate! Paul Muirhead has been our intern for over a year and a half. This month Paul was asked to become Children's Ministry Director for his church. He and Sarah will still help us but give the majority of their time to their new responsibility. Paul preached at his church for the first time last week and by all accounts it went very well!
Rich and Shelba leave the country! But only for a week of service with "alumni" Mark and Karen Higgins in Mexico. In addition, they continue to teach a Bible study for ranching families on Cochetopa Pass and a myriad of other ministries with us. Lord willing, Rich and Shelba will take the lead in the CB South ministry when they return. Rich and Shelba celebrate their 47th wedding anniversary January 29!
Family: Stephen and Joy (Hannah and Bethan) are seeking a new place to live as their missionary landlord retires and comes back. We trust this is part of the Lord's plan for the next step in their ministry and lives. Nick and Beka are settling into married life in Vail, CO. They've been featured in the local news as an outstanding "culinary couple". Today, Nick was on the local television station as guest chef! Steve and Annie are enjoying married life as well! Steve's television production job has stalled for at least a few months so he's scrambling to find other work. I know they'd appreciate your prayers. Tim and Sarah are going strong in Los Angeles as well. My mother has started her chemo treatments and is still the "designated driver" for all her friend's trips to the doctor, store, etc. Melva continues to substitute teach and serve as the most wonderful helpmate in every area of ministry and home.
Upcoming: In addition to our abundant schedule of services and Bible studies we are conducting a memorial service for our friend, Charles Barrett this week. February 27- March 1st I have the privilege of leading worship for the High Ground Men's Bible/ski retreat in Beaver Creek. Then, Lord willing, March 3-6 we'll hold services in Livermore, CO, outside of Ft. Collins. Please pray for these opportunities to share Jesus; that the anointing of the Holy Spirit will fall!
DMin and health: As the ski season slows down during January and February I'll be taking off more days to work on the DMin project (and let my poor knee rest). My hope is to finish by this summer. I'm still not fully over my pneumonia. My voice is very weak. Thank you for your prayers for our health!
Finances: Thanks to the Lord Jesus' faithfulness and your wonderful investments, we are entering 2013 in the best shape we've been in for several years. His grace is sufficient! We've given away cases of Bibles, devotionals, CD's and other materials; and never charge for our ministries. Your investments have allowed us to train workers and reach into "unreached" groups of folks like firefighters, ski instructors and more! Thank You!! (I know, ministries aren't supposed to tell when the finances are good, but we try to always be honest with you. When finances are tight we ask for prayer, when good we let you know so you can praise the Lord with us!)
Thank You for your prayers and financial investment with us. May the Lord Jesus richly bless you!
Rick and Melva, Rich and Shelba