Dear Praying Friends,
We are coming down the home stretch of summer . . . well, actually you are. For us September will bring of the same hot weather and rain. We hope you have been able to enjoy every minute of your summer.
We enjoyed our three plus weeks in America immensely. We were able to relax a little bit, spend time with family, go to BMM’s Annual Conference and witness Nate’s oldest niece’s wedding ceremony. All good times.
Being in America caused some time of reflection in a couple of different ways also. First was with Madison, Nate’s niece. There was a day, it seems many years ago, that Nate enjoyed something like “favorite uncle” status. Madison and I used to have a very close bond. Time and distance have changed that a little bit. The love is still there, but as I witnessed her giving her vows to her new husband I was reminded of the cost of being a missionary. The second instance came after we were able to visit with the pastor of our sending church in Ohio. Our pastor, Bradley Quick, is fighting a serious battle with cancer. It was very special to be able to spend an hour with him. Then, after we arrived back in Thailand we received word that the doctors are giving Pastor Quick two months or less to live. Apart from a special act of God, that visit we had with Pastor Quick will be our last this side of Heaven.
In the times like what I have just described the question does come up in my heart whether this is all worth it. The answer is, “Of course.” If
we focus on just this life, this life will likely be pretty disappointing. Relationships change all the time, even with special nieces. And even though we do not spend a lot of time talking about it, we all have a date with the destiny that we do not like: The day when we will leave this earth. Apart from Christ’s glorious rapturing us up in the clouds we will have our day. The point seems to be to use this life in doing something that has eternal value. The life lived giving glory to God is absolutely worth it, and I am not just talking about foreign missions.
The ministry here goes on. We are trying to prepare ourselves for the upcoming return of our coworkers to America for six months. Hey, if you know anyone who has a joyful spirit, is a team player, and PLAYS THE PIANO, please send him or her over to hang around us in Thailand for the
next six months. Hannah Scott is our piano player, and her shoes will not be filled while she is gone. Maam plays the guitar a little bit, so we will try to make do as best we can, unless of course you know somebody who can help us out.
Our attendance at church has been down a little bit lately. The tough part of it is that no one has intentionally stopped coming, but jobs and school classes require them to be away. The neat thing is that our teen and adult classes have seen some increase during the week. Last week a sister church had a women’s retreat and we had two unsaved ladies attend with our church ladies. They both said they enjoyed the retreat. Please pray for people to come to Christ through these ministries.
One ministry that has increased in opportunities to present Christ is our prison ministry. Previously, we were used in teaching English classes, and at the end of our English classes we teach the bible. Over the past year we have seen a few solid decisions for Christ through this ministry. However, upon our return we were informed of a new opportunity in the prison. We are being given opportunities to teach three and four hour seminars on subjects such as “Morals That Guide Our Lives,” “How To Be A Leader,” “Developing Your Character,” and “Getting Along With Your Coworkers.” Not only are the opportunities new, but so are the students. Last week I taught the lesson on morals to a group of 60 men. Next week
it will be to 150 men on the subject of developing your character. We have the freedom to share Christ in the sessions, and I am developing my lessons around the Gospel. Very exciting! Today I was able to follow up with about 15 of the 60 men from last week and seven of them indicated
that they would like to study the bible with us more. Pray for these sessions. Pray for the preparation and delivery of the lessons. We are not given a lot of advanced notice as to what and when we will have these opportunities, but when they are given we will accept.
A few other requests for which we ask for prayer are these: Pray for upcoming camps in October. We will have one English camp and one youth camp. Pray for good attendance in both, and for decisions for Christ to be made. Pray for Maam as she starts home schooling both Hudson and
Ryann. Pray for the Hudson and Ryann too.:) Pray for us to be faithful in following up on people who have not been able to attend church in a while. Pray for the spiritual growth of our people. We love them dearly and want to see them grow in the Lord. We provide opportunities during
the week for anyone who wants to, to study the bible more. Some are involved, others are not. This is normal in every church, but it is more noticeable in our tiny church. And the truth of the matter is our church will experience growth as its people pick up the ball and run with it. We need to be winning and training, and then see our people do winning and training. Please continue to pray for us in these things.
Finally, we praise the Lord for His continued goodness to us in taking care of our physical needs. Even as the dollar drops, increases in support and new support have come, and our financial support level remains strong. Praise the Lord with us.
Thanks For Your Friendship,
Nate, Maam, Ryann and Hudson Beckman
Baptist Mid-Missions, Thailand