FROM THE DESK OF DAVID ABBOTT
This, my final overseas trip for this year was certainly the icing on the cake!
The USA is like most other industrial nations today its children are over committed to school, homework, extra-curricular activities, social and sporting clubs etc. Add to that they have to be taken to anything outside of the home and it leaves little or no room for Christian activities.
Thirty years ago when I first started going to the USA we would have six nights and a Sunday morning of meetings and just about everyone would be there every meeting. Now we have had to reduce gradually the time down to three nights and even then by days two and three the numbers attending are going down.
This time God was beginning a new thing I believe. In Indiana we had five nights, Monday to Friday. We began with sixteen children the next twenty and from day three onwards twenty two with a large regular daily nucleus. Their behaviour was immaculate, they sat and soaked up every word and not everyone was a Christian or from Christian homes when we began the meetings. When any invitation was made for prayer you almost had to turn them off from responding instead of encourage them because if prayer was in the offing they wanted it. Several times I almost had to pinch myself to see if I was really in the USA and not a third world country where this kind of response is the norm. Let me add here that the meetings were not what the twenty first century church calls child friendly meetings. We had approximately thirty minutes praise and worship, an hour of teaching and ministry (one night that went longer and no one noticed) then thirty minutes of free time for fun and friendship building finishing at 19.00 and remember they had been in school all day too!!!
One night God led us into two ministry spots. As the meeting was being handed over to me God gave a word through two people and I felt it needed to be responded to immediately and twelve instantly responded for prayer because they lived under the cloud that they are nothings and failures. The presence of God at that point was so strong and awesome though some had to wait for a while to get ministered to they just stood as if frozen on the spot. Then more or less the same ones at the end of the meeting came out and instantly spoke in tongues, that night we finished somewhat later and still they didn’t want to stop. The Spirit of God was at work. We finished the final night with many of them voluntarily on their knees at the front giving their lives to continue on with God and live for Him whatever the cost and I believe they were real.
The Bible says that God loves to bless us with good gifts and He certainly did that for me again. You may remember that for the last few years when in Indiana in the summer I speak every day at a lunch club held in one of the local churches. This is for children whose families are on welfare to make sure those children have at least one substantial hot meal a day. This is just seed sewing as I am not allowed to make invitation for prayer or salvation. On the second night this time four children came from non Christian homes who had met me at the club and everyone responded for salvation at the end, two of those, twin girls continued to come every night. On the Saturday night we had a fun time with a bonfire, barbeque and hay ride and every child who had been during the week was there. Many parents joined us including the mother of the twins, a single parent of several children who in the atmosphere just sat down beside the pastor’s wife and opened up about the state of her life and wanting help. It was so wonderful to see God providing for those girls.
The Christian school I had three days and this year I was given more time with the children. I had my usual unlimited time with the whole school each morning then they added each afternoon a session with the top two classes (years seven and eight). We had a lot of very good feedback from the children from both sessions.
The final stop was Denver where I haven’t been for two years but we finished as we had begun with the new thing God is doing. We had the same fourteen children both Friday and Saturday, all from Latin American descent except for two girls who really stood out. They all literally soaked up every word. Everyone responded every session and you visibly saw them receiving by their facial and bodily movements. One five year old managed to sneak his way in and he was a little star. I am no way geared for that age but he reacted just the same as the older ones including in responses for prayer including the final session when he stood like a little dot between two big children and began to speak in tongues along with everyone else. That group left visibly different than when they came in, accompanied by some very excited parents.
So there we have it, all glory, thanks and honour to God for this and all He has done so wonderfully in so many children’s lives during this last exciting year. I cannot say enough times how much I value and appreciate the important role you play in all of this, it’s not what I do but us together faithfully doing what God has called each one of us to do and His mercy that produces the fruit. So again a huge thank you from the bottom of my heart for all you do and give to help these precious children to receive from and begin to be what God wants them to have and be. Have a wonderful blessed Christmas and New Year with whomever you are sharing it with and we look forward to an even more exciting and fulfilling year in 2013.
Much Love & Huge Thanks,