update, September, ’18

September 10th, 2018

How did your summer end? I know it’s not technically over yet, but in reality, most of us have already shifted gears and are launched into fall activities. If you’ve got children in school you don’t have a choice.
For us, the last part of summer was busy. We’ve been working on getting a new septic system installed for the better part of year, finally it got installed. The installation came right as our two daughters, Debbie and Tammi, came for a few days to help us get started on painting and redecorating our family/dining room. We didn’t plan to do all these things at the same time, but as they say, “The best laid plans of mice and men….” Well, in the midst of all the work, some of it hard physical work that we aren’t used to, an opportunity opened up.
I was writing out a check for the septic installer, in our gazebo, when our conversation turned to the frustrations of unexpected delays, like weather and government permits and approvals. I shared a Bible verse I had just read. My Bible was still open to the section: “Because of the Lords great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail; they are new every morning, great is your faithfulness!” In a few minutes we were talking about how having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ can really help. And, Praise God, he prayed with me to accept Jesus Christ as his personal Savior. That made my day, and capped off the summer. Pray for John, that he might “grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.”
And as you pray for Him, please pray for me, as I preach at Christ Community Church of Willoughby the next two Sundays. Pray also for Mur; she teaches the next two Wednesdays, as her women’s Bible class launches another year. And continue to pray for the Radio outreach.
How can we pray for you and yours?


Celebrating our 59th Wedding Anniversary

August 14th, 2018

Believe it or not, today, August 8, we are celebrating our 59th Anniversary!!! What a journey it has been. It started with just the two of us. Now, all these years later there are 32 of us. Pray for us, that our whole family will all “grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus Christ.”
Samuel Chadwick put it this way: “The one concern of the Devil is to keep the saints from praying. He fears nothing from prayer-less studies, prayer-less work, prayer-less religion. He laughs at our toil, mocks at our wisdom, but trembles when we pray.”
Besides seeing family and friends, and working on projects in our house and yard, here are a few ministry updates:
Mur had her Women’s Bible Class over for a mid-summer lunch in our gazebo. She also had some Amish women friends over for a lunch.
I’ve been playing golf with a group of guys from our church on Tuesday nights this summer. After 9 holes some of us gather to discuss a chapter from one of the books I wrote, A Call to Responsible Freedom. A number have shared how helpful the book has been. One of the guys I’ve played with a couple of times has opened up to me. Pray I might be able to help him discern God’s will for him, and then respond by faith and obedience.
A few weeks ago we went to a picnic with folks with connections to Wheaton College. One guy said he and his wife were friends of Wanda Devine, widow of a former morning radio host on WCRF. Having worked with her former husband I gave him a copy of one of my books to pass on to her. She wrote a week later: “Just wanted to thank you for your book ‘Light in the Night for Living in the Day.’ I just finished the book this morning and it indeed was a huge encouragement to me. I’ve even shared some of the contents with a dear Christian friend who has gone thru huge trials for several years. I like the way the book was written: deep, lots of scripture and applications, and yet simple enough for all to understand.”
A few weeks ago I talked with another widowed friend. He shared how he was helped through reading my daily devotional book on Romans, Unlocking the Mystery of the Ages, last year. I wanted to share these with you to encourage passing on a book or pamphlet or tract or CD or DVD, or your word of encouragement or your testimony. A paraphrase of Jeremiah 8:20, “The harvest is almost over, the summer is almost gone, and there are many who are not saved, or encouraged or restored.” Make the most of what is left of summer. We’ve had opportunities to do and see things, but there are still opportunities to do what Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes 11:1: “Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again.” Or what Jesus shared in the parable of the sower of seed, the Word of God (Matthew 13). Before this summer ends share with someone what God has done for you.
A couple of months ago I shared an email from a radio listener asking prayer for her husband who was unlawfully put in prison to be released. Here is an update from Diana: “In Montana, my husband has been freed from jail, and exonerated of all charges. Hallelujah! God is great and powerful, and is victorious over the enemy. Now he has a marvelous testimony, which we’re sure will impact many people. While he was in jail he shared God’s Word and 54 persons accepted Christ into their lives. Fellow prisoners asked him for spiritual advice, and even the jail workers asked him to talk with the other prisoners. The level of suicide deaths went down. All of this is for God’s Glory! We are so thankful to God! Please continue praying for us. Again, thank you for your radio program. I get much help from the messages and testimonies that you share. May God always bless you!” Prayer truly dose change things.
Remember Galatians 6:9-10: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the right time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”


Update from Lud and Mur

July 13th, 2018

The last month has just blown by. We’ve gone from hot to cold and then very hot weather. I’ve been working on cleaning/sealing/staining our deck (glad to check that off my “to do” list). We’ve enjoyed our summer home – our gazebo, right off the deck. Whenever we can we eat our meals out there, and read, relax, pray and enjoy. We entertain there as well. Mur had her women’s Bible study class summer lunch there the other day (my job was to help park cars in our driveway!) God has been so good to us.
We had Benjamin, our grandson, here for 5 days. That’s what we try to do with our grandkids when they turn 10. We got to do many neat things with him. After breakfast we studied the life of Stephen in Acts 6-7. Then the rest of his family came out and we did a quick visit to Niagara Falls, Canada side. What a blast. Jeff and son Matthew zip-lined down the river side by the falls. No, I didn’t join them! I have enough excitement in my life.
An item for praise! I just got word that the network in Charlotte, NC which carries my program has acquired a station In Chicago, IL. This is the largest city in America that their network covers, 5.5 million potential listeners. Please pray that many find the station, WYHI 99.9 FM, and begin listening, including my program, which airs Monday through Friday at 9:02 am right after the news.
A significant number of our friends have experienced health crises recently. We’ve tried ministering to them and praying for them. Pray that God would give us wisdom in this and that He would graciously minister to them and their families. Included in this was the recent home-going of Bob Nekola, one of the founding members and leaders of our church. I was unable to be present for his memorial service, but produced a 5 minute video which was shared at the service.


Update

June 21st, 2018

We just finished another trip. This time it included a brief time to just relax and enjoy the area around Boyne Falls, MI. Then we crossed the Mackinaw Bridge to Upper Michigan. After visiting with some of Mur’s relatives we drove to Wheaton where we again enjoyed the piano recitals of Matthew and Benjamin, watched Benjamin play in a soccer match and celebrated Matthew’s graduation party from HS. This fall he will be going to Wheaton College. From there we drove to Shelbyville, IN to visit with Mike and Sarah Farnsley and their three children (our great grand-children) in their new location, Mike’s family homestead. Along the way we were in touch with a few other folk. What a blessing to share life with so many.

Since returning home we’ve had our hands full getting caught up. Quite a few of our friends have experienced physical problems. God has graciously kept us feeling well, and our whole family is enjoying good health, God’s blessing and provision in the midst of some transitions.

We have a few more summer “get together” plans. Hopefully you too will enjoy wonderful times throughout the summer months with family and friends. Welcome, if you are coming our way. Make the most of these times, and ask God to use you for His glory.

Lud will be preaching at Christ Community Church, 36407 Ridge Road, Willoughby, OH, this Sunday, June 24, at their 10:00 AM Worship Service. Please pray for God’s anointing and blessing.

It’s always a joy to share answers to your prayers in our behalf:

I got a call the other day from a listener to my radio program. He expressed appreciation for the daily programs and how much they have helped him in his Bible reading and study. He wanted to get a copy of my book on Bible Study Methods, which I gladly sent him. He represents my target audience, those interested in learning how to discover and apply the rich treasures found in God’s Word. Pray for Arthur, and ask that many other listeners to the program will be inspired to follow his example.

Here is an excerpt from a letter written by a 60 year old prisoner in Chesapeake, VA:
I entered prison in April, 2015. I got a Bible and read it from cover to cover in three months, the very best thing that has happened to me, “my spiritual boot-camp.” Prison is “God’s potter’s house. I’m being chastened, corrected, disciplined and groomed for good works.” I can only get a good radio reception outside, weather permitting, when we go for morning outdoors recreation. I only have time for two programs, Getting God’s Message, being one of them. I long for and thirst for growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Your ministry is very inspiring, encouraging, informative, illuminating and illustrative. Those two minutes, on the mornings I’m blessed to listen to your program are like a Christmas morning unwrapping gifts!!! Keep up the great service of the Lord and thanks for your faithfulness. I’m due to be released in 2024, so I have plenty of time (God willing) to prepare to trust, to obey and to serve. Prayerfully yours, “a humble servant and slave for Christ Jesus.” Everett.

And from a dear friend:
I sat here praying this morning for you and Mur and suddenly found myself praising and thanking God for how you have mentored me in so many ways…. taking the time to help me, pray through tough passages of God’s Word, encouraging me in my walk with Jesus, and giving me opportunities to minister over the years.
I also thought of you when I recently had the privilege of explaining the Gospel to a 97-year-old man and his 70-year-old daughters at a local restaurant… and led him (and his two daughters) in a prayer to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord as we all enjoyed breakfast together. Why did God keep this man alive so long? I have to believe that, in His abundant grace, he knew June 4th, 2018 would be the day he gave ME the chance to explain God’s awesome plan for humanity to these three individuals… and their chance to respond. Wow… talk about a highlight for 2018. I just wanted to let you know how grateful I am for you in my life.


update for May

May 23rd, 2018

Dear praying friends. May has been a full month, and it’s not over yet. Mur’s women’s Bible Class had their last meetings of the year – they are taking the summer off. I’ve met with many of those I meet with regularly and a few extra men. It is always a joy to see them grow in the Lord. We all need encouragement now and then. A highlight for me this month was being able to witness at Tulane University in New Orleans the UNITED STATES ARMY COMMISSIONING of a young man, 2LT Hunter Spires, who also was honored as # 1 in the class. I started meeting with Hunter at McDonalds or Panera when he was just a kid almost 10 years ago. We’d have a Coke or Ice cream and talk about life. Now he’s an officer in the Army! And he insists on picking up the tab. What a ride he’s been on, and it’s about to get even more exciting. I’m really proud of him and his walk with the Lord Jesus Christ. Pray for God’s blessing on his life as he serves God and our country.
This weekend our grandson, Matthew, will be graduating from High School and preparing this summer for starting his college career at Wheaton College next fall.
Please continue to pray for the radio ministry which touches thousands daily around the world.
We love and appreciate each of you. Lud and Mur