Latest News – December 2020Wednesday 9th December, 2020
Peter & Maureen’s Christmas Newsletter
For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6 | NKJV
Maureen writes: Dear Prayer Partners, A friend wrote, ‘What a bizarre year!’ That sums it up very well!
If told this time last year that in 2020, we wouldn’t be allowed to go to Church, meet together to pray, sing or worship the Lord. Be with our family and visit their homes, share meals with them or hug and kiss them. We must not go out with friends for coffee or a meal. We could not put our arms around a newly bereaved person or go to funerals to show our support because there are too many relatives going and we must not exceed a stated number. Weddings had to be changed or postponed, new grandparents could not visit their children and meet the new family member. Terrorism, stabbings, shootings. Increasing persecution of Christians around the world. Education suspended for months. People needing medical treatment were put on hold and many left in pain. Needing to wear masks and using hand sanitizer! Beside all that the number of natural disasters have been devastating, fires, floods, typhoons, earthquakes, hurricanes, snow storms, the Beast from the East, the hottest November ever recorded and a pandemic sweeping the world! We were warned in Scripture that these things would happen in the last days before Jesus returns, look up for your redemption draws near! Luke 21:28
This year has been tough for everyone! Our struggle has been with Pete’s health issues but we are very grateful that he is so much better. Pete says he feels normal and has been doing DIY around the house but he needs to build up his stamina so we go for walks most days 30-40 minutes.
Anita finds her school work challenging, with doors and windows open and a very long one way system in place, all which are measures to try and reduce the risks of Covid19. At one period of time, 14 members of staff were at home as they all had contracted Covid! All but one have now returned to school.
Rob was made redundant just before Christmas last year. During this time, he has applied for well over a hundred jobs and two weeks before the one year anniversary of being jobless, he secured two jobs! The Lord makes me laugh sometimes! One job is temporary, and the other part time at the moment, so he is working hard juggling them both currently.
Grandson Peter and Larissa are still doing the same jobs, but Larissa’s hours have been cut. Joe is training to be a nuclear police officer.
Lynzi and Paul still work, one for the NHS and the other for the RAF. Lynzi and our grand-daughter Katrina both caught Covid over Easter. Lyn was very poorly for around 4 weeks but didn’t have to go into hospital. Katrina’s only symptoms were loss of taste and smell for a few days. She complained that she couldn’t taste her Easter eggs! Both of them are well now, Praise the Lord! They are delighted to announce that Jack got engaged to Caitlin recently, she is a lovely keen Christian and we are very pleased. Planning a wedding for next year is difficult as they have no idea presently how many guests they can invite.
I am well, and actually better than I have been for years. Giving up dairy, as well as gluten was hard but worth it! My garden was a real oasis during lockdown and I really thank God for it. I do feel for people that have no outdoor space. In the summer we loved having family and friends over in the garden for coffee and a chat, keeping to six at a time and social distancing. The girls came for a few hours on different occasions and Bryan and Alive, (my brother and sister-in-law), even had their Golden Wedding meal in our garden! It was nearly as good as Switzerland where they had been booked to take their whole family!?
Christmas will be different this year but I pray that you all may enjoy the Presence of the Lord and the Peace that He came to bring. I also pray that you and your families be kept safe and well during this pandemic.
Look up, for Jesus is coming back, wouldn’t it be amazing if He returned on the day we celebrate His first coming?
Love from Maureen
PS Looking forward to the day when like St Paul, we find ourselves on the road to Damascus (de-mask-us)
Peter writes: As I think about it, the last year seems to have been a ‘tunnel of illness’ for me, and its only recently that I have begun to see some light at the end. Beginning in January I caught Influenzae A, along with a severe chest infection and Pleurisy, causing an enlarged heart with severe atrial fibrillation! This put me in hospital twice. Then, I had to experiment with the timings that I should take the many types of medication with which they supplied me, in an order in which they didn’t conflict with each other, producing a feeling of ‘the battle of the pills’ raging internally.
Having eventually solved that problem I was attacked by a 4mm Kidney stone resulting in such excruciating pain the paramedics phoned my doctor and requested morphine for me before taking me to hospital again. I was then sent hometo pass the stone naturally. The pain however increased to the point where I was put back into another hospital to be operated on. Unfortunately the surgeon only pushed the stone further into my kidney, and he had to insert a stent until they could get me to a Covid clear hospital for a further operation. After a further two months of agonising waiting together with side effects, which meant I would to spend two thirds of each day in bed, the hospital sent for me again. The same surgeon who originally pushed the stone deeper into my kidney, removed the stent. He said the stone, which had now grown to 5mm, almost fell out on its own. I’ve never seen a happier surgeon!
The hospital overseeing my heart failure has recently referred me to the local Community Heart Failure Nurse, which is a very welcome move. I had my first meeting with her on November 13th (one and a quarter hours – face to face, not that common these days). And I had my second meeting with her colleague yesterday. She has started me on a new heart drug, which has experienced marvellous results on 90% of patients who take it. I am praying that I am part of that 90% and not the other 10%!
Looking to the future I’m still straining at the leash to begin teaching the Contextualised Leadership Development Course for MidWestern Baptist Seminary in Kansas City (to be taught locally). Each time we get close to setting the start date, the Government imposes yet another set of Covid restrictions! We’ve adapted all the materials, received approval from the Dean of MidWestern and also received approval for transmitting the Course to Romania and Poland. If Government restrictions continue to be extended much longer then we may have to begin by making the Course available electronically here too. You may wonder why I am so eager to begin sharing the materials. Let me explain. The Course core subject is Personal Evangelism and Discipleship, and the main reason for my eagerness comes from the effects arising from the Covid Pandemic. I think that it has caused folk to consider their future, and the afterlife more than ever before, and this will result in a host of folk seeking answers to their questions. Those who take the Course will be able to share the Gospel in a friendly and easy manner. Using some of the many methods demonstrated on the Course, I believe it will lead many to make a positive response to the Good News! Is it possible that you may be interested? Contact us for copies of the course brochure and the syllabus – it will be our pleasure to send them to you.
Now let me share something with you which may be a great help if you are connected with a Christian church, charity, or other Christian organisation: The Christian Supply Chain Buying Group. Join this group, which will cost you nothing, and you will be able to save money from loads of different companies supplying things like Beds/Bed Linen; Coffee & Tea; Catering; Furniture; Insurance; Office Products; Print & Design; Photocopiers; Utilities; Telecoms etc. Discounts from companies like Screwfix, Staples, B & Q etc. Look up this Christian Company for more information, and if you would like a free account Allison their Cost Reduction Manager has sent me the following link for you:
Every blessing for a very Happy Christmas