Peterson's August 2008 Prayer Guide
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare of the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; He is my God and I am trusting Him. Ps. 91: 1-2 NLT
Gary writes: What an incredible month July has been, and much busier than the schedule we originally sent out. By the time the month had started, I had many more groups book in, and by the middle of the month we had already set a record for sign-ups to pray for a Bibleless People Group. On one day I had no sooner finished with one group than I turned around and had another, followed by another. The youth pastor from one group said that in three years of Divinity school he had never heard that there were people without access to a Bible in their language. One person was amazed to find out that there were 80 languages spoken in their home country.
A pastor brought about 10 kids aged 5 to 18 years – most younger than 12 – to spend a day with us, going through our summer program. Since they were staying longer, we threw in a special, behind the scenes tour of the office. The kids from this church of less than 250, raised $130,000 for missions in the past 10 years, most of it in the last 3 years. One 15 year old raised $10,000 this past year! I have never met a more mission minded group of kids in my life! Many have already gone overseas on mission trips, and almost all have done trips in the US, and not just easy ones. They were preparing to head to Sturgis, North Dakota for the biggest Biker rally in the world – to witness to some of the toughest people in the world. The kids are fearless!
We’ve had lots of college groups come through this month, but the biggest was the 203 students/leaders from the Navigators, (mentioned in the last prayer guide). They spent most of a Saturday at the Wycliffe office, and I assembled a team that did a fantastic job of informing, inspiring and involving them. We all had a blast! The response was overwhelming too. Over half of the students signed up to pray for a Bibleless people group, the book store did over $3200 in sales, running out of the most popular items. (The profits go toward Bible Translation). The workshops were very well attended, and we were all thanked profusely for allowing them to come. Wow! I got a call at home afterwards asking if Robyn and I would go out to breakfast with a group of them. We met them at a restaurant in Orlando at 7AM on Sunday. What an incredible group of young men, hungry to learn and eager to serve the Lord. And we still made it back in time for church. What a weekend!
Esther arrived home from Australia last Saturday – July 26th.. It was a happy and sad day for us, as we learned that our dear friend, Geoff Morrow, who was Gary’s mentor into this work with Wycliffe, went home to be with the Lord following 2 heart attacks. He will be greatly missed, but he left a wonderful legacy in many, many lives. Please pray with us for his wife, Aileen, and their family in this time of loss.
August is hopefully going to be a slower month. This week we are enjoying a “staycation” – that’s a vacation where you stay at home. I had hoped to go up the East coast of the US and see some of the historic sites, but with high gas (petrol) prices, we decided to stay at home. And you know what? Esther is happy about that!
August 4-8 I was to be away at a retreat for Wycliffe’s Church Relations department. I have been asked to join this and have considerable interest in this aspect of our work. But for now I feel God has me in the right spot, and they have decided I don’t need to be there. We had postponed some groups coming in that week because of my being away, so we’ll see if we can re-connect and bring some in.
August 11-17 is the second installment on our vacation when we will be going two hours up the coast to Flagler Beach. Some good friends are letting us stay in their bungalow near the beach for a week. It will be away from phones and interruptions, so we’re all looking forward to reading books, walks and runs on the beach, watching some old movies and playing board games together.
August 18th – Josiah starts his last year of High-school. Where has the time gone?
August 22nd – Esther heads back to Trinity College for her third year.
The rest of the month I am filling in for people who are away, and am on call for any group that may walk through the door or book to come and visit on short notice – a common occurrence. I will also be getting ready for the fall when the school groups and home-school groups start booking, and we as a staff will be heading to various teachers conventions to promote our WordSpring education program. We will have two key staff away on a strategic overseas assignment with Wycliffe during the fall, so no doubt we will all have to share the load. I am also trying to train more staff to help me run the Mission Encounter program.
Thanks for your prayers. This has been the busiest summer I’ve had, but with some of the greatest results. And I have shared with many groups – especially with the Navigators – that folk like you were praying for them, and that’s why God was talking to them. We all make a great team! Have a great month!