Yesterday I preached my final sermon and taught my last class for the summer at Wellandport, as we said goodbye to our Canadian friends and brethren. Today we will be crossing the border back into the United States.
The past 2 months have been a real joy and a tremendous blessing as Norma Jean and I transition into a new phase in our lives. We determined some time ago to “retire” from what we call located work with one congregation, but not retire from preaching.
The Wellandport brethren have been wonderful. They have graciously received us and welcomed us to make our temporary home with them as we traveled throughout Ontario and shared the Word.
Mike Stephens, the Wellandport preacher, and his lovely wife Sherry have been instrumental in spreading the word about our plans and served to introduce us to many of the brethren in the area. We thank them for their many acts of kindness and encouragement in this endeavor.
The past two months we have presented lessons in Wellandport, Sudbury, Jordan, Toronto, and Smithville. We have preached 26 sermons and taught 18 classes. (That’s a pretty good schedule for a “retired preacher” eh?) The preachers in the area that we’ve met, John Haines, Brian Sullivan, John Maddocks and Peter McPherson, have been welcoming and encouraging. We appreciate each of them for their present and past labors in the Lord.
God has blessed us with good health and strength for our labor, for which we are truly thankful. By His grace, we hope to continue sharing the word as we are given more opportunities.
Several have asked about our schedule for the remainder of 2018. We are going to Chicago and flying out of O’hare this week to embark on our much anticipated 50th anniversary trip to Europe. We will be in both Rome and Athens worshiping with brethren and seeing the sights, as well as enjoying a Mediterranean cruise.
When we return, I have a meeting scheduled in Madrid, Iowa, September 9-12. Followed by a meeting in Birmingham at the Helena church Sept 16-19. We will travel to Florida to attend the Florida College leadership dinner, spend time with our family and celebrate the 4th birthday of our grandsons Roy and Miles.
In October I am speaking for the church in Spruce Pine, North Carolina on October 7th. And then holding a meeting for the Kettering, Ohio, church October 14-17. After a two week stay in the Smoky Mountains, we will return to Florida for the winter months. We anticipate having some preaching opportunities during those months as well.
In addition to gospel meetings already scheduled, we antiicpate returning to Ontario, Canada next summer. We believe the work here as been beneifical. And look forward to future fellowship and additioinal ministry opporunties with these fine brethren
All of our plans, however, are contingent on the Biblical admonition from James 4:13-16:
Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.”
This summer has confirmed our idea that there is a value in the type of ministry in which we’ve been engaged. And I can’t thank the Ontario brethren enough for their encouragement and this endeavor.
As we have time, continue to enjoy good health and possess the necessary resources, Norma Jean and I are looking forward to similar opportunities.
My motto, at least for now is: “Have Bible. Will travel.”
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman