FIELDS WHITE UNTO HARVEST

Pete in the white cotton fields

When Jesus took time out of his busy schedule to speak to a lowly Samaritan woman–a woman who had been married five times and was currently living with a man who was not her husband–he astonished both his disciples and the sinful Samaritan woman. Why would Jesus waste his time in a Samaritan community? After all, the folks there didn’t even worship in the temple in Jerusalem. Even worse, why would he waste his time with such a sinful woman?

Jesus had eternity in mind as he spoke to the Samaritan woman and he later admonished his disciples, “Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, then comes the harvest?’ Look, I tell you , lift up your eyes, and see that the fields are white for harvest!”

Cotton ready for harvest

When Jesus spoke of the harvest, he was not talking about cotton and he was not talking about wheat. He was talking about souls, the souls of men, women, and children, no matter where they came from. By the end of the story, Most of the Samaritans from that town believed in Jesus.

Can you imagine living in a town where the majority of citizens are Christians?

While we were in Georgia for the Sunbelt Festival we were surrounded by white cotton fields that were ready for harvest. During this time, one verse kept repeating itself to my soul. I tell you, lift up your eyes and see that the fields are white for harvest (John 4:35).

And at the Sunbelt Festival the fields were ready for harvest!

About 4,000 (4 times what you see here) walking sticks were given out which means 4,000 people heard the story of the beads–many for the first time.

The Sunbelt Festival is our largest event. Even with 6-8 folks sharing the gospel at one time, the line outside our tent was often 20-30 folks long.

Before the gates open each morning volunteers gather for prayer.

But that’s not when prayer begins. As soon as an event is scheduled, Pete and I begin praying for the people God will bring our way. We ask him to prepare their hearts to receive the gospel. We ask him to prepare us and give us strength, love for each person who comes our way, and the words to say. Whatever happens at an event is God’s doing, not ours. We are simply grateful and overjoyed that God would use weak people like us.

What a blessing to work with these wonderful folks!

Steve and Chris(front) fellow workers from New York worked countless hours at coordinating the event. Becky and Walter (right) offered their beautiful home so volunteers would have a comfortable place away from home and delicious meals for our entire stay. They also volunteered at the event. On the left, Pete and I. By the time we pulled our RV out of Walter and Becky’s yard, we felt we had known them all our lives, and knew we had made forever friends. How precious is our fellowship with fellow believers!

What a blessing this group of teens were! They all knew Jesus.

They were so excited about their relationship with Jesus and allowed me to pray for them that they will each follow the path God has for them. When I asked if I could take their picture to remind me to pray for them, they agreed. They then asked to take my picture so they could pray for me. What a gift these young folks were. God is going to use them in ways we cannot imagine.

My precious new friend Sheryl who kept the restrooms spotless.

Sheryl not only kept the rest rooms clean, she greeted everyone with a kind word and welcoming smile. Most important, she encouraged everyone to stop by The Fellowship of Christian Farmers’ booth. She reminded me of the words of Jesus found in Luke 9:48b “For he who is least among you all is the one who is great.”

The number of salvations at Sunbelt has not officially been put together. But God knows.

In one day, just one of the eight volunteers was blessed to lead 30 people to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Praise God for each person who will now spend eternity in heaven.

From the Sunbelt Festival in Moultrie Georgia with an attendance of 200,000 to 300,000, Pete and I made our way to Lake Wales Florida and Pioneer Days with an average attendance of 10,000.

The journey there wasn’t what we expected. Along the way, the trailer jack broke and we ran out of water in the RV which, among other things, meant we had to use costly bottled drinking water to flush the toilet. When things like this happen, all Pete and I can do is laugh and compare our tiny trials to those of the Apostle Paul. There’s no room for complaining when that comparison is made!

There is no way to adequately thank Ron and Deb (coral shirt) and Liz for all their help!

Pete sharing the story of the beads. The Lake Wales event offered many opportunities to share with families.
Sometimes God calls us to plant seeds, sometimes to water, and sometimes to harvest. We never know how he will use us. What we know is this: for the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

One of my most moving memories during the Pioneer Days took place when I shared with a group of three people, a couple in their 50’s and the woman’s aunt. The couple was due to be married the following Friday. After sharing the gospel, it was evident that only one person (the woman who was about to be married) was a believer. We talked some more. At one point the believer said, “I know I should not be unequally yoked, but I love him.” As we continued in conversation, I knew beyond doubt that God was giving me the words. The aunt was eager to pray to receive Christ, but the gentleman seemed like a wall was built around his heart. As the aunt prayed to ask Jesus into her heart, it was if the wall around his heart crumbled and he prayed along, tears running down his cheeks. He and his new wife agreed to read the Bible together every day, starting in the book of John. Afterward Pete and I were honored and humbled to pray over this couple, asking God to bless their marriage and use them as a couple to draw others to him. Isn’t God good!

Pete spoke with a teenage boy who knew Jesus as his Savior but was struggling with continued sin in his life. This young man was filled with guilt and very down on himself. Pete shared Scripture and spoke with him about the difference between conviction (which comes from God) and condemnation, which comes from the enemy and offers no hope for the future. They ended their time together with prayer. A few minutes later the pastor from a church who had a booth at the event came to Pete and said, “I don’t know what you told that boy, but I want you to know it made a difference. Thank you.”

Sometimes God allows us to pray for needs other than salvation. It was a blessing to pray with a mom whose son has stage 4 cancer.

Because our son had stage 4 cancer, I understood this woman’s broken heart. I don’t know if her son will survive as our son has, but she was able to tell me about her son’s faith in Jesus and we shared together the hope that is ours in Jesus Christ. I am confident this meeting was set up by Christ.

By the end of Pioneer Days thirty people had prayed to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior.

Deb sharing the bead story

We praise God for the opportunity to share him and the life-changing story of salvation wherever we go, especially at events with the Fellowship of Christian Farmers. We are blessed to work alongside some of the most wonderful people and we are blessed by you, our amazing supporters. We couldn’t do it without you. I can’t tell you how many times an unexpected gift came in the mail and within days we had a need that would have prevented us from sharing at an event had it not been for that gift. I wish I could share with you the confidence and strength that comes because of your prayers. It’s almost the official month of Thanksgiving. And at the top of our list is your name. Thank you. Thank you for all you do to make this ministry possible. Because of your prayers and gifts, people who were on their way to hell are now on their way to heaven. Praise God!

UPCOMING EVENTS

November 6 Dragon Boat Festival Lake Hernando, FL

November 20 Haven Holiday Market Winter Haven, FL

January 15-16 Manatee Festival Crystal River, FL

January 29-February 4 ECHO work week Ft Myers, FL

February 26-27 Swamp Cabbage Festival La Belle, FL

March 3-5 Pioneer Days Wauchula, FL

March 5-6 Strawberry Festival Floral City, FL

April 26-28 Flowertown Festival Summerville, SC

We also have applications pending for the Edison Festival of Lights in Ft Myers, FL, the largest event in SW Florida, and the Cape Coral Craft Fair. Please pray that our applications will be approved.

  • Doors will open for more events
  • Bill’s continued recovery
  • Our health, that we will remain healthy and able to continue in ministry
  • Our car and RV’s health. Right now our car won’t start. We are bringing it in on Monday. Pray it will not be too costly a repair.
  • Pray for growth of all those who have recently prayed to receive Jesus Christ and his offer of salvation.
  • Pray that God will prepare us for our upcoming events.
  • Pray that God will prepare the hearts of those we will speak with.
  • Pray for God’s continued provision for ministry.
  • Pray that we will be accepted for the craft fair and Edison Festival of Lights. This will be a huge miracle!
  • Pray for our nation and the freedom to continue to share Jesus with a needy world.
  • Pray for wisdom and provision as we decide whether or not it’s God’s will for us to travel to Louisiana for disaster relief.

Thank you for following our blog and supporting us with your prayers and gifts. We love you and look forward to seeing you at an upcoming event. May God continue to bless you and may you continue to glorify HIM. Feel free to contact us at sandyspieces@gmail.com or 14880 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda, FL 33955.

We continue to be held…

In His Grip,

Pete and Sandy Singer

IN TIMES LIKE THESE

But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power (2Timothy 2:1-5).

Turn on the television or open your computer, and a flood of all the traits Paul warned us about in the last days will swamp you. These same words would describe us, if it weren’t for Jesus and his saving power in our lives.

Even in times like these, when it appears like the end of this age is a blink-of-the-eye away, Jesus is still in the business of changing lives and saving souls.

And that’s just what he did in Summerville, SC at the Flowertown Festival last week!

Chris, Steve, Pete, Sue, and Pastor Rob handed out 1700 walking sticks at the Flowertown Festival in Summerville, South Carolina. Over 100 souls were saved at this event! We look forward to heading back to South Carolina in March.

Pete and I are grateful that God has given us the opportunity to minister with the Fellowship of Christian Farmers International.

We read the words of Jesus in Matthew 18:12-14.

What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray?”

There can be no greater joy than being used of God to pray with a person as they come to Christ. Each time someone prays to receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, a person literally changes the direction of their life from heading to hell to on their way to heaven.

These are miracles we are blessed to celebrate. And as you read our blog and support us with your prayers and/or gifts, we pray you will catch the joy of these heavenly celebrations as well.

Empty Chairs

As is customary, the day before an event is set-up day. Flowertown Festival is such a big event that it took two days to get everything ready. The tables, chairs, and walking sticks had to be unloaded and tents set up. In this picture the chairs are empty, but within 24 hours folks will be sitting in them as they listen to the gospel story and make the most important decision of their lives. Miracles happen to folks sitting in these chairs.

Not everyone makes it to the chairs. Sometimes the story is shared in the streets.

It’s not all serious business. God loves to hear us laugh and if you know Pete, you know he gives God and others many reasons to laugh. After witnessing to this police officer who was already a believer, Pete asked if they could take a picture together. “I want to send it to my wife,” he said. “She’s home taking care of our sick dog.” This is the picture that appeared on my phone that evening.

You’ll be glad to know Pete is still alive, even after this picture.

Pete was witnessing to a little boy who was about five years old. He showed him the gold bead on the walking stick and said, “The gold bead reminds us of heaven. Do you know what heaven is?”

The little boy shook his head. “No.”

That’s when the mom spoke up. “You know what heaven is,” she said. “Your dad is a pastor.” And with that, an impish grin grew across the boy’s face.

It was a joy to give Bibles to two folks who had recently received Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Prior to stopping by the Christian Farmers’ booth these new believers had no Bible.

Thanks to supporters like you, we were able to meet that need. We are ready to order a couple more cases of God’s Word. It’s exciting to know that God already knows whose hands the new Bibles will be placed in.

As I write this, Pete and I are parked for the night in a Cracker Barrel parking lot, on our way to our next event in Moultrie, GA. After Georgia, we head to Lake Wales, Florida for Pioneer Days. Stop by for a visit if you are in the area.

We have an extremely busy season ahead of us.

  • October 16-21 Moultrie, GA Sunbelt
  • October 23-24 Lake Wales, FL Pioneer Days
  • November 6 Dragon Boat Festival
  • November 20 Winter Haven, FL Haven Holiday
  • November 13, December 4, 11, 18 Punta Gorda, FL Farmers’ Market (hopefully)
  • 2022 Schedule will be posted in the next blog!

The Story We Share

Gold reminds us of heaven, a wonderful place God has prepared for all who believe in Him. Jesus is the only WAY to heaven. John 14:6

The Dark bead reminds us of sin. We have all sinned and sin separates us from God. Romans 3:23

The Red bead speaks of the blood Jesus shed on the cross. Romans 5:8

The White bead reminds us of purity. The blood of Jesus washes away ALL our sin Acts 3:19 and 1John 1:7.

The Green beads speaks of spiritual growth. 2Peter 3:18.

  • Please continue to pray for Bill Brown’s healing.
  • Pray for new believers that they will grow and find good Bible preaching churches.
  • Pray for those we will share with in the coming weeks that God will prepare them to hear the Good News and prepare us, giving us the right words and tender hearts.
  • Pray that God will continue to meet our needs according to His riches.
  • Pray that the RV will continue to run without problems and we will have safe travel.
  • Please pray for our health and strength. Pete’s migraine headaches have continued to get worse and he is in debilitating pain for days on end.
  • Pray for more open doors for the Fellowship of Christian Farmers.
  • Pray for wisdom as we consider our role in a “Boots on the Ground” FCFI disaster relief and ministry opportunity in areas hit hard by this years hurricanes.
  • Pray for Pete’s brother-in-law Phil who has spent the last few months hospitalized with very serious health problems. Pray also for his wife (Pete’s sister) Diane who has been by his side every day.

Thank you so much for your faithful prayers. We are blessed to know folks are holding us up in prayer. We’re in our 70’s so we need lots of holding up, right?

If God leads you to support us, you may do so via the giving page or by contacting us at: 14880 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda, FL 33955. We can be reached by phone at 239-849-5527 or 239-233-4359.

Thanks for reading and sharing the blog. Love you all.

In His Mighty Grip,

Pete and Sandy Singer

ALL BECAUSE OF JESUS

Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares (Hebrews 13:1-2).

They were the most horrible RV neighbors imaginable.

To start with, they parked their truck in our car’s parking spot, directly behind our RV. Then, just days after their arrival, they squeezed a second large RV into a spot meant for one. Nights were a noisy nightmare with the men sitting at picnic tables drinking beers and loudly speaking in a language other than English. Their children stayed up late into the night, running around with little adult supervision and throwing ear-piercing temper tantrums.

In our hearts, we saw these strangers as our enemy.

To make matters worse, every time one of the children saw our dog they grabbed her curly tail and pulled, laughing at her struggle to get away.

Just when we thought we could take no more, God asked a question.

Has God ever used his heavenly megaphone to speak to your heart? God turned the volume to max when he spoke to us.

“Every person you meet, likeable or unlikeable, is someone I’ve placed in your life for a reason.”

Pete and I had never thought of our neighbors as coming from heaven…quite the opposite, actually.

But God opened our eyes and we knew that we had to find a way to share God’s love with them.

All it took was sharing an ice cream bar with their children.

The next day their mother brought us two delicious homemade muffins.

Within days, she opened up to us and as we listened to her story we learned that she was the only Christian in her group. Her husband had been living for the Lord, but since starting this job he had fallen away and no longer attended church. She felt trapped and alone in a strange place.

We were grateful that God had kept us from complaining about the inconvenience these neighbors had caused because if we had, it may have cost us the opportunity to pray with this precious woman. We prayed for her husband, the salvation of those she was traveling with, and and joyfully shared the story of the beads with her. We gave her walking sticks for each person in her group and she was anxious to share what each bead represented with her family. Thanks to a generous donation of Spanish language Bibles, we left each of our neighbors with their own Bible. We are so grateful for the time we had with this precious woman. Within a day of our last encounter, she and her son had returned to Texas for the start of the school year.

Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person (Colossians 4:5-6).

We are thankful for each opportunity to share the salvation message this summer and for the many lessons God taught us.

Toward the end of the summer, Pete’s niece, who lives about two hours north of where we camp, contacted us asking if we could meet with her. We met at the resort where she lives and works.

We enjoyed time on the lake, and most important, she shared her heart. Pete’s niece knows Jesus as her Savior, but recent life events had taken a toll on her. What a great joy it was to share God’s word and love with her…and, of course, a walking stick with the beads to remind her of the salvation that is hers in Jesus Christ.

During our time up north, Pete’s brother-in-law became seriously ill. We visited and prayed with him and Pete’s sister. Please keep Phil and Diane in your prayers as Phil recovers. We were so blessed by this stone located on the hospital grounds.

By the time we had to head back south, we were different people than when we arrived. We’d seen God open doors that had always been barred shut when it came to talking about Jesus. We’d been at the center of God’s sense of humor when we led a Bible study in the game room at our campground, a place where every few minutes, the coin operated horse neighed in the loudest, most high pitched voice imaginable. We’d shared walking sticks with folks from all walks of life. God had grown our faith and…

He was about to grow it more.

We said nothing to anyone. We believed the Lord wanted us to keep our situation between God and us alone.

We didn’t have enough money to make it home.

It seemed like we worked and reworked the budget a million different ways. There’d be no stopping at camp grounds, eating out would be very limited, we’d make certain we wouldn’t have to buy diesel in Illinois where prices are unbelievably high.

The lowest we could bring the budget down to was $2000, which included $50 per day for propane. Among other things, propane fuels the air conditioning when the RV isn’t running. It had been a record breaking summer of heat and drought so we knew that no matter how many windows we opened, we couldn’t make the trip without air conditioning.

But for most of the trip we did exactly that.

God gave us cloudy, cool, rainy weather. Praise God, we had no need for air conditioning until we reached Georgia.

We kept a close eye on diesel prices that seemed to be going up with each passing day. We were traveling close to the Labor Day holiday so the average price was running over $3.50 per gallon. One day when we were down to less than a quarter tank we had no choice but to pull off the highway for fuel. When we did, we could not believe our eyes. The station at that very exit was charging $2.86 a gallon, an amazing savings since our tank holds 100 gallons!

Pete still weeps in gratitude when he looks back on the day that our fuel gauge read half a tank. A few minutes later, when he looked again the gauge was at 3/4 full!

By the time we pulled into our Florida campground, we had spent $1299, a miraculous $800 under budget.

Jesus, only Jesus, could bring us home so far under budget. We don’t have words to express how grateful we are for his provision. We are even more grateful for the opportunity God gave for our faith to grow.

It was just the fuel we needed for the upcoming season of ministry with The Fellowship of Christian Farmers.

Pete and I thank each of you who share our blog, support us with your prayers, and with your gifts. You are precious to us and we treasure your heart to see people come to Jesus.

In our last blog we asked you to pray for Bill Brown who has an aggressive cancer. Bill is our “boss” in the ministry, responsible for ministry in the eastern part of the country from New York to Florida. Bill has started treatment and so far everything is going better than anticipated. Praise God! Please continue to keep Bill and his wife Kathy in your prayers. In the mean time, Pete and I, along with others, will be traveling more. Please pray that all our needs will be met, according to his riches in glory. We know beyond doubt that Jesus is able.

Our October and November Schedule

October 4 leave for Edisto South Carolina for Flowertown Festival.

October 5-11 Flowertown Festival.

October 16 leave for Sunbelt Expo in Moultri, Georgia.

October 18-21 Sunbelt Expo.

October 22 Leave for Lake Wales, Florida Pioneer Days.

October 23-24 Pioneer Days.

November 6 Dragon Boat Festival in Lake Hernando, Florida.

November 20 Haven Holiday in Winter Haven, Florida.

We have many more upcoming events and will continue to update you. Please pray for our October and November schedule In this way:

  1. God will prepare us by giving us a passion for souls and love for each person we speak with. Pray that he will give us the right words.
  2. Pray that God will prepare the hearts of those we speak with so they will respond to the gospel, saying yes to Jesus.
  3. Pray for Bill’s healing. He is so passionate to share Jesus with folks so this time off the road is difficult.
  4. Pray for our vehicles to run smoothly and that God will provide all we need.
  5. Pray for our health and safety as we travel.

If you are close to any of the places we will be ministering, please stop by. We would love to see you.

Thank you for taking the time to read this long blog. We love you!

In His Grip,

Pete and Sandy Singer

THE QUESTION THAT WILL NOT GO AWAY… “WOULD I?”

I started to write an entirely different post, one updating the opportunities God has given us over the last three months–the folks He allowed us to minister to and the walking sticks we have given away. But God clearly said, “NO. Save that for your next post. Write about your last Sunday in Minnesota…and the question that will not go away.”

Romans 8:35-39 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Our son , Peter, carrying his grandson Jesse on his shoulders. How fast time has gone.

On that last Minnesota Sunday, our son and his wife, all three of our Minnesota grandchildren and their spouses, three family dogs…and Jesse, our precious great-grandson came for a Sunday cookout at our campsite.

When they arrived, little Jesse with his fire-engine-red hair and contagious grin, proudly wore his Sunday school name tag. According to Jesse, his teacher had taught the class about the really nice boy who wore the pretty robe with lots of colors and the very mean guys who took the nice boy’s robe and threw him in a big hole.

Joseph’s story was the same Bible story God used to bring me to Jesus when I was 12 years old.

I just knew Sunday was going to be a wonderful day.

We climbed the man-made mountain in the county park that borders our campsite and, like our granddaughter Emily, felt as if we had climbed to the top of the world (for certain our legs felt that way).

We ran down mountains, laughing all the way. I’m happy to report not one skinned knee or twisted ankle resulted from our folly.

We ate invisible hamburgers prepared by chef Jesse and we declared them delicious.

Pete, otherwise known as Great grandpa, followed Jesse up the mountain.

Cassie taught her dog how to swing.

We played games and later gathered outside for a picnic meal seasoned with typical “Singer humor.” It was if we didn’t have a care in the world.

And we didn’t.

Not even when we gathered around the picnic table to pray.

We stood out in the open, everyone’s head bowed and hands folded, and we offered thanks to God for the food and for our family.

When we prayed, not one family member feared for his/her life. We didn’t have to hide under cover of the forest or secretly whisper our thanks.

Proudly wearing his Sunday school name tag, little Jesse ran and played, his laughter echoing from one end of the camp ground to the other. He could freely climb the mountain in the government run park wearing that Christian tag and not one authority was there to insist it be removed.

Or worse.

Our family could openly be who we are.

Followers of Jesus.

I often wonder how long we have remaining before our freedom of religion, especially our freedom to share the Gospel and live out the Great Commission, will be stripped away. Most see our freedoms eroding. That is why, mingled with the joy of that Sunday were heartbreaking thoughts of believers in other parts of the world, places where being a Christian or telling others about Jesus almost certainly leads to death.

Places like Afghanistan.

As I’m sure you have, Pete and I have been on our knees for the people of Afghanistan, crying out to our LORD. We have no idea what it is like for these precious people who are literally “putting their necks on the line” that Christ may be glorified in and through them, even if it means horrendous torture or death.

Their children cannot wear Sunday school name tags in public, as our Jesse did.

It is not safe for fathers to openly lead their families in prayer, as Pete did when we gathered on that Sunday. It is not safe for children to learn Bible stories. And praying to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior comes with risks greater than those in our worse nightmares.

I have tried to imagine what it would be like handing out walking sticks and sharing the Gospel on a busy street corner in Afghanistan. When my thoughts go there, a gut-wrenching question comes to mind, a question that will not go away.

“Would I?”

“Under threat of being beheaded, would I still be passionate to share Jesus? Would I still hand out The Fellowship of Christian Farmers’ walking sticks and witness to those who do not yet know Jesus as their Savior?

We have all read stories of Christians in Afghanistan. We have prayed for them. We have cried over their bravery and pain.

If someone tried to silence me, threatening me with torture and death for myself and those I love, would I deny the calling God has placed on my life? For Americans, it’s easy to witness, easy to live for Christ. Sure, unlike years in the past, there are places we are not welcome. But, to be honest, the price of openly being a follower of Jesus Christ is no greater than having an unbeliever look at us and roll their eyes, or at worse listen to a few unkind words.

II recently read a missionary’s account of one Afghan Christian who said he had no desire to flee his homeland. He cared so deeply about the eternal destiny of his neighbors that he was openly going door-to-door telling them about Jesus and praying with all who wanted to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Because of the Taliban takeover, he didn’t know how long he would be able to continue witnessing in such a bold way before he was arrested, tortured, and put to death. But he had no intension of stopping until his arrest. This man’s Paul-like zeal feeds my question. Would I?

Do you ask the same question? Under threat of torture and death, would I openly live out my Christian faith?

At the risk of sounding preachy, I believe it is time for American Christians to ask themselves the “Would I?” question. We do not know how long we can count on the freedoms we so enjoy. One of the reasons I love the Fellowship of Christian Farmers’ walking stick approach is that it is so easy to share the salvation message. It’s simple–as simple and uncomplicated as Jesus intended salvation to be.

Pete and I would love for you to join us at an event when we are in your area this fall and winter. And you will have more opportunities than ever before.

Just yesterday we learned the sad news that Bill Brown (center) has been diagnosed with an aggressive cancer and must begin treatment immediately. Bill undoubtedly has more passion to see souls come to Jesus than anyone we have known. Bill lives in upstate New York and is responsible for the work of the Christian Farmers from New York all the way down to Florida in the eastern third of our country. He has asked Pete and I to be responsible for the events here in the south since he will be unable to take care of them. Of course, we agreed. That means Pete and I will be doing quite a bit more traveling this year.

And it all starts in just a few weeks at the beginning of October!

I will be sending out another post in a week or two updating everyone on our schedule and sharing stories from this summer. In the mean time, will you pray for Bill and his wife Kathy as they go through the weeks ahead? Especially pray for Bill’s healing. Please keep our Afghan brothers and sisters in prayer as well as the Taliban and Isis, that many will receive Christ through the testimony of the brave believers they seek to harm. And please pray for Pete and me–that we will remain healthy during this time. Please pray for the Lord to supply our needs as our traveling schedule will require additional funds. Thank you so much for your prays.

Thank you also to each of you who support us.

We can always be reached at 239-849-5527 or 239-233-4359.

By mail 14880 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda, Florida 33955.

We love you!

In His Grip,

Pete and Sandy Singer

WHEN GOD OPENS A DOOR

“At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ…” Colossians 4:3

It didn’t seem to make a difference that we had prayed for over nine months, or that those who so faithfully support us had been praying in agreement for open doors in Minnesota.

Every door seemed to not only be closed, but also chained shut, keeping the message of salvation securely out.

Despite our discouragement, Pete and I continued to pray and ask others to do the same. And yet, every time we contacted a farmers’ or flea market, or any community event asking to rent a spot to set up our Christian Farmers booth, the response was the same.

“We do not allow any religious groups.”

How can this be? I asked myself. Isn’t his America?

We did what we could, handing out walking sticks around our campground, in restaurants and gas stations, and we started a Bible study at our camp ground. But it seemed not many campers were interested in a summer Bible study.

I’d forgotten about Minnesota’s distinct culture, how after a long winter, with snow and winds so ferocious that snow covers the windows and doors, most Minnesotans are ready for outdoor fun. And in Minnesota, Land of 10,000 Lakes, outdoor fun means boating, fishing, and time at the cabin. There is little time for campground Bible studies. For many, little time for God.

It was a Friday night in early July when my sister Diane called. “They’re having a craft fair in Anoka tomorrow,” she said. “Would you like to go?” I remembered Diane talking about the Anoka craft fair. It was her favorite. Pete and I knew it was one of the most well-attended craft fairs in the area because we had checked it out and were told all their vendor spots were filled.

That night Pete said, “I think I’ll go with you, find a place to park close to the event, and hand out some walking sticks. We have about forty made. That should be more than enough.”

We didn’t see it at the time, but God was leading us to a door that he was holding wide open and no one would be able to shut.

The next day was sunny and warm, a perfect day for a craft fair. By the time we arrived, crowds filled the streets, strolling from tent to tent in search of that one thing they absolutely had to have. Diane had told us to park in the city parking ramp. We tried but the ramp was full. We tried area parking lots and along the streets. There wasn’t a parking spot to be found.

Was God closing this door too?

Just when he was about to give up, Pete found a spot to park behind a business that was closed on Saturdays. It was on a corner about a block away from the craft show. “Go ahead and shop.” He opened the back of the car where we had hundreds of walking sticks without the beads attached and forty that were ready to hand out. “I’ll stay here until the forty sticks are gone and then head out.” I left Pete with a large coke to sip on and left to meet Diane.

Diane and I spent the next hour or so shopping the market. By the time we went to check if Pete needed a fresh drink, our walking sticks were gone, given away to people who asked where they could find one for themselves.

Pete did not need a fresh drink. In fact, with such large crowds gathering around, he hadn’t had opportunity to take one sip of his coke. After giving away the first forty sticks, he was too busy sharing the Gospel and adding beads and Bible verse cards to walking sticks to take time for anything else.

Diane and I pitched in, adding beads to the walking sticks and sharing the Gospel.

We couldn’t have prepared all the walking sticks that were given out without the help of my sister Diane. What a joy it was to have Diane working alongside us!

We were hoping to give out forty walking sticks. God had other plans. And one BIG OPEN DOOR. By the end of the day, about 250 walking sticks were given out and the Gospel shared! God had opened a door for us in Minnesota, a door that no one, no rules meant to silence the Gospel can close.

We praise God for your prayers and support. Most of all, we praise him for the opportunity to share the salvation message with folks who need to hear.

We also learned a wonderful lesson. When it comes to sharing the salvation message, God does not want us to be silent. We simply might have to be more creative in looking for opportunities.

God always makes a way, always opens doors that he wants opened.

We were thrilled to learn that Pete (Sandy has previous plans and cannot attend this year) will be handing out walking sticks and sharing the salvation message at Farm Fest in Redwood County Minnesota for The Fellowship of Christian Farmers. Farm Fest is a huge 3-day gathering with over 400 vendors and thousands of visitors.

If this post would have been written just a few days ago, the title would not have been When God Opens a Door, it would have been When God Closes a Door. The things we see with our earthly eyes and hear with our earthly ears do not always reveal the truth about what God is doing. He makes a way for his will to be done, despite men’s efforts to chain doors shut.

On a much sadder note, we just learned that Pete’s sister, Clare, has been moved to Hospice. This was a difficult decision for her family. Pete dearly loves Clare and will want to spend as much time as possible with her. We have visited and look forward to more visits. We appreciate your prayers for Clare and all the family at this difficult time. Please pray that the conversations Pete has with his sister will count for eternity. Thank you.

More Prayer Requests:

  • God will continue to open doors for us to share the salvation message.
  • The people we have shared with–those who have prayed for salvation that they will grow and find a good church home–and those who have not yet made that decision that God will continue to bring to mind the message of the beads.
  • Continued good health for us, our RV, and car.
  • Healing for Bill Brown, the person we work under in the Fellowship of Christian Farmers. He is having problems with blood clots.
  • God will supply our growing ministry needs. Our needs are greatly impacted by the recent inflation.

Pete and I want to thank each of you for your generous support. We are so blessed that you are our friends. Thank you for your continued prayers. Each one who supports us financially and with prayer are precious treasures. Please know that Pete and I pray for each of you every day.

If you would like to reach us this summer (until September 1) or you feel God leading you to support the ministry with a gift, you may do so at Pete and Sandy Singer, C/O Kozy Oak Kamp, 8620 277th Ave NE, North Branch, MN 55056, or via the address on our giving page. Thank you.

We love you All,

Pete and Sandy Singer

AIR, BIBLES, CINNAMON ROLLS, AND DISCOURAGEMENT

The ABCD’s of Ministry

2Corinthians 12:9a But he (Jesus) said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

Sandy loading the car with her coffee-drinking plants.

I’m going to tell you about our weakness, not because I want you to feel sorry for us. I am telling you about our weakness to give just one more glimpse of how great and strong our God is.

The other day, when I loaded my coffee-addicted plants into the car that we’d be towing on our second ministry trip north, I had no idea just how weak I was, and how little it would take to make me want to turn back.

In less than 24 hours, I would have a much clearer idea.

Pete and I were excited to make the trip north and anxious to see what God was going to do “along our road.” We’d been praying about this trip for months, asking God to prepare the hearts of those to whom we would minister, to lead us to the people who needed to hear the story of the beads, and to give us the words to speak. The walking sticks we planned to hand out along the way were packed and ready to go. A case of Bibles sat on the dining booth cushion ready to be emptied one-by-one, given to folks who did not own a Bible. The RV had new batteries, a fresh wash and wax job, and had been checked over for possible problems.

We had a case of Bibles ready to hand out. We also had snacks to eat along the way.

Sure, money was tighter this year than last. The cost of diesel had gone up more than a dollar a gallon over last year, a huge increase in expense when traveling close to 4000 miles round trip in a vehicle that gets 8 mpg. Over the winter months, we’d paid more than our usual amount of doctor bills and the money we’d set aside for medical expenses was spent down to the last penny. We’d even borrowed a bit from the money we’d diligently put aside for travel.

We knew all this when pulled away from home, but the truth that was foremost in our minds was this: The God who called us to this ministry would supply all our needs according to His riches–not ours.

Even so, hidden in the back of all our “knowing” there lingered unfamiliar doubts and an unexplainable reluctance or hesitation to go where we were called to go.

Quite honestly, when we started down our road a few days ago, Satan was having a hay-day with us, using our health and financial issues, some personal issues, a dog that does not like to travel, and those voices in the back of our heads telling us we were too old for this life.

Our first day on the road we made it as far as we planned, Ocala Florida, which under normal conditions would be less that a four hour drive. But conditions were anything but normal. The generator stopped working which meant we had no air conditioning.

A is for air, something you don’t want to be without in June in semi-tropical Florida.

Thankfully, Pete was able to fix the generator, and so we kept our plans to meet long time friends, Rob and Nan Jankowski, for breakfast before starting on the second day of our travels.

Sometime early in the morning, long before sunrise, the generator quit again. We woke to sweltering heat and our dog Bella’s loud and pitiful panting. Without the generator we had no air and to make things worse, the water pump didn’t work. This meant we couldn’t take showers or even wash our hair.

“Go ahead and meet Rob and Nan for breakfast,” Pete told me, “I have to get this thing fixed.”

I took a sponge bath using my moisturized face cloths, and got ready the best I could for the day.

But oh the thoughts going through my mind! All Pete has to do is say the word, and I’ll turn back without a second thought. This life is no longer for us…our friends and some of our family think we’re nuts, they’ll be happy if we call it quits.

But Pete never mentioned turning back.

I grabbed a Bible and walking stick on my way out of the RV. Almost immediately I saw a man walking my way. To be honest, I didn’t want to talk to him. I was too discouraged and worried about how much it was going to cost to get the generator fixed.

But the thing was, I knew God wanted me to talk to this man. And so I did and he was receptive to the gospel. The sight of that man hugging his new Bible and walking stick tight against his chest is a memory I will not soon forget.

B is for Bible.

To make a 1200 mile long story (as I write this, we are not finished with our trip north) short enough for the blog, I will condense the events of the next few days.

We enjoyed a wonderful breakfast with Rob and Nan and enjoyed visiting their home in Ocala.

Great friends and prayer warriors Rob and Nancy Jankowski

Pete and Rob fixed the generator problem, but by the next day it went down again while driving in excruciating heat. Afraid poor little Bella was going to die of a heart attack from all her deep and constant panting, we were both on edge and uncharacteristically snipping at each other. I know we gave out walking sticks and Bibles and shared the gospel, but I do not remember a single face or story. At one point, all I wanted to do was quit and go home. I am very ashamed to admit this, especially when I think of the apostle Paul.

I’d like to know if Paul ever thought about quitting? After all, he made it through 5 missionary journeys without air conditioning, or an RV with a comfortable bed.

Paul didn’t have a Cracker Barrel or Marcy Jo’s Meal house to stop at when he was hungry.

The picture on the left is of Pete and me at Marcy Jo’s restaurant. If you have been fans of Joey and Rory, this is the restaurant started by Joey (before her illness and passing) along with Rory’s sister Marcy Jo. Between the parking lot and front door, we were able to share the gospel with four people and give them walking sticks. The waitress was very grateful for the Bible we left for the restaurant’s ministry.

C is for Cinnamon Rolls at Marcy Jo’s and Cracker Barrel Restaurants who allow RVers to spend the night without charge in their RV parking area. They are very receptive to the Fellowship of Christian Farmers ministry. We have given out countless walking sticks and Bibles at Cracker Barrels from Florida to Minnesota.

I know our spiritual battles are nothing compared to Paul’s, the man who wrote the instruction book on spiritual battle. But did he ever want to turn back? When he was in prison standing knee-deep in sewer, did he dream of going home, taking a bath, and spending the rest of his life on easy street? On the day he was martyred, did he regret the way he had spent his final days or was he still claiming, “For me to live is Christ, to die is gain.”

D is for Discouragement…Devil…Destroy…Death.

We met fellow RVer’s, Linda and Rich, in the RV lot at a Cracker Barrel in Kentucky. Thankfully, by the time we met them, the LORD had brought us to our senses and we were no longer listening to the devil’s voice of discouragement. We were overjoyed to share the Gospel with Linda and Rich and even though they were not receptive to the Gospel, they were thrilled to have the walking sticks. At the same time, they refused to accept the Bible. “We have our own,” Rich said, “Thank you anyways.”

As we talked more we learned that Linda and Rich are Jehovah Witnesses. I don’t know if Jehovah Witnesses believe God has a sense of humor, but we certainly do. You see, even though they refused our gift of a Bible, they walked away with salvation Bible verses attached to their walking sticks. We know that God’s word never returns void. I believe with all my heart that one day soon something is going to happen in this couple’s life that will make them turn to the verses on the card attached to their walking sticks and God will use those verses to draw them into a relationship with Him.

Here are a couple pics of happy moments along our road.

Pete and Bella relaxing in the RV after a stressful day on the road.

As a fan of Joey and Rory’s music, Sandy has wanted to go to Marcy Jo’s Meal House for a long time. It’s a humble little place with the best bakery.

We are settled in at an Illinois Cracker Barrel where the manager gratefully allowed us to leave a Bible for staff and walking sticks. We are no longer discouraged, but we know those times will come again, because we are weak. We appreciate your prayers for us as we continue on to Minnesota over the next couple days.

Prayer Requests:

  1. Safe travel
  2. No more mechanical problems along our road
  3. Linda and Rich that they will come to know Jesus as Savior and Lord.
  4. Those we ministered to and those we will minister to, that they will trust Jesus as Savior and Lord.
  5. We will be given the ok to hold church services at the camp ground.
  6. Provision and opportunities for events in Minnesota.
  7. The Fellowship of Christian Farmers Convention this July in New York–provision for the trip and the words to share at the convention.

Thank you to everyone who supports us with your faithful prayers and generous gifts. Without your support, this ministry would not go on.

If the LORD leads you to support our ministry, please check out the giving page or you can reach us at our summer address (good till September 1):

Kozy Oaks Camp Ground, 8620 277th Ave NE, North Branch, MN 55056.

2Corinthians 12:9b-10

Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weakness, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Question: Who was the first farmer mentioned in the Bible and what did he plant?

Please post your answer in the comments.

THREE QUESTIONS PLUS ONE ANSWER

Where have you been?

Because it’s been such a long time since our last update, you might have asked this very question, Where have Pete and Sandy been? We’re still in Florida, handing out walking sticks and sharing the Gospel at every opportunity the Lord provides.

Sandy has also been working tirelessly on her latest book, In the Sandals of the Shattered, the story of ten Biblical women whose lives were dramatically changed when they met Jesus face-to-face. The book proposal has been written and will go out this week.

We count it a huge blessing if you join us in prayer that Sandy’s book will be picked up by a Christian publisher.

We are grateful that over the last few weeks, Pete has been asked to share the ministry of The Fellowship of Christian Farmers with area men’s Bible studies.

And then there’s the festivals…

Manatee Festival in Crystal River

Not everything happens on the festival grounds. Days before we hand out our first walking stick, we start loading the sticks, Bibles, tents, chairs, and all supplies needed for an event.

Set up happens the night before or very early the first day of the festival. Then just before we open the Fellowship of Christian Farmers’ tent, all the workers gather together to pray, asking that God will prepare the hearts of those we talk with, give us the right words, and that folks will be saved.

We love to tell the story…of Jesus and His love.
Most of the stories from the Manatee Festival seemed to be centered around families.

Even though the Manatee Festival was less crowded this year, during the two day event, almost 800 walking sticks were given away! We praise God that close to 100 people prayed to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior!

Many who prayed were adult family members led to our tent by a child!

Early the first day of the festival Pete prayed with a young girl. Over the course of the day, she brought her mom, dad, brother, and sister back to the Christian Farmer tent. By the end of the day, the entire family had prayed to invite Jesus into their hearts. She wasted no time bringing others to Jesus!

Several folks came to the tent already carrying one of our walking sticks. They all said the same thing, “Someone gave me this stick and said I have to come to you to hear the story.”

The parents of a toddler were waiting in line at a near-by food booth when the toddler escaped their grip. He ran straight for the Christian Farmer tent. By the time the parents returned to the food line, they had both prayed to invite Jesus into their heart. The Fellowship of Christian Farmers’ tent is where the Bread of Life and Living Water is found. God’s ways are amazing!

On several occasions during the Manatee Festival, parents brought their children to the Fellowship of Christian Farmers’ tent because they wanted us to explain the Gospel to their children.

One family of six had spent the day looking for our tent. When they finally found us the festival was over and we were already in the process of packing up and taking the tent down. Pete took the time to share the Gospel with the children, ages 6-14, and all four of them prayed to receive Jesus! The parents, who were already Christians, stood together weeping with their arms around each other as their children made the most important decision of their lives.

That’s the wonder of the walking stick story, it’s so simple, so sweet, anyone can share it and everyone, even young children, can understand.

Of course, there are those whose hearts are hardened. As soon as they realize we are talking about Jesus, they turn away, refusing to accept the free walking stick and the free gift of salvation.

This is heartbreaking because we know what is at stake–eternity in heaven…or eternity in hell.

When a festival is over, Pete and I pray just as hard for the ones who reject the Gospel as we do for the ones who prayed for salvation.

There is nothing, absolutely nothing, as thrilling as leading someone to the Lord. We would love for you you to join us at one of the festivals in Florida next season or this summer in Minnesota.

And, oh yes…one more event to mention…

We celebrated our 51st Anniversary, an event that would not have taken place were it not for the One born in Bethlehem so many years ago–Jesus Christ. The photo, which was was taken about a year and a half ago, is proof of the difference Jesus and the prayers of so many others have made in our married life. The day we spoke our marriage vows, serving Jesus was the last thing on our minds. Pete had not yet prayed to receive Christ and I had turned my back on Him and the salvation decision I made at twelve years of age. But the faithful prayers of our family and the prayers of the pastor who married us changed all that. At almost the same moment but under different circumstances, Pete prayed to receive Christ as his Lord and Savior and I rededicated my life to Him. Nothing has been the same since. We owe every day, all 51 years of our marriage, to Jesus.

Where are you now?

We are in Florida, making sure the car and RV are safe to travel and we are preparing our bodies for the trip with necessary doctor appointments. Our calendars are full. Isn’t getting old fun? We are also touching base with the Minnesota contacts we made last summer.

Where are you going?

We are going to Minnesota for the summer where we will spend precious time with family–our son Peter and his wife Chris, grandchildren, great grandson, Sandy’s mom, sisters, and brother, Pete’s brother and sisters, and dear friends.

Like last year, we will be handing out walking sticks and sharing the Gospel with as many people as possible during our entire road trip. God already knows who we will meet and speak with. He is already preparing their hearts. And He is preparing us to speak the right words. We are confident that He sends His Holy Spirit ahead of us. What a blessing to be part of His wonderful plan!

We have made contacts with event leaders throughout the state of Minnesota and have been invited to attend several events. It is our prayer to be able to set up at as many events as possible as the Lord provides the finances. Setting up at an event can be quite expensive. But our God will provide every penny we need to go where He wants us to go. Of that we are certain!

Since the owner of the campground now knows us and seems happy to have us return, we pray he will allow us to hold Sunday services at the campground. Because Minnesota summers are incredibly short, the people there treasure the summer months and spend as much time outdoors as they can. That means they are away from their home churches on the weekends. We pray to be given permission to hold short and “campground casual” services on weekends.

Please join us in prayer that God will open doors so we can hold “Campground Casual” church services at our Minnesota campground.

Where are you going?At the beginning of June we will begin heading north to Minnesota. We have been praying for months for the people we will meet along our way. As we did last year, we will share the walking sticks and Gospel message with those we meet at restaurants, gas stations, and wherever the Lord takes us. Once in Minnesota, we have been invited to three events. Will you join us in prayer that the Lord will provide the funds to be part of these events (there is a fee for every festival and market we are part of).

We are excited to be joining with other Fellowship of Christian Farmer workers at the end of July in New York state for the Fellowship of Christian Farmers International Conference. Please keep us in prayer as both Pete and I will be sharing.

We can not ignore what is going on in Israel today as I write this blog.

Pete and I join Christians around the world in prayer for Jerusalem and all of Israel. We pray for all living there and in Gaza too, for the Jews, the Christians, the Palestinians, and those without faith. As we are instructed to do, we pray for peace. We pray for folks there to come to Jesus as their Lord and Savior. We pray for missionaries. And we long to be back there in the midst of it all, to share the walking sticks and message of Jesus Christ.

This is not what Jerusalem looks like today. As I write, rockets explode over Jerusalem and other areas in Israel.

2 Timothy 3:1-5 But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.

Those words from Scripture sound familiar, don’t they? Times of difficulty, lovers of self and money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, slanderous, no self-control, haters of good, reckless, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness but denying its power.

Sadly, this Scripture holds a mirror up to our culture today.

We share the Gospel with urgency because Jesus is coming soon.

THE ONE ANSWER:

JESUS.

Several years ago I taught pre-school Sunday School. I remember I could ask almost any question…who built the arkwho asked Pharaoh to let the people go. In unison the class would answer, “Jesus.” Jesus was the answer to every question. Maybe we should be more like the little children.

Where have we been? In the presence of Jesus.

Who will provide our needs? Jesus.

Who opens folks’ ears to the Gospel we share? Jesus.

Who leads people to the Christian Farmers’ tent…who gives us and all the workers strength…who gets our old RV to its destinationwho melts icy hearts…who protects and strengthens marriages…who will open doors for a campground church service…who will bring peace to Jerusalem, and one day to the new earth?

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, He is the only answer for the world.

Pete and Sandy standing in the spot on the Mount of Olives where many say Jesus ascended into heaven.

We long for His return. Until then, it is our job as believers to share the salvation story. Please pray about supporting the ministry of the Fellowship of Christian Farmers International. We Thank you.

Please support the ministry with your prayers.

  1. That those who have been saved this year will continue to grow in Christ and find Bible preaching churches to become a part of.
  2. That the Lord will open the eyes of those who reject the Gospel.
  3. Pray for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and many salvations among the Jews and Palestinians in Israel. Pray for peace in that region.
  4. Pray for our health and strength and that of our co-workers in the fellowship. Many are battling health issues.
  5. Lift up the July Conference in your prayers.
  6. Pray for workers who will join us in sharing the Gospel.
  7. Pray that we will have the finances needed over the summer to take advantage of all opportunities given us. With rising gas and diesel prices the budget we put together for this year is no longer sufficient. We trust God to meet our every need.
  8. Pray for many opportunities to share the Gospel as we travel to Minnesota. We often find opportunities at gas stations, restaurants, parking lots, and when walking Bella our dog. Join us in asking Jesus to prepare hearts and open our eyes to those we are to share with.
  9. Pray for the health of our vehicles along the road.

We thank you from the deepest spot in our hearts for all your prayers and the financial support you have provided along our road.

If God has spoken to you about supporting this ministry, please refer to the giving page on this blog or you may contact us at: Pete and Sandy Singer, 14880 Tamiami Trail, Punta Gorda, Florida 33955. We treasure your feedback and look for your comments on this page.

Keeping you in our Prayers and Hearts,

Pete and Sandy Singer

THE JAIRUS PLACE

Have you spent much time in the Jairus Place?

It feels as if Pete and I have spent this winter traveling in and out of the Jairus Place. Perhaps you are wondering exactly where and what the Jairus place is.

Simply put, the Jairus Place is a place of despair and death. It is where we must choose between two opposites–fear and faith.

To get the full picture, go back to Mark 5:21-43. When his young daughter is at the point of death, Jairus, a highly esteemed synagogue leader, leaves his daughter’s side and rushes off to find Jesus. As Jairus approaches Jesus, he humbles himself, bowing at the feet of Jesus like a common supplicant. “Please come to my home,” he begs. “My daughter is sick and close to death.” Jesus agrees to go with Jairus, but the huge crowd slows them down. When a woman who has been ill for twelve long years sneaks up on Jesus, touches the hem of his robe, and is healed, she causes an even greater delay. In the midst of all the delays, messengers arrive. “Don’t bother the Teacher anymore,” they advise Jairus. “Your daughter is already dead.”

His legs are too weak to hold him. If he doesn’t lean on the messengers of death he will drop to the ground. I can almost hear the thoughts stirring inside Jairus’ mind. If it wasn’t for all the people swarming around Jesus, if it wasn’t for the woman who touched the hem of Jesus’ garment, stealing my daughter’s miracle, my daughter would be alive. Now she is dead. There is no need for Jesus to follow me home.

Knowing his thoughts, Jesus interrupts. “Jairus, do not be afraid. Only believe.”

In that moment, Jairus has to choose between fear and faith. He chooses faith and leads Jesus to the bed of his dead daughter. With just one touch of Jesus’ hand, the little girl wakes from death, stands and walks around the room, fully alive.

Yes, the Jairus place is a place of despair and death. But it is also a place of growth and life. If we choose faith over fear, we step out of the Jairus Place with greater confidence and faith in Jesus Christ.

When have you found yourself in the Jairus Place?

Pete and I have found ourselves in that place quite often this winter. Honestly, because of cancellations and postponements due to the Coronavirus, we have at times felt almost pushed-aside by God. When we sought alternate venues to hand out walking sticks, we were denied because we are a “religious” organization.

We had many doubts. Had we heard God wrong? Maybe he did not call us to work with the Fellowship of Christian Farmers. Perhaps we are too old for ministry.

We decided to move ahead in faith and looked forward to the end of January and the first week of February when we would meet up with members of Christian Farmers from around the country for a service opportunity at Educational Concerns for Hunger (ECHO) where Pete would work with the construction crew building a roof to connect two sheds and I would work with the kitchen crew preparing meals.

What a blessing it was to attend church and go out to lunch with volunteers from around the nation who had come into town to work at ECHO.

The kitchen crew, under the leadership of Diana, made delicious meals for those working construction. I was part of this team and was amazed by Diana’s detailed planning.

Deb and Cathy sharing stories after a long day.

One of the greatest gifts of being part of the Fellowship of Christian Farmers is getting to know women who love and unselfishly serve the Lord.

Pete and Jess hard at work on a cold (yes, it does get cold here) Florida day. Jess and her husband were new friends and we looked forward to getting to know them during their week at ECHO.

Deb, long time ECHO volunteer and leader (along with her husband Ron) with the Fellowship of Christian Farmers comes from Indiana where she and her husband enjoy farming. Deb can do more work in an hour than anyone I know. Here she is in charge of the saw. Deb knows more than most men do about construction. She’s also an amazing cook and woman of great faith.

From morning to night, you could find John hard at work on the roof.

His humor kept every volunteer on their toes.

What a blessing John was to the group.

Pete and Ron talking about the week ahead. We had looked forward to this week for so long. Getting together with folks who share the same love for the Lord, worshipping, praying, sharing our journeys, we believe there are few greater joys on this earth. We’d missed out on so much since Coronavirus came to our shores. Cases of the virus were finally down in number and it looked like we were on the verge of normal…until two days into our week at ECHO...

We had just finished preparing the evening meal when a tickle made its way into my throat. Because I didn’t want to alarm anyone, I tried not to cough, but I could not stop. I don’t feel sick, I assured myself. It can’t be Covid. Not now.

But a test the next day, revealed that I not only had the Coronavirus, I had type A flu. Pete also tested for the virus and his test came back positive. “What’s new?” Pete tried to introduce a spark of humor into our disappointment. “In fifty years of marriage, we have done almost everything together.”

Of course, our immediate concern was the volunteers we had been working with back at ECHO. We notified them immediately, then our family, neighbors, and church. Unfortunately, Deb and Ron both came down with the virus a couple weeks later.

Once again, we found ourselves in the Jairus Place.

Lord, you know we are prepared to devote the rest of our lives to you. Once again, it all seems dead. We are under quarantine. How can we share the gospel while we are locked inside an RV? The thoughts going through our minds were painful and deadly.

As time went on, we did get quite sick and ended up in the ER where we agreed to a two-hour IV containing a drug that had not yet been approved. It helped for about a week before we went back to coughing and feeling like we’d been run over by a herd of full-grown elephants. Folks joined us in prayer that we would be free of Covid by the time of the Swamp Cabbage Festival, Pete’s favorite event of the year.

Instead of going to the Swamp Cabbage Festival, we returned to the Jairus Place.

To say we were disappointed, is an understatement. In prayer, we reminded the Lord of all our efforts. Lord, you know we’ve been praying for this festival for months. We’ve prayed for the people who would come for a walking stick, that you would open their ears and eyes, preparing them to accept your free gift of salvation. We have cases of Bibles to give new believers. Are we ever going to be able to use them?

As I said, the Jairus Place is a place of growth. Jesus encouraged us to keep praying for the festival. Even though we couldn’t be there, He would be.

God was true to his promise.

Throngs of people came for a walking stick and stayed to listen to the gospel. During the festival ten souls were added to the kingdom.

Tom Keithly, FCFI Board of Directors Secretary and Gary Gagwin prayed with this precious young family.

Maria, an elderly woman, returned to the tent to request a new walking stick. She had gotten one the year before and uses it every day to get around.

Kathy Brown sharing with a mom and her sweet children. Praise God, they were receptive to the gospel.

Holly Keithly and her grandchildren, Amberlie and Jamie, helped. The children especially loved inviting people to come to the tent for a free walking stick. Who could say no to such precious faces? In all 700 walking sticks were handed out at the festival and ten folks came to know Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

A short week following the Swamp Cabbage Festival, Pete and I were ready to go. God knew the last few days of rest were what we needed to recover our strength for ministry. On March 4th, a full month after our diagnosis, we headed for Zolfa Springs, Florida and Pioneer Days, a four day event, that started with a wonderful dinner gathering with members of the Fellowship of Christian Farmers International hosted by Bill and Kathy Brown. After dinner, we returned to our motel to rest up.

We had no idea what God had planned for the next few days.

Pete is ready to hand out the first stick of the day. But handing out the first walking stick is not where the day begins. We first wash and disinfect the chairs and other items, set up the displays, and most important spend time in prayer for those who will stop by our tent and ourselves, that God will give us a heart for the people we meet and the words to speak to them.

Ron showed up every day. He shared the gospel and kept us well-supplied with walking sticks. God has many faithful servants. Ron and Deb plus so many others in the Fellowship are examples of people who live the words Jesus spoke in Mark 8:34-36. “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?”

The greatest joy is praying with someone to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Nothing compares. Just like heaven is a free gift, something we cannot earn, deserve, or buy our way into, the privilege of praying with a new believer is a gift from God. The Holy Spirit calls the new believers, softens their hearts, and gives us the words to speak.

There were many things to spend money on as folks walked through the large festival–antiques, dishes, masks, yard decorations–but the most valuable item offered was offered absolutely free. The antiques would fall apart, the dishes break, the masks get dirty, and the yard decorations blow away, but the free gift of heaven, which is a saving relationship with Jesus, lasts for eternity.

The ground was dusty and dirty, turning to damp mud when the rain began to fall on Saturday. Each evening we left the festival with filthy feet and socks.

When I think about what went on Saturday night at Pioneer Days, I realize Satan must have been angry. On Saturday I had witnessed to two witches, one bearing a satanic tattoo and the other wearing a shirt with satanic symbols. Neither accepted Jesus, but they did listen to the entire gospel presentation. Satan knew many souls had been snatched from his grip that day, souls that would never again belong to him. And there was still a day left of the festival. I don’t know if it was the enemy’s doing or just an act of nature, but on Saturday evening, a strong wind blew through the Festival. When we arrived on Sunday morning, this is what we found:

Tables and chairs overturned, literature and walking sticks scattered, tent poles bent. What an awful mess!

Pete and I hurried to clean up the mess before people started coming by for their free walking sticks. “We don’t have to stay long today, do we?” I knew that Sunday was the slowest day of a festival. In fact, we had never even stayed open at the Pioneer Days on a Sunday. Besides, I was already tired and didn’t want to stand around with nothing to do.

But before we even finished picking up the mess, people started coming and they never stopped until late in the afternoon. We grouped people that were not even related together to hear the gospel. There wasn’t time for lunch or a break. Ron, who had not planned on coming in, felt he might be needed and to our surprise, showed up. If he hadn’t, we would have run out of walking sticks. Pete and I were humbled. We were used to lead more folks to Jesus that day than all the others combined.

In all, over one hundred souls were added to the kingdom and an entire case of Bibles was given away to new believers who did not own a Bible of their own.

These were the Bibles you, our supporters, purchased. Inside each Bible we wrote the name of a supporter and their favorite verse. We also included their name and the date of their decision to receive the free gift of salvation.

There are so many stories to share. A man and woman plus the woman’s two young children all prayed for salvation. After they prayed, with tears in his eyes, the man put his arm around the woman. “We’re getting married next weekend,” he said. What a way to start a marriage!

Pete was speaking with three high school students. When he told them that everyone sins, the girls all looked at each other as if they shared a secret. All three prayed for salvation.

A lady stopped by and with tears in her eyes, told us that her dad had died this year. When she was going through his things, she found the walking stick. The stick reminded her that her dad, a man who loved Jesus, was in heaven. For her it was a treasure she would always hold dear.

After a group of four teens prayed to receive Jesus as their Lord and Savior, I asked them if they owned a Bible. None of them did. Each young lady was thrilled to receive her own Bible. When I was writing one girl’s name in her Bible, she asked me to write the names of her father, mother, and siblings because she wanted them to know Jesus too.

We are grateful that when we doubted, Jesus took us to the Jairus Place. If he had not, our desire to serve Him might be weakened. Instead, it lives and our faith is stronger.

When you find yourself in the Jairus Place, never choose fear. Choose the wonderful gift of faith. When you do, the dead things in your life, the lost hopes and failed dreams, will come to life.

Thank you so much to all of you who support us with your prayers and gifts. You make this ministry possible. Every story we share, every soul that is saved is due to your faithfulness. If you would like to support the ministry with a financial gift, please check out the giving page or contact us. All gifts are tax deductible. If you support us by check, please write “Pete and Sandy Singer” in the memo. Thank you!

Prayer Requests

  1. Pray that the people who prayed to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior at Swamp Cabbage Festival and Pioneer Days will grow in Christ and find a good church home.
  2. Please pray for upcoming events, that God will prepare the hearts of those we speak with and prepare our hearts as we share.
  3. Please pray for open venues this spring and this summer as we travel to Minnesota.
  4. Please pray for continued support as we travel to more events. Taking into consideration rising gas prices, motel and camp ground prices, food, and gifts for the children, expenses are on the rise. We thank God for his faithful provision.
  5. Please pray for workers willing to join us as we share the good news.
  6. Please pray that we will be able to purchase additional Bibles. We will soon need more large print, Spanish, and Children’s Bibles.
  7. Open hearts.
  8. Our health and the health of all who serve with the Fellowship of Christian Farmers.
  9. The upcoming FCFI conference in New York this summer. Pray for all who will be sharing, including us.

Thank you again for your faithful support. We love you all!

In His Mighty Grip,

Pete and Sandy Singer