Sunday, December 7, 2014

So Much To Be Thankful For

It’s been six weeks since our last newsletter.  In these last few weeks we have not had much time to rest.  Most of the work now is preparing courses for the Bible institute beginning at the end of January. I now have Fundamentals of the Faith, The Sovereignty of God, and the ten basic theologies ready to go.  I will begin teaching Fundamentals and the Sovereignty of God.  Dayle is also quite busy preparing for a ladies retreat for which she will be the speaker in January.

The highlight of these last few weeks was being invited to spend the morning with the elders of Immanuel Baptist Church.  They had an elder’s retreat in Crescent City which is only a short drive from us in Brookings.  It was such a blessed time for us!

A couple of weeks ago we had a conference call with John MacArthur about an unrelated matter.  But during the conversation John offered the help of the Master’s Seminary to get our Bible institute up and running and even help with course material and possibly instructors.  We are very excited about this and I will be talking with them more at the Shepherd’s Conference.  Please keep this in your prayers.

We had our annual church Thanksgiving Service and meal here at His Place.  We put together the entire service with music, testimonies of thankfulness, I led the music, and Pastor Ken gave a great message.  Overall the service went quite well.
                               
We did find an economical car.  We went to Grants Pass to go to our storage unit and we stopped at Jim Siegel Car Dealership to check out the Nissan Versa Note.  The Note is the smallest car Nissan makes and the advertised price was within our price range.    After a few minutes we realized that the Note was not the car for us.  But we did look at a 2013 Honda Insight Hybrid and we loved it so we bought it.  Driving it home we got 48 miles per gallon.  The next day, just 27 ½ hours after driving off the dealer’s lot we went to Walmart down in Crescent City.  On the way back a big elk decided to mate with our new car....crash!  Dayle was driving and we were not hurt–neither was the elk.  The funny thing was that I didn’t even tell the insurance company that we bought the car and our check hadn’t even cleared yet.  But our insurance company took care of everything and twelve days later we got our car back looking as good as new.  Then Thursday morning while going to the early morning men’s Bible study I had my arms full of stuff and tripped on a piece of wood and fell into the right front fender of our new car.  It now has a dent on the right front fender.  I am not going to turn this one into the insurance company.

We did take a few days and went to spend some time with Stephen, Neeley and the kids.  I was able to ride the bike trails and ride home with Stephen from his work in downtown Sacramento.  I really enjoyed spending time with Jack and Pearl.

While we were in Sacramento with the kids I saw an ad for a 5th wheel trailer which looked really good so we went to take a look at it.  This trailer had everything we wanted.  It seemed practically perfect and the price was perfect too.  I checked online and the price that we got this trailer was the best price anywhere in the country.  We gave it a couple of days thought and prayer. The trailer was near perfect, the price was right, and they would deliver it to us in Oregon. So, we now have a new trailer.  This trailer is 6'9" longer than our previous trailer.  We now have counter space, a huge refrigerator, plenty of storage, and room to actually have someone over for a meal.  We had our first visitors today.  What a joy.

We leave on the 8th for our trip south to Arizona, then to my mom and sister in Southern California, and then to Stephen and Neeley for Christmas.  This will be a working “vacation” as I still have lessons to prepare.

We want to thank you all for your prayers for continued monthly support.  Our support has increased almost to the level required. We are now at 90%.

We wish you all a very merry Christmas as we celebrate the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ.  May you all be blessed this Christmas season!

Our address in Brookings is:
18881 Cornett Rd
Brookings, Oregon  97415

Shelley for the both of us.

Praises:
1.  For the new car and trailer
2.  That we were not injured when we hit the elk.
3.  For the additional monthly support.

Prayer:
1. For safety as we travel to Arizona and back.
2. For the upcoming start of the Bible classes
3. For guidance as we continue to serve at His Place.

Starting the Thanksgiving Service

Enjoying precious time with Jack and Pearl



Jack and Papa having fun at the park.
Our new home
Our new car

My Dayle is so happy



Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Work Continues

We had our first conference the end of September.  It was a men's conference and we only had 15 attendees but everything went well and we learned a few things.  Overall it was a big success.  The main speaker really touched some of them men.

We have been quite busy here at His Place and we needed to take a break.  On September 29th we pulled our trailer up to Port Angeles to visit Jason, Shelley and the grand kids.  We haven't seen them since July but it felt like a lot longer.  We really miss our kids!  Part of the reason for our trip was to attend the NICE regional conference in Bremerton, WA.  As usual the regional conference was a time of encouragement and reconnecting with friends who are also in ministry. I also was asked to play bass guitar for the music time at that is always fun.  We were with the kids for 2 1/2 weeks and during that time Shelli, Asher and Autumn flew to Colorado to visit Shelli's dad and we got to stay home with Aiden.  Jason had to stay at the Coast Guard station almost the entire time so we had Aiden all to ourselves and we really had a great time with him.

We returned to Oregon on October 16th and we spent two nights at Fir Point Bible Camp where Dayle attended the Southern Oregon IFCA Ladies Retreat.

We returned to His Place on the 18th and set up the trailer at the top of the parking lot on the asphalt.  Which was just in time as the rains started that night and it has been raining ever since.  I think the rainy season is here. Golly, we sure miss Lake Havasu City!


Yesterday we had our first His Place board meeting.  I presented the board with a list of suggested priorities along with some needs and wants if we are going to make this an actual conference and educational center.   To make a long story short most everything is on hold because no money is available yet.  There is money to pay the monthly utility bills and minor repairs but that is about all.  In a way this is good because it frees me up to continue working on courses for our Bible institute that we plan to start early next year.  On Monday we we had a conference call with John MacArthur and he offered the assistance of The Masters Seminary for our teaching program.  We do plan on taking him up on the offer.

So we continue to serve and get involved with the life of the church.  We so much enjoy being part of a church.  I do miss being able to regularly preach and teach but Pastor Ken knows that I willing to fill in for him anytime and at a moment's notice.

We are still in need of additional support.  We have gained one more supporter and are currently at 50% of what the mission requires for us.  Below is the address for support.  Please put our name in the memo on your check.

Northwest Independent Church Extension
PO Box 2225
Sumner, WA  98390


Praise and Prayer

Praise:
1.  For a relaxing time in Washington
2.  For another wonderful NICE conference
3.  I still have had no back issues since March

Prayer:
1.  For wisdom and direction for us at His Place
2.  For an economical car


 Shelley for the both of us!
Semper Famulus


Thursday, September 25, 2014

We are now happy non-home owners.

Today marked the end of us being home owners.  Our house actually closed today.  All the utilities were transferred to the new owners.  We didn't get as much as we had hoped but at least we are done with it.  So now we can look seriously for an economical car and a little bigger trailer.

Tomorrow begins the 1st Men's Conference at His Place.  Pastor John Kim is the main speaker and I (Shelley) will be speaking in the three breakout sessions and I will be speaking on what is a Biblical Man.  I am actually using the same outlines as the time I spoke in Washington in May.

Then on Monday we will be going to Port Angeles to spend a couple of weeks with Jason, Shelli and kids.  We are excited to see them again!

Thank you all for your prayers!  Also thank you for the additional support that has come in.  We still are not at the level required but are getting closer. 

Praise:
1.  Our house actually sold
2.  Things are progressing well here at His Place

Prayer:
1.  Additional monthly support
2.  For the Lord's guidance and direction as we serve at His Place
3.  For an economical car and the right trailer all at an affordable price.


Shelley for the both of us!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

His Place Conference Center in Brookings, Oregon



View of His Place from the road.
We arrived here at His Place on August 11th.  We took some time to assess the buildings and evaluate what needs to be done and prioritize. Once completed we knew there was a long road ahead.  Since we have been herem we have cleared out rooms, painted interior walls, organized, and cleaned.  We even painted the entire exterior of the main building which took five full days.  There was much in the way of repairs that had to be done including removing and replacing the water heater, hooking up the filtered water system, repairing the door locks, landscaping and much more.  Once the work is done on the facilities we can begin actually working on the various ministries here.  The first thing we need to do is to design and print brochures. Then get the word out through mailings as well as establishing a web site, also visiting churches in the area as a personal contact.  And we need to make this ministry self-supporting as soon as possible.  Pastor Ken Whitted wants us to get started with a Bible Institute type program here early next year. We have much work ahead of us, but we are excited to be here serving the Lord here at His Place.

Before

After
We have some good news about our house in Klamath Falls.....we are actually in escrow.  We are supposed to close by the end of September.  Everything looks good and we are just waiting for the appraisal to come in.  Once we get an actual closing date we have to go to the house the week before and remove all the rest of our stuff that the buyers don't want.  We will have one final yard sale and then take the rest to the Gospel Mission.  Please pray that this sale goes through.

Something that I don't like to speak about is our financial support.  As you know we are mostly self supported.  However, we do rely upon some support.  Our monthly support has dwindled and is now well below the minimum that has been set for us by the mission.  We actually need another $175 a month to meet the minimum required.  Please join us in prayer in this matter.

We are also looking for a fuel efficient "beater car" to purchase for us to get around.  Our truck is ideal for pulling the 5th wheel trailer and it gets excellent mileage for towing (11-14 mpg).  However, using that huge truck for daily driving gets to be quite costly.  It only gets about 14 miles per gallon for city driving and about 19-20 highway.  At $4 a gallon for diesel it costs about $120 every time I fill the tank.  So we are looking for an inexpensive smaller vehicle which will pay for itself in no time in fuel savings.

Prayer/Praise

Praise that we finished our ministry at fir Point and are now serving at His Place in Brookings, Oregon
Praise that our house is in escrow.
Praise that God has given us good health to complete this task
Praise that He has provided for all our needs and even ,any of our wants!

Pray that we will have clear direction as we serve at His Place
Pray that the sale of our house actually happens
Pray for additional financial support.
Pray for an economical car to purchase.


Monday, August 4, 2014

Final Week at Fir Point Bible Camp

    We finally have internet again.  For the Fir Point Camping season which is the entire month of July we have not had internet because of all the other people that were connected to the WiFi and since our trailer is so far away, we could not connect.  So now camp is over and we have service again.

    This is our last week here at Fir Point Bible Camp.  We have been here a full three months and have worked on many, many projects.  This previous week has been the most exciting for me as I was the music leader as well as the speaker for the 3rd and 4th grade camp.  I led singing and preached in ten sessions.  The theme for the week was “Look Up” as in look to God for answers.  I taught on ten different men in Scripture and how they went to God in prayer; how they obeyed (or disobeyed as in Jonah’s case).  But my big push was that they had the right to go to God because of their faith in God and how they must have faith.  I taught them a few new songs and their favorite song was “You Got To Have Faith” written by a member of Grace Community Church, Rick Dempsey.

    While I was having a great time with music and teaching, Dayle was slaving away in kitchen.  She worked from sun up to sun down.  Janice the regular cook was away caring for her daughter who was recovering from surgery.  So Dayle and a couple of other ladies prepared all the meals. Needless to say, my Dayle was tired!

    This last week we will be finishing up a few things around the camp including the painting of the exterior of the care taker’s residence.  Then on Saturday we will be heading to Brookings, Oregon to begin our new ministry there.  These last three months here at Fir Point have been a wonderful time of service.  It was a lot of hard work and long days but we are so blessed to be able to serve in this manner!

    Yesterday we said our “see you laters” to our Glendale church family.  It was a joy getting to know them and we hope to see them again soon.

With Pastor Kent Staton

All the Grand Children
      Two weeks ago we had a family vacation at Lake of the Woods.  Our three kids and their families all came and Dayle’s sister, Ellen, was there too.  It was the first time that we were all together.  It was a wonderful few days.  We all talked and played together and enjoyed just being with one another.  Annie had a photographer friend come up and take family photos.  We are expecting the pictures real soon but we only have a couple now.  At one point when we were all together–all the kids, their spouses, and their kids and Dayle and I looked at each other and said, “Look, this is all because of us.”  That was a very special moment for us.  What a joy, what a blessing, to be able to enjoy all our children’s families.  We often thank God for our grandchildren and for the spouses that our kids have chosen.  Our kids often joke saying that we love their spouse more....I don’t think that we love them any more, but we certainly love them just as much.     
             
Our kids and their spouses.
     Next week we will be in Brookings and we hope to work out a game plan on what we will be doing.  We are so looking forward to being part of a church again for a long period of time.  We love doing what we are doing and being available to go wherever we are needed at a moment’s notice, but we greatly miss not being more involved in a church. Once we get settled in at Brookings we hope to take a couple of weeks and head south to visit Neeley, my sister and mom and take a hop over to Lake Havasu.

    Our house in Klamath Falls still has not sold.  We continue to pay all the costs of owning a house and without having any rental income it is getting quite burdensome.  Please pray with us for the house to sell.  Our realtor is still confident that it will sell.
 
   This morning (Monday) we woke up to smoke in the camp and I just figured that there was a small forest fire near by.  I was partially right....it was nearby.  Our burn pile was on fire.  Normally that is not a problem but this is fire season and all burning is prohibited.  We have not burned anything for almost two months but evidently there were still a hot spot deep down in the pile and it decided to flare up today.  I immediately ran and got about 300 feet of water hose and began spraying the pile.  We soon realized that this was going to take a long time and a lot of our drinking water so we called the local fire department for help.  The Glendale Fire Department came and brought a tanker truck and  with the help of a neighbor and his back hoe tractor they totally extinguished the fire.


Mark and his back hoe putting out the fire.
We will miss Fir Point Camp and living in the forest.
   
Check out our Facebook page for more pictures.  www.facebook.com/pastorshelley

Praise:
1.  For the gospel being preached at all four camps and many kids committing themselves to the Lord
2.  For the Lord continuing to provide for our needs.
3.  For continued health and safety.

Prayer Requests:
1.  Ministry in Brookings
2.  For our house to sell
3.  For future financial needs regarding the house
4.  For a small economical car to drive while in Brookings



Shelley for the both of us
Semper Famulus

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Always Serving

 We have been so busy here at Fir Point Bible Camp that we hardly have any time or energy to do much of anything else.  We have been making a daily log of all of our activities here at camp and it is already three pages long.  We have been fixing broken equipment, building things, repairing damaged walls, performing preventative maintenance, spray painting cabins, cutting wood, using the bull dozer to skid logs out of the forest to be cut up for firewood, and much, much more!  And there is still much to be done.  I am still amazed how God has prepared us for this work here at camp and has given us the skills and the ability to do all this.  Perhaps the most amazing thing of all is that I have almost no back pain other than common muscle aches from hard work.  But a heating pad and a couple of ibuprofen takes care of that.

Three Sundays we have driven the 120 miles to Brookings, Oregon and I have preached there the last two. This coming Sunday I will be preaching here in Glendale.  I will also be preaching July 13th in Crescent City, CA and I will be the speaker here at camp for the 3rd and 4th grade camp at the end of July. 
Preaching in Brookings
Dogwood cabin freshly painted.  (That spot is a spot on the camera lens.
Painting Madrone cabin


Cedar and Alder all finished

Painted the outdoor glider chair

We fabricated and installed galvanized tops for six fire hose boxes

As of our last letter we accepted an offer for our house.  Yesterday we learned that the buyer backed out because he was unable to secure a loan.  So we are back to square one and our realtor, Lori Graves, is going into high gear to find another buyer.  At least TJ Morgan will be able to keep his summer job of maintaining our yard.

Last week Dayle's sister (Ellen Parker) had a biopsy of her uterus with the possibility of cancer .  We are very thankful to God that the pathology report returned as benign (non-cancerous).  Yay!  However, she will be having a full hysterectomy in August to prevent any further problems.  Please keep her in prayer.

We are looking forward to a busy and enjoyable summer here at camp.  It truly is such a blessing and a privilege to be able to serve our Lord in this way (James 1:25).  Not only are we so blessed to be able to serve, we are having a great time doing it.  Dayle and I try to do every task together and we are having a blast working side by side. 

Check out our Facebook page for more pictures.  www.facebook.com/pastorshelley


Praise and prayer requests:

Praise for:
    Ellen’s biopsy coming back as non-cancerous
    Praise for God’s continued provision for us   

Pray for:                       
    Ellen’s upcoming surgery
    The right buyer for our house
    Shelley’s upcoming speaking opportunities
    Continued health and safety for us both

Shelley for us both
Semper Famulus

Monday, May 19, 2014

Port Angeles to Port Townsend to Fir Point Bible Camp

So much has happened since my last post.  On May 2-4 I spoke at the Olympic Peninsula Men's Fellowship Retreat at Fort Worden in Port Townsend, WA.  There were about 120 men in attendance.  I spoke on what makes a Biblical man.  After every session there was one to four men who wanted to talk.  They all said that they have really messed up and see that they need to start doing things right according to God's Word.  Two of the men were actually going through a divorce and now vowed to try and win their wife back. I gave Stuart Scott's book, "The Exemplary Husband" to these two men.  (I think this book should be a must read for all men.)  I continue to pray for these two men as well as for all the men in attendance.  Each man received a "Man Up" card. I asked each one to sign it and vow to be a real man of God.  At the end of the last session they gave me a standing ovation.  I immediately thought that John MacArthur walked into the room.  This retreat was very exciting for me because I really felt the Spirit of God in my speaking.  Biblical examples and verses were coming to mind that I had not written in my notes.  A couple of times I totally went off my intended outline as I was able to feel the pulse of the group.  What a privilege and joy to be used of God!
Man Card...no one can take away someone's manhood except the man himself!

Here are a few pictures taken by my grandson Asher who was able to attend with me:


I even got to play my bass with the music team.

After the retreat I returned to Jason and Shelli’s house in Port Angeles and began to prepare the trailer for travel to Fir Point Bible Camp.  On Tuesday I said my good-byes and headed south.  Ten hours later I arrived and then my Dayle arrived.  It was only two weeks that we were apart but I think as we get older it is more difficult for each of us.  Every time we have to be apart we always say, “Never again.”

On Wednesday I got right to work at camp while Dayle still had to be with Annie for a few more days.  But at least she was home every night.  So now we have been at camp for a week and a half and we have worked on many projects including fixing a gas powered golf cart, cutting grass and weed trimming, installing bathroom vents in the new building, cleaned the chapel, and more.  This next week the care takers, Dennis and Janice, will be gone, and we will have lots to do in their absence.


Here is Dayle the Weed Hacker trimming around the amphitheater.

Last Sunday (May 11th) we drove 2 1/2 hours to First Baptist Community Church in Brookings, Oregon and met everyone and toured the new facility that they want us to help turn into a conference/retreat center.  The people were very excited that we were going to be coming and we are even more excited about the future ministry.  We will leave Fir Point after the Summer camping season about mid August.  We hope to return to Jason and Shelli in Port Angeles before beginning our ministry in Brookings.  We will certainly miss our church and dear friends in Lake Havasu City, Arizona this year but we are excited that we will be in a long term ministry once again.

We have some good news on our house in Klamath Falls.  We just accepted an offer.  This was the same buyer who made an offer last month on which we could not come to an agreement.  This time we both compromised a bit and came to an agreement. It is not as much as we had hoped for but it is close and we will be done with the burden of maintenance, the bills, and the headache. The buyer is pre-approved and the only thing now is the home inspection.  Unless the home inspector finds something that I have missed all should go well.  We hope to close by the end of June.  So in 3 weeks (Lord willing) we will return to the house to have a garage sale to try to get rid of most of everything else and what we decide to keep will be placed in a storage unit in Grants Pass.

My back continues to feel great.  I am now declaring myself "healed."  I am sore from all the work but the pain that I have been living with for the last 15 years is non existent!

Prayer requests:
1.  That the sale goes through with our house
2.  Our new ministry in Brookings
3.  Our ministry here at Fir Point

Praise:
1.  For offer on the house
2.  For the opportunity to minister to so many needy men
3.  For God's direction in our lives
4.  For our daughter Annie's leg healing and her mobility 
5.  For the "healing" of my back.

Shelley for the both of us.
Semper Famulus (Always Serving)

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

The first two weeks of being here in Port Rain-a-lot (Port Angeles) has been a wonderful time with Jason, Shelli, Asher, Autumn, Aiden and the two foster children.  I even got a few bike rides in.  Aiden loves to play with our dogs.  He especially likes to play with Puggles. He can do just about anything with her and she just sits there.  Here is one of the things he did to her.
Aiden put Puggles in the baby swing...and she just sat there appearing to enjoy the ride.
Our last update kept you hanging on a couple of things.  First, the buyers decided not to buy the house as it was just too much for them.  We even decided to accept their last offer but they still chose  not to proceed.  So, our realtor will continue working hard and she scheduled another open house for May 4th.

Annie's surgery to put her leg back together went well.  Below is the x-ray of the finished product.  Both bones in her leg above the ankle were broken.  There are two plates and 12 screws. 

It has been a week since the surgery and she is still in pain.  But it is lessening every day.  Because she really can't do anything, she called begging for her mommy to come care for her.  So, sadly, I put my Dayle on a plane last Monday headed for Grants Pass--another two weeks apart (grrrrrrr).  She is now chauffeur for the boys and their sports practices, cook, maid, and nurse.  I will pick her up next week on the 6th or 7th on my way back to Klamath Falls to have our garage sale.  Then off to Fir Point Bible Camp for our Summer ministry.

This weekend has been filled with Seattle Mariners Baseball.  On Saturday our son, Boatswains Mate First Class Jason Gale, was the Coast Guard's representative to throw out a ceremonial first pitch.    I took two short videos of him with my cell phone (I forgot my good camera). 

video


video

I must say, that I am one proud father!  Not only does Jason serve in the Coast Guard with honor and has earned the respect of his superiors and others, and he is a wonderful husband and father, but, and most importantly, he loves the Lord, Jesus Christ.  Jason was in the running for the Coast Guard Petty Officer of the Year, but unfortunately he was not selected for the award.  Of Course we all think that he should have got it. 

It is a three hour trip each way to get to Safeco Field.  We got home a little after midnight from the Saturday baseball game and then on Sunday Asher and I returned for the Sunday game.  This was my time of taking him to a ball game for his 16th birthday.  The Sunday game has been planned for weeks.  We really didn't expect to go to two games but Asher loved it.  Asher is a Major League Baseball walking encyclopedia.  I am amazed at how much trivia he knows.  He knows all the rules, all the teams, all the players and all their statistics.  I can see a future for him as a baseball statistician. 

This will be my last week here in Port Angeles.  I will be doing my final preparation for the Men's Retreat coming up this weekend.  I will be speaking 5 times in 3 days.  The theme is "Man Up" and I will be speaking on being a real man according to the Scriptures.

Since Dayle had to leave two weeks early, we hope to return in September before beginning the ministry in Brookings, Oregon.  She said that she did not have enough time with the kids and she feels like she got cheated. 

Prayer Requests (not in order of precedence):
1.  Annie's recovery from broken leg and surgery
2.  The Olympic Peninsula Men's Fellowship Retreat, May 2-4
3.  Summer ministry at Fir Point Bible Camp
4.  The Brookings ministry opportunity
5.  For our house to sell.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Safe in Port Angeles, Washington

We left Klamath Falls on March 31st.  Dayle had a dentist appointment early on the 31st with our friend Dr. Tim Moore.  Tim's staff is always so friendly, happy and very knowledgeable.  If you live in Klamath Falls, I highly recommend him to you.

After her appoint we returned to the house and hooked up the trailer and headed west about 11:30 a.m.  While going up the first steep mountain grade just outside of Klamath my "check engine" light came on.  I just had a new $600 exhaust system put in and they told me that it might happen.  So we turned around and returned to the shop so they can do their magic to correct the problem. God was definitely teaching me patience and trust once again, you would think I would get it by now...... We had to return to the house, disconnect the trailer, pray, and then go to Bradley's Diesel.  The shop owner, Joe, said that it is an easy fix.  All we need to do is have the computer "re-flashed."  That means to  re-program it with all the latest updates.  No problem right?  But then he said that I have to take the truck to the dealership because they are the only one in town that can "re-flash" the engine computer.  I drove to the dealer just 1/2 mile away and they said no problem and they'll can get right on it.  Yay!  We can still stop at Annie's house and make it to the NICE Regional in Albany by the 7 p.m. start time.  An hour later I checked with the service desk and they said that they have not been able to begin because their GM computer was down.  After another hour the service advisor said that the problem was on the GM side and he did not think that they will be able to get it done today.  Now normally when a check engine light comes on it is a warning that something needs to be checked.  It doesn't always indicate a fatal engine condition.  But on my particular truck if you do not attend to the check engine light right away, the truck can go into "limp mode."  Limp mode is when the on board computer partially disables the engine and making it so you cannot go over 30 mile per hour.  Since we had a 700 mile trip ahead of us I got a little worried. The service advisor said that all I need to do is clear the code every time it comes on.  So, I plugged in my code reader into the On Board Computer port and returned to the house, hooked up the trailer and headed for Annie's house in Grants Pass about 3:30 p.m.  So while driving every single time we went up a hill and the automatic transmission down shifted the code would appear and I would clear the code with just the push of a button.  A little annoying, but it worked.  We were able to make it all the way to Port Angeles without any engine troubles. But the trip was not without problems.

We arrived at the conference just as the evening session ended at 8:30 p.m.  The retreat was wonderful.  It was so good reuniting with so many friends that we haven't seen in a long time.  There was a lot of hugging going on.  We really didn't realize just how much we missed them all!  The speaker was Knute Larson from Ohio.  Knute is a long time pastor and is now a "Pastoral Coach."   His messages were excellent practical messages on the challenges of shepherding the flock of God. 

We were able to spend some time with our friends, Ken and Joy Whitted from First Baptist Community Church in Brookings, Oregon where Ken is the pastor.  Ken told us that one of his church members purchased a nearby conference center and donated it to the church with the plans of turning it into a Christian conference center and camp and that they are looking for someone to come in for at least a year to get it up and running.  Dayle and I looked at each other and said, "When can we start?"  This is right up our alley.  We and all of you, have been praying for an opportunity to be used of God more widely and here it is! We have been involved with camp work off and on for many years and especially for the last few years at Fir Point Bible Conference Center and Camp.  Ken also wants to start a local Bible Institute.  Again, here is something that I have already prepared an entire curriculum for.   Of course we have to go and visit the church and facility and make sure that it is in fact something that we can handle and we will need to be approved by the church's elder board.  But we are already planning on serving at Brookings when we our summer ministry at Fir Point is completed.  The more we think about it, the more excited we become!

Overall the conference was a great time of fellowship, renewal, and encouragement.  I even got to play my bass guitar for two of the sessions.
Shelley Gale on Bass, Dan O'Donnell on Guitar, and Toby Beck on guitar and keyboard.
 The conference ended on Wednesday (April 2nd) at noon and we headed north en route to Port Angeles, Washington.  We spent the night in one of the State Parks.  Once there I discovered that one of the trailer tires was flat.  No big deal!  I put on the spare and then in the morning we'll go to the nearest Les Schwaab Tire Store.  I pulled into Les Schwaab in Chehalis, Washington.  Thinking that I'll just get the flat fixed.  Then I noticed that the tire had what looked like a slice between the tread.  Again, no big deal because I have a 7 year tire and wheel road hazard insurance policy.  So the tire tech examined it and said that the tire cannot be fixed because is coming apart.  It is 9 years old and it is deteriorating.  He then inspected the other tires and they too are all coming apart due to old age.   Grrrr.  Old age is not covered on my road hazard policy.  Fortunately I had purchased a new spare tire just a few months prior.  So after purchasing three brand new tires we rolled out with four new tires on the trailer and receipt for nearly $500.  After the tire tech showed me those old tires we were both amazed that they did not blow out and cause some real damage or worse.  All the tires showed signs of separation.  Once again, I am completely amazed how the Lord protects us and provides for us!

The remainder of our trip to Port Angeles was uneventful arriving in PA on Thursday (April 3rd) evening.  We drove onto their property and were excitedly greeted by everyone.  I made an appointment to take my truck into the dealership and they were able to get right on it and fix the problem.  Another $170 receipt was in my hand.  The only reason I mention the amounts that these things cost is to show how the Lord always provides for our needs even before the needs arise.  This year we are actually getting a tax refund (first time in years) and we even filed an amended 2012 tax return.  The amount of the refund completely covered the cost of these unplanned expenses! Remember last year we had a $2400 tax bill.  Then our car that we left with Mel and Annie in Grants Pass was totaled and the insurance company gave us $2400.  Is our God amazing or what???

We have been in Port Angeles for a little over a week and are enjoying every minute with our kids and grand kids and the two foster kids that Jason and Shelli have.  Being foster parents is truly an entire family ministry.  They have a 6 month old and a 2 year old and everyone helps out with them.  It is such a joy to see the entire family ministering to these two children.

Our son, Jason, has been selected, along with 12 others, in the running for the Coast Guard Petty Officer of the Year.  If he is selected for this great honor he will receive a meritorious promotion in rank. Another honor that he receives right now is to throw out the first pitch at the Seattle Mariners baseball game against the Texas Rangers on April 26th in Seattle and we are all going to be there.  We are all so very proud of him!  He is a good testimony and shining light at his station.

Our house situation has not changed.  We have just received an offer for the house.  But the offer is ridiculously low with several unacceptable demands.  We are preparing a counter offer and we will keep you informed.

Yesterday while in the church service we got a text from our son-in-law, Mel, telling us that Annie broke her leg and they are in the emergency room in Grants Pass, Oregon. Mel and Annie went to the local skateboard park and Annie fell breaking her leg. It is quite a bad break.  The Tibia of her right leg is completely separated and the fibula also has a break. The local hospital sent her home and are trying to get her into surgery with a specialist in Eugene which is a two hour drive.  Hopefully they can get her in very soon.  She is in a lot of pain and agony.

Well, she is following her big sister who also had a run in with a skateboard when she was 33, broke her clavicle, elbow, and had stitches on her head . You would think these girls would have learned by now that riding a skateboard is hazardous to one's health.

Prayer Requests:
1.  Continue to pray for the Men's Retreat May 2-4.
2.  Pray for our Summer ministry at Fir Point Bible Camp
3.  Pray for the opportunity to minister in Brooking, Oregon at their new conference center/camp ministry.
4.  Pray for our daughter Annie, the surgery, a speedy recovery, and financial provision (she has no medical coverage).

We continue to praise the Lord that my back is still doing well.  Still no pain at all!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Back in Klamath Falls

Last Friday we arrived at our house in Klamath Falls,  It was difficult leaving the kids in Sacramento, but we had to move on.  On Saturday Lyle Willoughby and myself totally emptied out our storage unit and put it all in the garage.  It was a lot of pushing and lifting but Lyle is like a machine that doesn't quit and my back doesn't hurt at all.  It is just amazing that just a few weeks ago I could barely walk and the pain was the worst pain that I have ever experienced.  Now my back is better than it has been in years.  I am actually pain free for the first time in 15 years.  Praise the Lord.

We have had several visitors stop by to say hello, thank you for the needed breaks!!

For the past few days we have been going through every single box and sorting out the stuff that we really want to keep from the stuff going to our next garage sale in May.  Now all the stuff that we want to keep fits easily in our back yard 12X16 shop with plenty of room to spare.

Wednesday our long time friend Kathy Klemz came over and worked with Dayle getting the yard sale items organized.Thank you Kathy!!

I went to my doctor today for a follow up exam for my recent pain episode and all is well.  My doctor examined my recent x-rays and explained what happened and gave me some exercises and other things to do to prevent this from happening again. Dayle has a dental appointment on Monday morning.  Then we will head north to Albany, Oregon for the NICE Regional Conference.  Then we will arrive at our son's house in Port Angeles, WA.  I will be speaking at the Independent Bible Church, Port Angeles Men's Retreat May 2-4.  


Praise: 
 1. Birth of Pearl....grand child #8 and all is well.

2.  My back healed from an injury the 1st or March and is now better than it has been in years.

3.  God continues to meet all our needs.


Prayer Requests:

1.  For a church in which to minister as interim pastor, pulpit supply, long term pulpit supply or anything from building repair to janitorial.

2.  For our house to sell in Klamath Falls. It is now vacant and has been on the market since January 1st.

3.  For the Men's Retreat at IBC Port Angeles, where I will be speaking.
Jack meeting his baby sister for the first time.

Friday, March 14, 2014

A Slow Recovery

Many of you have asked how my back is doing.  It has been over four weeks since this episode of pain started and I am doing much better but I still have a little way to go.  The intense pain is gone and  walking is becoming  easier every day and I can actually see the "light at the end of the tunnel."  I was doing all I could to get well enough to go to the Shepherd's Conference but I had to face reality and cancel my plans to go.  I have gone to the Shepherd's Conference for the last ten years and it is truly the highlight of my year.  The Conference always proves to be a wonderful time of spiritual refreshment. With all the excellent speakers, and training, and fellowship with old friends, just being there is like getting a shot of adrenaline for me.  But, alas, I was not able to attend.  At least I was able to watch most of the messages via the internet.  But it just wasn't the same.  I didn't realize it but Steve and Neeley said that I was very "grumpy" because I couldn't go.

So after all this time of not doing much of anything I think my muscles are beginning to atrophy.  I was actually able to get on the bicycle this week.  Riding actually felt good and there was no pain at all.  The problem is that I have to walk to get to the bicycle.  But I have to do something to keep the rest of my body active.  The good side of all this is that after the intense pain subsided, I have lots of time to read and study.

We hope to leave Sacramento next Friday (3/21).  We need to return to the house in Klamath Falls and do some more work there as well as empty out our storage unit and move everything back to the house until it sells. I also have a follow-up appointment with my VA Medical Provider in Klamath Falls on the 27th.  I am going to ask for an MRI so maybe we can figure out what is going on with my back.  We then plan on attending the NICE Regional Conference in Albany, Oregon before heading up to Port Angeles, Washington.

So we have another week with Stephen, Neeley, Jack and Pearl.  Oh my, we are going to miss them! Here is a picture of our two youngest grandchildren taken by our daughter Annie when she came to visit.

This Sunday (3/22) our realtor is having another Open House.  Please pray that a buyer comes and the house will sell!


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Oh the joy of Pearl and the oh the pain.

We left Lake Havasu on February 3rd and drove to my sister's in Pinon Hills, Ca.  We stayed with her for three days.  Of course she had a "brother to do" list ready for me.  I was able to complete everything she had on the list.

We arrived at Stephen and Neeley's house in Sacramento on Thursday, February 6th.  We unloaded the trailer with all the stuff we would need during our stay.  The baby was due on the 13th so we had a few days to hang out.  Seeing that I had a full five days before the baby was due, I put the trailer in storage and packed up the truck with clothes and tools and headed to Klamath Falls to do some work on the house to make it more sell-able (please pray God would be gracious to us and bring just the right person to buy our home).

I got into Klamath Falls on Saturday afternoon and went right to work on the house.  Some of the projects that were awaiting me were as follows:
  1.  Move the refrigerator back into the kitchen and move the cabinets back into the utility room
  2.  Refinish the exterior French doors
  3.  Stage the house with furniture and decorations from storage
  4.  Shampoo the carpeting
  5.  Clean out the chimney flue
  6.  Lots and lots of yard work. The yard work took two full days.  I had to cut the grass, pull weeds, and trim every bush and tree.  Then I loaded all the cuttings into a 8 X 16 foot trailer as well as my truck bed.  Had it not been for the help of Chris Myron and Lyle Willoughby, I never would have gotten everything done.
   7.  Wax and polish kitchen floor

While in Klamath, I stayed at Les and Lois Tucker's house.  My days were busy from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., but on Wednesday afternoon I finished. I jumped back in the truck and drove back to Sacramento.  I drove five hours straight and pulled up in front of Stephen and Neeley's house.  But when I opened the door, I could barely walk.  I had an excruciatingly sharp pain in my left hip.  Now, I am not a stranger to pain, but this was the worst pain that I ever had.  This certainly was not my normal pain from my lower back.  I know what that feels like.  My first thought was bursitis. I figured that I'll just take a bunch of ibuprofen and be better in the morning.  After a sleepless night, the pain was even worse and was spreading to my back and down my left leg..  I took some old Hydrocodone but even that did not help.

So now it is Thursday morning and I am home with Jack (13 months old) and everyone is at the hospital for the birth of Pearl.  Fortunately, Jack was on his best behavior and was no trouble.  Even with all the pain, I managed to care for him from 8:30am-6pm (his bedtime). Pearl Ann Wetzel was born that evening at 10:37 p.m. and was a perfect 7.5 lbs and 19 inches. 


Dayle came home late that night and she was able to relieve me of my Jack duties.  Now I can concentrate on the pain in my side.  By this time, I can't walk without the assistance of a cane.  The pain is so intense that I am double dosing on pain killers.  When Stephen and Neeley come home with the baby on Saturday morning, Stephen said, "You are going to the Emergency Room."  He took me to the VA Hospital at Mather Field.  The doctor confirmed my suspicions that it was bursitis.  He gave me a shot to reduce inflammation and gave me a bunch of drugs.  He told me to go home and that I will be better in a few days.  Stephen and Neeley convinced me to go to an acupuncturist which I did twice.  After shoving about a thousand needles into me, the pain decreased some but the relief was very short lived.  I don't think I will be returning for any more acupuncture treatments.

After a few days, the pain has not subsided and is getting worse.  So, on Thursday I went back to the ER.  This time another doctor took x-rays and determined that I did not have bursitis but rather I am having a Sciatica episode.  Now I have had sciatic pain and this was not sciatic pain.  This doctor gave me even stronger pain killers and muscle relaxers.  After taking the pills I had another sleepless night with no relief from the pain and I still have to use a cane to get around.

On Friday morning, I decide to find a chiropractor.  My first thought was chiropractic but I did not think this was an issue that a chiropractor could fix.  I checked the yellow pages and called one that was near by and he told be to come right away.  Doctor Michael Symes and I sat down and he discussed my condition and my history.  He said just by my symptoms he suspected that I had a pinched nerve at L-4.  (L-4 is where all my back problems originate.)  He got me up on his table and quickly ruled out sciatica.  He was able to adjust me and immediately took away that severe pain in my hip.  I am still having problems with leg pain and muscle spasms but it is getting better every day. 

Next week is the Shepherd's Conference. This is the highlight of my year and I don't want to miss it. Therefore, I will be going to the Chiropractor every day until I am past this episode. 

So what causes this, you might ask?  The simple answer is that I am getting older and because of my weakened back I need to take things slowly and not work 16 hour days.  I need to take frequent breaks and do my stretching exercises.  I also need to ride my bike more, hike more, and exercise more.

Just before we left Lake Havasu I had the privilege to speak on a Sunday evening at Bethany Bible Church.  Guess what I spoke on?? James 1 "Count it joy my brethren when you encounter various trials knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance..." God seems to always test us so that we live what we preach!!  Just thinking about all the pain Christ endured for us while mine was no where close... what a loving, gracious God.

So now that the pain is manageable I am able to resume my studies and my continued preparation for the Men's Retreat.  We are still looking forward to a full Summer of ministry.

Shelley and Dayle
Semper Famulus

Monday, January 13, 2014

Work, work, work...and play and pain..

One of the best things about being here in Lake Havasu is that we get to serve (work) in the church.  We love being able to work in the church building where were worship our Lord.

Dayle helping in the office
Stan and Shelley painting
Painting











Stan and Shelley building an new cover for the outside plumbing.










A mostly finished product.  Stan built the doors..not yet installed..















On Sunday January 5th I began teaching a series in the adult Sunday School titled "Man Up."  This just so happens to be the title of the series that I will be teaching at the Men's Retreat for Independent Bible Church in Port Angeles, WA this coming May.  I guess you can say that I am fine tuning my presentation with the folks here at Bethany Bible Church.


This last Wednesday I took Dayle, Stan, and Stephanie to Wing Mine which is an old abandoned gold mine.   When I first found this mine it was a 6 mile hike through the Arizona desert.  Hiking here in the desert is one of my favorite things to do...it's right up there with riding my mountain bike through the beautiful trails of Port Angeles.  Here are some pictures of the beautiful scenery all around Lake Havasu City, Arizona while hiking to the mine.





Once at the mine we found three tunnels that were carved out of solid rock.  I even brought a hammer and chisel hoping to find a new gold vein.  I didn't find any gold but I did find some quartz.  It was really fun exploring this old mine.
An entrance to one of the a mine shaft.s

A shot out from inside the shaft
Another shaft entrance.  This shaft is about 90' long.

Dayle coming in this long shaft.
So we had a good time hiking to the shaft and exploring around a bit.  We brought a light lunch due to the distance and length of the hike.  While Dayle was enjoying her bowl of cut fruit she said, "How did rocks get in here?"  Somehow, she thought, that some little pebbles got into her fruit....until something cut her tongue.  I looked into her mouth and her lower left molar had broke into pieces.

I was able to get her into the dentist the next day.  Now you have to understand......Dayle is deathly afraid of going to the dentist.  When we were first married she had to have her back teeth pulled and the only way that they could get her to acquiesce was to put her on nitrous oxide (laughing gas).  But today I literally had to escort her into the dentist otherwise she would have run for the hills.  She was doing alright through the x-rays and exam until the doctor said that she needs a crown.  "Do you have to drill?" she asked while trembling and with tears in her eyes.  The doctor told here to not worry that he will be very gentle and she wont feel much of anything except some pressure.  
Dayle looking so calm and happy......but actually this is a look of intense fear!
Then the Doctor Sorkin came in and in a few seconds he administered the dreaded shot..  Dayle was squeezing my hand so tight that it hurt.  But soon, she couldn't feel a thing and the procedure went smoothly.  




  January 27th is her return trip to have the permanent crown put in.  Dr. Sorkin assured her that it won't hurt at all and no dreaded shot will be required.

We still have lots of things yet to do before we depart on or about February 3rd; including doing a brake job on Stan's car; changing the water pump on Jim King's van; hopefully painting the church sanctuary, and some other smaller projects.   

Please pray for:
     Our house to sell
     Neeley as the baby is due on February 14th
     Safe travel as we go to Stephen and Neeley
     The men's retreat in May at Independent Bible Church in Port Angeles, WA
     Our summer ministry at Fir Point Bible Camp
     Future ministry opportunities
   
Praises:
     My back pain has just about returned to normal
     Dayle's medical issues have all been addressed and she is doing much better
     For the freedom to serve wherever the Lord leads.
     For our financial needs being met


The US Marine Corps motto  is "Semper Fidelis" = Always Faithful
The US Coast Guard motto is "Semper Paratus" = Always Ready

Our motto is "Semper Serviens" = Always Serving


Shelley and Dayle
Semper Serviens