Partners With The Rickers In Guatemala

November 16, 2020

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world.
If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”

1 John 2:15

Dear prayer warriors and partners in the ministry,

In the verse above, the Christian is contrasted to the world. Real Christians know that they were predestinated and chosen out of the world. This is done in a wonderful way so that they no longer belong to it. They are still in the world and yet apart from it, so that real Christians are separated from the world and contrasted one from the other. Let us remember this and not follow the world’s philosophies and its sinful and attractive patterns. Praise the Lord for the victory we can have over the world in Christ Jesus.

Evelyn’s Health

We are grateful for all those who have been praying for Evelyn! The night before her stroke, she was at the dinner table with the family talking and laughing and went to bed at her regular time. Friday morning, September 11, when she awoke, it was noticed that she had suffered a stroke that paralyzed her complete right side – arm, leg and face. We took her to the hospital where she was treated for five days. On Monday, September 14, she had a brain CAT scan and the doctors determined where the hemorrhage was. She had other tests, of course, and the doctor let her come home on Thursday the 17. She has steadily improved, but her words are few and mumbled. We praise the Lord that she smiles and does not appear to be in any pain and seems to understand some things we say to her. We sing to her practically every night, and she enjoys it. At times she tries to sing, yet the words are garbled. We praise the Lord for Juanita, our daughter-in-law, and for Lidia, a lady from the Montserrat church, who attend to her every need and administer many medications. Pray for them! The therapist comes three times a week, and they have had Evelyn stand on her feet and making motions to walk, but the feet have to be pushed. She is spoon fed liquefied food (with plenty of vitamins) along with the doctor’s prescribed medication mixed in. Pray for her improvement and recovery; may the Lord’s will be done.

Just a note on Hal’s health: “The Lord is good and keeps me going. I had a problem with my sciatic nerve and was not able to walk very well. But praise the Lord it is getting better every day.”

Opening of the Churches

The government edict by the Congress and President, on the state of calamity, was terminated September 30. We used the opportunity to open our Montserrat church the following Sunday (October 4) for the morning worship service for the first time since March 15. We celebrated the Lord’s Supper and made sure to follow the government’s protocols using hand sanitizer, masks, social distancing and of course the church was cleaned before and after the service. Then on Sunday, October 11, we opened the Los Angeles Church with a 5 o’clock Sunday afternoon worship service and communion. It was good and beneficial to see the brethren that we hadn’t seen for six months. Churches are made to be open so the saints can worship God and have communion with the people of the Lord.

Starting November 1, we use our old schedules and will have Sunday School with Catechism, worship services celebrating the Lord’s Supper monthly, and have the evening services. At the Los Angeles Church there will be a morning and evening service also. The Chimaltenango CIEF Church was opened two weeks before our churches in the city and thanks to your prayers, we didn’t lose the church to a Pentecostal group that wanted to invade and take it over. Hal and Stephen have had the opportunity to preach and teach to this group since it’s reopening. Hal had one marriage ceremony to perform, and four funerals with Stephen, but none of the deaths were of corona virus. Praise the Lord for his protection.

Service Broadcasts Continue on Facebook and YouTube

To explain, the difference between the two is that the broadcasts are now from the churches instead of our home, where we did them during the lockdowns. These were held in our home at 10:30 am and 5:00 pm. Hal and Stephen alternated with the sermons, with many responding favorably from foreign countries as well as Guatemala. Hal and Stephen also had the privilege to preach the gospel and other related subjects in Peru and Chile via Zoom, and Juanita held conferences in Peru to teach ladies groups.

Food Packages

During the pandemic and even when the churches were reopened, food packages were distributed to the widows and those who were out of work and needed help. Those with health problems were helped financially for medication. We want to thank those who sacrificially gave for this good work. This aid for the needy continues, and if you would like to have a part in this ministry please mark your gift “GUATEMALA NEEDY” and send it in to the mission Board. Along with the food packages that go out, the people receive catechism materials, prayer requests lists, sermons and other related literature, delivered by Stephen and Juanita to their homes. Those who have internet receive the literature electronically.

Scripture Calendars

In our last prayer letter we told you about the possibility of publishing the 2021 Golden Thoughts calendar for the Trinitarian Bible Society of Guatemala. Last year, many were lost or stolen en route from Bolivia. To avoid this, the TBS of Grand Rapids decided to have them printed in various countries, and one was Guatemala. Praise the Lord we now have 5,000 printed and they are ready to go out by the end of October or beginning of November. Just today, while writing this letter, a small church received calendars to evangelize from our TBS office. Pray that God will use these believers to witness and evangelize the lost through the means of the Scripture calendars.

Trinitarian Bible Society of Guatemala

Another opportunity has come to our group. There were 4,500 New Testaments with Psalms and Proverbs, shipped to our son David in Florida, from Grand Rapids, Michigan, and are ready to reship to Guatemala via ocean freight. They are now on their way to us. The TBS of London is still working on a faithful translation of the O.T., and put it together with the N.T., to make a full and accurate Spanish Bible. Pray for the translators of the O.T., and for us in Guatemala as we give out the free N.T. Pray that some will give a donation to help cover the freight. (8 boxes x 160.= $1,280)

Another blessing is that a Guatemalan brother, whom Stephen helped with the logistics to bring Gospels of John and Romans from Tennessee to Guatemala, is giving Stephen about 15,000 Gospels of John and Romans for free distribution. Pray that many will be saved as the truth goes out to the unsaved.

Dr. Jack Sin’s Book

Jack Sin’s book is ready to be published in Spanish. It was also published in English and went out through Singapore. Sixty-four pages were added, so now the price has gone up too. We are negotiating with the printer for a better price. If any would like to help in the printing or in freight charges to send out the book to other countries, please mark your gift “JACK SIN’S BOOK, GUATEMALA” and send it in to the IBPFM. We know this book (A Christians Perspective of the Coronavirus Pandemic and Biblically Related Themes Examined) will be a help to some Christians who still have fears and can’t get to the churches that are now open because of these fears. The related Christian themes are explained in a very practical and easy to understand way that brings blessings.

Finally, we wish to thank you all for your prayers, especially for Evelyn, and also for your faithful monthly support and special gifts. Thanksgiving is coming soon, so we wish you a hearty and blessed thanksgiving, with many thanks to our great God and Savior. December is just around the corner, so we wish you all a blessed and Merry Christmas because we truly believe Jesus Christ came to save us from our sins and will bless and prosper the New Year for all of us.

Lovingly, and waiting to see Christ face to face in and after the rapture,

The Rickers
Hal, Evelyn, Stephen, Juanita, Samuel, and Joshua

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