There has been so much that has happened since my last update.
As you may have known, Ashley and Elijah, our daughter and son-in-law, have been expecting their first child. While talking with my sister, Sharalynn, Tina mentioned that Ashley was a little disappointed that she was not going to be able to have a baby shower. They do not live close to any family or any of their close friends. So, it was pretty much a foregone conclusion that she would miss out on that happy event in a new mother’s life when preparing for a new addition to their family.
Well, my sister had the idea of organizing a traveling caravan baby shower. Tina and my sister began planning and contacted friends and family. March 8th, Tina’s mom and sister, from Ohio, family and friends from California, Oregon and Washington drove to Washington. We all met at Elijah’s work on March 10th and transformed a teaching center into “Baby Shower Central.” Ashley was blown away. She had no idea. I think it took her about 10 to 15 minutes to realize what was going on.
The love poured out on her by the 12 women who attended, bringing gifts and the Lord’s blessings, along with many others who sent gifts, since they were unable to attend, was amazing. Thank you one and all.
The day after the baby shower, I got to celebrate my birthday with Ashley and Elijah, Tina, her mom and sister, along with my mom and sister. It too was a blessing. The weather in Seattle was amazing, close to 70 degrees and clear blue skies.
Ashley was due to deliver March 19. On or about March 12th, during a routine doctor’s visit, it was discovered that Ashley’s blood pressure was a little high. They decided that the right course of action was to have her return every two days so they could monitor it. When she returned her blood pressure as still a little high. They were concerned but thought to just continue to monitor her. When Ashley and Tina returned to the doctor’s office on March 19, her blood pressure was still a little too high, so they decided to keep her at the hospital. Long story short, Ashley’s water broke at 3 AM on the 20th. They were very concerned for her and the baby since her blood pressure was up and down between 160 to high 170’s over high 90’s. At 704 PM Ashley delivered Noah Khatter Knepper, 7 lbs 4 oz, 20.5 inches.
Tina stayed in Washington to help Ashley and Elijah adjust. To show them “tricks of the trade” as it were. I will fly up there the last week of April, spend time with Noah and bring Tina home the first week of May. I can’t wait to see that little guy and get my wife back. We miss her so much.
Meanwhile, back home, I continue to teach the Bible, via Skype, Tuesday nights with the Pastor’s College in South Asia. We finished the Gospel of John and started the Book of Daniel. This group of guys are so hungry for the word, they’re just drinking in every study. The class has decreased in numbers recently due to a constant, overwhelming pressure from their families for them to leave their small villages and to move to a bigger city, get a job driving a taxi and then send money home to support the family. Please pray for the guys who remain.
I wanted to make a correction too. In my last update, I stated that as a western missionary “I could never actually go to this area of the world.” Well, I mis-spoke. We have two Pastor’s Colleges and one Bible College that has been established there. We are able to go visit each of them, but in one area, I would not be allowed to teach. That would cause problems. But we can visit and be an encouragement.
And that brings me to the next bit of news. Pastor Trent, of Calvary Chapel Saving Grace, has asked me to accompany him and a team going to South Asia to visit the schools. It would also help me in getting familiar with the country. So, in faith, I have applied for a visa to travel to South Asia. The trip is planned for early to mid June and will cost about $3000. It’s money we don’t have, but we’re trusting the Lord to provide it.
One last thing, if you’re in the Orange County/Southern California area on May 5th, I’d like to invite you to the Saving Grace World Missions, 2018 Annual Missions Banquet. I was able to attend one of the past banquets when we still lived in Europe, and it was amazing. There will be good food and great speakers. There will also be a raffle for a Apple MacBook Air, along with a few other things raffled off and a few prizes. All of this is to raise funds for missions and to connect with people who are missions minded and would like to get involved in the Great Commission. If you’re interested you can get further information and register at http://sgwm.com/blog/news/sgwm-2018-missions-banquet/. I hope to see you there.
So in closing, please pray for us.
- Pray for Ashley, Elijah and Noah. Pray that God would gift them with knowledge, skills and abilities to raise Noah up in the Lord. Pray that God would use that little life, and like his namesake, stand strong for the Lord even while others are going about their business as if God doesn’t exists.
- Pray for Tina’s time in Washington with Ashley, Elijah and Noah. Pray that it would be sweet and a blessing for them all.
- Pray for traveling mercies when I go to Washington and for when Tina and I return back home.
- Continue to pray for the Pastor Colleges and for the students. Pray that God would continue to reveal His heart to us in equipping these men for the work of the ministry among unreached people groups.
- Pray that God would supply the $3000 for my trip. Pray that we would have the Lord’s heart for the region and the people. Pray for vision, anointing and wisdom for us as we go to South Asia. And please pray for Divine appointments and God’s favor. If you would like to donate to this trip you can click here to “Become A Financial Partner.” If you’re reading this on FaceBook, you can go to our website www.sgwm.com/barrow and find and click the button there.
As always, we are so thankful for your prayers and support in the ministry. If there is anything we can be praying for you for, please let me know.
Gary and Tina